Tag: Kieran Kramer

Review: Loving Lady Marcia by Kieran Kramer

Posted August 30, 2012 by Rowena in Reviews | 1 Comment


Rowena’s review of Loving Lady Marcia (House of Brady #1) by Kieran Kramer

Hero: Lord Duncan Lattimore
Heroine: Lady Marcia Brady

In the House of Brady, three very lovely girls have hair of gold—and hearts to match—but finding a match among the gentlemen of London is one comedy of errors that could bring down the house…

MARCIA GETS SCHOOLED…

Of the three Brady sisters, Lady Marcia has always seemed the girl most likely to lead a perfectly charmed life. But after a handsome cad breaks her heart, she swears off love and devotes her life to teaching girls at a private school. In spite of her family’s wish for a London debut, Marcia is happy where she is—until terrible news sends her back to the Brady clan…and into the arms of an unexpected suitor.

ON THE SUBJECT OF LOVE

A dark and dashing earl who knows Marcia’s past, Duncan Lattimore is surprised by what a fascinating and independent woman she’s become. Marcia, too, is surprised—by the fiery attraction she feels for Duncan. But why—why—must he be the brother of the scoundrel who broke her heart? Why must Marcia’s rival at school forbid her from seeing him? How can this lady possibly resist this fellow—when they know that it’s much more than a hunch…?

I was drawn to this book because it’s the historical Brady family, how could I not want to read this book? This first book in the House of Brady series is Marcia’s book. Marcia is first introduced in this book when she’s traveling to Ireland with the two Lattimore brothers. She’s almost sixteen years old and she takes quite the fancy to the younger Lattimore brother, Finn. The older Lattimore brother just inherited his earldom and has a lot of things on his mind. Making nice with the young woman that they’re traveling with is not one of them. Marcia takes quite the offense to Duncan (the older Lattimore) and his neglect in proper manners toward her but let’s it slide because the younger Lattimore returns her crush.

On Marcia’s sixteenth birthday, she’s with Finn and she’s in love and he makes her the happiest sixteen year old on the planet until she wakes up the next morning and is thrown from cloud 9 and falls flat on her face, back on planet reality. With her heart broken, Marcia has no choice but to move on.

Fast forward all of these years later and Duncan Lattimore is once again thrown into her world. Of course, this doesn’t make Marcia happy at all. She holds him responsible for crushing her young and in love with his younger brother Finn’s heart. Duncan, on the other hand is happy to see her as he’s got a few years under his belt at the helm of the family title and he’s got a son that he can dote on. He’s got a family. He may not have a wife but he’s got a son and a house full of servants that dote on him and his son. His life is good and when he meets Marcia on the street, she’s grown into a beautiful woman and Duncan wants to reacquaint himself with her.

Seeing how far Marcia came from the first time she met Duncan to all of those years later made for some interesting reading. She went from being that starry eyed young woman who was in love with the man of her dreams and ready to run away and get married to the headmistress of a school who is a realist through and through. Watching as Duncan removed those walls around her heart was cute.

I really liked Duncan. He was such a strong and solid presence in Marcia’s life and I wanted to hug him close and give him the family he longed for. There were times when I didn’t think Marcia was good enough for him because when things got bad, she ran and that bothered me. I understood her mistrust of him at first because all she had to go on before she learns the truth about Finn is Finn’s word and she was in love with him all those years ago so why wouldn’t she believe him? But when things between them progressed and they were friends and she knew where his head was, and she shied away from him anyway? I wanted to wring her neck.

There was plenty to enjoy in this book. From the Brady family (they had me laughing quite a bit, especially young Cynthia) to seeing Alice and even Tiger to Duncan’s son, Joe. They all added fun to the story and I really enjoyed getting to know them. I loved that the Brady family embraced Duncan and his son and I loved how they were there for Marcia when she finally came clean about what happened to her back in the day. There were times when I wanted to wring Marcia’s next though. When she becomes engaged to Duncan and all that madness that followed that? I wanted to kick her in her teeth but when the end came, I forgave her. How could I not?

Overall, I’m not at all mad that I read this book. I enjoyed the way that the story unfolds and I enjoyed getting to know the different characters. I’m mighty curious to see who’s story will be next and I will most definitely be reading it too.

