Series: Titled Texans #1
Date Published: November 20, 2014
Description: An English lady runs away to Texas, in pursuit of a groom.
Lady Cecily Thorndale has lived her whole life preparing for her future role as wife to the Earl of Devonshire. But when the future Earl, Charles Worthington, goes to Texas to oversee land the family has purchased – and stays there – Cecily decides the only thing to do is to track him down. Arriving in Texas with her lady’s maid and all the determination she can muster, Cecily sets out to conquer both the new world and her reluctant fiancé. She captivates her new neighbors and shows Charles that the one thing that’s been missing from his adventurous life is her. Originally published in 2000 under the title Nobility Ranch, To Love a Lady is the first volume in the Titled Texans series about a family of English nobility who set out to tame the American west. With humor, romance and authentic historical detail, To Love a Lady takes readers on a romantic journey to 1880s Texas.
There you are, trying to decide which historical romance genre to read next. Do you pick English nobility? Do you pick Western? Or do you try one of those you got your English nobility in my Western mash-ups? Well, if that’s the case, To Love a Lady might not be the way to go. Yes, it is a genre mash up. But not a good one.
To Love a Lady is about Lady Cecily Thorndale and Charles Worthington, Lord Silsby. Cecily is an old maid of 24, who’s been engaged to Charles for four years. Cecily runs away from home after receiving a letter from Charles. She has loved him since she was a child, and knows that he needs her. (I’ll not rant here about a woman being an “old maid” at 24.) Charles is currently living in the Texas panhandle and managing the ranch that his father owns. But mostly getting out from underneath his father’s day to day control. He has no interest in marrying and starting a family, let alone moving back to England.
The initial concept of this book was very interesting. I was wanting to read a western historical romance. And usually am always interested in English nobility. The execution, however, was not. The characters were standard, dull, romance tropes. Cecily has loved Charles since she was a child. Charles never even noticed Cecily until she has run away from home and started to show some gumpshun. The two dance around eat other throughout the whole book. There are few hints of any passion. The secondary characters were more interesting to me than the two main characters. Cecily meets a trio of women on the train out west. And doesn’t realize they are a madame and two “fallen” women. (Did I mention she was naive?) Charles’s valet Gordan was super sassy, in that whole English valet kind of way.
The plot was predictable. The end of the book wrapped up all of the conflicts with a neat ribbon. And set up the next book in the last couple of chapters.
This book had a lot of potential, but missed the mark. There are other books in the series. And maybe I’ll read them. The one plus to reading this book is that it’s one book off my #ShelfLove challenge shelf.