A Night in Grosvenor Square (2018) is an EXCELLENT collection of novellas by Sarah M. Eden, Annette Lyon, and Heather B. Moore. This anthology is part of the Timeless Regency Collection published by Mirror Press, and was just released on January 23, 2018. This book is available in all forms including eBook, and is 320 pages in length. This collection reads as a stand-alone; it is not necessary to read any of the other books in the Timeless Regency Collection series to understand the stories in this anthology. With a full-time job and an exceptionally precocious five-year old at home, this novella series took me less than 24 hours to devour!!! I received a copy of A Night in Grosvenor Square in eBook form from the publisher to review. In no way has this influenced my review. The opinions expressed in this review are my own. I give this novella collection 5 STARS. This collection is a Clean Historical Romance series.
About the Stories and My Thoughts
A MATCH FOR PRINCESS POMPOUS by Sarah M. Eden
Matchmaker Adelaide Northrop may be embarking on her greatest challenge yet. Miss Odette Armistead has been dubbed “Princess Pompous” by Society’s elite, and Odette’s parents are desperate to see her married off to a respectable gentleman. When Adelaide first meets Odette, she is expecting a young lady who fits the pompous description. Instead, Adelaide discovers that Odette is far from conceited, but has chosen to wear a mask in a desperate attempt to hide her love for a gentleman who has been chosen for someone else. It seems that Adelaide has far more than matchmaking to accomplish.
“A Match for Princess Pompous” is an EXCELLENT novella. I loved every second of this story. The plot line is highly engaging, the characters are well crafted, and the ending is endearing. When this story ended, I wanted more!
Imagine Mary Poppins as a matchmaker in Bath, England in 1810, and you’ll sort of get an idea of what this story is about. Adelaide Northrop, a well-known and highly sought-after matchmaker, swoops into the upper-crust families of England in order to help them secure advantageous matches for their children. What I like most is that Mrs. Northrop is more interested in securing happy futures for the children, rather than bending to the whims of the greedy, socially-minded, arrogant parents. Mrs. Northrop is like a mentalist — she expertly reads any room she walks into and ascertains her clients’ secrets in mere days. Her current task is to secure a match for Princess Pompous herself, Miss Odette Armistead. Odette has gone out of her way to seem aloof and standoffish much to the disdain of Society. BUT, things are not as they seem and Mrs. Northrop is determined to unravel the mystery as to why Odette is choosing to act so contrary to her actual temperament.
CONFECTIONS AND PRETENSE by Annette Lyon
Anne Preston dreams of opening her own dessert shop some day and saves every spare penny she earns working at Gunter’s Tea Shop. She makes ice cream molds to perfection, bakes and decorates cakes, and hopes to one day be an independent shop owner. When an American man orders an ice, Anne is immediately taken with Davis Whitledge, but he is far above her station in life, so she tries to forget about his cordiality. Soon, she finds herself in a dangerous situation when confronted by two troublemakers, and Davis happens to be nearby. He sends the scoundrels on their way, but this only makes Anne more of a target. He doesn’t understand London ways, and his generosity has the potential to steal Anne’s dreams, or to make them soar.
“Confections and Pretense” is a sweet story that had a couple of real tense moments I didn’t expect. Anne is the main character, and she works at Gunter’s Tea Shop making beautiful ice creams and cakes and other confections. She is amazingly talented, and she dreams big of one day moving to America and starting a sweets shop of her own. Anne meets Davis, a very handsome, wealthy, and admirable American man. Anne ends up in a little trouble and Davis heroically comes to her aid.
I really enjoyed this story. Of the characters, I felt for Anne the most. She is 31, completely alone, and poor. But she dreams big and labors hard in the hopes that one day she will achieve her dream. Anne really niggled her way into my heart. She felt small and invisible, but she has so much strength and presence. I was rooting for Anne the entire story, and really wanted her to get her happily ever after. Davis is an excellent hero. He is handsome, vulnerable, and always willing to save the damsel in distress. I really liked how almost immediately he felt compelled to protect Anne. I found that trait to be exceptionally endearing because it reminded me of my sweet husband.
LITTLE LONDON by Heather B. Moore
Ellen Humphreys has never had a Season, has never danced the waltz, and will likely never do so while confined to watching over her ill mother at their country estate. Therefore, Ellen creates her own Little London, and imagines all the gentleman she’d dance with and all of the friendships she’d have with other young ladies, if only she were allowed to have a Season. When Quinn Edwards, the Marquess of Kenworth, comes upon her quite by happenstance while Ellen is imagining herself in a London ballroom, she is mortified about her playacting. But a chain of events is set off from this one meeting that has Ellen questioning if her reputation would ever survive a Season or another encounter with the marquess.
I absolutely LOVED, LOVED, LOVED “Little London”! It has everything I need in a clean romance. There is Ellen, the beautiful but isolated heroine who dreams of one day dancing with her prince. There is Quinn, a handsome marquis longing for freedom from Society’s expectations and husband-hunting women. There are mothers bent on dictating every step their children take, which is exceptionally frustrating! And, there is a clandestine meeting between Ellen and Quinn that really sets this story off on the right track. “Little London” is a magical reading experience. I rooted for Quinn and Ellen the entire time. There were a couple of sticky moments I wasn’t sure how the couple would maneuver through, but all things eventually work themselves out. Of the three stories, this story’s ending was the most satisfying, and I closed the book with a very BIG smile on my face. I love happily ever afters, and this short story delivers a happily ever after for Ellen and Quinn that does not disappoint.
Overall, A Night in Grosvenor Square is an excellent anthology of Regency-era novellas. The writing is very good in all three stories, the story lines are highly engaging and fast paced, and the characters are totally endearing. I am sad my time in this book is over. The end came way too fast! I highly recommend this collection as it may be one of the best anthologies I have ever read! Pick up a copy of this book today. You will not be disappointed.