Sunday, February 24, 2013

Sunday Salon: Victorian Romances

Photo source: dreamstime
We may be almost out of the month of love (February), but you can always find romance in some of the most intriguing books.

This last Sunday Salon in February seems the perfect time to share 2 charming Victorian romances. Both are a delight and sure to bring a smile to your face. So fluff up those cushions, top off that cup of coffee (or tea), settle back, relax, and let me tell you what I’ve been listening to lately.

The Importance of Being Wicked by Victoria Alexander

There are several things I know for certain when I turn on an audio 9781455800124_p0_v1_s600book by Victoria Alexander:
    * I’m going to be amused,
    * I’m going to be transported to a different time and place, and
    * I’m going to be thoroughly captivated by the story.

Alexander’s latest book, The Importance of Being Wicked, doesn’t disappoint. She brings together characters from 2 previous stories - His Mistress By Christmas and What Happens At Christmas - and blends them with new faces for a tantalizing tale.

The characters reveal their true personalities through the vocals of narrator Michael Page. He does an excellent job giving distinct voices to all from the lords to the ladies. His cadence draws you in and holds you as the story unfolds.

Winfield Elliott, Lord Stillwell, has never had problems with the ladies. In fact, he’s almost been married - three times. For that reason, he has developed quite a reputation and is the subject of endless gossip.

Win is currently more interested in repairing Millworth Manor, his family’s country home, which was damaged by fire. When the firm he hires sends a woman as their representative, Win may be in for more than he bargained for. Despite wearing the ugliest pair of shoes he’s ever seen, Win finds the lovely widow quite desirable and intolerable.  

Lady Miranda Garrett is determined to make this project a success for the sake of the business and its employees. She’s heard the rumors of Win’s flirtatious way and intends to keep their relationship strictly business. But while overseeing the work, Miranda finds Win occupying not only her waking moments, but her dreams as well.

Before the two can be happy, however, they both must face issues from their past. 

The Importance of Being Wicked is an alluring blend of romance and humor mixed with a touch of mystery and suspense. The story flows smoothly and at a steady pace. The characters are well-developed and very likable. Millworth Manor playing a important role in the story, Alexander places you there with her detailed descriptions of the structure and its surroundings.

While there are characters from prior stories, new readers/listeners won’t be lost if this is their first book by Alexander. For returning fans, the appearance of previous characters will be a charming reunion bringing the circle of friends and family a bit closer.

Enjoying the trip to the Victorian London countryside, readers/listeners will be reluctant to leave as the story concludes. Hopefully it won’t be long before there’s another trip to discover who falls under Alexander’s match-making spell.

Author Victoria Alexander’s website is

The Importance of Being Wicked by Victoria Alexander, Read by Michael Page, Brilliance Audio, @2013, ISBN: 978-1455800124, Unabridged, 9 Discs, Listening Time: 10 Hours 28 Minutes

FTC Full Disclosure - This audio book was sent to me by the publisher in hopes I would review it. However, receiving the complimentary copy did not influence my review.

The heroine in most Victorian romance novels are usually prim and proper with a touch of independence.
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Author Sarah MacLean’s heroine in One Good Earl definitely doesn’t fit this mold. Lady Philippa ‘Pippa’ Marbury looks at life as a scientist. She tries to follow the rules of society, but finds herself not most times.

Narrator Rosalyn Landor does a fantastic job bringing the characters to life. She gives distinct voices to each leading you to think there’s more than one narrator. She expresses the emotions and feelings with great conviction.

As her wedding to Lord Castleton approaches, Pippa has questions of a scientific nature about personal issues between husband and wife. Her logic is to seek answers from the man reported to be an expert in matters between a man and woman - Cross. A co-owner of The Fallen Angel, the most scandalous and exclusive club (casino) in London, Cross should be able to give her all the answers she seeks.

The last thing Cross wants to do is assist this feisty woman in her scientific experiment. He may have the reputation of a womanizing rogue, but he has sworn off women for the last nine years because of a tragic event in his life.

When Pippa and Cross clash, the sparks being to fly as they are completely opposites while being so very much alike. Determination leads to dangerous results on both their parts.

The bantering between these two is contagious and you can’t help but smile. The dialogue pulls you in to be a part of the adventure. The quirky secondary characters add to the well-developed plot.

While there are times you know where the story is going next, you’ll be surprised at what’s waiting when the destination is reached. MacLean slips twists and turns in that will catch you off guard with both shock and delight.

One Good Earl was my first introduction to the writing of MacLean, but it won’t be my last. I’m eager to see what adventure the author has in store for the other partners of The Fallen Angel.

Author Sarah MacLean’s website is

One Good Earl Deserves A Lover by Sarah MacLean, Read by Rosalyn Landor, HarperAudio, @2013, ISBN: 978-0062220448, Unabridged, Digital Download, Listening Time: 12 Hours 33 Minutes

FTC Full Disclosure - This audio book was sent to me by the publisher in hopes I would review it. However, receiving the complimentary copy did not influence my review.
Thanks for stopping by today. Are you a fan of Victorian romance? Aren’t the covers for both of these novels amazing? Have a wonderful Sunday.


  1. I like the title: The Importance of Being Wicked!

  2. Mason - There's just something about the Victorian Era and romance isn't there? These certainly sound like great examples, too. Thanks for sharing.

  3. I love this time frame in my stories. Queen Victoria gave women more freedoms and rights and inspired many. I love it! Your two featured authors are my favorite and I just LOVE audio books - I'm addicted to them!


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