Review and Blog our for The Earl’s Inconvenient Houseguest by Virginia Heath @rararesources

The earl she loved to hate…until she stayed in his mansion!

Sophie Gilbert has thwarted the standoffish new earl’s plans to sell his country estate and the quaint village which forms part of it. But when disaster strikes and he offers her refuge, she must reconsider everything about this vexing, determined man. After the heartbreak in her past, it’s a revelation to feel her pulse racing and her body yearning for his touch…

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A Very Village Scandal is off to a great start with The Earl’s Inconvenient Houseguest. What’s next for the residents of Whittleston-on-the-Water? Or as the reluctant Lord Hockley puts it, ‘whinging Whittleston on the blasted Water’. Must admit, think I chuckled every time a read that description… especially as he said it with progressively less heat each time.

The romance is simply divine in this tale. I often enjoy the enemies to lovers trope, and it unfolds perfectly here. The cutting banter between Sophie and Rafe sets the tone for the novel and leads to the natural chemistry that bubbles up between the two protagonists.

There is the delightful addition of Archie in this story. Virginia Heath often tackles poignant social issues in a gentle but thought-provoking ways. Archie suffers from Downs Syndrome, I believe, although it’s never explicitly stated. The author is able to cover the issue of prejudice and the harmful impact of ignorance of the issue. This is worked seamlessly into the story and helps to paint a picture of how Rafe was shaped into the person we meet at the start of the novel.

Sophie is a delightful heroine with a troubled past. Her recounting of the events that led to her arrival in Whittleston-on-the-Water is heartbreaking and goes a long way to deepening the understanding Rafe and Sophie have of each other. It also makes the reader yearn for Sophie to really have her happy ending!

It is ultimately up to Sophie to decide if she has grown enough since her tragic past. She must search her own mind and heart to decide if she wants to live a life of love and risk or if she would be happier living safely closed off.

I only wish this story had an epilogue or at least a bit more to the resolution. After witnessing these two characters duke it out for so much of the narrative, a bit more detail in their ‘happily ever after’ would have been the cherry on our cake.

However, I imagine we’ll catch peeks at the happy couple as the series progresses with new couples.

The Earl’s Inconvenient Houseguest is a fun and romantic enemies to lovers historical romance. There are several vivid secondary characters from a ‘sickly’ aunt to an intrepid nonagenarian who make the story truly entertaining.

I give this story 4.5/5 espresso shots!

About the Author

When Virginia Heath was a little girl it took her ages to fall asleep, so she made up stories in her head to help pass the time while she was staring at the ceiling. As she got older, the stories became more complicated, sometimes taking weeks to get to the happy ending. Then one day, she decided to embrace the insomnia and start writing them down. Twenty-two books and two Romantic Novel of the Year Award nominations later, and it still takes her forever to fall asleep.

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Giveaway to Win 2 x e-copies of The Earl’s Inconvenient Houseguest (Open INT)

*Terms and Conditions –Worldwide entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then Rachel’s Random Resources reserves the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time Rachel’s Random Resources will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

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