What a wonderful regency novel! Don't worry if you haven't read the first book, Moonlight Masquerade. A Heart's Rebellion can stand alone just fine. However, I have read Moonlight Masquerade and it was such a pleasure to get to visit with Celine and Rees again! Now on to my review of A Heart's Rebellion.
The beginning of the book started a little slowly for me. This is not actually a complaint. I felt the author did a great job of setting the scene. Jessamine Barry had been horribly hurt approximately a year earlier when the man she had been in love with since childhood broke her heart. After waiting patiently and doing everything that a dutiful daughter should, she felt jilted and unlovable. When the chance comes to have a London season and remake her image, she takes it.
Lancelot Marfleet feels drawn to Jassamine, but also very frustrated with the way she rebuffs him. He does know that he feels protective of her and is concerned with her reckless behavior. Lancelot is not the typical "hero" described in most romance novels, however, that does not diminish him in any way. His strong character and caring personality quickly made me root for him to win Jessamine's heart.
I truly enjoyed A Heart's Rebellion. London society and all of the trappings that make regency reads enjoyable are present in this book. The author points to the importance of putting God first in your life. Jessamine had a real problem with blaming God for her disappointments instead of trusting that He would guide her and perhaps had a better plan for her than she could envision. The romance blooming between the main characters was sweet and satisfying and I loved the way the author ties up everything at the end of the story with a big romantic "bow" on it. Such a delightful read!
I received a complimentary copy of A Heart's Rebellion from Baker Publishing Group in exchange for an honest review, which I have given.
A Heart's Rebellion was an interesting story. It was beautifully written and the detail was wonderful to read. Ruth Axtell was able to capture the regency era for these characters. The gowns, the attitudes, the speech, and the hairstyles were all captured in away that brought you back this era.
What threw me off of the story a bit was the character of Jessamine. When we are introduced to her, she comes off as cold and bit spoiled. However, as the story unfolds, you find out that isn't the case. She isn't the stuck up girl I thought her to be, but as the story continued I realized that Jessamine reminded me of Scarlett O'Hara, not in the manipulative, cold. and calculating way, not that at all, it was how Jessamine stuck to this idea of a man, like Scarlett did to Ashley Wilkes. Jessamine thought herself more than old enough to presented to London society after skipping a few seasons, but with the thoughts she had and her innocence/naive on many issues, she had quite a bit of growing up to do, she was far from ready in my opinion.It was hard to connect with her.
Lancelot Marfleet I connected with instantly. He was a nice, well educated, and cultured man who, by his father's edict, needed to find a wife. However, he was determined to marry for love, so he was willing to look, but not willing to settle for just anyone. As the second son of his family, he wasn't destined to inherit, so he followed his calling and became a minister. There was one small flaw in Lancelot, it seemed that he fell instantly for Jessamine at first sight, and then when she acted a bit snobbish, it didn't put him off, but wanted to get to know her more. He wanted to keep giving her a chance despite her attitude toward him. He is a persistent character, which was nice to read about.
I enjoyed reading about Megan, Jessamine's friend, who traveled to London to be presented to society with Jessamine. She was a sweet girl and in all honesty, the balance Jessamine needed. Megan was able to bring the positive out of Jessamine.
A Heart's Rebellion was an enjoyable story over all. The research that went into the story really brought these characters alive.
Thank you to Revell Blog Tour Program, I received a copy of this book for free in exchange for an honest review.
This was a good book. The plot was good. I love regency novels, so it hit the spot there. The author provided rich details of the gowns and ball rooms, which I loved. There were parts of the story that moved kind of slow. However, the end was satisfying.
The characters are relatable, even though it's discouraging to know one can relate. I can understand Jessamine's behavior. Who doesn't act out of hurt and anger sometimes? I found I didn't really care for her though. I wasn't that impressed with Lancelot either. For a vicar, he was very judgmental. But, I can relate to his actions toward Jessamine because he cared for her. People tend to be more judgmental about ones they love.
The message was the best part of this book! Jessamine struggles to let God take control of her life because she felt He let her down. Everything happens for a reason, even when you can't see it! God knows what he is doing! We also need to learn to forgive ourselves because God has forgiven us.
Overall, this was a good story with a great message!
**I received this book for free from the publisher as part of the Revell Reads blogger program in exchange for my honest review, which I have given.**
I have never read anything by Ruth before. I have to say I love her voice. She definitely captures the regency period beautifully with her flow and prose.
At first Jessamine is a bit rough around the edges, complaining a lot. But I love tough characters because that means there's brokenness in their lives and God can come in and heal that. Sure enough, Jessamine has had her heart broken and isn't over it.
She feels unworthy and not beautiful enough to win a husband so she does what so many of us do. She tries to change her outward appearance while she stuffs in her hurt. That was so me so many times in my life.
Then there's Lancelot, not an overly handsome man but you can tell that he cares for Jessamine. Unfortunately they get off to a rocky start and Jessamine doesn't care for Lancelot at all.
Instead her attention move to men who are not very respectable and don't care for her best interest, but they care about how she looks.
Even though this is a historical romance I see this story playing out in many women's lives today. This is a very relatable novel. And I could tell there would be a wonderful Genesis 5020 ending!
If you enjoy a good historical romance you will not be disappointed with this one :)
A copy of this book was given to me by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
English gardens, ballrooms, waltzes, ladies, gentlemen, and cads can all be found within the pages of Ruth Axtell's newest Regency Romance "A Heart's Rebellion." Axtell creates a dimensional Regency England environment abounding with historical detail. Jessamine Barry is nursing a broken heart and navigating her way through society in search of healing and love. Lancelot Marfleet is an unlikely hero - a scientific vicar with a love of botany. As Jessamine's path continues to cross Lancelot's and their mutual attraction builds, Jessamine fights it resolutely. There is enough romance among the characters, and the unrealized romance between the two leads will keep readers engaged until the end.
Though the plot is rich in detail, there are slow points in the plot at times. Some of the descriptions become repetitive and dull, specifically the discussions about plants and their scientific names. I found myself skimming some sections to get to passages of more interest. The plot lags between balls and social outings, which are the primary events in the novel. It is probably representative of life for members of the ton and young ladies in the era seeking a place in society. The change of scenery to Jessamine's hometown of Alston Green is a refreshing departure from London at the novel's conclusion.
Anyone who read "Moonlight Masquerade" will enjoy revisiting Celine and Rees, who play active roles in "A Heart's Rebellion." In comparison to the former novel, "A Heart's Rebellion" is a much more subdued novel, but Ruth Axtell captures the essence of Regency England.
I received a complimentary e-copy of this book from Revell. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions expressed above are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255 "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.