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Thursday, November 29, 2012

Made the Grade: The Windham Series, Book 6 & The Duke's Daughters Sub-Series, Book 3

- This is an ARC book - Available Formats through Amazon.com: Paperback - Pages: 359; Kindle Edition - File Size: 1179 KB | Expected Release Date: October 1, 2012 | Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca | Obtained: NetGalley

"Lady Louisa’s Christmas Knight" [The Windham Series, Book 6] & [The Duke's Daughters Sub-Series, Book 3] by Grace Burrowes

My Book Summary : Secrets come in all shapes and sizes ... Some secrets can be as small as a book, while others can surely fill up a house.

However, when secrets fall into the wrong hands trouble can form in all shapes and sizes too...

Because of a childhood dare that one of Louisa's old brothers gave her years ago she is now in constant fear that the result of that dare (quite a few published books) will get into the wrong hands and she will be found out as the author, there by creating scandal that will haunt her for years to come. Therefore, she has console herself to knowing that until all the books are found she will not be in the market for a husband any time soon. Yet she might not have a choice in the matter when her big helpful family tries to get involved making anything possible...

Sir Joseph, a family friend, has troubles of his own ... two little daughters in need of a mother and the possibility of a title being thrust upon him soon. Thus, he plans to find himself a wife even if that means going to functions he typically doesn't find enjoyable. While he partakes getting involved in "polite society," he becomes close to Louisa (as a friend even though he wishes it could be more).

Then, after being asked to look after Louisa from her brothers, Joseph protects her from what could have been bad circumstances if he hadn't been there. In need to protect her honor, Joseph asks for her hand in marriage and Louisa gracefully accepts.

Nevertheless, Louisa still hasn't found all of her books and Joseph has a big secret as well that he has yet to inform Louisa about. When they both find themselves being blackmailed, will they be able to save themselves and their new fledgling family before scandal brakes out everywhere? Has Louisa found her Christmas Knight in Joseph? Or will everything they've worked for fall apart at the seams?

My Book Review : 3 out of 5 stars. This is a novel about finding hope and love during the Christmas season.

Okay to verify before I get into truly reviewing this novel I will state that this is the first novel I have had the chance to read by Ms. Burrowes. Therefore, because I have not read any other novels within this series, I am giving her (a bit) of a benefit of the doubt. However, if I had not liked the last 150 pages of this novel as much as I did I would have given it a lower rating.

With that being said ...

I enjoyed the plot and the characters. Louisa's family is all very quirky and fun to read about, especially when they start bantering with each other! In addition, I liked the subtle romance between Joseph & Louisa when they first got together. Then it was humorous and sweet reading about how Louisa goes about taking care of Joseph's daughter and him after they get married. Very charming.

My only real issue with it (which could be because this was my first book to read in this series as I mentioned above) was how slow the build up in this novel was. As well as, how it seemed you'd get into a good part within a scene and then it would just skip off and move onto another, leaving me feeling a bit lost. Then there was the fact about Joseph's big secret, or, more to the point, Joseph's personal background. I mean throughout the novel you will find out everything about Joseph's background yet in the beginning because I didn't know anything about him it made me feel more lost then ever. At times, I felt like I was deciphering riddles when it came to Joseph's past, which is why I hope that if I had read the series in order this would not have been the case. However, it's too late for that now, so I don't know.

Because of all of this, I still recommend this novel but to only those who are fans of Ms. Burrowes' books. Also, to those who like and/or have read the other books within The Windham Series and/or The Duke's Daughters Sub-Series.

Author's Novel Extras : Deleted Scene : Lady Louisa's Christmas Knight | The Right Words | The Right Words | Happiness Rules | What’s Afoot for June 10, 2012 | What’s Afoot for June 24, 2012 | What’s Afoot with Grace for July 15, 2012 | What’s Afoot September 2, 2012 | Lady Louisa’s Christmas Knight received more encouraging words... | What’s Afoot with Grace for October 1... | Merry Christmas!!! | What’s Afoot with Grace for October 13, 2012 | What’s Afoot with Grace for Nov 18, 2012

Author's Series Extras : Please view the Windham Family Tree. | The Duke's Obsession | The Duke's Daughters | A Duke and His Duchess | Deleted Scene : The Heir | Deleted Scene : The Soldier | Deleted Scene : The Virtuoso | Pertinaciously Yours | Bare ruin’d choirs... | When Enthusiasm Fizzles | The Joy of Discovery | "The Heir" Goes Airborne | "The Soldier" Marches Out Smartly! by Grace Burrowes | What’s afoot with the Windhams? | Three Faces of Grace Burrowes | Happy Valentine's Day! By Grace Burrowes | The Virtuoso is available now! | What Ails My Valentine? | Writing a Resurrected Dream | 8 Spinsters Singing with Grace Burrowes | What’s Afoot December 21 | It’s Called “Earthing...” | What’s Afoot for March 4 | The 1810 Underwear Blues | What’s Afoot with Grace for July 1, 2012 | What’s Afoot for July 22, 2012 | What’s Afoot With Grace for Nov. 4, 2012

Book Teaser(s) :
Teaser #1 ~ within Chapter 1
"You will get coal in your stocking for Christmas," Sir Joseph groused at his horse. "You allowed me to sit there, blathering to a woman---a lady---about domes and docks and whatnot. When a man recites poetry to a beautiful, intelligent woman, he ought at least to be mentioning roses."
He ran his stirrup irons up the leathers, loosened the girth, and glowered at his horse. "Stand, while I try to find a headstall of sufficient size for that empty noggin of yours. Daffodils would have been an improvement---daffodils and lonely clouds."
He stalked off, finding the halter on its customary hook while Sonnet stood, docile as a lamb in the barn aisle.
"Lambs wouldn't have gone amiss either, though nobody reads Blake except eccentrics."
The horse lowered its head and started rubbing against Sir Joseph's jacket. After a few moments of this, Joseph stepped back. "Filthy beast. I'll smell like horse for the rest of the day." ~ within Chapter 3
"Nervous?" Fairly put the question quietly, though they were downwind of Grattingly, suggesting the doctor wasn't a complete fool.
"Would I admit such a thing to a stranger?"
"You don't have to. There's tension about your mouth and eyes, your breathing is shallow, and you've been pushing the snow around with the toe of a riding boot that deserves better treatment."
Joseph turned to regard the man. "If your medical acumen is commensurate with your powers of observation, perhaps my nervousness is misplaced."
"I can also tell you that Grattingly's breath reeks like a gin whore's when the fleet has docked. He's very likely still the worse for drink from last night's excesses."
"Which makes him unpredictable."
Fairly nodded and said nothing more. ~ within Chapter 9
For more information on this book, series', and/or any other books by Grace, then please check out her website.

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