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Rosalind: A Regency Romance

Bachelor Brides, Book 1
Narrated by: Helen Taylor
Series: Bachelor Brides Series, Book 1
Length: 6 hrs and 43 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (9 ratings)

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Summary

He is determined to avoid marriage, she to despise men....

London 1818: Destitute, disillusioned, and desperate, Lady Rosalind Marlowe sets the tongues of Regency London wagging when she becomes the "Mayfair Thief". Targeting only those who had won large sums of money from her father, bleeding him dry and causing him to take his own life, she decides to teach them a lesson. She takes something valuable from each, leaving her calling card with a bible quote behind. On her last outing, she is caught red-handed.

Bored, restless, and guilt-ridden over the death of his own father and with his accusations of him being a selfish whelp still ringing in his ears, Lord Atherton heads off a Bow Street runner who is pursuing Rosalind. In an altruistic act, he engages her to be a companion to his mother, leading her to believe he is making amends for his father’s actions. Unaware that he has become the target of enmity from a desperate gambler from whom he has won a large sum of money, they are thrown into a series of increasingly dangerous situations.

Even as events conspire to draw them closer together, Rosalind discovers she has been hired under false pretenses. Will they manage to overcome both pride and prejudice to finally find happiness, or will an unexpected letter from a solicitor drive a final wedge between them?

©2018 Jennifer A. Hambly (P)2019 Jennifer A. Hambly

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Rosalind

Rosalind sets out to get revenge on all that wronged her father before his death. She is on her last mission when basically all goes wrong. Lord Atherton offers her a fresh start and she agrees. As time passes she becomes reacquainted with this family that has a great connection to her father and learns all things are not what they seem. Helen Taylor does a fantastic job with the narration and bringing this story to life.

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Great!

This was a lovely listen. Rosalind is a cute and lovable heroine. The sparks fly immediately between her and Lord Atherton.
I loved how spirited Rosalind was. She wasn't afraid to get stuck in and help in situations that other ladies would shy away from much to the annoyance of Lord Atherton. There was lots of humour in their interactions and it made for very entertaining listening.
The characters found themselves in plenty of dangerous situations and the suspense made it all very exciting.
The narration is very good. I will be looking out for the next book in the series.


I voluntarily reviewed an advance reading audio copy.

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Extremely well written and read

I thoroughly enjoyed this book as it led me from its start to finish enjoying the humour, drama and romance. I also found the book educational to the era and enjoyed imagining how it would be like to live in that time. The twists and turns of Rosalind’s life was intriguing as I wanted to learn more. You feel for her in her plight to get revenge and the turning of events which were not to be expected as all unfolds to a very Happy result. I love to 2 boys cheeky and fun they did make me laugh out loud. I can recommend this book and not being much of a reader myself I give a big thumbs up to audio books as it’s great to listen anytime, like walking the dog. Well done Jenny Hambly you are a very clever lady.

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great book

He is determined to avoid marriage, she to despise men....London 1818: Destitute, disillusioned, and desperate,
great regency book

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

A Regency romance with a fun family at its heart

I enjoyed this audiobook and its slight departure from many similar historical romances, but it still adheres to most of the traditional elements and I'm not sure I would really describe it as a 'thriller', despite the claims on the cover.

In the beginning I was thrown a little off-kilter by the easy openness between characters who are scarcely acquainted, which is so uncommon for the era that it sometimes unseats it slightly. Their warmth is charming, but it takes some getting used to.

I especially loved Lord Atherton and his family. The Dowager, Lady Atherton, is a wise and wily matriarch and his sister, Belle, is a delight. They contributed much of the humour which really helped endear me to the characters and become invested in their fates. It felt very much like Sir Philip Bray's story were being teased for a future novel, and I hope this is so as it would be nice to see him take a more central role.

As well as not always being faithful to Regency grammar and styling, some of the language felt overly-embellished at the beginning, as if the author had tried to squeeze in as much cant and cockney as possible to try and make it authentic, and to pepper the text with facts and phrases discovered during her research.

This gimmicky tendency was exemplified by lengthy and recurring references to "Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen", which Rosalind says she has "always wanted to read". This is an awkward conceit which really pulls the listener out of the story and cheapens any moment it is shoehorned into. I had only just forgiven it when the author pulled out an "...although it goes against my better judgement" speech straight from the pages of the aforementioned classic. Referencing such a well known text so directly makes the book feel like amateur fanfiction, and is all the more frustrating because the rest of this audiobook is certainly good enough to stand on its own two feet. Despite the knowing comparisons it still appears trite and rather silly, and utterly ruined one of the most highly anticipated scenes between Rosalind and George by turning it into a clumsy parody.

I do appreciate the compulsion to honour one's forbears when writing genre fiction, but it is rarely done with enough subtlety to blend into the narrative. Unfortunately, on this particular matter, this book dispenses with subtlety altogether.

