Have you torn through the entirety of Bridgerton season 2 already? Have your cravings for more Regency romance and salacious scandal began setting in? Fear not – we have a reading list that can satiate your post-binge Bridgerton blues. Read your fill of affluence, affairs, indulgence, debauchery and social-climbing with these top titles of historical romance…
The Stranger I Married by Sylvia Day
They are London’s most scandalous couple. Lady Pelham and the Marquess of Grayson are well-matched in many things – lusty appetites, constant paramours, provocative reputations, and their absolute refusal to ruin a marriage of convenience by falling in love.
It is a most agreeable sham – until a shocking event sends them both apart.
When, four years later, the Marquess returns, the boyish rogue is now a powerful, irresistible man determined to seduce Lady Pelham. He is not the man she married – but is he the one to finally steal her heart?
An erotic tale of love and awakened desire in Victorian England … perfect for fans of Bridgerton!
Emma by Jane Austen
As well as being a mature and brilliant comedy of manners, Emma is perhaps Austen’s most complex and psychologically dexterous novel. Focalised through its eponymous protagonist’s well-meaning but uninitiated mind, Emma is an enchanting meditation on the difficulty of knowing yourself and the vacuity of cunning logic when it comes to matters of the heart.
Emma Woodhouse, handsome, clever, and rich with a comfortable home and happy disposition, seemed to unite the best blessings of existence; and had lived nearly twenty-one years in the world with very little to distress or vex her.
Nothing, however, delights her more than interfering in the romantic lives of others. But when she ignores the warnings of her good friend Mr Knightley and attempts to arrange a suitable match for her protégée Harriet Smith, she carefully laid plans soon unravel and have consequences that she never expected.
Bronte’s Mistress by Finola Austin
Meticulously researched and deliciously told, Bronte’s Mistress is a captivating reimagining of the scandalous affair that has divided Bronte enthusiasts for generations.
Lydia Robinson – mistress of Thorp Green Hall – has lost her precious young daughter and her mother within the same year. She returns to her bleak home, grief-stricken and unmoored.
All of that changes with the arrival of her son’s tutor, Branwell Bronte, brother of her daughters’ governess, Miss Anne Bronte and sisters, Charlotte and Emily. Branwell has his own demons to contend with, but his presence is a breath of fresh air for Lydia. Handsome, passionate, and uninhibited by social conventions, he’s also twenty-five to her forty-three.
As Branwell’s inner turmoil rises to the surface, his behaviour grows erratic and dangerous, and whispers of their passionate relationship spout from her servants’ lips, reaching all three protective Bronte sisters.
Reputation by Lex Croucher
Gossip Girl meets Pride & Prejudice… YES, PLEASE! Sweet and naive Georgianna finds herself mixing with some highly questionable characters from the upper echelons of society in Croucher’s deliciously witty debut.
Abandoned by her parents and living with her dreary aunt and uncle, Georgianna meets the enigmatic Francis Campbell and falls in with her unfathomably rich, deeply improper friends. But the price of entry into high society might just be higher than Georgianna is willing to pay…
To Have And To Hoax by Martha Waters
After a five year estrangement, Violet receives a letter informing her that her husband, James, has been thrown from his horse. She races to be by his side – only to discover him alive, well, and baffled by her concern.
Outraged, Violet decides to feign an illness of her own to teach James a lesson. And so begins an ever-escalating game of manipulation – and a great deal of flirtation between a husband and wife who might not hate each other as much as they once thought.
A laugh-out-loud Regency romp – Waters’ sweepingly romantic historical rom-com is sure to enchant!
The Other Bennet Sister by Janice Hadlow
A beautifully judged and tender homage to Pride and Prejudice, Hadlow’s period novel puts the oft-neglected Mary Bennet centre stage in a tale of quiet ambition and personal freedom which is both moving and warmly funny. A delightful new story in its own right, The Other Bennet Sister is, at its heart, is a life-affirming tale of a young woman finding her place in the world. Witty and uplifting, it will make you feel – and cheer – for Mary as you never have before.
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