Lady Maybe by Julie Klassen
Berkley, July 2015
Source- borrowed from my library
Burton Book Review Rating:
In the new novel by the three-time Christy Award-winning author of The Maid of Fairbourne Hall, a woman’s startling secrets lead her into unexpected danger and romance in Regency England…One of the quotes/blurbs you will see on Klassen's works is:
One final cry…“God almighty, help us!” and suddenly her world shifted violently, until a blinding collision scattered her mind and shook her bones. Then, the pain. The freezing water. And as all sensation drifted away, a hand reached for hers, before all faded into darkness…
Now she has awakened as though from some strange, suffocating dream in a warm and welcoming room she has never seen before, and tended to by kind, unfamiliar faces. But not all has been swept away. She recalls fragments of the accident. She remembers a baby. And a ring on her finger reminds her of a lie.
But most of all, there is a secret. And in this house of strangers she can trust no one but herself to keep it.
“[It’s] what readers love of Jane Austen, Downton Abbey and even a bit of Jane Eyre…everything a historical romance reader looks for.”—Historical Novels Review which is actually from a review I had written for the HNR site. You can read my reviews of Klassen's work here. This novel is written for less of an inspirational perspective as it is not published by Bethany House like most of her other work, and as such could disappoint her most avid readers, and judging from Amazon reviewers I think it did due to the fact that there were some romantic scenes throughout.
The quickest summary of the novel is one of a type of a Cinderella or rags to riches story. The maid gets mistaken for the true wife of a gentleman, thus the title "Lady Maybe". There is a large amount of hiding identity, thus untruthful aspects are applied to our heroine. The gothic tones we come to expect from Klassen are no longer evident, and it really just reads like a regency style romance with a bit of a thrill interlaced which in itself is not a bad thing.
I enjoyed the characters, and the pacing was swift and kept me guessing. The plot deals with the summary above and the heroine having to choose between two men and I ultimately had no idea which way it was going to go as the novel didn't really address a certain back story very thoroughly. While written with less of the gothic and inspirational undertonees, Klassen's beloved compelling writing style is still evident here.While it may not be a favorite Julie Klassen novel and its certainly not an epic read, I am still glad I was able to enjoy this novel for free via my local library's eBook program.
This is another book to add to my personal resolution of 2015 to read my own books, and ban review books.