Rating:

Reviewed by Rachel Mann

I thoroughly enjoyed the first book in Sara Ramsey’s Muses of Mayfair series, Heiress Without A Cause, and it was a treat to pick up the next of the series, Scotsmen Prefer Blondes, and check in on these amusing characters. A standout supporting character from Heiress Without A Cause, Lady Amelia Staunton, takes center stage in this book, while the first book’s protagonists, Madeleine and Fergus, show up and remind us that their marriage is working out just fine. Ramsey fakes you out at the beginning by starting with another interesting female character, Prudence, but then Amelia outshines her both for readers and the book’s hero, Malcolm.

Amelia is a great, unusual protagonist for a Regency romance because she’s a secret bestselling author. She writes Gothic romances and satires—she seems to be good at just about any genre she tries out—and when Scotsmen Prefer Blondes begins, she’s still incognito. Ramsey is unconventional in presenting readers with Regency heroines who do desire their own careers and want to make art—they’re not content to be wives and mothers, as their society would wish them to be. They’re more like modern women struggling with the conventions of the time in which they were born.

I wish Ramsey could have pushed this unconventionality even more, although that might have been difficult to do while maintaining this Regency setting. Amelia doesn’t seem like someone who’d give up anything for her husband at all, or care about being forced into marriage just because she’s been compromised. After all, she’s got plenty of family money. She has terrible trouble saying “obey” during marriage vows, and I don’t blame her. Amelia doesn’t seem like she’s willing to obey anybody. It’s pretty clear, though, that her unabashed lust for Malcolm, which takes her completely by surprise, unbalances her. In turn, as a good hero should be, he’s handsome, interesting, and troubled. (I don’t know if he quite measures up to Fergus from Heiress Without A Cause, though.)

At least two more Muses of Mayfair books are in the pipeline—it looks like we’ll have to wait until book four to find out what really happens to Prudence.

Rating: ★★★½☆ 

Also by Sara Ramsey: Heiress Without a Cause

Rachel, who has a Ph.D. in English, is a freelance writer/editor and a voracious reader. You can talk to her about books at http://twitter.com/writehandmann.

Review copy was provided free of any obligation by Sara Ramsey. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.