Genre: romance: historical
Queer Representation: cis lesbian, cis bisexual
Alice had her eye on that lady’s maid.
Yes. Yes she did. For like the whole book, which I read in about and hour and thoroughly enjoyed. I was not expecting this to be as good as it was. Wow.
The cover is a little…well it reminds me of the kind of romance novels my grandmother used to read. I almost didn’t buy the book because of it. But then I remembered how much I loved THE LADY’S GUIDE TO CELESTIAL MECHANICS, also an Avon Impulse book, and thought I would give this a try.
Not. Disappointed. This tiny novella packs a punch.
Alice Stapleton is a confirmed spinster, thanks to A) Mr. Tenpenny, the gentleman who accosted her virtue and then said she came on to him (oh the nerve!), B) her asshole father who kicked her out of the house for smearing the family name, and C) Mrs. Wraxhall, and older spinster who has brought Alice to live with her, provides everything she needs, and really would like Alice to have a better time (but isn’t going to push it).
Alice likes embroidery, so she spends her free time…embroidering.
Molly Wilkins is a lady’s maid who used to be a pretty decent thief and maybe still is, for the right mark. She works for Mrs. Wraxhall and is trying to stay straight (HAHAHAHAHAH ahem) but you know, Stapleton just looks so nice and pretty and is so damn proper and irritating and maybe if Molly just set her right on a few things…
Molly likes the ladies and embraces it. Alice likes the ladies and can’t admit it. Mrs. Wraxhall pretends to be oblivious to everything (hilarity). But Molly dragging Alice from her shell digs up more backstory than either were planning, and the two have to help each other to forgive, forget, and even embrace parts of their pasts.
This book is adorable. And short. It has no wasted words or pages, gets right to the flirting and sass, and has decent sex scenes. Molly is every part the seductress scamp with a heart of gold and Alice, though initially irritating, proves to be a really engaging lead by the end. Her father gets a sound smacking, as does Mr. Tenpenny (I’d love to smack the guy myself), true love blooms, and Mrs. Wraxhall is hilarious in her silent aiding and abetting.
Another solid lesbian romance installment from Avon Impulse. You can get your own sassy lady’s maid by buying the book here.