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Rags-to-Riches Wife by Catherine Tinley

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Lady’s maid…

To wedded Lady?

Lady’s maid Jane Bailey’s life is turned upside down by the arrival of wealthy gentleman Robert Kendal. He’s come to take Jane to visit her long-lost, aristocratic grandfather. Traveling together, they succumb to a mutual attraction. Yet Jane knows a maid should not hope to love a gentleman, even if she’s suddenly wearing silk dresses and dining with the Family. Society decrees they cannot marry, but how long can Jane deny her heart?


This story brings me back to my younger days when I enjoyed reading Regency romances with no explicit sex and more of a slow build-up to the storyline and the characters’ personalities.

Miss Jane Bailey has worked hard to become a lady’s maid to the kind and generous Marianne Ashington, Lady Kingswood, who was once a governess herself. When Jane and her mother were left destitute after her father’s death, the first year was harrowing as they sought work where they could eventually secure a position in Miss Marianne’s home.  But Jane’s life has been turned upside down when a handsome stranger, Robert Kendal, asks Jane to accompany him to her estranged grandfather’s home, Beechmount Hall in Yorkshire. The cold-hearted grandfather threw Jane’s father out of his home after professing his love for Jane’s mother, a mere servant. 

Robert Kendal is dispatched by his uncle by marriage to bring a mysterious woman, Jane Bailey, back to Beechmount Hall in Yorkshire. Their 5-day trip to Beechmount Hall forges an unexpected friendship with an attraction that cannot be acted upon. When the secret is revealed, Robert feels betrayed that she didn’t tell him, but her beauty, kindness, and bravery cannot be ignored and he considers changing his life for the better. Until his uncle springs yet another unexpected surprise on them.

Overall, Ms. Tinley’s story is heartwarming and emotional as I found me teary-eyed a few times. The love Jane finds for her grandfather is touching and his grand gesture to keep her and Robert happy is very sly, but indicative of an old man making amends for his mistakes in the past. Of course, the relationship between Robert and Jane is enchanting and the buildup to their HEA is worth waiting for.

Thank you to Ms. Tinley for giving me the opportunity to review this book with no expectation of a positive review.



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Catherine Tinley is an award-winning author who writes witty, heartwarming, Regency love stories for Harlequin Mills & Boon. She has loved reading and writing since childhood and has a particular fondness for love, romance, and happy endings. After a career encompassing speech & language therapy, NHS management, maternity campaigning and being President of a charity, she now works in Sure Start. She lives in Ireland with her husband, children, and dog and can be reached at her website, as well as Facebook and Twitter.


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