Publish Date: February 22, 2011
How I got this book: NetGalley
I’m a big fan of Regency era Historical Romances, so the premise of this one sounded great to me, a woman struggling to survive after the death of her parents takes on the role of serving as governess to the new Earl’s young niece. Having never served as a governess before, Mercy is unsure of proper protocol, but is fairly sure that the Earl and his merry men of former soldiers are not doing things correctly.
The Earl, Nash, was horribly injured at Waterloo, and the burn disfiguration on his face has led him to be somewhat cynical. But the fire and passion in his new governess awakens feelings he didn’t know he could possess. With the failing state of his lands and home, the Earl has some hard decisions to make. Does he pursue the beautiful governess, or take a wife who can provide a large dowry and save him home?
I really wanted to like this book, but when I say that I’m just glad I was able to finish it, it’s disappointing. The beginning held promise. An old Duke is on his deathbed, looking for the grandchildren that he disowned years ago. We then cut to Mercy, daughter of a vicar and his wife who have just died. She is on her way to her new potential home, working as the governess to the young Emmy. I liked Mercy at first. She was just the right mix of strong will and innocence. But as the story progressed, she drove me more and more crazy. As the vicar’s daughter she had never been kissed, and only courted twice. But suddenly she is letting Nash steal kisses, flirt inappropriately, and even make love before even determining if he likes her. What happened to that strong will? She just fizzled out as a character for me.
Nash on the other hand started off poorly, and while his character was a little more agreeable for me, I still wasn’t completely sold on him. As a war vet, he was in many a battle, and was injured horrifically. His scars make him angry and bitter, and he lets that bleed over into his whole life. While he wants Mercy with something fierce, he also wants to make sure his home succeeds, and to do so would mean courting and marrying a rich neighbor’s daughter. I hated that Nash was still planning on courting the heiress, even as he was ruining Mercy’s future.
Even the romance between the two seemed off. I thought Mercy was going to remain strong in her values to be a good vicar’s daughter and marry properly. But she became more of a swooning impressionable heroine that was irrevocably changed into a wanton with only one kiss. I just couldn’t believe that. Likewise Nash wanted to pursue Mercy, to the point that he even mentioned wanting to be with her if his financial situation was different. However, at the same time seemed completely amicable with the thought of marrying another. It was hard for me to be on board with that.
The only thing I enjoyed about this book was the mystery surrounding the mysterious death of Nash’s two older brothers, and the ongoing investigation of the dying Duke’s granddaughters. Those two plot lines kept the story moving more than the romance between Nash and Mercy, and were (in my opinion) the only believable parts to the story.
All in all, I give Seducing the Governess 2 out of 5 fallen governesses!