(this is a conglomeration of my reviews for this series, all previously posted on this blog. enjoy!) (three of this were written in my old reviewing style, so bear with me 🙂 )
After being unjustly expelled from the Boston Conservatory of Music, Amaryllis Brigham sees her dreams of founding a music academy in her hometown of Seattle, Washington, disappearing before her very eyes. Now, the only way to achieve her goal comes with high stakes for someone set on avoiding men as much as possible: Marry within the year to inherit the immense fortune of her estranged grandmother. Amaryllis reluctantly moves in to her aunt’s Boston home and rubs shoulders with fashionable society. Despite her own misgivings, she soon finds herself quickly falling in love with the most unlikely of men, Nathan Everstone, the envy of every eligible female, whose father has haunted her dreams for the decade following her mother’s tragic death. However, Nathan turns out to be much more than he seems…and everything she never knew she wanted. But can she ever really trust an Everstone man?
Reminiscent of classics such as Pride and Prejudice, The Hesitant Heiress is a refreshing read that embodies the style and heart of much-loved classics.
1. THH felt solid in the time that it was set in. No future lingo slipped in, and it felt very real
2. Dawn’s style was easy and drew me in from the first page!
3. THH featured very real and well-written characters
4. I couldn’t stop reading!
5. The character had a unique name, not one that I would forget or get mixed up with other characters’ names.
6. The plot was well-thought out and strong.
7. The romance was shippable! Lots of romances have good story, but flat romance, or flat story, good romance. This story had good romance AND good story.
8. Nathan was totally awesome. Like, really.
9. I loved how this book is written in First Person! It has the classic feel of Austen, but also the personal feel that you can only get with First Person Point of View.
10. The villain! He totally came out of nowhere, and was completely unexpected, but still sort of unconsciously expected. I loved how this story actually had a reall villain, while some romances just go for emotions as the villain.
11. I love how the chapters start out with quotes!
1. The beginning took me a few tries, and I was somewhat confused for a few chapters.
FOR THE PARENTS
INTIMACY/KISSING – There is a near rape situation, and some mild kissing, and some innuendos
CUSSING – Nothing to report on this front!
VIOLENCE – There’s a revenge plot, but nothing hugely violent.
One accidental kiss from Lawry Hampton. That was all it took to throw Meredyth Summercourt’s world upside-down. Determined to marry the ever-elusive Vance Everstone, she simply doesn’t have the time or the desire to fall for her best friend. But with Vance out of the country, and with Lawry at her side nearly every day, teaching her what the world is like through the eyes of a little orphan girl named Wynn–Meredyth can’t deny that what’s holding her to Vance is nothing more than a desire to redeem herself from her past.
Will she marry Vance once he returns from Europe? Or will she be strong enough to break free from the tangled web she’s convinced she deserves, and accept that God’s plan for her life includes redemption…and, quite possibly, Lawry Hampton
This book drew me in with a refreshing, new plot, a familiar character, and new love, and is by far my favorite of the Everstone Chronicles!
1. Lawry!!! He’s so great.
2. The plot of this book is just really great. Well paced and suspenseful!
3. Vance! I loved how rude he was and how he changed from a rude guy to someone special. I can’t wait for his story!
4. Meredith! She was loyal and torn and really quite a good character.
5. I loved the love in this story. It was unexpected and sweet.
6. I was glued to this book! I couldn’t leave it alone until I finished it.
7. I love the cover on this book! It is really beautiful.
8. Wynn! She was sweet and lovely and a great addition to the book.
9. Garrett and Ainsley! I loved how their story developed within Meredyth and Lawry’s.
10. The loved the romance! Carrying on with the things I loved with the last book.
11. The emotion! The emotional stakes are definitely raised in this book.
12. Again, the first person. I just love that Dawn wrote her books in first person.
1. The book was confusing while I figured out a few things.
FOR THE PARENTS
INTIMACY/KISSING – Meredyth gave her virtue to Vance, which was important for the plot. It’s implied, but not shown. Also some mild kissing and innuendos.
CUSSING – Nothing to report!
VIOLENCE – This book is a bit more violent. People are shot. Someone dies.
Sent away for protection, hotel heiress Estella Everstone finds herself living undercover as a lady’s companion named Elle Stoneburner at one of her father’s opulent hotels in the mountains of Maine—the one she’d always loved best and always hoped to own one day, Everston. The one thing she doesn’t like about the situation is that her ex-fiancé is in the area and is set on marrying someone else. Reeling from her feelings of being unwanted and unworthy, Estella reluctantly forms a friendship with the gruff manager of Everston, Dexter Blakeley, who seems to have something against wealthy young socialites with too much money, although they are just the kind of people Everston caters to.
