Title: A Reluctant Belle (The Daughtry House Series #2)
Author: Beth White
Release Date: June 4, 2019
Genre: Historical Romance
Format: Paperback (also available in eBook)
Note: I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher. I was not required to give a positive review. All of the opinions expressed are my own.
About the book:
Impoverished Southern belle Joelle Daughtry has a secret. By day she has been helping her sisters in their quest to turn the run-down family plantation into a resort hotel after the close of the Civil War. But by night and under a male pseudonym, she has been penning articles for the local paper in support of the construction of a Negro school. With the Mississippi arm of the Ku Klux Klan gaining power and prestige, Joelle knows she is playing a dangerous game.
When childhood enemy and current investor in the Daughtry house renovation Schuyler Beaumont takes over his assassinated father’s candidacy for state office, Joelle finds that in order to protect her family and her home, she and Schuyler will have to put aside their longstanding personal conflict and develop a united public front. The trouble is, what do you do when animosity becomes respect—and even love—if you’re already engaged to someone else?
This is an incredible historical romance!
I think that all of the central characters are extremely well developed. Joelle has to be my favorite with all of her insecurities and doubts. I can relate to her as far as how many of them she has. Yet she continues to strive to help other people and treat them fairly.
Schuyler Beaumont finds himself having to grow up suddenly and face the realities of what life is truly like. Along with that he does a fair amount of kicking himself for not having been acting in a more adult manner for so long.
I thoroughly enjoyed seeing how Joelle and Schuyler interact with each other. They suddenly find themselves seeing each other as their adult selves not the children that grew up as friends/foes.
The plot of the story is very heavy in that it deals with the middle portion of the Reconstruction Era, five years after Robert E. Lee surrendered at Appomattox. The presentation of the racial atmosphere of the time is very well done. I do appreciate the fact that the author chose not to use all of the very harsh language that would have been prevalent at the time. It made it a little easier for me to read.
The wonderful book is getting a rating of 5 stars from me. I highly recommend it.
Disclaimer: *Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a copy of this book for free in the hope that I would mention/review it on my blog. I was not required to give a positive review, only my honest opinion - which I've done. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.*