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  • Writer's pictureCatherine Bilson

The Earl Most Likely by Jane Goodger

In The Earl Most Likely, we meet Harriet Anderson, a heroine with a difference. Harriet is plain compared to her beautiful older sister Clara, ignored by her parents and everyone else except a few close friends. Harriet, however, has a special talent. She has a photographic memory, remembering literally everything she has seen even if only at a passing glance. When her talent comes to the attention of Lord Berkley, master of the magnificent Costille House, he realizes that Harriet’s gift is exactly what he needs. His deceased wife made over his beloved home into a ghastly, floral, over-decorated Victorian disaster, and he needs Harriet’s particular talents to help restore it to its former medieval glory.

Harriet and Augustus were a delightful couple, even if I did want to whack Gus over the head with a blunt object once or twice for being far too concerned about his position. Especially for someone who had spent several years in the American West, his insistence that he needed to marry a ‘suitably bred lady’ was baffling.

Of course, he finally came to his senses, at which point Harriet’s ghastly mother almost ruined everything. This was the point at which the story fell down a little bit, for me, because although they both recognised the social consequences of marrying and even discussed it with other people, the book then ended without them really addressing the issue and what it would mean for them and their children.

An enjoyable read with a really unusual heroine, but I have to take off a star for the ending just not quite hitting the spot. Four stars.

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book for review through NetGalley.

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