Pages: 432 pgs
Genre: Historical Romance-Regency
Challenges-Read’n’Review Challenge, 100+ Reading Challenge
Olivia Grace has secrets that could destroy her. One of the greatest of these is the Earl of Gracechurch, who married and divorced her five years earlier. Abandoned and disgraced, Grace has survived those years at the edge of respectability. Then she stumbles over Jack on the battlefield of Waterloo, and he becomes an even more dangerous secret. For not only is he unconscious, he is clad in an enemy uniform.
But worse, when Jack finally wakes in Olivia's care, he can't remember how he came to be on a battlefield in Belgium. In fact, he can remember nothing of the last five years. He thinks he and Olivia are still blissfully together. To keep him from being hanged for a traitor, Olivia must pretend she and Jack are still married.
To unearth the real traitors, Olivia and Jack must unravel the truth hidden within his faulty memory. To save themselves and the friends who have given them sanctuary, they must stand against their enemies, even as they both keep their secrets.
In the end, can they risk everything to help Jack recover his lost memories, even though the truth may destroy them both?
I am not the type of person to give second chances. Once I have been crossed, I rarely forgive. That being said, this presents a problem because Barely A Lady is all about second chances and forgiveness. Jack divorces a pregnant Livvy because of a misunderstanding. He leaves her on her own to survive as a disgraced woman. How could she have even come close to forgiving him? He chose to believe his cousin over his wife and that, in my humble and unmarried opinion, is unforgivable.His family played a huge role but he still didn’t trust her. Even after that, she chooses to protect and help him when he loses his memory. I don’t know how Livvy forgave him. Somehow, and I mean it as a huge compliment to Eileen Dreyer, even though I could not understand why Livvy and Jack did what they did and behaved the way they do…I still liked both of them and thoroughly enjoyed this book.
Now, aside from that, I really did like Barely A Lady. I thought that the writing was engaging and the history was woven into the story really well. I also liked most of the characters. Even though I didn’t agree with their actions some of the time, I generally liked them. Jack was sweet even through his pigheadedness. Livvy was smart and strong. She was a heroine with quite a bit of moxy. She survived in a nearly impossible situation on her own. My favorite character, however, was Grace. I know…I know…expected but I love characters that share my name. She wasn’t the typical character and I wanted to know more about her. I can’t wait to read her story in the next book in the series.