The arrival of the new Earl of Hawkesbury has the entire village aflutter—everyone except Lavinia Ellison, that is. In fact, in Livvie’s eyes, he is just as arrogant and thoughtless as his brother—who stole the most important person in her world.
Nicholas is weighed down by guilt, by ancestral obligations, and by the legacy of war. He hadn’t anticipated that a perfunctory visit home would engage either his mind or his heart. Then the hoydenish, intelligent, and very opinionated Miss Ellison challenges him to see past his pain and pride. But between society’s opposition, his brother’s reckless past, and a shocking family secret, there may be too many obstacles for the two of them to ever truly get along.
The Elusive Miss Ellison is the first book in Carolyn Miller’s Regency Brides: Legacy of Grace series, and is also the first book I have ever read by her. I must confess, I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect when I first picked up this novel, but the description definitely intrigued me, and since I love historicals, I had to give it a try. Fortunately, I wasn’t disappointed! Carolyn weaved quite a story into so few pages, and I really enjoyed getting to know the character and the secrets behind them.
Lavinia Ellison is quite the personality! She has so much fire and compassion in her small frame, and she definitely is the loudest character of the bunch. I don’t mean that in regards to vocal volume, but she just has the most outspoken, goes-after-what’s-right type of attitude out of all of the characters, so even if she wasn’t the main character that would make her hard to miss. Her family’s secrets that are revealed close to the end absolutely floored me—I never saw them coming—but I have to say they really helped me to see what made her (and her aunt) who she was, and I loved the plot twists those secrets brought in.
The Earl of Hawkesbury is such an intimidating figure at the beginning of this story! It is immediately obvious that Nicholas has faced some serious opposition in his life, and it initially seems that he definitely wasn’t changed for the better because of it. He is surly, and rude, and almost completely compassionless, and I had no idea how he and Lavinia would ever be able to end up together! They seemed to be total opposites! But as the story moved on, he became warmer and kinder, and near the end I was finally able to actually grow to love him!
All in all, this was an adorable, enjoyable story, and I really commend Carolyn for coming up with some interesting plot twists! I will have to be honest and say that in a couple of scenes the writing was a little less than it could be—in my opinion, anyway—but other than that I think Carolyn did a wonderful job! I am most certainly looking forward to the next books in the series, and I can happily give this novel four out of five bookshelves. I highly recommend it!
I received a copy of this book through the Litfuse Publicity Group in exchange for only my honest review.
To see where I’m linking up, check out my Where I Party page.
All credit for the italicized synopsis goes to Carolyn Miller and Kregel Publications.