‘The Secrets of Sir Richard Kenworthy’ by Julia Quinn

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Rating: 4 1/2 stars

In “The Secrets of Sir Richard Kenworthy,” Julia Quinn proves that there can still be unique plot twists inhistorical romance novels. Let’s face it, in romancenovels there are a few themes that are tried and true. Hasty marriage, couple begins to fall in love, secret or problem ensues, problem is overcome, couple lives happily ever after.

But in this story, Sir Richard’s secret, and the reader knows it’s a secret — the author leaves no doubt about that — is not uncovered until well into the story. And it’s not a secret that this reader guessed, although other more astute readers might have clued in earlier.

Iris, Sir Richard’s quarry, is not stunningly beautiful but rather pale and lacking in any distinguishing features except for her extremely light hair. But she is intelligent and perceptive, and Sir Richard likes those traits.

Iris knows that Sir Richard is not all that he seems, but she agrees to marry him — in unseemly haste — when the situation arises. But just as she is really starting to fall in love with him, the secret rears its ugly head, and Iris is left doubting that Sir Richard has any feelings for her at all.

Of course, there is a solution to all problems in the world of historical romance, and it will come as no surprise to all readers that Iris and Sir Richard live happily ever after. Fans of Quinn will recognize her love of language, her eye for details, and her quirky characters and humor. It’s a delightful read.

Please note: This review is based on the final paperback book provided by Avon Books for review purposes.