Tuesday, June 25, 2013

The Perks of Being a Beauty by Manda Collins + Featured Freebie

The Perks of Being a Beauty (Ugly Ducklings, #3.5)
The beautiful Miss Amelia Snow is not accustomed to being snubbed by the gentlemen of the ton. But when her mother dies unexpectedly, forcing Amelia to take employment as companion to a wealthy cit’s daughter, she quickly learns to play down her looks or risk losing her position. When her employers, the Smithsons, decide to throw a country house party, she is determined to fade into the background. But how can she when the Smithson’s guest of honor is Lord Quentin Fortescue, the childhood friend who stole her heart?

Younger son, Lord Quentin Fortescue, is far more interested in his host’s cotton mills in the north than he is in courting the man’s dim-witted daughter. But it’s the girl’s companion who makes him look twice. Years ago, Miss Amelia Snowe rejected his proposal without a backward glance. Quentin has molded himself into just the sort of man she’d have wanted back then, but is Amelia still the smug beauty who broke his heart? And can either of them risk their newfound positions to indulge the fiery attraction that burns between them?

My Rating: 4 Roses

A lovely romance novella. The Perks of Being a Beauty was a quick, wonderful read about the redemption of a heroine. I really liked this novella.

I'm going to be honest, I haven't read the previous books in this series (The Ugly Ducklings), where Amelia was the antagonist. So, I don't know the full extent of her crimes. But, from the quick recaps in this book, it sounded pretty bad. But, I think people deserve second chances, so I like romance where the hero or heroine has a chance to redeem him/herself. And this was a great one.

Amelia  has gone from the top, being society's premier beauty, and fell pretty hard. Now, as a companion to a cit''s daughter, who she would have scorned in the past, she has been thoroughly humbled. And, after reflecting on her past actions, she has figured out that she was a terrible person. So, she's working on bettering herself, becoming a better person. I respect that. And that allowed me to respect her character and really like her. She might have been terrible in the past, but she redeemed herself.

Quentin was also wonderful. He was a sweet guy and it didn't take long for me to adore him. He was way more forgiving than most people would be in his situation, considering Amelia threw his offer of  marriage back in his face. But, to me, that was a marker of a true gentleman. I thought he was a perfect hero.

The romance was mostly sweet. Not much spice here. Amelia and Quentin were so cute together. I though it was adorable how, despite how things seemed so against them over the past years, they still ended up together. They were a lovely couple.

The plot was fast paced. Though I was kept interested, however, I never got completely hooked, which is why I knocked off a points. I enjoyed this story, but I didn't get completely into it for some reason, so I didn't love it. Regardless, I still really liked this book. And I thought the ending was a perfect redemption for Amelia.

The Perks of Being a Beauty was a lovely romance novella. If you're looking for a great, quick read, this is your book.

*Thanks to Netgalley and St. Martin's Publishing for a copy!
Featured Freebie:
Today, I have a pirate romance that sounds good: Pirate's Bride by Lynette Vinet . Go forth and get it for free!

Young Bethlyn Talbot, daughter of the Earl of Dunsmoor, is forced into an arranged marriage with brash colonial Ian Briston, who abandons her after the wedding ceremony. Seven years later, Bethlyn has blossomed into a beautiful and alluring young woman, with a husband in name only.

Wishing for the marriage to be annulled or force her errant husband to make her his wife in all ways, Bethlyn leaves England for America on one of her father's ships. But when the ship is captured by the infamous American privateer, Captain Hawk, he mistakes her for a prostitute.

Fighting her attraction for the masked pirate, Bethlyn becomes Hawk's prey and succumbs to nights of passion in the arms of the buccaneer. What will happen when she finally arrives in Philadelphia to claim her wayward spouse now that she's known the ecstasy of being the pirate's bride?

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