The Siren of Sussex

Penguin Random House Audio. (Belles of London, Bk. 1). Jan. 2022. 13:46 hrs. ISBN 9780593458051. $22.50. HISTORICAL ROMANCE
Evelyn Maltravers, confirmed bluestocking and excellent horsewoman, leaves her Sussex home for London in order to create a better future for her younger sisters. Without many prospects in society, Evelyn plans to use her riding skills and fashion sense to capture a potential husband’s attention as she rides through Hyde Park’s Rotten Row, much like the courtesans known as the Pretty Horsebreakers. Pursuing her plan, Evelyn searches for someone to make her exquisite new riding habits and finds Ahmad Malik, a half-Indian tailor who also needs a leg up in society to secure his shop and his sister’s future. Striking a deal to help each other, Evelyn and Ahmad must balance their growing feelings while trying to secure their futures in a society that would struggle to accept their relationship.
VERDICT Vidish Athavale and Lydia Hanman bring Victorian London to life with their narration, capturing both the lush details in Ahmad’s fashion creations and Evelyn’s love for her stallion and search for a partner worthy of her. A must-have for library collections, this romance from Matthews (John Eyre) is great for those looking for stories with exquisite historical details and chaste heat.
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