tocThe Other Countess (The Lacey Chronicles #1) by Eve Edwards
Release Date: July 12, 2011
Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers
Source: Library
Rating: starstarstarstarblank_star
Buy It: Amazon | IndieBound

England, 1582 

Ellie—Lady Eleanor Rodriguez, Countess of San Jaime—possesses a worthless title, but her feisty spirit captivates the elite of the Queen’s court—especially the dashing new Earl of Dorset.   

William Lacey, Earl of Dorset, has inherited his father’s title—and his financial ruin. Now Will must seek a wealthy bride and restore his family’s fortune. If only he hadn’t fallen for the beautiful but penniless Ellie…

Sparks fly whenever Ellie and Will are together, but circumstances—and the conniving interference of others—threaten to keep them apart.

Now, I normally leave the romance novels to my fellow reviewers-in-arms, but historical fiction was like my first serious genre boyfriend. This is set in Queen Elizabeth’s reign, which is my favorite era in history, the era of the Tudors. Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn have been an obsession of mine for a long time, so I couldn’t resist, and honestly, I found this really cute. Will is a bit of a dick to Ellie when he learns who she is, but I find myself forgiving him, not because he’s charming, but because he is dumb. He’ll figure it out, and Ellie has enough fire and spirit to throw some of his insults back in his face. He even seems to have some remorse in him, which is more than can be said for some male protags (*cough, cough* Noah from Mara Dyer *cough, cough*). The third main character is missing from the summary, and she’s Lady Jane Perceval, who seems to be a stuck up aristocrat who lost her virginity to Sir Walter Raleigh (before he was a Sir). She’s hilariously mean, but is brought out of her shell more than once, and her meanness can be justified. I like her a lot.

This is such a romance, and I don’t mean to be derisive. I just mean that the plot is mainly Will falling in love with Ellie, and vice versa, and Will fretting about having to marry Jane. There’s a little side plot about Ellie and her father’s poverty and how they’re kicked out of the castle, but this book is mostly about Will and Ellie’s journey to one another. And they do get there, I’m not sure if that’s a spoiler, but you HAD TO KNOW it works out for them.

There’s not much to say about this one, really. I liked Jane and Ellie’s friendship, I liked how Will was self-aware enough to realize he was a jerk to Ellie, I like how realistically Edwards presents Queen Elizabeth. I like how medieval life was only romanticized a little bit and I liked how much of a jerk Edwards made Sir Walter Raleigh. This one is historical romance through and through, so if that’s your bag, check this one out! I’ll be reviewing the sequel, The Queen’s Lady, which is about Lady Jane, here as well. Check this space later in the week!