Because if Edward ever pursued a lady in truth, he couldn't imagine treading carefully. Not if his heart was at stake. Love would be an adventure of its own. He knew that instinctively.
Caroline Clapham isn’t a world renown artist—she’s simply a farmer’s daughter possessed of natural talent with a paintbrush. Talent that her mentor, the Countess of Inglewood, is happy to foster for a summer at her beautiful seaside estate. Caroline’s friends warn her that the season will end and she will return home as insignificant as ever, but Caroline refuses to let go of the hope for something more. Mr. Edward Everly is preparing to take over the management of the estate from his father. His new responsibilities are many and varied, and include marrying the girl his parents have selected for him. Unfortunately, the chosen bride is in love with another, and Edward would rather help her cause than champion his own. When he stumbles upon Miss Clapham painting in the woods, he hatches a plan to help both himself and his supposed intended. The beautiful young artist agrees to enter into a pretend courtship with him, but before summer’s end, Edward’s emotions are far from feigned. Friends and family alike have warned against Caroline and Edward’s relationship. Edward has a role to fill, and Caroline’s lifelong dream is almost within reach. Will their pretend courtship have the chance to blossom into more, or will Edward follow the wishes of his family and risk breaking more than his own heart?
Thoughts & Feelings
Have you ever opened a book and immediately felt at home? The characters and places seem familiar and welcoming even though you've never read about them before? That's the feeling I got within reading the first few paragraphs of Romancing the Artist.
I immediately loved each of the characters and was dying to know more about the secondary characters. So much so that I hopped right on Goodreads and searched through all of Sally Britton's books. Guess what I discovered...Romancing the Artist is the FIRST book in a series called Return to Inglewood which means there is an entire Inglewood series! That's right my friends all of the amazing secondary characters (the now moms and dads) have their own series and we get to see them fall in love! Is anyone else doing a happy dance? Each of the books immediately made it on to my Amazon wishlist because I need to know those stories.
All of that leads me to one of the things I loved about this novel. Even though I haven't read the Inglewood series I didn't feel lost or confused. As previously mentioned I was captivated by the secondary characters and wanted to know more about the close relationships they shared. However, I didn't feel lost or like I was missing any crucial information. Sally wrote these characters in a fantastic and thoughtful way. You immediately get the sense that all of the moms and dads know each other very well and their bantering is fantastic. Some of my favorite moments were conversations between these characters, like this one:
"Perhaps you should invest in spectacles. I have heard aging can rob even the nobility of their sight."
I also loved our leading lady, Caroline Clapham. She is excellently written and I love that we get to see her personality from all sides. We get to see the uncertain artist who is unsure of her abilities. The daughter who loves her family dearly. The confident girl in the woods, who's calling out of Edward's loud stomping is absolutely fantastic. And the shy woman who is uncertain of how to manage societal functions and stays to the corners of the room. I loved all of the depth and emotion and how much it endears us to Caroline. Don't worry, Sally did an equally excellent job with our main man, Edward, and you will quickly love him as well.
I am so excited to see who our next leading lady or main man is and hope to see more of Caroline and Edward throughout the series. I am just as excited to dive into the world of Inglewood. Keep your eyes out for those reviews this summer.
clean, a few kissing scenes
Content & Trigger Warnings
Title: Romancing the Artist
Series: Return to Inglewood #1
Author: Sally Britton
Authors Note on Goodreads: The Return to Inglewood novels are a continuation of the stories in Sally Britton's Inglewood series, following the children of the heroes and heroines of Inglewood . This series can be read out of order and without reading Britton's previous books. All books in the series are sweet romance with no steamy content.
The Inglewood Series
Rescuing Lord Inglewood
Saving Miss Everly
Engaging Sir Isaac
Reforming Lord Neil