Alongside the traditional Regency elements was, of course, the dastardly plot against Lord Atherton. This lent the story an interesting diversion and plenty of intrigue to keep up the pace. I did feel that two kidnappings was somewhat repetitive and, of them both, Belle's ordeal was much more compelling.

There are some very good passages within this book, and a great many very engaging characters, but I would have liked to feel a little more of the attraction growing between Lord Atherton and Lady Rosalind. It sometimes felt as though their connection was overshadowed because the author was trying to accomplish so many things all at once. In a Regency romance the point of all the thrilling adventures should have been to draw them together at every turn (or cast them apart so that they might be reunited later on), yet there were times when it felt as though the various threads were not especially well entwined in the central plot. I had also expected Rosalind to be more central to countering the villainy, but after the initial promise her feisty nature seemed to wane.

It is a credit to the other characters that the titular heroine was actually my least favourite of them all. Perfection, as George observes in many of the Ton ladies who have tried to ensnare him, is often rather bland. Belle's vivacity and humour, Lucy's steadfastness, Lady Atherton's warmth, Sir Philip's kindness, Lord Preeve's good-naturedness, and Lord Atherton's wry wit more than make up for any deficits in Rosalind's character, though, and they are the people I would be happy to see return in future books in the Bachelor Brides series.

The narrator, Helen Taylor, has a lovely tone to her voice and is very pleasant to listen to. Her pace is a little slow but her female voices are all very good. I would have liked Lord Atherton's voice to have had more richness but it is always difficult for a single narrator to perform both sexes' parts, and personal preference is key.

Her performance is very entertaining, with each character having a distinct voice and personality. My only complaint would be that there are lots of audible sounds of breath and swallowing, especially at the beginning, which can be problematic for some listeners (especially those enjoying the story via the intimacy of earbuds).

Whilst Hambly is certainly no Heyer, few reach the vertiginous heights of that particular bar, and it is a good deal more diverting than many of the Regency romances I come across. The focus upon the vengeful wrath of a 'gentleman scorned' tempered the predictability of the traditional formula, and made for a very enjoyable twist. Despite the one significant criticism I have about this story, I would listen to other Regency audiobooks by this author.

I think that this audiobook would appeal to other fans of Regency romance, especially those who are looking for some 'clean' excitement.

*I received this audiobook free of charge in exchange for an honest, unbiased review.

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  • CuteAsADaisy
  • 07-10-19

Heist turned into Romance

This was a fun spin on a Regency romance, it just starts as a jewelry heist with the main female character as the thief. The story was very entertaining and yes was a bit predictable, but aren't all romances? It was entertaining enough that I will listen again when I need something fluffy while I'm working on my projects. The narrator does a wonderful job with the acting and voices and really had a very pleasant voice to listen to. Overall a great book for those who like a good clean Regency romance.

I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 20-09-19

Is Georgette Heyer here again?!

This book was highly enjoyable , both in story and in narration. Funny characters, reminescent of a Georgette Heyer novel and I think I've found the female equivalent narrator to Richard Armitage. Most female narrators are too shrill. This lady has a beautiful voice that never impedes the story, but serves it very well and keeps the interest to the last word. Thank you.

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  • Dee
  • 04-02-20

Loved it!

Regency romances are pretty special. This one stayed true to the genre and then some.

Rosalind is easily my favorite character so far this year. Her father kills himself and Rosalind sets her sights on wounding those who wronged him. She was wonderfully strong and loyal and just the right amount of fierceness that you rooted for her right away. She meets an unsuspecting Duke and gets drawn into the Duke's family and more drama.

I love, love, love that the author did not rely on angst and hand-wringing to propel the story. Rosalind was always direct and this book lover TOTALLY appreciated that.

I can't leave without a special nod to the narrator. A Regency romance narrator is a special breed and Taylor stands side-by-side with the best.

Loved this listen!!

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  • chieftwidgit
  • 20-10-19

Familiar story line

The story line is similar to so many others. There isn't enough variation to get someone excited about the book. The performance was well done; but the material prevents a truly exceptional performance.

This book was provided free of charge and this review was done voluntarily.

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  • PattyH
  • 20-09-19

Wonderful Story

I fell in love with the characters and their interactions. Nothing makes for a better story than to listen to what seems like real conversations.

The narrator has done an exceptional job with the voices of everyone in this story.

I received this audible free at my request. This is my honest review

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  • Layla
  • 06-09-19

Regency romance

I usually like humour in my regency romance. This book does not have it but I did like the herione. She is an intellegent woman even if she made a silly mistake at the beginning. We see this intellegence without being told. I don't see a lot like this female (where we see them use their brain) in other historical romance.
Would recommend it to those who like clean romance with a female character who can stand on her own two feet if needed.

1 person found this helpful