An Offer From a Gentleman by Julia Quinn – Review #Bridgerton

I really do seem to be stuck on these stories. This was the third book in the series (and the last in the three-volume Bridgerton compilation that I bought). I may have to get the next compilation in the set…

Will she accept his offer before the clock strikes midnight?

Sophie Beckett never dreamed she’d be able to sneak into Lady Bridgerton’s famed masquerade ball—or that “Prince Charming” would be waiting there for her! Though the daughter of an earl, Sophie has been relegated to the role of servant by her disdainful stepmother. But now, spinning in the strong arms of the debonair and devastatingly handsome Benedict Bridgerton, she feels like royalty. Alas, she knows all enchantments must end when the clock strikes midnight.

Who was that extraordinary woman? Ever since that magical night, a radiant vision in silver has blinded Benedict to the attractions of any other—except, perhaps this alluring and oddly familiar beauty dressed in housemaid’s garb whom he feels compelled to rescue from a most disagreeable situation. He has sworn to find and wed his mystery miss, but this breathtaking maid makes him weak with wanting her. Yet, if he offers his heart, will Benedict sacrifice his only chance for a fairy tale love?

I’ve heard the third book in the Bridgerton series is possibly one of the best… or where the series really picks up. All I can say is… oh yes indeed.

Let’s start with the blatant Cinderella theme. It is so cute though! Unfortunately for our darling Sophie, the fairy godmother type is unable to completely save her from the viciousness of her wicked stepmother and stepsister. That’s not a problem though as what happens in this story is far more interesting.

Sophie is such a likable heroine and she’s just as determined as Daphne and Kate (of the earlier books) to achieve what she wants. In Sophie’s case, she wants a respectable marriage and won’t settle for being anyone’s mistress. This pride is something Benedict cannot begin to understand given his very privileged upbringing. A major part of this novel is devoted to how Benedict must confront his expectations as well as those of his family and society.

I will admit, though, Benedict’s difficulty in accepting Sophie’s position doesn’t bode well for granting him favoured male lead accolades. His stubbornness is grating at times but yet there is still his charming nature to save him in the end.

There’s also a case of mistaken or hidden identity. Benedict does not recognise Sophie as the mystery lady who steals his heart at the story’s opening, yet she very well knows who he is all along. He never quite understands why Sophie seems so familiar or why her presence is so enticing. Sophie realises Benedict fell in love with her as the mystery lady but doesn’t think he can give her what she wants as herself… That part is a little drawn out but still mixed with moments of humour or sweet emotion.

For the most part, the story follows all the expectations of the genre and isn’t necessarily unpredictable. Yet, there are still a few surprising gems. I quite enjoyed Posy. I mean, once I got beyond the ridiculous name. Yes, it’s a person. Her role is subtle yet very key and she gets a very special spot in the second epilogue to the book.

Overall, I was, once again, fully entertained by the exploits of the Bridgeton lot and look forward to reading more about them in the rest of the series.

I give An Offer From a Gentleman 4.5/5 espresso shots.

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