Author: L. G. Rollins
Series: Dickens of a Christmas #3
Genres: Historical Romance
Format: eBook, Print
Date: December 9, 2020
All she wants for Christmas is to keep her family together.
Miss Martha Cratchit is barely making ends meet. As a woman who once belonged to high society, options to secure a better income are limited. Blessedly, the aging vicar agrees to pay Martha if she will clean the church house for him. He even agrees to keep her employ a secret, allowing her to keep what little standing she has left in society. Hopefully, the coin she earns will be enough to keep her and her two brothers housed and fed. It is a tenuous plan, but it is all she has.
Peter De Ath, Duke of Pembroke, hates everyone and everything; he has no qualms with his reputation as the Silent Duke. He’s been alone nearly all his life and is content to remain so. All he needs is a few minutes a week, alone in the church house, to commune with the one being who won’t judge him for his incurable stutter.
When a wisp of a young woman stumbles upon him in the church house, Peter finds his solitude shattered. Martha, for her part, is far too terrified of the Silent Duke to wish herself anywhere but far away from him. But fleeing isn’t an option; the cost of caring for her ailing grandfather is growing and she’s running out of options. It seems this Christmas may be the one that finally breaks her family apart.
Rating: Mild. Mild kissing.
I have really enjoyed this series and this book was one of the best. The way the author tied the book to Dicken’s A Christmas Carol is so creative.
To be clear I gave each of the books in this series 5 stars but I willingly admit that this one was my favorite of all. 5++ stars from me. I also admit that I still don’t know Dickens well enough to recognize all the nods to his book but I love that the author points them out to us in the notes.
I loved Martha. She is so caring and willing to work hard to help her family even when she needs to keep it a secret. She is genuinely a good person and it is no surprise that Hugh falls for her.
I also loved Hugh. And felt sorry for him. He pushed away all the joy in life and in many ways mirrors Scrooge himself. I love how the author used him as the Ghost of Christmas future. Also love the growth he makes over the course of the book to be a better person both for himself and for those around him. I also love the promise he makes Martha because it isn’t to make her world better with his money.
Martha’s brothers are delightful and fun characters.
And I was thrilled to have the epilogue which is usually used to show how things look in the future. But that was shown us in the last chapter. That last chapter gives us a glimpse of the characters from the previous books which was fun and a nice way to end the series. But as I was reading that last part I kept trying to think back to Scrooge’s experience and piece things together of how they fit with the book. And then we got the beautiful epilogue that went back and told me more of what I wanted to know. It was perfect.
So I highly recommend the entire series. It is definitely one I would love to read again.
No sex, language or violence
*I received a complimentary ARC of this book and voluntarily chose to review it.