This newest book by Sarah Eden was completely delightful. Regency romance at its best. Last month I attended a writer’s conference where Sarah was the Emcee along with James Dashner (Maze Runner). She’s this short, cute redhead with a bubbly personality. I loved listening to her banter about with Dashner and learn from her wisdom during one of her classes. I’ve read lots of her books, and she is an expert at writing emotionally gripping characters that you can’t help but fall in love with.
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 event 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.
Romancing Daphne had great new characters that I loved. I have to admit, from reading this book, I realize I’ve missed out on reading an earlier book that has characters in this one–Persephone and the dastardly Duke. I need to go find their love story and read it because even as side characters in this book, I fell in love with them.
This Regency romance has Persephone’s younger sister, Daphne, as the main heroine. She is shy and has felt overlooked all her life. Her father didn’t want her. Her siblings tolerate her, but she is invisible to them. As her sister and brother-in-law prepare to have her ‘coming out’ to snare a husband, Daphne is mortified and wishes to remain single the rest of her life rather than face society, knowing they think of her only as the plain sister to be pitied. But when James Tilburn seeks an audience with her, and then returns later to take her for a ride, she believes he might really see her…and possibly come to love her.
I really liked this story. Daphne is such a fragile, vulnerable heroine. Not your typical strong-willed, free-spirited heroine who can slay dragons. She’s a damsel in distress at first glance. But her inner strength shines through the more you get to know the ‘true’ her. That’s the problem. No one has ever stayed around long enough to get to know who Daphne really is. And so she has guarded her heart inside a fortress to keep from being hurt. To see her blossom and bloom is a treasure. Her growth is beautiful, poignant…and heart-tugging. Eden always writes deep, complicated characters, and I loved how both the hero and heroine have to struggle and wade though deep waters—almost drowning—to figure out their hearts and how to win each other’s as well. This is a decadently delicious read. A solid 5 out of 5 all the way across the board.