When stable hand Nolan Price learns from his dying mother that he is actually the son of the Earl of Stainsby, his plans for a future with kitchen maid Hannah Burnham are shattered. Once he is officially acknowledged as the earl’s heir, Nolan will be forbidden to marry beneath his station.
Unwilling to give up the girl he loves, he devises a plan to elope–believing that once their marriage is sanctioned by God, Lord Stainsby will be forced to accept their union. However, as Nolan struggles to learn the ways of the aristocracy, he finds himself caught between pleasing Hannah and living up to his father’s demanding expectations.
At every turn, forces work to keep the couple apart, and a solution to remain together seems further and further away. With Nolan’s new life pulling him irrevocably away from the woman he loves, it seems only a miracle will bring them back together.
This is the first book that I’ve read from Susan Ann Mason. However, I had to try it because I found the premise to be totally fascinating–a stable boy being the son of an Earl? Yes, please. My thoughts:
What I liked
Father-son relationship. I love books based off of relationships be it romance or familial. Whenever Nolan and his father were on the page together, for me, the story slowed down. I wanted very much to see them come together.
The story. Mason managed to surprise me with the romance. I did not expect what I read and that kept me turning the pages well into the night. I’m not going to lie, as a regency-purist I didn’t know how she was going to make this situation work. But she did (even if it was a bit Disney-esque). Also, there are several situations where the author could have let miscommunications ruin it and I like that she didn’t. She made Nolan and Hannah face each other.
Spiritually, the characters must learn to trust God, and to realize that He might have a bigger plan.
What I didn’t like
Father-son relationship. It was kind of disappointing. While I felt like, at the end, both men came to understand each other, I never felt them connect. The Earl kept upsetting Nolan. Nolan kept upsetting the Earl. I kept wishing for their relationship to strengthen.
This book went too long. I loved the beginning, even the middle, but by the end I was skimming.
Romantic scale: 7.5
Overall, a very good book and rather surprising at times.
** I received a copy from Bethanyhouse. My opinion was not affected in anyway.**