When upstairs valet meets downstairs maid, the line between work and play blurs.
John Toogood dreamed of being valet to a great man…before he was laid off andblacklisted. Now he’s stuck in small-town Lively St. Lemeston until London’s Season opens and he can begin his embarrassing job hunt.
His instant attraction to happy-go-lucky maid Sukey Grimes couldn’t come at a worse time. Her manners are provincial, her respect for authority nonexistent, and her outdated cleaning methods — well, the less said about them, the better.
Behind John’s austere façade, Sukey catches tantalizing glimpses of a lonely man with a gift for laughter. Yet her heart warns her not to fall for a man with one foot out the door, no matter how devastating his kiss.
Then he lands a butler job in town — but there’s a catch. His employer, the vicar, insists Toogood be respectably married. Against both their better judgments, he and Sukey come to an arrangement. But the knot is barely tied when Sukey realizes she underestimated just how vexing it can be to be married to the boss…
I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review.
Marriage of convenience? A romance between people of the serving class as opposed to aristocracy? YES PLEASE. When I read the blurb for Listen to the Moon, I knew I needed this book in my life and was excited to read it especially since I loved A Lily Among Thorns. I wasn’t even really surprised that I ended up loving this one.
My main issue with the book was that towards the end, there was a little too much drama and angst for my tastes but that’s really about it.
I didn’t know going into the book that the two MCs would have a huge age gap and I was a little nervous because age-gaps can either be gross or so well-done that you forget about it. The romance was really neither of those. Lerner did not shy away from exploring the weirdness of a relationship where there is an giant age difference. The romance between John and Sukey is awkward and hard but also full of so much compassion and understanding. They aren’t a perfect couple but they are perfect for each other. I LOVE this about the romance. I love that there are some real misunderstandings that arise from both of them feeling as though they cannot communicate with one another. This isn’t just plain-ole miscommunication, it’s so much more than that.
Even though John clearly has feelings for Sukey, he sometimes has a hard time treating her like an equal since she is so much younger than he is. He ends up treating her like a little girl and Sukey, for her part, also acts like one. She wants to be comforted and protected, but also wants to be treated as an equal. Throughout the book these two struggle to find a balance in their relationship and it’s GREAT seeing them do that. Also, it is a marriage of convenience but they don’t fall in love with each other a few weeks later. It’s actually kind of awesome. A couple weeks into their marriage, John even states that he isn’t quite in love with Sukey but can see himself falling into love. It’s so great that it isn’t a denial of his feelings but more of him admitting to really care about Sukey while also stating that he isn’t quite in love yet. HOW MANY TIMES DOES THIS HAPPEN and isn’t a denial? Not a lot in my experience.
As you can probably surmise, these two undergo a LOT of character development over the course of the book and it is AMAZING. Who doesn’t love character development? YAY.
Listen to the Moon is definitely one of the better historical romances I’ve read and if you’re looking to read a HR with a romance that is messy, complicated and totally worth it in the end, Listen to the Moon is for you!
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