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1.0 out of 5 starsSketchy content was not for me
Reviewed in the United States on August 25, 2017
I did not finish this book, hardly even got started, but was offended by some of the content from the get-go. I hoped it would be a clean read, but in the first chapter there is a description of the beginnings of an illicit tryst as another character accidentally views it. A naked woman, fondling, etc. . . . I stopped reading. This may not bother some, but those who prefer to avoid it should be aware. I wish I had not purchased this book.
No. And I had hopes for this one too. It wants to be funny, and sets up funny situations, but without the dialogue or description to carry it off. I think it wanted to be scary, but I was never for a moment frightened. Tries a few times to be titillating, but falls a long way short. And I'm going to be polite and say there was no proofreading, because otherwise, I'd have to believe the author can't tell "formally" from "formerly"--or, I suspect, "tong" from "tongue." Time and again you find something which will not trip Spellcheck, but was clearly not the right word. To write a credible historical novel, you have to make the reader believe, just a bit, that this is actually taking place there and then. I never could. Start by trying to imagine a young woman of the respectable classes shinnying up a tree in a Regency day gown, and go from there. The "undaunted debutantes" of the title exist, for purposes of the story, without family, connections of income level--credible perhaps from the 1970's on, but not in the London of the Prince Regent. I will not give up on the author. The main plot was credible and original, and those are steadily less common. But she has to learn to proofread or find someone to do it for her. And she needs to actually study the period--by which I do not mean "read more Regency romances." There's hope, but she didn't put in the work this one needed.
This was a quick read with a bit of action and adventure tied in with a mystery. The general story was pretty good, but it quickly became obvious who pushed Tilda down the stairs even if Edith was too blind to figure it out. If you don't figure it out on your own, it could be said this ends on a cliffhanger since the trio still haven't reached a conclusion on the murderer. However, it seemed pretty obvious to me, so I found no need to read further. Edith wasn't my favorite character. She was too headstrong and naive, and her behavior was not at all fitting for someone of her station. At times she seemed smart, and at other times she seemed dim. She was lucky to have caught Triston's attention and gained his favor. Triston was admirable, and I liked his sense of humor. Edith called him arrogant, but I would call him cocky. He could have been condescending and rude, but he was not. He was honorable and protective, and despite looking like an Adonis, it was his personality I was really attracted to. I thought about rating this 3.5 stars, but there were a few typos that need to be fixed. Only one of them caused me trouble, where I had to reread the paragraph, but the others were easily overlooked. Not a bad way to pass the time while I waited in line.
It begins with a tragedy. On the night of her wedding, Lady Tilda falls or is pushed down the stairs to her death. Her new husband, the Duke of Abercorn, doesn’t seem to be terribly upset about it. Even though they have not been able to prove the Duke is responsible for her death, Tilda’s closest friends, Ladies Edith, Luci, and Ophelia are determined to find the evidence they need to prove his guilt.
We next see the friends in London about a year later. The girls are still trying to prove Abercorn is guilty of Tildas death, but they have branched out to warn London’s ladies about unscrupulous men through a column in the newspaper. Edith, although she is the most skeptical of the three, is best at investigating and gathering clues. She and Tristan meet when he catches her in a tree spying on Abercorn. They continue to run into each other, and the result is hilarious, until Edith is kidnapped. Now Tristan and the ladies join forces to find and rescue Edith.
This is a story that holds your interest from the prologue right through to the epilogue. It is a fast paced plat with a number of twists, turns, and surprises. It is the first in the Undaunted Debutants series centered around the three ladies trying to solve their friend’s murder. Tristan and Edith are wonderful together. Luci and Ophelia are tough and determined. You will love meeting Tristan’s sisters, Pru and Chastity. It will be interesting to see what kind of adventures are ahead for Luci and Ophelia.
5.0 out of 5 starsYou'll disappear Right into this story
Reviewed in the United States on May 23, 2017
Christina McKnight has created a wonderful world of romance and suspense when Lady Edith gets caught up in trying to catch her friend's murderer. She begins her own private surveillance of the Lord who had pushed his new bride down the stairs to her death. Lady Edith is a smart, independent woman who probably has more bravado than sense but she is so delightfully written you can't help but love her. No wonder Triston can't ignore her - he first sees her hiding in a tree and is a witness to her very unladylike fall from the tree with her skirt over her head. How can two such great characters help but fall in love. I can't wait to read further about other Undaunted Debutauntes in the future.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on November 25, 2020
I'm not sure what this is, but it's not really a romance.
The whole story is very rushed and there is no real romance in it. I'm not talking about the fact it's "clean". That's fine. There's simply not a lot of interaction between the two main characters. They talk a few times and suddenly they're in love and getting married. There's nothing that really leads us to that point. By the end, they are still pretty much strangers and never at any point did it feel like they'd made any kind of connection.
There are things going on in the background which are never really fleshed out. And her disappearance lasts only for a few hours. The characters are never given time to develop and we never really get to know them very well at all. There's just not much to this story and I found it quite dull.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on December 31, 2020
It was disappointing. Was this meant to be a Regency? If it was, WHY was Lady E wearing knickers when she fell out of the tree? Everything I remember reading about Regency clothing seems to indicate that this fashion would not have happened yet, possibly towards the end of the Regency period.