The Unlikely Lady
by Valerie Bowman
“Miss Jane Lowndes is a confirmed bluestocking. She’s convinced that if she can wait out her parents’ demand that she marry, someday she can be a confirmed spinster and hold intellectual salons, her fondest dream. No man wants a bluestocking for a wife, after all. And that’s exactly the way Jane likes it. In fact, she’s invented a fictitious chaperone to help her achieve that purpose.
Lord Garrett Upton is a devil-may-care confirmed bachelor. He’s lived through the war, and now that he’s back in London, he intends to enjoy life to the fullest. Marriage is certainly not a part of that plan. He’s known Miss Lowndes for years, and the two of them have long engaged in a war of words. Jane’s latest scheme to pretend she has a fake chaperone is none of his business . . . until her desire to involve herself in a scandal becomes all too personal.
When Garrett and Jane mistakenly kiss at a wedding party masquerade, their well-documented dislike for each other is turned on its ear. And when a devious widow, who will stop at nothing to have Garrett, plots to keep them apart, will their desire for each other overcome their dreams of remaining unattached?” -Goodreads
While Valerie Bowman’s novels all have the typical historical romance covers featuring women wearing dresses that wouldn’t have been made in that era, her story is absolutely beautiful.
This is the third book in the playful brides series which follows three friends and their battle for romance. The first of the series is The Unexpected Duchess which tells Lucy’s schemes that result in her becoming a duchess. The second book The Accidental Countess gives Cassandra’s scheme to gain her love, and the third book The Unlikely Lady gives Jane’s accounts of accidentally falling in love because of her friends’ schemes. While I’ve thoroughly enjoyed all three of these novels, the third is my favorite. It may in some way have to do with the fact that the hero and heroine of the story were also in the previous two novels giving the reader a greater and fuller appreciation for them.
Jane Lowndes, our heroine, reminds me of myself (which is probably part of the reason this one is my favorite). She is in her mid-ish 20s, unattached, never found someone she could envision marrying, a self-proclaimed spinster and bluestocking, and she loves to read. She enjoys reading more than social interaction. Basically she is exactly like me. Our hero of the tale is my ideal man, well read, fit, compassionate, and funny.
I appreciate that this was a romance that didn’t have a super evil villain, just an evil widow who is more of an annoyance than anything else. I’ve granted this novel 5 stars for his beautiful romance that brought together bickering acquaintances.