About the Book:
Title: The Viscount’s Daring Miss
Author: Lotte R. James
Page Length: 278
Publication Date: April 25, 2023
Publisher: Harlequin Historical
Synopsis: Rivalry leads to passion in 1830s England
May the best viscount or miss…
When her best friend and employer is injured, groom Roberta “Bobby” Kinsley feels compelled to help him. She agrees to step into the saddle and compete in an endurance horse race to help secure his ancestral home. Yet the minute that Bobby comes face-to-face with her opponent—arrogant yet infuriatingly charismatic Lawrence, Viscount Hayes—it’s clear that it won’t just be the competition that has her heart racing!
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The Viscount’s Daring Miss is a unique and swoon-worthy historical romance with amazing banter, an epic horse race, and a protagonist you can’t help but root for.
Lawrence and Julian’s families have been feeding over land for decades, and the men decide to compete in a horse race to determine who gets the land. But when Julian is injured right before the race, he fears he may have to forfeit and lose his land forever. An orphan raised by Julian’s parents alongside Julian, Bobby has always felt out of place, more content in the stables with her horses than in the ballrooms. So, when the opportunity to race arises, she jumps at the chance. This is her opportunity to help Julian, who has always stood by her side and supported her, and prove her skill and success as a horse master. Of course, this is completely unconventional for 1830s London, but so is Bobby.
Bobby is a layered and interesting protagonist, and I quickly became immersed in her story. Strong, self-assured, and fiercely determined, Bobby doesn’t conform to the dictates of society. She loves horses and has a special way with them, and she much prefers her role in the stables to her role as a member of polite society. However, she also longs to be her own person and not live under Julian’s shadow. She’s so conflicted between expectations and who she really wants to be, and she struggles to find a compromise that works for her while facing difficulties and sabotage in the race, as well as conflicts in her personal and professional life.
Though Lawrence doesn’t have an affinity with horses like Bobby, he is a skilled horseman and a strong competitor. Fueled by his desire to get back his land and to beat Julian, who he doesn’t like, Lawrence is determined to win the race. I loved Lawrence! He’s very introspective, and I like how he never expects Bobby to be anything but what she is. In a society where many tried to fit her into a mold, this is so refreshing. Lawrence also has an interesting story, and I sympathized with him when I learned why he keeps people at a distance. He changes so much over the course of the story, and I think his deepening connection with Bobby is the catalyst for these changes.
I adored Lawrence and Bobby’s swoon-worthy enemies-to-lovers romance. Whether antagonizing, arguing, or flirting, their chemistry is palpable. They do not get along when they first meet, which makes sense because they are competing against each other. At one point in the story Bobby calls Lawrence a “vainglorious viscount,” and I kind of want to meet a viscount just so I can use this alliterative gem. She also calls him a toad, as well as some other antagonistic names. It’s so comical, and the sparks between the two are fantastic! There are also many tender and touching moments that made my heart squeeze.
With a setting across the English countryside in a weeks-long race, the story is unique and entertaining, and the passionate declarations and epilogue are wonderful! I always love Lotte R. James’s historical romances, and this one is no exception.
- The romance!
- The setting.
- The banter.