About the Book:
Title: The Beast and the Bookseller
Author: Eva Devon
Page Length: 150
Publication Date: May 29, 2023
Synopsis: All of London gossips about the Duke of Montrose. A recluse. Inflicted with a terrible disease. A gargoyle with a terrible temper. But he’s also the most important patron of the centuries-old book shop that belongs to Miss Elizabeth Sharpe’s family. Now she’s been charged with delivering books to the Gargoyle of London herself—or risk their shop falling into ruin. But surely a duke can’t be that ghastly…
Garrett Maximilian doesn’t give a tinker’s damn what society says about him. Most of them are sycophants, bowing and scraping in his presence. But not this proud, redheaded spitfire of a woman standing before him. In fact, nothing makes him feel more alive than Miss Elizabeth tartly criticizing his books. Perhaps he just needs a plan to keep her close…
The duke’s glower doesn’t terrify Elizabeth as much as it fascinates her. And worse, he looks at her with a dark hunger that should make her shake with fear—not desire. But Elizabeth’s father has sinister plans in store for his daughter…and this beastly duke might be her only salvation.
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A mash-up of Beauty and the Beast and Pride and Prejudice, The Beast and the Bookseller is an immersive historical romance about a reclusive duke and a strong-willed woman who runs her family’s bookstore. The story begins with some major Beauty and the Beast vibes with Garrett Maximilian, the Duke of Montrose, charging into Elizabeth’s bookstore. As he is the main patron, and her drunk father is not meeting the Duke’s expectations, Elizabeth takes over her father’s duties and promises to deliver the Duke his books. This begins a friendship between Garrett and Elizabeth as they bond over their love of literature.
For a relatively short historical romance, the book packs a punch. Elizabeth and Garrett are well-developed characters with compelling stories that highlight many of the problems faced at that time. Gender inequities, the mistreatment of women, abuse, the horrific treatment of patients in mental institutions, alcoholism, and the lack of control women had over their own lives are all shown through Elizabeth and Garrett’s situations and struggles.
The focus of the story, of course, is the blooming relationship between Elizabeth and Garrett, and it is lovely. Garrett is very similar to Darcy in Pride and Prejudice in his actions and way of thinking. And Elizabeth very much resembles Elizabeth Bennett, which I love since they’re actually reading the novel aloud to each other. Both characters expose the other to new experiences and feelings, and their relationship evolves from a working relationship to a friendship to something even more special and swoon-worthy.
I love how Elizabeth and Garrett connect over their love of books, and they use it to battle their worries and grow closer. Garrett has such terrible memories of his childhood, and it has scarred him tremendously, even though he does everything he can to right the wrongs he witnessed. With an alcoholic and verbally abusive father, Elizabeth has experienced her fair share of turmoil. I think that’s why their book talks become so important to both characters.
Elizabeth and Garrett have long and deep discussions about the books they read, and they even read the books aloud to each other. These scenes are very romantic, and the chemistry between them leaps off the page. However, Elizabeth and Garrett come from different social classes, and they both feel like they’re not good enough. On top of that, Elizabeth’s father causes trouble for Elizabeth, which puts her romantic interest in Garrett at risk. Internal and external obstacles stand in their way, and they have a lot to overcome if they want to be together.
I really enjoyed the story. It was fun and witty, but it also tackled some heavier subjects and included some very touching moments. You can’t go wrong with a Darcy-like hero, a bookworm heroine, and a swoon-worthy romance in my book!
Special thanks to Entangled Publishing for providing me with a copy of the book. All thoughts are my own.
- The romance!
- The literature love!
Show me how to love you, and I promise I will.
I wish… I wish to take you in my arms, to stroke the worry from your brow, to hold you carefully and make certain you never feel afraid again. For I can see you have many worries, and I would take them all away if I could.
Oh, my dear friend. I feel like you are playing with fire, and yet I confess I wish to shove you in.