Someone to Love (The Westcotts #1)
By: Mary Balogh
Format/Source: eBook; my purchase
Humphrey Wescott, Earl of Riverdale, has died, leaving behind a fortune that will forever alter the lives of everyone in his family—including the daughter no one knew he had…
Anna Snow grew up in an orphanage in Bath knowing nothing of the family she came from. Now she discovers that the late Earl of Riverdale was her father and that she has inherited his fortune. She is also overjoyed to learn she has siblings. However, they want nothing to do with her or her attempts to share her new wealth. But the new earl’s guardian is interested in Anna…
Avery Archer, Duke of Netherby, keeps others at a distance. Yet something prompts him to aid Anna in her transition from orphan to lady. As London society and her newfound relatives threaten to overwhelm Anna, Avery steps in to rescue her and finds himself vulnerable to feelings and desires he has hidden so well and for so long.
I read a few of her books from the Survivors series and loved them. I ended up picking this book up in a sort of whim as it was on sale at the time, but given how much I enjoyed the other two books, I figured I would enjoy reading another book of hers 🙂
Someone to Love was a wonderful start to a new series. The premise of Humphrey Wescott leaving quite the mess behind him after his death was quite something as it leaves Anna Snow inheriting a fortune and elevating her status in society; I was wondering how her status would be changed and whatnot but that one little detail was something I haven’t yet seen in historical romance to date, so that was different. It’s a lovely twist on the Cinderella tale, of her life as an orphan informing who she is and what she believes in. It was a little heartbreaking how the thing she wanted–a family–kept being shot down at the start as her half-siblings are suddenly disinherited and cast-off so they’re rather bitter about the whole situation and towards Anna. But I love how Anna perseveres despite Society trying to mould her into the fold.
Avery’s also a very interesting character, someone who carries an aloof persona but has quite an interesting inner life and backstory, interests and set of skills (say the last bit in Liam Neeson’s voice). He’s also someone who does the right thing and has his principles so he’s not just some bored member of the ton. I wish we had more scenes featuring him away from London because he was more relaxed and whatnot but I’m glad that there was a moment in the novel that addressed his preference for the countryside. His and Anna’s love story was lovely, from that unexpected chemistry and being drawn to each other to the cuteness of how they ended up engaged (hee) to just <3 It's quiet but it's lovely.
Overall I enjoyed reading Someone to Love. I had read it around Valentine’s Day actually so I guess that added to the mood but it was also a good read to offset all the stress that had been happening in my life at the time. It’s quite a cast of characters introduced in one go but they were wonderful characters nonetheless and I look forward to reading more from this series at some point.