When Estella finds herself in need of help, Dexter comes to the rescue with an offer she can’t refuse. She sees no other choice aside from going back home to her family and accepts the position as companion to his sister. Throughout her interactions with Dexter, she can’t deny the pull that’s evidenced between them every time he comes near. Estella realizes that while she’s been hiding behind a false name and identity, she’s never been freer to be herself than when she’s with Dexter Blakeley. But will he still love her when he finds out she’s Estella Everstone? She’s not entirely sure.
The Captive Imposter follows the tradition of Dawn’s other books, with a refreshing new plot, and new romance!
1. Dexter Blakeley was a strong, well-written character!
2. Estella got over Jay! Yess!
3. I loved Estella’s drawing abilities!
4. I loved Roxy as a character! Maybe we could see her get her own story??? (*hint* *hint*)
5. I loved that Jay got a girl!
6. I loved that Dexter’s mother hated Estella. It added such good emotional tension.
7. I was completely glued to this book!
8. I loved the romance, which was slow but still well paced
9. I loved Everston!
10. Again, I loooved the First Person POV.
11. I loved Vance! His part in the story was great.
12. I loved the ending suspense!
1. I got confused (I’m easily confused, though)
2. I think that I was supposed to like Violet, but I didn’t.
FOR THE PARENTS
INTIMACY/KISSING – Mild kissing. One girl is from a brothel, so they have dealings with the owner and the girl is also pregnant.
CUSSING – None!
VIOLENCE – Mild violence, nothing too bad
Violet Hawthorne is beyond mortified when her brother Ezra turns their deceased parents’ New England country inn into a brothel to accommodate the nearby lumberjacks; but when Violet’s own reputation is compromised, the inn becomes the least of her worries. In an effort to salvage her good name, Violet is forced into an engagement with a taciturn acquaintance; Vance Everstone. As she prepares for a society wedding, Violet learns that her brother had staked her hand in marriage in a heated poker game with the unsavory Rowen Steele, and Ezra had lost. Now Rowen is determined to cash in on his IOU. With danger stalking her and a new fiance who hides both his emotion and his past, Violet must decide who to trust and who to leave behind.
WELL THAT WAS BEAUTIFUL
I was determined not to let the gorgeous cover or love for this author win me over. I wanted the Cautious Maiden to woo me with it’s plot and characters AND BOY DID IT.
Violet won me right away. DUH. Vance took a few chapters, because I’d seen him in this series before and quite frankly, I hadn’t liked him.
YEAH HE’S A FAVORITE CHARACTER NOW.
I love how all of Dawn’s characters were perfect in their own ways. And by perfect I mean flawed and so, so real!
I also loved how this was a sweet romance, but there was also a villain! This book refuses to be categorized as merely romance because the villain invites an aspect of suspense.
DAWN CRANDALL KNOWS HER TIME. I mean, seriously. I was so engrossed in this that I could have been IN 19TH CENTURY AMERICA.
Like in every other book by Dawn, I adored the family in this. There is always that family aspect to her books. In this one that was Vance’s family, the Everstones. They were perfect and also I loved the cameos and mentions to the other characters from the other books.
This book was delectable and is now battling the Bound Heart to be my favorite of the series. It has a swoon-worthy romance, a heart-pounding plot, and characters I would die for.
CONTENT GUIDE –
Intimacy – There was a lot of kissing, and Violet’s brother runs a brothel. There’s mentions to prostitution, sex, and illegitimate children.
Drugs/Drinking – None.
Violence – Rowen threatens Violet with a gun and kills someone.
Cussing – None.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Dawn Crandall is an ACFW Carol Award-nominated author of the award winning series The Everstone Chronicles, which consists of four books: The Hesitant Heiress, The Bound Heart, The Captive Imposter and The Cautious Maiden which released October 4th, 2016.
Apart from writing, Dawn is also a mom of two little ones and serves with her husband in a premarital mentorship program at their local church in Fort Wayne, Indiana.
A graduate of Taylor University with a degree in Christian Education and a former bookseller at Barnes & Noble, Dawn Crandall didn’t begin writing until 2010 when her husband found out about her long-buried dream. It didn’t take her long to realize that writing books was what she was made to do.
Dawn is a member of the American Christian Fiction Writers, the secretary for the Indiana ACFW Chapter (Hoosier Ink), and an associate member of the Great Lakes ACFW Chapter. She is represented by Joyce Hart of Hartline Literary Agency.
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