Author: Suzanne Enoch
My rating: 3.8 of 5 ⭐️
Quick points: lighthearted found family set in Regency period with some romance.
Emmeline loves the house and estate she grew up in, so when her parents move out, and her grandfather declares that he will give the house to whichever grandchild next marries, Emmie rushes into a marriage arrangement with an old friend. Will Pershing was a good childhood friend, and agrees to a convenient partnership that will help further his career. This arrangement works splendidly for years, until Emmie faces the second part of her grandfather’s stipulation: she must have a child in order to keep the house. Since her grandfather & other family live a distance away and only communicate by mail, Emmie was able to pretend she had children. But when her grandfather requests their presence at his grand birthday bash, Emmie and Will are in a quandary. Without children, they lose the house and their respect. Can they borrow a set of children and manage to pass them off as their own without anyone the wiser?
This was a lighthearted found family novel with a side dish of romance. Emmeline’s & Will’s lives were set and orderly, as they each did their part in furthering Will’s political career. Bringing George and Rose, two young orphans, into their home for a few weeks completely uprooted their lives.
The kids, used to fending for themselves, are not interested in playing pretend rich kids for a few weeks before being thrown back into an orphanage. They have plans of their own, which might have something to do with how often valuables seem to disappear from the estate. But they are cute spunky little cherubs that can surely pass as little angels in time for the party.
There were plenty of light humorous moments, tangles of lies, and bits of romance. Mostly, I loved how everyone, from the servants & staff, to Emmeline & Will, and George and Rose, all came together over the course of the book. Despite their differences, saving the house becomes a joint project. Without intending to, they all became a family.