Dutiful daughter Faith Baxendale just wants to please. Faith isn’t as adventurous as her younger sister, Hope, gadding about Italy with their aunt, nor as rebellious as her elder sister, Honor, who planned to become a card sharp. And Faith couldn’t lose herself in her art like sixteen-year-old, Charity. Even Mercy, at fourteen, shows more backbone!
After Faith’s first Season ends, her father urges her to marry the man of his choice. But when Lord Vaughn Winborne, a neighbor Faith had a crush on while still in the schoolroom, arrives home for the Brandreth’s hunt ball, surprising even to herself, Faith is drawn again towards a man her father would never consider.
The youngest Brandreth male, Vaughn, is the black sheep of the family. His elder brother, Chaloner, Marquess of Brandreth, still looks upon him as a reckless youth, and Vaughn is determined to prove him wrong.
A chance comes in the form of a scandal not of Vaughn’s making, and he must learn to trust Faith, who, when all’s said and done, has always known her own mind.
“Ah, a cruel thrust, Lady Faith. You don’t spare a man’s feelings.”
“I believe your shoulders are strong enough to bear it.” Faith instantly regretted her words, as her hand rested on his shoulder and she could feel the strength and warmth of him through her glove.
“I remember what a thin, feisty child you were,” Vaughn said with a glint of humor warming his eyes. “You used to climb a tree like a monkey.” Her face heated.
“I was never thin, and it’s extremely bad manners to suggest it.”
“You’d prefer I uttered flowery compliments?” He cocked a brow. “I’m sure you get enough of those.”
Faith did, but she was happy to receive more, and from him especially. “And I would prefer not to be reminded of my past misdemeanors.”
“I quite agree.” He bowed his head with a rueful and very charming smile. “I apologize.”
Vaughn was an accomplished dancer. She was aware of the female gazes following them as they turned on the floor. She’d caught that wicked gleam in his eyes and didn’t believe his apology for a minute. He was outrageous. Why did he refuse to bow to society’s conventions?
“I could list your misdemeanors, my lord,” Faith said, “but I’m afraid the dance won’t be long enough.” Vaughn chuckled.
“What would you know of such things, Lady Faith?”
“You have been the subject of village gossip for some time.” His eyes gleamed beneath a fringe of thick, dark lashes.
“Indeed? What has been said about me?” She shook her head. He was incorrigible. “Nothing that would please you, sir.”
“Ah, my luck in life, I fear.” He did not look particularly put out. “My brothers have all been exemplary, never put a foot wrong. It behooved me to add some color to the family.”
“You’ve made a remarkably good job of it,” Faith said, unable to keep the laughter from her voice.
Lady Faith Takes a Leap by Maggi Andersen is an exciting Regency Historical Romance. Book 2 in “The Baxendale Sisters”, but can be read as a stand alone. See, “Taming a Gentleman Spy”.
Fast paced tale of scandal, trust, passion, and romance. Once again, Ms. Andersen has proven her storytelling, even in a Novella. This title is a quick read, only 122 pages, but packed full of action and passion.
I enjoyed how Faith, stepped up to the occasion and showed her worth and her own mind. Compelling and powerful! Fans of Regency Romance will enjoy this quick, light-hearted romp through Regency England. Well done!
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I’ve read a couple of titles from Maggi Andersen, but the Baxendale sisters are new to me. Faith is the ‘dutiful’ sister, often feeling uninspired and uninspiring around her sisters that are more daring, dramatic, artistic or even more self-centered. You can’t help but like Faith, she wants to please her parents, but she also wants something more. She’s just not completely certain that she deserves, or can reach for it.
As a girl in a family of them, there isn’t time or patience for extended seasons with no clear choice of husband, and Faith’s father isn’t willing to let her chances pass her by. He’s made his choices clear, and the suitor he has chosen as appropriate is just not what she wants.
The annual Brandreth Hunt Ball brings a chance for another option in Vaughn, the younger brother of the Marquis, Vaughn has always been the black sheep: not in direct ascendant line, Faith knows that the object of her crush of many years would never be acceptable to her father.
A lovely and sweet romance, this fast paced novella gives Faith some of the daring, adventure and backbone she fears were sorely lacking in her flirtation soon to be romance with Vaughn. Their interactions are lovely, and both characters grow and develop with the support of one another to become more than their familial reputations, even more than they expected from themselves.
Andersen writes a lovely character: full of heart and emotion with some growth to discover their true selves and feelings as they work their way through obvious and not so obvious obstacles. Secondary characters add depth and contrast, while a touch of humor and insets of description and etiquette obeyed or flaunted keep the story firmly grounded in its time.
I loved this story. Lady Faith Takes a Leap is about not being afraid to explore. Maggi Andersen has written a beautifully enchanting story about being true to the heart. No matter what. Isha.