A Groom of One’s Own by Maya Rodale

Writing Girls, Book 1

Avon

Historical

ISBN: 978-0061922985

Reviewed by Shayna

 

   

 

Scandal sells, and no one knows that better than the infamous Writing Girls, The London Weekly’s four female newspersons.  After having been jilted halfway to the alter – literally – Sophie Harlow now writes about society weddings…and she hates it.  Each installment of “Miss Harlow’s Marriage in High Life” reminds Sophie that she will see many a bride walk down the aisle, but quite likely will never have a groom of her own.  All that changes when a dashing stranger rescues Sophie from nearly being trampled.  Could the mysterious Brandon be the groom she’s longed for?

Likely not.  The charming Mr. Brandon is actually the Duke of Hamilton and Brandon and is betrothed to Lady Clarissa Richmond, the daughter of the Duke of Richmond.  There’s no chance the “double duke” and upstanding gentleman would break his marriage contract and jilt his fiancée for a scandalous newspaper writer, no matter how much he desires Sophie.  But Sophie may have a second chance at the aisle yet, once a foreign prince, astonishing secret, and kind-hearted dowager duchess enter the mix.

The day of the wedding draws close.  Who will be the next Duchess of Hamilton and Brandon?

Weddings, forbidden love, gossip, scandal, and the odd bout of fisticuffs bring life to A Groom of One’s Own, the first book in the refreshingly original Writing Girls series.  I loved the idea of having unconventional newspaper writer heroines and Sophie’s fellow Writing Girls – Julianna, Annabelle, and Eliza – all promise to delight.  Sophie herself was a bit hard for me to like, I must admit.  She’s intelligent and witty, but she also comes across as somewhat self-centered.  I understood and sympathized with her plight concerning Brandon, yet her seeming disregard for anyone else affected by her situation bothered me a bit.  Brandon, as befitting a true gentleman, is everything that is good and honorable, which becomes a large obstacle in his and Sophie’s relationship.  Yet while I liked Sophie and Brandon, it’s the subplot of A Groom of One’s Own that captivated me.  I give Maya Rodale high marks for not making Brandon’s fiancée evil, shallow, or stupid.  Clarissa is a genuinely lovely, intelligent, kind-hearted girl and it was her romance with the Prince of Bavaria that stole the show for me.

If A Groom of One’s Own is any indication, Ms. Rodale’s Writing Girls series promises to be truly unique.  I hope Ms. Rodale pens stories for all of the other Writing Girls, for they quickly endeared themselves to me and I find myself on the edge of my seat, waiting for their books (Annabelle’s in particular, if the object of her affections is her hero).  Though I had a few reservations about A Groom of One’s Own, all in all I found it to be a most satisfying read and I hope to read many more of Ms. Rodale’s books.

     

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