Genre: Historical romance
Subgenre: clean read
Author: Elizabeth Johns, @ejohnsauthor
Ready to try a new author, but not ready to commit hours of your life? Here’s your chance. As I write this review, First Impressions is a free read on Amazon.
It’s been awhile since I reviewed anything from Elizabeth Johns, but I do enjoy her writing. If you’re in the mood for a regency romance, but not one that feels like its ripped straight out of Pride and Prejudice, I encourage you to give her a try. (Side note: Ms. Johns professes to be a fan of Austen, but there is a great deal of difference between emulating a style and trying to recreate the same stories over and over.)
For a summary of the story, read some of her other reviews. It’s been summarized thoroughly on Amazon, so I’ll just share what I thought about certain aspects of the story.
Some of the characters were fairly standard fare, e.g., the prerequisite pushy mother who encourages her daughter to play dumb in order to attract a mate. The heroine, Helena, a smart woman who preferred reading Greek classics to engaging in more traditional feminine past times. But, both of these characters, especially the heroine, were highly likable and the fact that we’ve “met” them before did not detract.
I found the hero’s character very appealing. He was a widower with a child. Maybe it’s just me, but I love heroes who have children. I know that’s been done before, too, but it’s one of those themes that really appeals to me. His former wife was a beautiful, but cold woman who was fairly ego-centric. Thankfully, Ms. Johns doesn’t go into too much back story – just enough to explain why the hero is reluctant to fall for another beautiful woman.
All in all, it’s a quick, enjoyable read. Unlike I lot of novellas, it felt complete. In fact, I didn’t even realize it was a novella until I started reading the other reviews. No wonder I finished it so quickly!