Otherwise Engaged by Joanna Barker
My rating: 4.5 of 5 stars
Source: Received to Review
Genre: Regency Romance
Book Description: She’s never been afraid of breaking the rules—until she risks breaking her heart
Constantly stifled by the rules of Society, spirited Rebecca Rowley enjoys finding ways to quietly—or not so quietly—rebel. But riding bareback and avoiding nosy neighbors are nothing compared to the thrilling secret she is keeping from her family.
When Rebecca’s quick thinking saves the life of a young girl, she unwittingly attracts the attention of the child’s dashing brother, Lieutenant Nicholas Avery. As that attention turns flirtatious, Rebecca is forced to tell him the truth: she is secretly engaged—to the one man her family would never approve of. Fortunately, Lieutenant Avery is a navy man with no wish to marry, or so they both assume as they enter into a friendship. Rebecca hopes to change her family’s mind about her betrothed, but the more she comes to know the handsome lieutenant, the more she wonders if she promised her hand too hastily.
After all her carefully laid plans are shattered during a family crisis, Rebecca must force her heart to decide. Should she stay true to the promise she made or fight for the future she’s only just begun to imagine?
My thoughts: Oh Rebecca, Rebecca, Rebecca. She is quite a clever character. She has a good heart but a rebellious spirit. She wants to make her own decisions, ride bareback, save a child from drowning, and marry with her family's support. From the moment you meet Rebecca, it is clear that you are in store for a very interesting book.
Rebecca has a secret engagement. She lives for letters from Edward Bainbridge. She soon finds out that there is a feud between their two families. A match with Edward would be frowned upon by her family. So, she tries to find out where the divide happened and figure out a way to marry Edward.
Little does she know that when she saves the drowning child (a very funny event btw) that Lieutenant Nicholas Avery would sweep into her life unexpectedly. They are friends and she can share all of her escapades with him and know that he will not judge her for it. Their friendship grows and he becomes important to her, but she can't forget about her dear Edward.
This book is full of funny scenes that left me chuckling. I enjoyed Rebecca's free spirit and her desire to go and do things that test the limits of her abilities. She is full of love and has a good heart. Her relationship with Nicholas's sister was unexpected. She didn't know that she could get along with children. So, she is learning and growing and finding out who and what is truly important to her.
This is a wonderful book. Joanna Barker is a wonderful author and I love everything I have read of her work. This book is no exception.
Source: I received a complimentary copy. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.
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About the Author: Joanna Barker was born and raised in northern California. She discovered her love for historical fiction after visiting England as an eleven-year-old, and subsequently read every Jane Austen book she could get her hands on. After graduating with a degree in English, she worked as an acquisitions editor before devoting herself full-time to writing. She enjoys music, chocolate, and reading everything from romance to science fiction. She lives near the mountains and is just a little crazy about her husband and two wild-but-loveable boys.
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