Sarah is back! For those of you who don’t know her, Sarah is a library science student and a part-time librarian. She runs the blog Sarah’s Bookshelf and you can also find her on Goodreads.
I first read Celeste Bradley when she co-authored a book with one of my favorite contemporary authors, Susan Donovan. The book, recently republished under the name Unbound, follows a story of a courtesan and her diary of sexual exploration. It was a fabulous read, but more importantly it introduced me to Bradley. I'm not usually a huge historical fan, but Bradley has a way to keep me laughing, sometimes crying, but almost always finding time to finish any book that I can get my hands on. This book was no exception to that. In fact, I can't wait to read the other books in this series, including the previous book, When She Said I Do.
We initially meet Mrs. Miranda Talbot, a naive widow, as she is trying to locate a man that she's previously met and very attracted to. She knows his last name, Worthington, but not much else. Her curiosity has gotten the best of her, but when she finally locates him a huge explosion occurs, and she is saved by the mysterious object of her affection. Only it turns out that man is different from the man she thought she was looking for. He is actually a twin. She doesn't realize this fact until the twins actually confront each other about their mutual interest in Miranda.
There are a lot of ways you can go with a good twin romance, which was one of the reasons that I adored this book. Bradley decides to take the route of a traditional romance, so no ménage funny business going on here. The Worthington family's size will lend itself easily to future books in this series, plus some great background knowledge of the various personalities. I can imagine we are going to see great things from the littlest Worthington, Atalanta, who seems to have a penchant for trouble. Can't wait!
This book felt like a very fresh story. The character development, especially with Miranda, seemed very genuine. One of the reasons that I often have trouble enjoying reading historicals is that the resolution often feels too contrived for me--the man saves the day, etc. I did not feel that way at all with this book and the resolution worked for me. The side stories never detracted from the main story and truly gave a great foundation to future books within the series. Bradley's sense of humor really shined through Attie's antics, as well. I feel like we should have "I heart Button" buttons made up or something.
If you haven't given Bradley a shot, I definitely recommend her. The writing is solid, the stories are interesting, and the characters are genuine. Her stories sometimes start mid-stream, but they are always very easy to get up-to-speed on. They tend to be a little funnier than dramatic, so if you need a chuckle, Bradley is your gal.
Guest Review by Sarah
TWICE THE TEMPTATIONAfter years of being a quiet, dutiful wife, the recently widowed Mrs. Miranda Talbot is finally free to do as she pleases. As an attractive woman of independent means, Miranda is suddenly turning heads all around town. When she meets the dashing Mr. Castor Worthington, she is swept away by his passion. Is he too good to be true?DOUBLE THE DESIRELittle does Miranda know that there is more to Castor than meets the eye. In fact, he’s a twin. Castor’s brother, also a confirmed bachelor, takes his romantic pursuits—and rivals—very seriously. When Castor discovers Miranda is being courted by his own twin, his competitive nature takes over. Who will be the one to win Miranda’s hand and heart? The race to say I do is about to begin…
And Then Comes Marriage by Celeste BradleySt. Martin’s Paperbacks. July 30, 2013