Review – Someone to Remember by Mary Balogh

About the Book:

It’s never too late to fall in love in this enchanting new novella in the Westcott series from New York Times bestselling author Mary Balogh.

Matilda Westcott has spent her life tending to the needs of her mother, the Dowager Countess of Riverdale, never questioning the life of solitude she has spun for herself. To Matilda, who considers herself the aging spinster daughter, marriage is laughable–love is a game for the young, after all. But her modest, quiet life of order unravels when a dashing gentleman from her past reappears, threatening to charm his way into her heart yet again.

Charles Sawyer, Viscount Dirkson, does not expect to see Matilda Westcott thirty-six years after their failed romance. Moreover, he does not expect decades-old feelings to emerge at the very sight of her. When encountering Matilda at a dinner hosted by the Earl of Riverdale, he finds himself as fascinated by her as he was the first day they met, and wonders if, after all these years, they have a chance at happiness together. Charles is determined to crack the hard exterior Matilda has built for over three decades or risk losing her once again…

Click on title below for direct Amazon buy link:                                                       Someone to Remember (The Westcott Series Book 7)

My Review:

I received a complimentary copy of this book.

Thirty six years ago, Lady Matilda Westcott and Charles Sawyer were a pair of twenty-year-olds, passionately in love and eager to be married.  When Matilda’s parents flatly refused Charles’s suit, Matilda accepted their decision with no thought of disobeying them.  In order to ensure Charles was gone from her life, she declared that she never really loved him.  A heartbroken Charles returned to his former rakish ways, soon fathering an illegitimate son, and having countless affairs, even after he eventually married.  Matilda never found another man she wanted to wed, and so devoted herself to caring for her crotchety mother.

Fate has decided to throw Matilda and Charles, now Viscount Dirkson, back into each other’s lives, as Matilda’s niece has married Charles’s illegitimate son.  Though both are wary of meeting again after all this time, they are far from being indifferent to each other.  Matilda’s life took a decidedly different path than Charles’ did.  Without a family of her own, her desire to feel needed was revealed in her intense, almost overbearing, care of her mother, who seems to find Matilda’s attentions annoying at times.  Charles is now a widower, and has toned down his wild lifestyle, even dismissing his last mistress.

As the Westcott and Sawyer families begin to socialize, Charles continually seeks out Matilda, and the former youthful sweethearts slowly begin to fall in love again.  Perhaps their love never really went away.  They eventually come to tell each other the truth of their feelings back thirty plus years ago, and why they took the actions they did.  They come to the conclusion that regrets are pointless, but they can still have a future together.  Charles proposes, and Matilda accepts.

Mary Balogh is a genius at pulling on my heartstrings, and slowly developing her characters and their romance.  I loved watching poor old Aunt Matilda blossom, and regain her sense of fun, then face her fears head on.  I felt the love between this long estranged couple and felt that their future together would be a joyful one.  Though they share some lovely kisses, I was a bit disappointed that their intimacy wasn’t explored a little further, only because of their unique circumstances.  Mary Balogh doesn’t write explicit sex scenes, but she doesn’t usually shy away from sharing private bedroom moments.  Because Matilda was still an innocent, I would have truly enjoyed reading about her (hopefully) satisfying experience, perhaps even in retrospect, just her reliving it the morning after.  Having said that, few other authors can create such warmth and closeness.  SOMEONE TO REMEMBER is brilliantly written.  It’s an emotional novella, with plenty of family affection, tears, reconciliation, and one of my very favorite things, a second chance at love.    ~Rose

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