Tuesday, July 5, 2016

An Elegant Façade by Kristi Ann Hunter

An Elegant Facade by Kristi Ann Hunter

I enjoy Kristi Ann Hunter’s writing. So, I couldn’t wait to read this one for review. She is an author to watch!

Let’s begin with the summary:

Lady Georgina Hawthorne has worked tirelessly to seal her place as the Incomparable for her debut season. At her first London ball, she hopes to snag the attention of an earl.

With money and business connections, but without impeccable bloodlines, Colin McCrae is invited everywhere but accepted nowhere. When he first encounters the fashionable Lady Georgina, he’s irritated by his attraction to a woman who concerns herself only with status and appearance.

What Colin doesn’t know is that Georgina’s desperate social aspirations are driven by the shameful secret she harbors. Association with Colin McCrae is not part of Georgina’s plan, but as their paths continue to cross, they both must decide if the realization of their dreams is worth the sacrifices they must make.

And now, my review:

When I read Book One in this series, A Noble Masquerade, where we were first introduced to Georgiana (the heroine of this book), I didn’t think there were any redeeming qualities in this younger sister. She was rude and judgmental, superficial and selfish. But this book gives us a look inside her world, her heart, and we do find redeeming qualities there.

We begin this book, as the author’s note tells us, with a bit of overlap of Book One. At first, I didn’t mind this. I enjoyed seeing these happenings from Georgina’s perspective. But as this overlap continued for about a third of the book, I found myself experiencing déjà vu and wanting more from the story. As the author promises, we do get to dig deeper into Georgina’s world following the overlap, and since I was hooked, I devoured this novel.

Georgina is rather unlikable. And I think she realizes she comes across as harsh and unkind. Perhaps this is partly why she hides, beyond the secret she keeps. So for a while into the story, she is unapproachable. I loved watching her transformation as the truth, and unconditional love, set her free.

Colin. What a fun hero! In Book One, he’s a bit of a clown, but we find his deeper layers in this book too. He’s humble, and competent in business. And he sees past Georgina’s façade to the woman within. And wonder of wonders, he likes what he sees. He doesn’t judge her, but calls her to honesty, to come out from behind her façade. Will she do it?

I found a few POV missteps within the story, but to be fair, I read the ARC (advanced reader copy), so these may have been weeded out by the final version. Of course, Regencies are less stringent on purist POV than other genres, so perhaps this was intentional.

There were several places within the story where I laughed aloud. That makes for a fun read. 

As to whether you could read this book without having read Book One first, yes, I believe you could and not be too lost. The overlap helps, and this book focuses directly on Colin and Georgina. 

Great read!

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