I’m really excited to get to review The Wrong Woman by Kimberly Truesdale. I have to confess that I got to read this book more than once as I was honored to be a beta reader for Kim, and I loved it both times I read it! The hard part about getting to read a book before it is out is that you have to wait to gush about it!
So, here is my gush…er, I mean review of The Wrong Woman:
I read and loved the Austenesque novel My Dear Sophy by Kimberly Truesdale so I was super excited to find out she was coming out with a Regency romance. Of course, one of the things I loved about My Dear Sophy was its focus on an unlikely heroine (Sophia Croft from Austen’s Persuasion). Leave it to Ms. Truesdale to bring us another story with the unlikeliest of heroines…and to totally rock it.
In The Wrong Woman Isobel Masters isn’t the type of heroine you usually find in a Regency romance. She’s too old – in fact, she’s firmly on the shelf – she’s too chubby, she’s got her head in the clouds and her nose in books of poetry, and worst (or best) of all she’s as klutzy as all get out. In her first season she was given the unfortunate nickname Dizzy Izzy after a series of spectacularly klutzy moments. All is against the idea of Isobel every making a decent match and she is resigned to acting as her younger sister’s chaperone. Her younger sister, Catherine, is everything Isobel isn’t: young, slender, graceful…but luckily for the reader, and for Izzy, Cat is actually a sweet and caring sibling.
Cat attracts the interest of Miles, the Baron of Revere, who has decided to finally settle down and get married because it is what society expects of him. Miles is not planning for his heart to be involved in his decision – Miles’s heart is rarely involved in anything. Cat seems to be an excellent choice for a bride other than being related to Dizzy Izzy who seems to have an inexplicable dislike for Miles. Inexplicable that is, until he’s reminded that HE was the one who saddled her with that name ten years ago as he and his friends laughed at her expense.
While Miles courts Cat he finds himself drawn more and more to Izzy’s warmth, humor, and passion. Izzy is surprised to find out that there is actually a warm heart beating under Revere’s cold exterior. They can’t even admit to themselves the attraction they feel simmering between them. Even if they could there’s a huge problem: Miles is very publicly courting Isobel’s sister.
Just as Miles is realizing the depth of his own feelings, a danger from his past threatens to tear Izzy away from him before he confess his love.
I absolutely loved both Miles and Izzy. Izzy is a refreshing heroine. She’s smart and funny, but still a bit awkward and self-conscious. Miles starts out really unlikeable, and then Truesdale peels back the layers revealing the true hero underneath. The dynamic between the two was great. Miles truly doesn’t “get” Izzy at first and Izzy can’t see past the hurt he’s caused her in the past. Their banter is fun, and then sweet, and then HOT. By the end of the novel, Miles has made the journey from kind of a jerk to complete and total hero. The kind of hero found in the poetry that Izzy is so fond of.
The supporting cast of characters in The Wrong Woman is fabulous. It would have been really easy to short change Catherine and make her the annoying, perfect “arm candy” kind of girl in opposition to Izzy’s character. But Truesdale managed to create a realistic and loving relationship between two women you can actually see yourself being friends with. And then there’s Aunt Hetty who is hilarious and fun and Miles’s younger brother Jack who is sweet and handsome and so in love with love.
All in all, this was an engrossing read with several surprises and swoon-worthy moments. I’m sure after reading it you will all envy Izzy her dance with Miles. I sure did.
Five out of Five Stars