Series: Keeping Up with the Cavendishes #1
Published by Avon on February 23rd 2016
Genres: JAFF, Pride and Prejudice
Lord Darcy is the quintessential Englishman: wealthy, titled, impossibly proper, and horrified that a pack of Americans has inherited one of England's most respected dukedoms. But his manners, his infamous self-restraint, and his better judgment fly out the window when he finds himself with the maddening American girl next door.
Lady Bridget Cavendish has grand—but thwarted—plans to become a Perfect Lady and take the haute ton by storm. In her diary, Bridget records her disastrous attempts to assimilate into London high society, her adoration of the handsome rogue next door, her disdain for the Dreadful Lord Darcy, and some truly scandalous secrets that could ruin them all.
It was loathing at first sight for Lady Bridget and Lord Darcy. But their paths keep crossing . . . and somehow involve kissing. When Lady Bridget's diary goes missing, both Darcy and Bridget must decide what matters most of all—a sterling reputation or a perfectly imperfect love.
After the Duke of Durham passed away, American James Cavendish, son of the duke’s brother and the closest living male relative, inherits the dukedom and moves from their horse farm in Maryland, USA to the upper echelons of English society with his three sisters, Amelia, Claire, and Bridget. Their Aunt Josephine trains the girls to become proper Ladies, but between their arrival and their scheduled debut, there just wasn’t enough time. And the girls were more stubborn than Lady Josephine expected.
The haute ton is curious about the imports, some excited to rub elbows with them and form a connection, and some disdainful of their American roots. Among the latter is Colin Fitzwilliam Wright a.k.a. Loooord Darcy. Upon seeing the Cavendishes and Lady Bridget’s unfortunate fall during their debut, Lord Darcy is convinced that they are bad news and does his best to avoid them, especially Lady Bridget. Despite his disdain, he takes an interest in her anyway. Lady Francesca, the woman expected to tie down Lord Darcy, notices his uncharacteristic interest in Bridget, and keeps Bridget close to make sure things don’t go out of hand.
All throughout the story, Lady Bridget writes prodigiously in her diary about her family’s adventure in London, her plans to become the Perfect Lady, her crush on Rupert Wright, the Dreadful Darcy and his kisses, the rejected proposal, and secrets that would surely scandalize the whole Ton. When she ends up losing her diary, the Canvendish household is in an uproar. If the diary falls into the wrong hands, not only would they lose their reputation, the secret might cause someone’s life.
Lady Bridget Cavendish is somewhere in between Elizabeth Bennet and Bridget Jones. Impertinent, self-deprecating, charming, funny, and a bit of a mess, really. She’s such an endearing character, not because of her clumsiness and her novelty for being a carefree American in such a proper English society, but because of her lack of pretentious airs. Yes, she wanted to be a Perfect Lady to fit in, but she stayed loyal to her family, and she didn’t act differently to make the men fall in love with her.
Lady Francesca is Regina George and Caroline Bingley personified. I disliked Caroline Bingley in Pride and Prejudice, but bah, I hated Lady Francesca. You just know there’s something not right with someone that perfect.
All in all, this book was such a delightful and entertaining read. I can’t wait to read Amelia’s story in Chasing Lady Amelia.