Saturday, September 12, 2015

Lady of the Imperial City by Laura Kitchell

Title: Lady of the Imperial City
Author: Laura Kitchell
Genre: Historical Fiction, Romance
Publication: May 23, 2015

My Rating: 3/5

Source: NetGalley

Love isn’t forbidden to Lady Kirei as long as it’s with a proper gentleman of Kyō and she doesn’t mind sharing him with his wife. Her provincial upbringing makes her socially unacceptable as a true wife, yet as a lady by birth and a court favorite, her position makes it impossible for her to seek a match below her station. She’s trapped.

When a nobleman of similar provincial upbringing arrives in town and becomes an instant favorite of the emperor, he is sent to Lady Kirei for tutoring on city ways. Lord Yūkan is smitten, but she’s not a conquest to be won. She’s a woman of substance and worth, and she’s off limits.

Despite his unrefined manners, Lord Yūkan’s aristocratic bloodline shows through his fine taste and quick mind. It doesn’t hurt that he’s handsome, too. As he begins to touch her heart, Lady Kirei is ever mindful that they can’t commit, especially when her uncle schemes to make her a consort to a prince.

Will her family’s honor relegate her to the shadow-life of a consort, or can love find a way?

**I received a free copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review**

Historical fiction has become one of my favorite genres, but I had yet to read a book like this.

As soon as I saw Lady of the Imperial City it really caught my attention. I'm very interested in Asian culture, especially Japanese and Korean. Although I must admit that my knowledge is pretty much limited to the 20th-21st centuries... Well, if you consider listening to their music and watching their TV shows actually knowing about their culture, ahem...

Lady of the Imperial City tells the story of Lady Kirei, a woman of good birth with a provincial upbringing that keeps her from enjoying all the benefits of her status. Now, I know that most people will start reading this and be really lost (like I was), but be patient. Kitchell does a wonderful job explaining every little detail, so that we can get a better idea of how people used to live back then... I mean, if you're used to your typical regency novel, then... Nothing like that. No. Nope.

One of the big differences that first hit me was that girls are supposed to have sex, it's very shameful for her family if a grown woman remains a virgin (because what if she's possessed by demons and what not)... Pretty much everyone was sleeping with everyone and I just kept thinking "What, wait, is this the 21st century??".

And that Kirei's provincial upbringing should be a problem for her... Well, I just sat there arguing with myself, thinking why it should matter at all! But it does matter. She's not considered to be one of them, even if everyone loves her.

But that's when Lord Yūkan makes his appearance. His situation is very similar to Lady Kirei's, except that he is a man (obviously has more privileges) and that he doesn't know anything about the rules of the big city. So the emperor, who is very fond of Lord Yūkan, instructs Lady Kirei to teach him how to behave and become a true gentleman of Kyō.

Needless to say, these two start spending a lot of time together, which helps them realize that they may have a lot more things in common than they thought. But with both of them sharing the same provincial past and Lady Kirei's social ladder climber of an uncle, things don't look very well for them and the possibility of a future together.

Kirei's and Yūkan's relationship was very cute to read, although I must admit that my favorite part about reading this book was getting to know how things were back then in Japan. The author really emphasizes on the importance of art and beauty, you can certainly tell by how she never fails to describe Kirei's outfits, I really liked imagining how the different color combinations might look.

I know that this book might not be everyone's cup of tea, but if you're interested in Asian culture or enjoy historical fiction and want to read something a little bit different... Then this might just be for you :)

What do you think of this book? Anything similar you'd recommend?

Thank you for reading! Bye-Bye! 


  1. Great review! I don't think this book will be my cup of tea, though ... thanks for sharing you thoughts :-)

  2. Thanks for sharing this book review! It sounds like a really good love story. LOL your Ron gif made me giggle. XD


    1. Thank you, I'm glad you liked it! Hahaha I love that gif! Ron is hilarious <3

  3. I have spent all evening reading your blog, thanks for the great post, lovely as per usual! xx

    My Little “Fashion” Box Review

    1. That's so nice of you to say!! Thank you so much! <3

  4. I haven't tried any Japanese or Korean books, but I really do love their culture!
    This book sounds like it would be something I might enjoy!
    Escaping Through Ink

    1. That's great!! :D I think it was a very interesting read :)

  5. Awesome review! Made me want to read the book, it sounds like a great read!


    1. Thank you so much! I'm glad you liked it ^-^

  6. nice review! Great post!


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