Monday, June 29, 2020

BOOK REVIEW: First Comes Scandal by Julia Quinn

I’ve never read Julia Quinn before, but saw a favorable review of her new historical romance, First Comes Scandal, and decided to give her a try.

The novel is set in England in 1791.

Georgiana Bridgerton is a spirited young woman of twenty-six, who has never had a London Season partly because she was a sickly child and her mother still worries over her and partly because she doesn’t like crowds and fuss. As far as marriageability goes, she’s a bit past the expiration date. So when a local man courts her, she goes along with it, though her interest is only minimal. The man is awful. Only after her dowry. And when the courting isn’t proceeding quickly or successfully enough, he abducts her. She escapes before he can violate her, but she is “ruined” just the same.

Nicholas Rokesby, the 4th son of an earl, is in Edinburgh at medical school when he is abruptly summoned home. There, he learns that his father’s goddaughter, daughter of their neighbors and closest friends, was ruined by a scoundrel. His father tells him to marry the girl. Nicholas has nothing against Georgiana. They grew up together and are friends. But he is too busy with school to even think about marriage and when he does, he wants to choose his own bride.

Nevertheless, when he sees Georgiana again, and finds her as delightful as he remembers, he does propose. Not well. And things are awkward for a bit. But they like each other so much, love can’t be far behind.

Their light-hearted conversations are enjoyable, though some of the comedy is a bit forced. The serious conversations provide some depth. Period details give the story a solid base. There isn’t much in the way of conflict but it’s well-done historical romance and I’ll be looking for more of Quinn’s books.