The Heiress He’s Been Waiting For by Kaitlin O’Riley

The Heiress He's Been Waiting For by Kaitlin O'Riley

In Victorian London, the Hamilton sisters are known for their bookshops—and for finding their happily ever afters on their own terms. Now, much to their chagrin, their offspring are following in their unconventional footsteps—in life and in love…

Raised in New York, shipping heiress Sara Fleming was ready to elope—until her disapproving parents tricked her onto a boat heading to England. Her only consolation is getting to see her beloved aunts and cousins. Even the start of London’s Season—and a strikingly handsome earl—can’t make her forget the man she left behind.

Considered one of London’s most eligible bachelors, Christopher Townsend, the Earl of Bridgeton, is not what he seems. Having inherited his father’s crushing debt, he must choose a wealthy bride to save his family’s estate. Though rumored to be penniless and committed to another, Sara takes his breath away—and makes him question what he truly needs to be free of the past. But he’ll have to win the headstrong beauty’s heart one kiss at a time.

The Heiress He’s Been Waiting For by Kaitlin O’Riley

The appeal of this one for me was that the setting is late Victorian England (1894). I’m a massive fan of the era, and will pick up most things that use that setting.

The Heiress He’s Been Waiting For (the title is so clunky!) is a very readable book. Kaitlin O’Riley has a style of writing that most readers will find appealing, and I bet the American heroine appeals to US readers. However…

As excited I was about the setting, I was really confused about this book.

The heroine comes from America to stay in London with her relatives who all hold different aristocratic titles, but… they run a little bookshop? One of them is a “Marquis”, even though no such title exists in Britain (it’s a Marquess – Marquis is French)? And there are also earls and dukes – all in the same family… Possibly even in the same house? I was too confused to try and figure it out properly.

Someone in the publication process should have picked up on this.

Additionally, I found the heroine to be very young – and not in years.

When I reviewed Lisa Kleypas’ Devil in Spring I commented on this quote:

 

‘To play devil’s advocate – has it occurred to you that Lady Pandora will mature?’

 

I loved the idea that maybe a very young woman hasn’t finished growing yet; historical romance readers tend to expect their twenty-year-old heroines to act like they’re forty. I like seeing heroines who don’t have everything sorted out yet.

On the other hand, Sara – the heroine of this book – comes across as too childish to be ready for marriage. Her melodramatic thoughts are one thing (I know I must have had them back then), but her melodramatic actions and constant mood changes are another. One moment she’s so devastated over her lost love in New York she’s a little suicidal, then in the same scene she’s excited to be going to London and happy and smiling. She seemed more in the Lydia, rather than Elizabeth Bennet stage of maturity.

I think that readers who either don’t know or don’t particularly care about the little details will have a good time with The Heiress He’s Been Waiting For. However, the things some others will overlook are the things that matter to me.

 

Review copy provided by NetGalley.

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