Review * Giveaway
Romancing Daphne by Sarah M. Eden
As her first London Season looms before her, the thought of the impending social whirl fills Daphne Lancaster's timid heart with dread. She hasn't her sisters' beauty nor their talent for conversing easily. Even her family's enviable connections may not be enough to prevent disaster.
But Daphne's misery turns to surprised delight when the first even of her Season brings an unexpected visitor to her door—James Tilburn, whose tender kindness stole her heart in her youth. When the handsome young gentleman expresses his desire to court her, Daphne is elated. Their feelings for each other quickly grow, and it appears that, much to Daphne's disbelief, her happily ever after is within reach.
Yet nothing is as it seems. The couple finds themselves caught in a tangled web of greed and deceit, leaving James and Daphne to determine whether they are willing to risk everything for true love.
I'm so grateful for the opportunity to read and review Sarah M. Eden's books. She is an amazing author! Her writing is excellent, and she creates such lovable characters. She's an author I've always been able to count on for good, clean, touching stories. The story in Romancing Daphne met and exceeded all of my expectations.
My first impression of a book is usually the cover (unless it's an eBook). Sadly, I didn't like the cover for Romancing Daphne, and something about the title rubbed me the wrong way (although it is a very good fit for the story). I'm only throwing those tidbits out there because if you have similar feelings and consider not reading this book, you are making a big mistake! I loved the story!
Romancing Daphne sucked me right in. The introduction of both Daphne and James told so much, and was the beginning of me neglecting everything else while I spent the day reading this beautiful story.
Daphne lost her mother at a young age, and subsequently lost her father in most ways as he succumbed to his grief. She was constantly overlooked, and when she was mentioned by people it was about how plain she was. She lost her eldest brother to war, and he was the one who'd really made an effort to reach out to her. She was used to blending in, and until she was able to move into her sister's house, she really didn't have anyone to discuss her interests with. The friendship she formed with her brother-in-law was heartwarming, but even that didn't completely remove the feeling of being unwanted. Reading about Daphne's struggles was very emotional.
James was also in a difficult situation, although not nearly as tragic. His father was basically a horrible person that forced James to do things by threatening other family members. I can't imagine being in a situation like that, and I loved seeing James take the high road, even at great personal cost to himself.
If you've read Sarah's other books, you're probably familiar with the Duke of Kielder. I loved the side that we got to see of him in Romancing Daphne.
I'm looking forward to reading this again, and highly recommend it.
We get more Adam in this book!!!! How can you not love the Dangerous Duke. I mean, he is still just a secondary character, but if he's in a book I want to read it. Plus it helps that Sarah Eden just writes great characters no matter who she's writing about. Daphne and James are not exception to that.
I'll admit I was shocked about Daphne's backstory. I mean if you've read the rest of the books about this family you kind of fall in love with this family, and to hear the neglect that she grew up with is heart-wrenching....but she's so stoic about it.
Now James...good 'ol James. He isn't flashy, or dashing, or brawny. He's just James. He's a man filled with integrity (for the most part anyway...otherwise we wouldn't have a story). I kind of love that he's just a regular person. Sometimes with my romantic fiction the leading males (and females) are too good to be true. There's no way you would meet someone like that in real life. James is someone that you really could meet, and I liked that.
I can't wait to read Linus' and Artemus' stories. Actually, I can't wait to go back and reread everything Eden's written
It's like coming home again. Adam Boyce is probably my favorite of Sarah Eden's characters, so I was very happy that he played such a large role in this story. I love how we get more of his gruff exterior, but we also get to see just how strong the bond is between Adam and Daphne. He is the father that she didn't get the chance to have growing up.
When Daphne's world seemed to fall apart, I was inwardly urging her to run away, to go off on her own...And then had to remind myself that 1) problems generally aren't solved by running away from them, and 2) she was a woman and women generally couldn't go off and be on their own, especially not "gently bred" women. (Have I ever mentioned how glad I am that I live in this day and age and not back then?)
Thankfully, Daphne is a stronger character than I am, and she did not run away. My heart broke for her battered, bruised spirit. Being shy myself, I completely understood her desire to fade into the background, or better yet, stay home. Again though, there's that quiet strength that she possesses. She faced so many challenges head-on, even when it was killing her inside.
I also really liked James. He was a very good man, put in a very tough situation, trying his best to do right by everyone. Plus, he didn't run away from Adam, even though there was a very real chance Adam right run him through.
So in case you can't tell, I really enjoyed this book. Sarah Eden once again brought all of the characters to life, and led the reader through a whole gamut of emotions while doing it. This book will be going on my shelf to be read again and again.
*June 5th: http://mybookaday.
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Title: Romancing Daphne
Author: Sarah M. Eden
Publisher: Covenant Communications, Inc.
Published: June 2017
Source: We received copies from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Purchase: Amazon | Kindle | Deseret Book