(Image from Deseret Book)
(Note: Romancing Daphne is a companion novel to Courting Miss Lancaster and Seeking Persephone. Although this review will not contain spoilers for Romancing Daphne, it may inadvertently reveal plot surprises from the other two books. As always, I recommend reading series [however loosely connected the books may be] in order.)
Daphne Lancaster has always been known as the short, plain one. Next to her sisters—all of whom possess more beauty and grace than she—the 18-year-old tends to blend into the wallpaper. It's just as well. Daphne prefers the quiet order of her herb garden or the book room to any ballroom or theater. The only reason she is enduring a come-out at all is because her guardian—the formidable Duke of Kielder—is insisting upon it. No one expects Daphne's Season to be successful, least of all Daphne herself.
Everyone is shocked when Lord James Tilburn begins paying attention to the timid young woman. Although Daphne has loved him from afar since she was 12, she never dreamed he would ever notice someone so forgettable as herself. Despite her initial mistrust, Daphne finds herself blossoming under James' attentive eye. When she discovers the true purpose of Lord Tilburn's courting, however, Daphne will be shattered to her already fragile core.
Daphne never expected love to find her. Now that she's had a taste of it, she fears she can no longer live without it. Will shy Daphne ever find someone who will truly love her? Or is she destined to be alone forever?
Sarah M. Eden is a master at penning warm, witty novels full of earnest characters, sparkling repartee, and swoon-worthy romance. Romancing Daphne is no exception. Daphne is an undeniably empathetic heroine, a woman whose fears and insecurities make her extremely relatable. James is likable as well, although both of the lead characters are somewhat overshadowed by the more colorful personalities of The Duke of Kielder and young Artemis Lancaster. An engaging cast overall. Although I enjoy slow-building romance, the Romancing Daphne does feel overly long. I don't read much romance; when I do, I like it short and sweet. The story gets formulaic and predictable, too, but honestly, that's what I've come to expect from this genre. All in all then, I enjoyed Romancing Daphne. It's nothing original or mind-blowing, but it's a fun read, the kind of light snack I like to consume between heavier literary meals.
(Readalikes: Other Regency/Proper romances by Sarah M. Eden, Jennifer Moore, and Julianne Donaldson)
If this were a movie, it would be rated:
for brief, mild violence
To the FTC, with love: I received a finished copy of Romancing Daphne from the generous folks at Covenant. Thank you!
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