Title/Author: Lady Sarah Sinful Desires (Secrets At Thorncliff Manor #1) by Sophie Barnes
Publisher/Date published: Avon Books, May 7th 2015
How I got this book: received it from the publisher as an egalley
Buy this book at: The Book Depository
Goodreads summary: Welcome to Thorncliff Manor, where London's elite mix, mingle, and may even find their heart's desire...
There are thousands of things Christopher, Viscount Spencer, would rather do than hunt for a bride, especially since experience has taught him that women are not to be trusted. Then he finds the intriguing Lady Sarah scrambling around in Thorncliff's conservatory and he is instantly charmed by her passionate nature. But why is she so intent on avoiding him?
Lady Sarah would make the perfect bride for a peer — if not for a tarnished past that she's hiding from the ton. A stay at Thorncliff Manor was meant to help her plan for her future, not fall in love. Yet Christopher's kisses are irresistible, his gallantry enticing. When her secret stands to be revealed, will the truth ruin their dreams of happiness?
So I was very much in need of a good historical romance when I started this book, and Lady Sarah's Sinful Desires did not disappoint!
I really like Sophie Barnes' writing style and I kinda liked that this wasn't set in London for a change. I mean, don't get me wrong, I LOVE reading books set in London with all of the ton present and balls and calling on each other and EVERYTHING. But this setting of Thorncliff and the houseparty was very charming as well.
I liked Sarah, she's smart and funny and she has a pet hamster. I mean, hello, she's living in historical England and she has a PET HAMSTER. That is just awesome in my book. Also: hamsters are great pets, I had one myself when I was younger. She's obviously not made all the right choices in her past and back then you were judged harshly for that. By your parents as well as the rest of the world. She has a major sense of duty and loyalty to a family, that in my opinion doesn't deserve said loyalty. I was so wishing for just the teensiest bit of warmth or love to show from her father and stepmother, but there was ZERO affection there. I don't really understand this, I mean, sure I can get being angry with her at first, but after two years? Can you not get over this and try to give her a GOOD future instead of one with a hateful and disgusting man in it? That was some bad parenting right there.
But I did really like Christoper and Sarah together. They have great chemistry and banter and I loved to see them become friends and then something more. There's mutual respect and affection that grows naturally and I really liked seeing their lovestory unfold. I also thought Christopher's reaction to Sarah's secret was realistic. It wasn't perfect, but it felt real for the time they lived in.
And OMG, how much did I love Christopher's family! His sisters and his mom are perfection. They're the ultimate family, teasing each other, telling each other how it is, but there's so much heart there! I would have loved to spend even more time with them!
Sophie Barnes spins an interesting tale about a lady with a less than perfect past and how she goes on from there. Obviously there's a happily ever after, because this is a historical romance novel after all, but the road to getting to said happily ever after was very much enjoyable and there was a connection between Sarah and Christopher that made me root for them and that's basically what I want from a romance novel!
My rating: 4 stars