What a beautiful conclusion to Sarah Ladd‘s Whispers on the Moors series. Regency romances are definitely Sarah’s forte. A Lady at Willowgrove Hall combines a rich and authentic setting with emotional tension that whisked me away into Cecily’s life right away.
Secrets are a theme of this novel, and who can’t relate to having a secret tear a relationship or life apart (or at least witnessing such)? I think that’s why Cecily earned my vote of confidence right away. I really wanted to see her overcome the circumstances which open this novel–and succeed. But I wasn’t sure how that was going to happen. I didn’t mind not knowing, though, because Sarah kept everything interesting as the story moved along and Cecily walked through change after change.
The historical detail is superb; I can definitely see why people compare Sarah’s writing to Jane Eyre and Jane Austen. This book reminded me of Julie Klassen, too.
A few times, I would have liked more detail to what was going on. Some scenes felt rushed. And the death in the latter half of the book (no spoilers from me!) felt slightly contrived, but Sarah handled grief with grace.
Nathaniel was intriguing from the beginning. I was surprised he made some of the choices that he did, but he firmly established himself as his own man and he had some tough choices to make that endeared him to me. A hero with a secret and secret strength? Yes, please.
My favorite part of this book, though, were the interactions between Cecily and Nathaniel. It was clear early on that they are better together, that they are good for each other. It was just a matter of uncloaking every past secret and working through the dramatic tensions–and I won’t say more lest I spoil a good ending!
If you love Regency fiction or you’re looking for a soft, quiet read that will make you think, pick up A Lady at Willowgrove Hall.
About the Author
Sarah Ladd received the 2011 Genesis Award in historical romance for The Heiress of Winterwood. She is a graduate of Ball State University and has more than ten years of marketing experience. Sarah lives in Indiana with her amazing husband, sweet daughter, and spunky Golden Retriever.
Read my review of Sarah’s The Headmistress of Rosemere
Disclosure: Litfuse and the publisher sent me a copy of this book to review. This post contains affiliate links. Read my full disclosure here.