Set in Gilded Age America, a young woman must choose between circumstance and destiny. When orphaned as small children, Sterling Redmond and her older sister Charlotte are raised by their grandfather at the family’s Maryland country estate of Northampton. Charlotte blossoms into a famed Baltimore beauty, but Sterling is more interested in books and horseback riding than feminine pursuits. Concerned that her niece will never find a suitable husband among the local Baltimore gentry, Madame De Chant whisks Sterling away to Belle Époque Paris in search of a gentleman who can understand her. In their absence, Nicholas Pembroke, the son of an English earl, takes up residence in the manor bordering Northampton. When Sterling and her aunt return to America for Charlotte’s wedding, Sterling finds that her perfect husband is living right next door. But there is a problem: he is already engaged to marry Charlotte.
Excerpt from Sterling Redmond:
“Sterling Redmond walked into the room, and Nicholas saw her for the first time. He had not yet met her, but Charlotte had told him this about her: she was dull. Her disposition was too serious. Some called her a bluestocking. In short, she was a problem. A young woman of such a prominent and influential Baltimore family was expected to secure a marriage worthy of her social status. After two seasons in Paris, where her great-aunt Madame De Chant maintained a household, she had yet to win a firm offer of marriage. There was a growing impatience among her closest family members, who wondered if her education and forthright manner prevented any positive momentum in this direction, and to make matters worse, Charlotte complained, the young woman seemed not the slightest bit interested in abandoning her independence. Charlotte painted her sister’s prospects in such a dim light that Nicholas was astonished when the supposedly awkward and plain sister walked into the drawing room, and he saw a creature quite unlike the one described to him. Two years spent in Europe had clearly transformed the younger Miss Redmond into something unrecognizable.”
Oh my. My second historical of the week and this is a complete 180 from the other one that I read. This is a great story of family, star-crossed lovers, revenge, privilege, scandal and in the end true love. I loved this book. I read it one day and I’m still thinking about it.
I will say there is a lot going on and there are a lot of characters to remember what the relation to everyone but the main characters, Nicholas and Sterling are perfect. Their first meeting is intense, emotional and sigh worthy. I instantly fell in love with both of them. I cheered for them, cried for them and in the end felt that the ending of the book was the only way for them. 🙂
There were a couple of things that I didn’t like though. I hated Charlotte and her treatment of others including her family, In the end, she was selfish, conceited and a brat that needed a spanking and not in a good way. George was another character that was horrible to everyone around him. His scenes were hard to take and they dealt with a topic that was swept under the rug a lot during that time period. I really liked that Ms. Nathan didn’t shy away from it nor prettied it up for the reader. Great job.
Did I mention that the book takes several years to be told? I like that in a historical book because I don’t have to rush through the reading. The writer takes me on a journey through the written words on the page and this was one of the most beautiful told story that I have read in a while. I felt like I was in the countryside of Maryland not to mention Paris.
Keep in mind that this is a true historical written in the manner of Hyer, so the sex is behind closed doors but the tension build is great. Every time Nicholas and Sterling were in the same room, you can feel the tension that rolled off of them.
I really loved the lush settings, the scandals that enveloped Sterling and Nicholas and was completely rewarded in the ending. Plus, whoever said love wasn’t messy is lying. It was even messy in the Guilded Age.
Kim Nathan is an American author of romance fiction, including Sterling Redmond, a historical romance, and Dreaming Montana, a paranormal romance. Born and raised in Baltimore, Maryland, she relocated to Seattle, Washington in 1994, where she lives with her husband and cats.
- Website http://kimnathanauthor.com/
- Facebook http://www.facebook.com/kimnathanauthor
- Twitter @KimNathanAuthor
- Goodreads http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5753888.Kim_Nathan
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