I’m squeezing in this review of A Holiday by Gaslight right before the New Year. Also, since it’s a holiday read, what perfect time? Victorian Christmases are one of my favorite settings in Historical Romances. Since I had taken a little break from this genre, it was actually quite a pleasant read. If you’re into a lighthearted, short read for the holidays, this one fits the bill.
A Holiday by Gaslight
Having read a Mimi Matthews story before, I was a little excited to jump into this one. Her heroes are actually quite interesting and in depth (and totally my type–heh.) While the heroines can be a little trying, I enjoy her writing style and the ease in which she tells the story.
A Holiday by Gaslight has your typical Historical Romance formula. In this one, it’s all about the role an elder sister has to take in order to save her financially tight family. Sophie Appersett, although willing to be such a daughter, finds that the man she has to court a little too stoic and reserved. So naturally, she doesn’t feel a connection and against all else she severs the relationship.
The man in question, Edward Sharpe is not of the same class. (But who cares about that?). His family’s self-made fortune still makes him lower classed, but since Sophie’s family is in dire straights, that does not stop her father from enforcing the match.
Sophie’s father is quite the character. And not in a good way. Spending well beyond their means just for house upgrades, has put his family in danger financially without any feeling of remorse. While I can appreciate the necessities to upgrade housing at the turn of century with the addition of plumbing and gaslight, I just couldn’t get past the selfishness of it all. So with duty to her family, Sophie tries again with Edward.
Thank goodness for letting out transgressions early because for the rest of the story it’s all about Sophie and Edward really getting to know each other and actually talking. The cozy setting of the Christmas celebrations is prime for romance. This little statement alone from Edward made me like is his character a lot:
“I have neither birth nor breeding. I never attended Oxfurd of Cambridge. I’ve never toured the capitals of Europe or met the Queen. Some might argue that I’m not even a gentleman.” “I’m just a man, Sophie.”
Yep, that clinched it for me.
It’s a sweet romance with some passionate kisses thrown in, nothing too heavy. All about building a relationship in a normal way and finding out what makes the other tick.
I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.
A Holiday by Gaslight
A Courtship of Convenience
Sophie Appersett is quite willing to marry outside of her class to ensure the survival of her family. But the darkly handsome Mr. Edward Sharpe is no run-of-the-mill London merchant. He's grim and silent. A man of little emotion--or perhaps no emotion at all. After two months of courtship, she's ready to put an end to things.
A Last Chance for Love
But severing ties with her taciturn suitor isn't as straightforward as Sophie envisioned. Her parents are outraged. And then there's Charles Darwin, Prince Albert, and that dratted gaslight. What's a girl to do except invite Mr. Sharpe to Appersett House for Christmas and give him one last chance to win her? Only this time there'll be no false formality. This time they'll get to know each other for who they really are.