Review: Second Chances

Review: Second ChancesSecond Chances by Mary Balogh
Published by Class eBook Editions Ltd. on February 5, 2019
Genres: Historical

This is an anthology of four unconnected stories which were previously published.

ANOTHER DREAM: This is the story of Eleanor Thompson, an independent woman of almost forty. On the way to visit her sister, the Duchess of Bewcastle, she is forced to seek shelter at an inn because of the weather.  There she meets Michael Benning, Earl of Staunton and his two precocious children.  These two mature adults find sweet platonic companionship with one another but never expect to meet again.  When they do, at Eleanor’s sister’s home, they discover that Michael’s children already have plans for Eleanor to be their new mother.This story was reserved and sweet.  It is book 6.5 in the Bedwyn series and, for me, the best part was seeing all my favorite characters from that series again.  The relationship between Eleanor and Michael was not complicated and they are rather reserved characters, but I enjoyed their romance because it wrapped up some lose ends from the series and I like that these more mature characters also get their happy ending. The children in this story are simply adorable as well. Rating: 4 stars.

THE TREASURE HUNT: Jonathan Hayes, Viscount Whitley, has been sent by his brother to face Constance Manning. Constance has been waiting for Jonathan’s brother so that they can reveal their secret engagement, but her fiance has second thoughts and sends his brother instead. Jonathan has a secret as well — he has been in love with Connie for years. This story didn’t really work for me because of the short time frame involved and Connie changing from “loving” Jonathan’s brother to recognizing her own love for Jonathan. That being said, I loved the sweetness of the relationship between Connie and Jonathan and willingness to put her happiness above his own. Rating: 2.5 stars.

THE FORBIDDEN DAFFODILS: Kate Buchanan was banished by her father for refusing to marry the Marquess of Ashendon after they spent two nights alone together. Now Ashendon has traveled to Wales to see Kate and try again to gain her consent for them to marry. But Kate’s hate for Ashendon has not abated in the five years since her banishment. I really liked this story. It is short and somewhat old fashioned in its tone, but the characters actually have some interest here. I really did feel the two of them had something between them. Rating: 3.5 stars.

THE BETROTHAL BALL: Laura Melfort is the governess for the niece of the Earl of Dearbourne. Dearbourne intends on marrying and has his potential bride in attendance, but finds himself constantly intrigued by the bluestocking governess. This one was just okay. There were some funny moments which I enjoyed, but I didn’t really see the connection between the characters. The short length of the story felt more like a fairy tale than a serious romance. Rating: 2 stars.


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