Dr. Rhys Gray and Miss Margaret Babcock are friends—strictly friends. But over the course of the year, as they exchange dozens of letters, they share personal details that put them on the path to something more. When Dr. Gray helps Margaret realize her dearest dream and she comes to his defense in the uproar that follows, it seems that their connection cannot be denied. But will their relationship stand the scruples of society and jealous intendeds, or are they destined to be only friends, and nothing more?
Pros – Both Rhys & Margaret have their own passions they nerd about, this is truly a friends to more story, Margaret doesn’t go from “plain Jane” to “beautiful”
Cons – this didn’t feel like a “regency” or “historical” (change the time periods and outfits and I’d swear it could be contemporary), the obstacles felt contrived all things considered
Note – There’s a Giveaway at the end of my review!
Review – There’s a lot to say about friends who go on to become lovers. Isn’t that what a lot of people claim they want? But there’s also something to the fact that sometimes its nice to have mystery about the person you’re falling in love with and I think that was kind of what was missing for these two at times.
Their correspondence starts out professional, but as the year progresses their letters contain just as much personal updates as they do professional updates. Little polite conversational questions become larger conversational questions that lead to an intimacy. Especially if you don’t think you’ll ever meet the person on the other end of the letter.
When they finally meet…when they finally acknowledge their feelings…I honestly wonder if circumstances hadn’t pushed the issue if they would have danced around the topic for years yet. Margaret is no polished lady – she’s awkward, more at home in her greenhouse then a ball room, happiest when she can coo over her beloved roses. She’s no startling beauty either – too tall for fashion with a striking face and form, but lack of ability to showcase it properly. She’s at her best when discussing her new hybridization of roses.
I enjoyed the strong bond between the two. They obviously were well matched as friends; drawing strength from the other’s belief in their abilities, being a source of peacefulness when everyone around them seemed to be anything but.
Their romance though…the two were both a bit too skittish. A bit too unbelieving that the other person they admired, admired them back so fervently. No matter what anyone said. In Margaret’s case I think she was too green and unused to the attention. Rhys…I don’t know, maybe he thought she was too high for him to aspire towards?
As for the historical nature…I’ve always enjoyed Noble’s romances because they are refreshing and light with interesting heroines. This book however felt less “time period” than usual and I can’t tell if its because I was so busy wanting to smack sense into Rhys or Margaret, so I took better note of the fact it felt “modern” or what. It felt a bit like AUSTENLAND – the players were saying the right things, going about the right sort of jobs, but only in a shallow sense. Its hard to define.
In all its a good diverting read. While its not the best I’ve read of Noble’s (REVEALED remains that tops for me), it should please any romance reader.
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Published by: Pocket Books
Release: November 22, 2016
Series: Winner Takes All Book 3
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“With her usual witty writing and exquisite flair for characterization, Noble offers [The Lie and the Lady]. The effortless manner in which she wrote. The Lie and the Lady as a separate love story while at the same time gracefully connecting it to The Game and the Governess and cleverly hinting at what is to come in the series is nothing less than brilliant.”
—Booklist (STARRED REVIEW, The Lie and the Lady)
Thanks to Pocket Books I can offer one lucky commenter a set of their “Winner Takes All” books! All you have to do is leave a comment with a question you’d want to ask a pen pal. US Only, Giveaway Ends Friday 11/25. Extra entry if you follow our blog!