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Mass Market Paperback Her Perfect Earl (Signet Regency Romance) Book

ISBN: 0451215990

ISBN13: 9780451215994

Her Perfect Earl (Signet Regency Romance)

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Format: Mass Market Paperback

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Book Overview

This description may be from another edition of this product. Esmerelda Fortune would never have accepted the position of governess to the Earl of Ashforth's infamous brood of five children were it not for the lure of the Corinna-the ancient manuscript in the...

Customer Reviews

4 ratings

A great surprise and worth every one of the 5 stars I give it!

I was very surprised by this book. The author's output - at least in the Regency sub-genre - appears to be tiny. I believe there is a related book to this but otherwise the author seems not to have written any other Regencies. Well, that is a great loss to the sub-genre. As a lover of Regencies, I find it gets more and more difficult to find good authors who write in the traditional manner. Regency historicals are not, in my opinion, as true to the esprit as laid down by Georgette Heyer; and, let's face it, all Regencies owe their raison d'etre to her. Her Perfect Earl is the story of a young woman of a good background but much less than perfect face who has not managed to find a husband. Following financial reverses in her family she winds up as a governess but one with a great dream. She wants to create a school for young women and offer them an education on par with young men. She believes they are smart enough and deserving enough to merit a proper education. I am currently reading a social history of the English governess and it is astounding that until the very end of the 19th century educationalists believed women deserved only to learn a few social skills in order to snag a husband. Esmeralda Fortune ("Miss Fortune") goes for a governess to the Earl of Ashforth and his five children. I don't want to give spoilers but will say that any reader who knows what I mean by the Harleian Miscellany will know what follows. The earl is an intellectual whose upbringing directed him into adulthood with the goal only of preserving his physical inheritance - his perfect, beautiful house full of fabulous furniture and art. However this inheritance is close to breaking his spirit and he does rebel in the end. For Miss Fortune is his intellectual equal and their mutual passion for classical literature (as well as each other) is extremely well portrayed. What I liked about this book was the very polished style of writing, the classical allusions, the conversations and the five children and a certain cat. There is humour and pathos in the story and, at the end, although nothing like the usual Regency ending, you know there will be happiness all round. The author has posted a "post script" on her website which I also read and I thought it was a lovely addition. I do recommend this. It's really well done, well written, well-researched without the usual medley of clichéd error so often found in Regency historicals and I can only hope that the author gives the sub-genre another go. I'd be first in the queue to buy it!

Nearly perfect

What could have been a pretty standard Regency about a governess marrying an earl has twists--the heroine takes the job as governess to his 5 children (very Sound of Music-ish) to get her hands on a rare manuscript he has. The earl has this legacy of "perfection" which could have been better explored, and has to marry a "perfect" woman with a fortune to restore his home and pay his debts and provide for his children's future. If it had had about 100 more pages to flesh out some of the story lines more, Her Perfect Earl would have been a perfect story.

Her Perfect Earl

Esmie was born with the poor luck to have the last name Fortune, resulting in the more formal members of society addressing her properly as Miss Fortune. She is also rather plain and more intelligent than most young women of her time. Her only fortune, however, is her name. Lacking funds she can't pursue her dream of establishing a school to educate young ladies. If she could present a winning paper in an upcoming competition, she would have the money required. The only copy of the Life of Corinna is in Lord Ashforth's possession, and that manuscript is the key to her victory. Therefore, she accepts a governess position in the nobleman's home. His five children almost immediately come to love her, though Ashforth holds himself aloof from everyone who tries to come near him, including his children and certainly from their nanny. However, when the Corrina goes missing, once Esmie convinces Ashforth that she is not responsible, they begin to work together to try and locate it. It is then that Esmie begins to get under his skin. She may not be perfect, but she is what he wants. Unfortunately, Esmie does not come with a dowry that could solve Ashforth's debts, so at best, she can be a mistress. Once again, it would appear that life will triumph over love, and break at least seven hearts in the process. **** Though this book lacks a soundtrack, it will bring to mind the Sound of Music. Even non Regency fans may be charmed by this sweet, endearing tale. ****

A real gem

I loved this book. I am a sucker for governessess who fall in love with their unattainable employers and this one fit the bill spectacularly. I don't usually read Regencies, but this one caught my eye and I'm glad I picked it up. Esmerelda Fortune, Miss Fortune, is an intelligent woman with a secret wish. She accepts employment with Julian Armstrong. In exchange for being governess to his five children, who are a delight, she will have access to his extensive library. Of course, there is the obligatory heiress he must marry and she is a toad. Naturally, things resolve themselves quite nicely. This book is not your typical romance. There is a healthy dose of reality in the ending that played out just perfectly. Perfect was a word much used in this book. I find it just the perfect word to describe my feelings for this book.
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