A Thousand Steps

A Thousand Steps
A Thousand Steps by T. Jefferson Parker

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

The Earl's Inconvenient Wife- by Julia Justiss- Feature and Review


The obvious solution:

A marriage of convenience!

Part of Sisters of Scandal: Temperance Lattimar is too scandalous for a Season, until finally she’s sponsored by Lady Sayleford. The whole charade feels wrong when she doesn’t want a husband, but Temper feels awful when MP and aristocrat Gifford Newell is appointed to “protect” her at society events. With her past, she knows she’s not an ideal wifebut then a marriage of convenience to Giff becomes the only option!



The Earl's Inconvenient Wife (Sisters of Scandal Book 2)The Earl's Inconvenient Wife by Julia Justiss
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The Earl’s Inconvenient Wife by Julia Justiss is a 2019 Harlequin Historical publication.

A lovely and tender' friends to lovers' story-

Temperance is happy her twin sister has found her true love and a husband. But that is not the life for her. No, Temperance wants desperately to defy conventions and become a world traveler. Her father, however, will not release her dowry until she has gone through with at least one ‘season’.

Due to her mother's scandalous reputation, easing Temper into society might prove tricky. Coming to her rescue is an old friend of her brother’s, Gifford Newell.

Gifford enlists the help of the influential Lady Sayleford to sponsor Temperance. She agrees, but with one stipulation-

Gifford must attend all the various dances and functions with Temperance to protect her from any backlash.

Neither Gifford or Temperance is happy about this arrangement. Why? Because as of late, there has been a little noticeable, if unspoken, shift in the way they feel about one another. Being forced together at social events would only increase the palpable tension between them.

Never in their wildest dreams would they have imagined those uneasy social engagements would lead to a forced marriage!

While I loved the first book in this series, I’m afraid Temperance and Gifford may have given Prudence and Johnnie a run for their money in this second installment of the ‘Scandalous Sisters’ series.

This is a charming story, which features two very likeable main characters, both of whom are under pressure to marry. Yet, they fight off the prospect of marriage as hard as they fight their attraction to one another. It was so much fun watching them fall in love, but there are a few darker tones in the story, as well.

A diabolical and spiteful plot is afoot which could force Temperance and Gifford to give up everything they hold dear. No only that, Temperance is harboring a painful secret, another reason why she would rather travel abroad and avoid marriage at all costs.

Justiss did a fantastic job with the construction of this novel. The character development and emotional depth are outstanding, as are the cleverly written plot twists. The pacing is very balanced, keeping the reader entertained from start to finish.

As always, the author stays true to the time period, and as always, I send my deepest thanks to JJ for sticking to a format so many have abandoned. Finding a pure Regency is not always easy.

However, readers should be aware this story is more than a ‘friends to lovers’ romance. However, the serious topics do not damper the lighter tones expected in a Regency romance. The idea that women were not as free to travel and see the world is also a stark reminder of the restrictions women were forced to adhere to, with little or no wiggle room.

Although Temperance’s life may have suddenly veered away from the path, she had so determinedly marched towards, with her delightfully unexpected happily ever after, she and her unburdened soul can now find peace and contentment no matter where she lands.





Julia Justiss grew up breathing the scent of sea air near the colonial town of Annapolis, Maryland, a fact responsible for two of her life-long passions: sailors and history! By age twelve, she was a junior tour guide for Historic Annapolis, conducting visitors on walking tours through the city that was a hotbed of revolutionary fervor. (Annapolis hosted its own tea party, dispensing with the cargo aboard the "Peggy Stewart," and was briefly capital of the United States.) She also took tourists through Annapolis's other big attraction, the United States Naval Academy. After so many years of observing future naval officers at P-rade and chapel, it seemed almost inevitable that she eventually married one.

But long before embarking on romantic adventures of her own, she read about them, transporting herself to such favorite venues as ancient Egypt, World War II submarine patrols, the Old South and, of course, Regency England. Soon she was keeping notebooks for jotting down story ideas. From plotting adventures for her first favorite heroine, Nancy Drew she went on to write poetry in high school and college, then worked as a business journalist doing speeches, sales promotion material and newsletter articles. After her marriage to a naval lieutenant took her overseas, she wrote the newsletter for the American Embassy in Tunis, Tunisia and traveled extensively throughout Europe. Before leaving Tunis, she fulfilled her first goal: completing a Regency novel.

Children intervened, and not until her husband left the Navy to return to his Texas homeland did she sit down to pen a second novel. The reply to her fan mail letter to a Regency author led her to Romance Writers of America. From the very first meeting, she knew she'd found a home among fellow writers--doubtless the largest group of people outside a mental institution who talk back to the voices in their heads.

Her second goal was achieved the day before her birthday in May, 1998 when Margaret Marbury of Harlequin Historicals offered to buy that second book, the Golden-Heart-Award winning novel that became THE WEDDING GAMBLE. Since then, she has gone on to write fourteen novels, three novellas and an on-line serial, along the way winning or finalling for historical awards from The Golden Quill, the National Reader’s Choice, Romantic Times, and All About Romance’s Favorite Book of the Year. 

Julia now inhabits an English Georgian-style house she and her husband built in the East Texas countryside where, if she closes her eyes and ignores the summer thermometer, she can almost imagine she inhabits the landscape of "Pride and Prejudice." In between travelling to visit her three children (a naval officer son stationed in Washington, DC, a textiles and design major daughter who cheers for University of Texas at Austin, and a mechanical engineering major son also at UT Austin) keeping up with her science teacher husband and juggling a part-time day job as a high school French teacher, she pursues her first and dearest love--crafting stories.

To relax, she enjoys watching movies, reading (historical fiction, mystery, suspense) and puttering about in the garden trying to kill off more weeds than flowers.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.