Grade: 4 out of 5

This book is available from St. Martin’s Press. You can buy it here or here in e-format.

Review: When Harry Met Molly by Kieran Kramer

Posted January 12, 2011 by Holly in Reviews | 0 Comments

Holly‘s review of When Harry Met Molly (Impossible Bachelors, Book 1) by Kieran Kramer.

Dashing Lord Harry Traemore is perfectly content to live out his days in the pursuit of pleasure. But when he’s named by the Prince regent as one of society’s ‘Impossible bachelors’, Harry is drafted into a ribald romantic wager. The rules of engagement are scandalously simple: the bachelor whose mistress wins the title of ‘Most Delectable Companion’ gets to remain unmarried. Harry is utterly unconcerned about his status…until his latest lightskirt abandons him.

Enter Lady Molly Fairbanks. Harry’s childhood friend – actually, ‘foe’ is more like it – is the most unlikely companion of all. She’s attractive but hot-headed, and in no mood for games. Besides, what could the self-indulgent Harry possibly know about what makes a woman delectable? It’s time for Molly to teach him a lesson once and for all…but will it lead to happily ever after?

I’m very conflicted about this novel. It isn’t often that I’m so torn when I finish a book.While this novel was enjoyable, I had a hard time suspending disbelief through much if it. I’m willing to give the characters some leeway in any historical novel I read, if the author provides an entertaining enough read to distract me from the fact that what’s going on would never have been allowed in real life. Kramer exceeded in this at times, but all too often I was left feeling vaguely ill, waiting for the ax to fall and the characters to be caught.

Harry and Molly have been adversaries since the year Molly was 13, fancied herself in love with her sister’s fiance, and proceeded to tell the world that she’d seen Harry (the younger brother of her sister’s fiance) kissing her sister two weeks before the wedding. With that one act she forever changed her future and Harry’s. So started a lifetime of animosity.

When Molly runs into Harry as she’s on her way to elope with her father’s assistant some 8 years later, not much about their feelings for one another has changed. Due to circumstances outside their control, Molly’s intended runs off with Harry’s mistress..which is really bad timing for Harry because he’s been roped into a wager with 5 other men who are all hoping to win a full year of freedom from marriage, thanks to the prince regent.

So they agree to help each other – Molly will pretend to be Harry’s mistress for a week. If she wins the title of “most delectable companion” (something she and the other mistresses will be competing for during the course of the week), Harry will help her find a husband during the next season. In the meantime, Harry will teach her what she needs to know to be a mistress and they’ll hope for the best.

Harry has always been “the spare”. Being the second son of a duke, there were no expectations for him to do anything great with his life, especially after the incident with his older brother’s fiance. He was shipped off to the army where his heroics were overshadowed by a scandal involving the wife of a senior officer. Since his return from the army, he’s done his best to live up to his bad reputation. His feelings of inadequacy really defined him and gave him some much needed depth.

At the outset of the story Molly was a naive girl who let her emotions lead her in everything. She’s confident she’ll have no trouble pretending to be a mistress and winning the competition alongside Harry. It isn’t long before she realizes she’s in over her head. Her desire to win over the other mistresses and her constant blundering were hard to read at times. Her inner strength and perseverance eventually emerged, which made her much more likable.

Naturally I had some trouble accepting that a young noblewoman could pretend to be a mistress without consequences. First of all, who would believe it? She’s a girl who’s been tucked away at school or acting as companion to her ailing aunt for the last 8 years. I cringed for her every time she made some faux pas or someone hinted that she wasn’t a real mistress. Not to mention the fact that they weren’t exactly discreet while discussing their real arrangement, leaving themselves wide open for discovery. Beyond that, since they both come from influential families, the ruse seemed even more ridiculous.

But here’s where I’m conflicted. Both characters showed tremendous growth (especially Harry) and I truly enjoyed their journey into love. But I think the author asked too much of us with the plot, especially at the end.

Despite the issues I had with this book, I’ve already started the next. Though I struggled with the plot, I enjoyed the characters and Kramer’s writing.

3.75 out of 5

The series:

When Harry Met Molly (Impossible Bachelors)Dukes to the Left of Me, Princes to the Right (The Impossible Bachelors)

This book is available from St. Martin’s Press. You can buy it here or here in e-format.