This is the first book by Kimberly Bell I’ve read and I am already looking forward to the next one! “The Importance of Being Scandalous” is chockfull of rapid fire witty banter, high-jinx and yummy hanky-panky. The heroine’s sister is a wonderful ringleader of bad influence and questionable judgment. Speaking of bad influences the hero’s best friend Jasper’s one of the best secondary characters I’ve enjoyed in a while. I better see lots and lots more of him. Nicholas, the hero, is a well-bred second son in a reserved family. He’s a bit insecure due to his merely existing to be a “contingency plan”. Amelia’s family isn’t “acceptable” so she and her sister are rabble-rousing troublemakers. Often found terrorizing maids and racing their horses in the rain. Nick’s been in love with Amelia since he first saw her. The only one who doesn’t know of his feelings is Amelia herself.
Nicholas Wakefield has been best friends with the Bishop sisters from the neighboring estate ever since he can remember. He’s been in love with Amelia Bishop just as long. Unfortunately his parents disapprove of them. Amelia and Julia are A.) Hoydens and B.) Julia has a spinal condition which causes the family to be unacceptable. Apparently the girl’s disability is a sign of a genetic moral flaw. When Alex became to close to the girls, when he was a boy, he was sent away to school. He’s now in his twenties returning from touring the continent and plans to finally confess his love to Amelia. However he learns that Amelia has a fiancé who is titled, the Earl of Montrose. But when he sees Amelia again and sees that she isn’t happy in her engagement he’s determined to help her.
Amelia’s usual partner in crime and the mastermind behind their shenanigans is her sister Julia. Unfortunately Julia wants Amelia to remain engaged. Because of her infirmity Julia has no hope for a suitor nor husband. Anyone who treats Julia as an invalid or disgrace is immediately disliked. When her betrothed’s cousins say disparaging things about Julia Lord Montrose doesn’t stand up for her sister. Amelia decides he isn’t the man for her. However the Earl won’t take no for an answer and blackmails Amelia to remain engaged. Lord Montrose’s conservative and Julia decides she needs to be so unsuitable he’ll no longer want her. This leads her on a rash of scandalous adventures with Nicholas, and his best friend. Jasper’s a veteran of bad decisions. One of her madcap antics puts her at a literal bacchanalia of alcohol and sex for which she isn’t expecting. Nick’s rescue’s quite steamy!
Amelia isn’t truly the scandalous type; deep down she prefers a book and a cup of tea. However she finds herself with a delusional fiancé she doesn’t want and can’t get rid of. Desperate times call for her to put herself into wonderfully entertaining scandals in order to rid herself of the Earl. Because of the bullying behavior of her fiancé and her mother Amelia decides she never wants to marry. This is unfortunate for Nick because he definitely wants to marry Amelia. Amelia has feelings and “feelings” for Nick but decides she’d just rather take him as a lover. Nick is too conventional for this and vows to rid Amelia of her fiancé and convince her to marry him.
“The Importance of Being Scandalous” is a sexy historical romp and joy to read. Kimberly Bell has a winner of a romance with her foray into Victorian England. This installment in the A Tale of Two Sisters is fun, romantic, thrilling, and sexy. HUZZAH! Kimberly Bell portrays the sisters’ rapport perfectly as they riff off each other while they’re in antics and capers mode. The character of Jasper is synonymous with “shenanigans. This is my first Kimberly Bell book; since I’m eagerly awaiting the second sister’s story, it won’t be my last.
I’m giving “The Importance of Being Scandalous” 5 Lightning Bolts and a Gale Warning.
This novel was provided, voluntarily read, and honestly reviewed.