Thursday, December 15, 2016

Review: Chasing Lady Amelia by Maya Rodale

Series:     Cavendishes #2
Pub. Date:June 28, 2016
Publisher:Avon
Length:384 pages

I am new to Maya Rodale, having started with Lady Bridget's Diary earlier this year. I liked the premise of this series, with the first book being a light-hearted historical take on modern books/cinema a la Bridget Jones' Diary and Mean Girls. I didn't get the same modern cinema vibe with this story, but it was still good fun. This story is told concurrently with Bridget's, so you could probably read them out of order if you were so inclined.

If you haven't read Bridget's Diarythen you will want to know that series follows the Cavendish family, American horse farmers were thrust upon London when the James Cavendish inherited one of England's most-respected dukedoms. Only the bon ton looks upon Americans with disdain, seeing them as little better than the savages they share land with across the pond. Our heroine, Lady Amelia, may be the most hoydenish of them all.

As the youngest of the Cavendish siblings, Lady Amelia is the least mature and used to getting away with most of her scandalous behavior with indulgence and pats to the head. Now that she has arrived in London and is under the thumb of the Duchess of Durham, Amelia is feeling hemmed in by all the rules she must follow in polite society. One mustn't use crass language, one mustn't remove their uncomfortable shoes at a ball, and one definitely mustn't disappear to explore all of London with a scoundrel. Amelia is just so tired of seeing ballroom after ballroom every night with the same uppity women and leering men. I liked Lady Amelia, even though she was a tad immature, it was more fun than annoying. She displayed an honest joy and enthusiasm for life that was endearing, and I can see how that would have been infectious to those around her.

Alistair Finlay-Jones sees himself as a half-breed, orphaned, fortune hunter, who is nearly alone in the world. The only family remaining to Alistair is a stodgy old uncle who treats him with disdain and drove him away from home after a tragic accident. Since that time, Alistair has been traveling in search of... something. He yearns for his uncle's approval to such an extent that he scurries home as fast as possible when his uncle summons him after six years with no word. When Alistair discovers that his uncle wants him to marry one of the scandalous Americans, Alistair agrees readily hoping that this will finally win his uncle's approval. I liked Alistair when he was with Amelia... she brought out the fun and flirty side of him. Their time together let me forget about how much of an omega male Alistair really was - he had no back bone whatsoever when dealing with his crass uncle. That drove me a little bit crazy. 

This was a bit of a whirlwind romance where our H/h meet and fall in love within a period of about 24 hours. Although it was instalove, I didn't feel like it unfolded too fast. Rodale did a good job to make you feel like you were racing the clock with them... they had to fit everything into one day before going back to the real world and facing the consequences of their actions.

I continue to like the Cavendish siblings and how close-knit and down-to-earth they are. I really hope they all end up thumbing their nose at the bon ton and quit giving a fig about what the society matrons think. I felt like the Duchess of Durham softened a bit in this installment, particularly toward the end of the story. I am now interested to see if the remaining books of the series take place concurrently or if all the siblings will be married off this season.  Stay tuned for the review of Lady Claire is All That later this month.