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Friday, January 25, 2013
Early Review: The Importance of Being Wicked by Victoria Alexander
Author: Victoria Alexander
Series: Millworth Manor
Release Date: January 29, 2013
Source: From NetGalley
Buy it here: Amazon | Book Depository
For more information visit Victoria Alexander's website
Reviewed by: Ronnie
The Importance of Being Wicked is the latest offering from Victoria Alexander. Winfield Elliott, or Viscount Stillwell if you prefer, has hired the firm of Garrett and Tempest to restore and rebuild his family home that was damaged in a fire. Unbeknownst to Winfield Elliott, Miranda Garrett is the architect of the firm, and comes to the Stillwelll’s family manor under the pretense of being the firm’s public representative. While at Millworth Manor, Miranda learns more about the reputedly wicked, Winfield Elliot, who is famous for being engaged three times, yet has never married.
I am a fan of a slow building romance and this book certainly fits the bill. There was a lack of insta-lust between the two main characters that I found refreshing. Both Miranda and Winfield have very definite ideas about who they think the other person is, and discovering that not to be the case is part of the fun within the book. Often times within a historical romance, the former husband will get the short end of the stick so to speak. He’s written as a lout, a lazy lover, or someone that truly did not appreciate the heroine’s lovely qualities. This is not the case in The Importance of Being Wicked. John Garrett is noted as a loving husband who appreciated his wife’s talents and tried to do the best he could for her before he passed away. Miranda Garrett is written as a smart, competent woman who took over her husband’s business when it was ascertained that she possessed skills he did not.
However, there are a couple of issues that bugged me throughout the novel. First, the word wicked. By golly, it appears over 70 times within the whole text. 70!! In one memorable instance, the word wicked appears 6 times within 1 kindle page. I got REALLY tired of seeing the word wicked. I know it’s in the title..but c’mon now. Other than the term wicked being attributed to Viscount Stillwell, I wouldn’t say that word even comes close to describing him. There are no shenanigans to speak of, other than the failed engagements. And reasonable, plausible explanations are given as to why Winfield never married. So that term rather missed the mark. I found the dialogue to be cute without being cloying (with the notable exception of that term) and I enjoyed the way the story ended up playing out.
As a general rule, I like reading books by Victoria Alexander because of the humor and characters that populate her novels. The Importance of Being Wicked is definitely not without its flaws, but I still enjoyed the story.