REFINING THE DEBUTANTE
GENRE: Historical/Regency Romance (Clean & Wholesome)
PUBLISHER: Covenant Communications
RELEASE DATE: March 8, 2021
Miss Miranda Bartley is in love with the Honorable Ethan Roderick, their engagement all but official. But as she basks in the success of her London Season, her joy is cut short when Ethan ends their courtship, claiming she is too insensitive. In the wake of her heartbreak, Miranda is dealt yet another blow, one that changes everything. In a harsh twist of fate, she quickly falls from Society darling to servant in her uncle’s home.
Believing he will never see Miranda again, Ethan is shocked when he encounters her by accident. Even more surprising is her dramatic change; she is no longer the self-centered young woman he left behind. Her eyes now open to the plight of poverty surrounding her, Miranda has become every bit the lady Ethan once imagined her to be. As he helps the woman he once loved, their tattered relationship returns to familiarity. But Ethan is determined to protect his heart and begins a courtship with his neighbor, who is predictable and safe—everything Miranda is not. Forced to perform a delicate dance, Miranda and Ethan must choose—follow the rules of Society or the longing of their hearts.
This was my first book by Anneka R. Walker and, my goodness, it had my emotions – and my loyalties – all over the place! Such an engaging Regency romance with heart-tugging character growth and sweet notes of redemption.
At the very beginning of Refining the Debutante, I was intrigued by Miranda and her unconventional ways… and by Ethan & his heart for the poor. They made me smile, and the chemistry between them was instant & palpable. My greater affection for hero over heroine switched back and forth a few times, and there was even a brief moment where I didn’t like either one of them! (LOL – don’t worry, I loved them again before too long.) I felt deeply for both of them as they each were bound by choices which had unforeseen ramifications, and I couldn’t put the book down until I saw how it would all turn out. I also loved that the traits that initially drew me to Miranda and Ethan, respectively, were the very things that ultimately helped Miranda survive when her world fell apart.
While the romance is nearly always my favorite part of a novel, the tenderly-drawn themes of humility, empathy, courage, family, forgiveness and redemption are intrinsically linked with Miranda & Ethan’s love story. Separating the romance from the other themes would do the story a disservice and, frankly, it wouldn’t be the same story nor would I have appreciated it quite as much. These layers add further dimension to the main characters, often through the actions of one (or more) of the supporting characters, and serve as timely lessons for our world today, too. The author accomplishes this without being heavyhanded or maudlin; it just all fits together organically and leaves you very satisfied with the outcome.
Bottom Line: Refining the Debutante is a sweet romance that’s so much more than two people getting a second chance at love. It reminds us not to take our blessings (including people) for granted and, at the same time, to never become so consumed by those blessings that we lose the ability to see the world through someone else’s eyes. Walker draws you immediately into the story and keeps you engaged from beginning to end, with layered characters (both main & supporting) and an emotional journey to happily-ever-after. Perfect for fans of Sarah Ladd & Carolyn Miller!
(I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the publisher. All views expressed are only my honest opinion.)
My Rating: 4 stars / love it!
KissingBook Level: 3 / may forget to breathe on occasion
Anneka Walker was raised by a librarian and an English teacher turned judge. After being fed a steady diet of books, she decided to learn about writing. The result was a bachelor’s degree in English and History. When she isn’t dreaming up a happy ending for a story, she’s busy living her own together with her husband and adorable children.
Other Books by Anneka R. Walker
Covenant Communications is offering a print copy of Refining the Debutante by Anneka R Walker to one of my readers! (US only. Void where prohibited by law or logistics.) This giveaway is subject to Reading Is My SuperPower’s giveaway policies which can be found here. Enter via the Rafflecopter form below.
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