Series: Smythe-Smith Quartet #4
Published by Avon on January 27th 2015
Genres: Historical Romance
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Sir Richard Kenworthy has less than a month to find a bride. He knows he can't be too picky, but when he sees Iris Smythe-Smith hiding behind her cello at her family's infamous musicale, he thinks he might have struck gold. She's the type of girl you don't notice until the second—or third—look, but there's something about her, something simmering under the surface, and he knows she's the one.
Iris Smythe–Smith is used to being underestimated. With her pale hair and quiet, sly wit she tends to blend into the background, and she likes it that way. So when Richard Kenworthy demands an introduction, she is suspicious. He flirts, he charms, he gives every impression of a man falling in love, but she can't quite believe it's all true. When his proposal of marriage turns into a compromising position that forces the issue, she can't help thinking that he's hiding something . . . even as her heart tells her to say yes.
Julia Quinn is a staple on my historical, regency era shelf. Her books tend to be lighthearted, whimsical, and solidly written. When I came across The Secrets of Sir Richard Kenworthy I was intrigued. Honestly, I have read much of Ms. Quinn’s recent works – sadly, my “fun” reading time has been cut back even more than before. (Tear & Sniffle)
The Secrets of Sir Richard Kenworthy started off strong. Sir Richard is in desperate need of a wife. Knowing he will find plenty of eligible ladies in London, he leaves his country estate for the big city. It is at a concert where he meets our very likeable heroine, Iris Smythe–Smith. Personally, I didn’t care of her name, but she is a refreshing character. Most regency ladies are either push overs or are stalwart with few falling in the middle. Iris is suspicious of Richard’s motives for wanting to get to know her. She views herself as “plain” and has never had a man pursue her with such interest.
There are a few twists to the storyline that spice thing up a bit. Though I didn’t like how manipulative the hero was at times, I did feel as if the characters had real chemistry. However, the book became a bit…irritating towards the end, which is what kept me from giving it 4 stars. Sir Richard’s sister were spoiled, rude, and selfish. So much so, they nearly ruined the story for me.
As I said, I really liked Iris. She carried the book and for her I give it 3 stars. Richard was decent as heroes go. He was charming and determined to help his family no matter the consequences. Although, I don’t think his sisters were deserving of his sacrifices.
Even though this particular book missed the mark for me, I will continue to watch for new releases from Julia Quinn. This book has by no means frightened me away from her work.