Review: Blossom Time by Joan Smith (1997)

Posted May 16, 2024 by Mary Kingswood in Review / 0 Comments

Finally, a Joan Smith Regency I can enjoy unreservedly. I liked both hero and heroine, the side issues were interesting and there was a lovely kiss quite early on which should have ignited something, and perhaps it did, but the romance still only smouldered until the very end.

Here’s the premise: Rosalind Lovelace is twenty-four, and seemingly firmly on the shelf. Her brother is engaged, so she’ll soon be superfluous in her own home. However, some poetry she’s written has been accepted for a fancy London magazine, and the publisher wants to meet her. She’d have preferred to keep her writing secret, especially from her neighbour Lord Harwell, who would tease her unmercifully about it, but when Lord Sylvester Staunton arrives, not only is her secret revealed but it seems that she has acquired an admirer. Could this lead to a marriage offer? Lord Harwell certainly thinks so, and he realises rather belatedly that Rosalind would be the perfect wife for himself.

And so the plot unfurls in amusing style, much of it revolving around Rosalind’s brother’s vulgar and snobbish future wife. Her excesses were very entertaining, and even though the final outcome was never in any doubt, the route there was a pleasant one. I never felt that the characters were behaving oddly or were being manipulated purely to advance the plot.

I loved Lord Harwell (or Harry, as Rosalind and her brother charmingly call him), who never put a foot wrong and never became the sort of overbearing arrogant man so beloved of older Regencies. I liked Rosalind, too, pragmatically building a new life for herself when faced with a sister-in-law she couldn’t get along with. And if she seemed a bit bossy sometimes, that was inevitable given that she’d been running the household for years, and her brother had leaned on her to make all the difficult decisions. Her hopes for Lord Sylvester were rather sad, when she would much rather have stayed at home. And then, a fine ending, with all loose ends neatly tied up and Harry and Rosalind finally getting together for a repeat of that lovely kiss. A very enjoyable five stars.


Leave a Reply