09 October 2022

Book Review and Giveaway: The Belle of Belgrave Square by Mimi Matthews

I was delighted to have the opportunity to read and review The Belle of Belgrave Square, which is book two in the “Belles of London” series of Victorian romances. Read on for my thoughts on this complex and satisfying novel.

Plus, scroll down to be in to win a signed and annotated copy of the book!

Here is the book description:

Tall, dark, and dour, the notorious Captain Jasper Blunt was once hailed a military hero, but tales abound of his bastard children and his haunted estate in Yorkshire. What he requires now is a rich wife to ornament his isolated ruin, and he has his sights set on the enchanting Julia Wychwood.

For Julia, an incurable romantic cursed with a crippling social anxiety, navigating a London ballroom is absolute torture. The only time Julia feels any degree of confidence is when she’s on her horse. Unfortunately, a young lady can’t spend the whole of her life in the saddle, so Julia makes an impetuous decision to take her future by the reins—she proposes to Captain Blunt.

In exchange for her dowry and her hand, Jasper must promise to grant her freedom to do as she pleases. To ride—and to read—as much as she likes without masculine interference. He readily agrees to her conditions, with one provision of his own: Julia is forbidden from going into the tower rooms of his estate and snooping around his affairs. But the more she learns of the beastly former hero, the more intrigued she becomes…

My Thoughts

This book is a retelling of Beauty and the Beast, to me it was sometimes reminiscent of Jane Eyre... the dark, brooding hero with a mysterious past in a creepy Yorkshire mansion. *shivers, happily*
As someone who also suffers from social anxiety (and prefers the company of animals to people!), I had a great deal of empathy for Julia. She is also under the thumb of extremely needy and overbearing parents, so marrying a man who lives in the back of beyond seems an ideal plan. Neither she, nor her groom Jasper Blunt, could have imagined how many secrets each are hiding.

The marriage of convenience trope offers so much opportunity for a beautiful slow burn romance, and this is a beautiful example. As we peel away the layers of the war-bruised hero, it becomes apart that these two characters are perfect together, as their weaknesses become their shared strength. There are so many gorgeous romantic moments between them, I'm sure I caught myself sighing blissfully several times. A very special book.

About the Author

USA Today bestselling author Mimi Matthews writes both historical nonfiction and award-winning proper Victorian romances. Her novels have received starred reviews in Publishers Weekly, Library Journal, Booklist, and Kirkus, and her articles have been featured on the Victorian Web, the Journal of Victorian Culture, and in syndication at BUST Magazine. In her other life, Mimi is an attorney. She resides in California with her family, which includes a retired Andalusian dressage horse, a Sheltie, and two Siamese cats.


Thank you to Laurel Ann from Austenprose for asking me to participate in the blog tour for The Belle of Belgrave Square.

Giveaway: signed and annotated copy of The Belle of Belgrave Square.

One lucky winner will receive a paperback copy of The Belle of Belgrave Square, signed and annotated by the author with personal comments, underlining of her favorite lines, and other highlights by Mimi Matthews. Please note, this giveaway is only open to US residents.

The giveaway is open from 12:01 am Pacific time 10/03/22 until 11:59pm Pacific time on 10/30/22. The winner will be announced on Mimi's blog on 10/31/22.

Terms & Conditions:
Giveaway hosted by Mimi Matthews. No Purchase Necessary. Entrants must be 18 years or older. Open to US residents only. All information will remain confidential and will not be sold or otherwise used, except to notify the winner and to facilitate postage of the book to the winner. Void where prohibited.

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