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Product Details (as per amazon page)
1786: Regency London. Everyone is hiding something. But someone is hiding everything.
Lizzy Ward never meant to end up working the streets of Piccadilly. So when a mysterious noble pursues her, it seems her luck is changing. But though Lord Hays offers to grow Lizzy’s fortunes, his price is unexpected. She must masquerade in the sumptuous gowns and social mask of a true lady.
With the stakes so high, love is out of the question. But as Lizzy navigates the fashion and faux-pas of the London elite, she finds her tough facade failing her. Lord Hayes wants to show her that nobility is more than skin deep . . . and as the connection between them grows, it’s no longer certain who’s wearing the mask. As the street-girl and the lord collide, Regency London is poised for scandal . . .
A love story of surpassing power and imagination, this is a stunning new British voice in Historical romance for fans of Eloisa James, Julia Quinn, Stephanie Laurens and Georgette Heyer.
I’d like to thank the publishers and author for an arc in return for an honest review.
I really enjoyed this book. I was first taken in by the stunning cover which is glamorous but it also shows a hint of mystery. Then the synopsis intrigued me, and also Joanna Taylor is a new author to me but has sold over 150,000 books and has become an amazon bestseller with her first adult romance Spotlight. So the book has 3 things going for it before I even started reading; a) stunning cover, b) intriguing synopsis, c) bestselling author.
Its the late 18th century and Lizzy Ward (Elizabeth) left the countryside of Bristol looking for her fortunes in London. However, it wasn’t easy to find a respectable job and Lizzy unfortunately ended up working the streets of Piccadilly. (In the Regency era in the city of London the streets were rife with young ladies looking to court a rich gentleman to fund their lifestyle. it was quite fashionable for Lords and rich gentleman to seek the attention of courtesans. Very often they would ‘show them off’ to their fellow peers).
By chance one night Lizzy met Lord Hays, a mysterious nobleman, that didn’t particularly like London life, preferring the country lifestyle at the family estate. However, he had a week of business to attend to in London and needed a female companion. Lizzy received a proposition from Lord Hays to become his companion. You may think that this is were the book could become seedy however, Lord Hays was very surprising. I instantly became enthralled and in love with his character. The way he treated Elizabeth, as he preferred to call her was very sweet and noble. This side of the storyline reminded me of a movie (I’m not going to reveal which one as Joanna herself at the end of the novel mentions this, and luckily my perception of the storyline was in line with the authors – phew!)
What follows is a beautiful love story. An eye opening one of lives long ago and how difficult it was to be a woman, whether from the working or upper class. The story was sexy but not explicit however, the chemistry building up between the characters was evident. I was gripped by Elizabeth and Edward’s story.
Will love shine through the masquerade?
Will the barriers of class be broken forever in Elizabeth and Edward’s story?
I thoroughly enjoyed this story and I will definitely look out for more work by Joanna Taylor. A sultry, sexy, mysterious Regency Romance 5/5*.
To find out more about Joanna Taylor and her books please visit the following links: