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Bewitching Benedict

Saturday, March 31, 2018

Bewitching Benedict (2017) C.E. Murphy

I really enjoyed CE Murphy’s Magic and Manners, so when I saw she had a straight-up historical romance, I put it on my wish list, and then got a surprise when Tania got it for me.

Set in the late 1700s (Many of the male characters fought in the Napoleonic wars)

Charles had returned from the Peninsular War some weeks ago only to be accosted by his parents’ hopes of a swift and suitable marriage, a barrage as ceaseless as the guns of war. He consequently spent as many waking hours as possible in the Lads’ company, avoiding not only his mother’s unsubtle hints but what few parties and socials that nice society held in the autumn.

This was a very interesting story that kept me guessing the entire time–in fact I kept reading even when I needed to go to sleep, because I was certain the end was coming soon. (It wasn’t)

Claire Dalton is a country Miss, ready for her first season, who is excited when her cousin visits, bringing with him two of his friends. However, both friends inadvertently insult her, leading to the tension between the romantic leads.

“With all due respect to my cousin, if your gentlemen friends are all so poorly raised that exposure to them causes you to forget your manners, perhaps you should consider finding new friends.”

Benedict Fairburn has been best friends with Charles Dalton since their school days–one of Charles’ “Lads” with whom Charles has surrounded himself. When he is told that his great-aunt will leave her fortune to an orphanage if he doesn’t marry before she does, he immediately goes on the marriage mart–whether he wants to or not.

Although Claire and Benedict are the main characters in this story, it was as much about Charles’ Lads and all the other characters as it was about Claire and Benedict. And I’ll be honest, I wasn’t rooting for Benedict. With good reason.

I do not wish a husband with only the makings of a gentleman. He must already be one. A woman’s job is to raise her children, not her husband; that is his mother’s duty.

But instead wanted Claire to marry Jack Graham, the competing male lead, who I liked much much more than Benedict. All of which made the story that much more compelling and interesting, because Jack had A Secret, and was also in love with someone else.

And I find it difficult to say much more without giving away all the complicated bits. Suffice to say that I really enjoyed this story, and was extremely concerned as to how things were going to work out for everyone, and was prepared to be very offended if Jack was left in the lurch. (He wasn’t. This is a romance after all.)

But really the strength of the story was the secondary characters, who I very much liked, and very much want to learn more about. (Good job there CE Murphy.)
Rating: 8/10

Publisher: Miz Kit Productions

Categories: 8/10, British, Historical, Romance     Comments (0)    



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