Thursday, February 4, 2016

Pretty Poison by Lynne Barron

Title: Pretty Poison
Author: Lynne Barron
Publisher: Booktrope Editions
Genre: Historical Fiction, Romance, Realistic Fiction
Publication: September 01, 2015

My Rating: 5/5

Source: Publisher on NetGalley

What's an American heiress to do when a pair of britches, a plunge into a pond in the dead of winter and a broken betrothal force her to set sail across the ocean to an arranged marriage with a fortune-hunting Englishman? With her hopes and dreams sinking to the bottom of the sea like so much lost treasure, Emily Calvert falls into the pretty poison she finds in a little blue bottle. Can Nicholas Avery, a charming aristocrat with a faulty memory for names and a family in dire need of financial salvation, convince the wounded lady that the blessed oblivion she finds in his arms is sweeter than laudanum?

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

Emily Calvert was seen wearing britches, not too long after being caught swimming in her unmentionables with two men (her brother and their very good friend). She's involved in scandals without even trying. Because of her reckless behavior, her fiancé breaks off the engagement and she's forced to go to England to marry a broke aristocrat she's never even met.

On her way to England, she falls ills and is given laudanum by a doctor, and she soon realizes how good it makes her feel, making her forget about all her problems and what her life has become.

I loved reading about Emily! We don't really get to see what goes on during the months she's addicted to laudanum, what makes her stop taking it and how she got the scar on her chest, until the story is revealed later in the book. Emily felt very real and she was so strong, it just shows you that even the strongest of people can have their own problems and insecurities.

She's also very smart, she's got what she likes to call a treasure trove of useless knowledge, and does things likes helping out her father with the household accounts and their horse farm. And it's a real shame that he tells her to play dumb, because men don't like smart women (which was true, except Nick was a little different).

Nick is very sweet, it was adorable seeing him try to convince Emily to marry him, which was not easy to do, given that the boy is no stranger to making silly mistakes, like never learning her name!

She can't get herself to trust him thinking he's a rake, and let's be honest, kissing her without even knowing who she was and thinking her the stable's master's daughter doesn't really get him any points.

But they had a beautiful relationship and I loved every single moment they shared together. They make a wonderful silly couple.

I still don't know how I feel about her dad. At first it seemed like he didn't care that much about her, but that definitely changed after her addiction problem. Even so, I didn't like the fact that he had a wonderful wife and cheated on her like that. God knows how much I hate cheaters. And her aunt's story was kind of similar, it made me uncomfortable to know that she was with a man just like Emily's dad, a married one. This man is no other than Nick's dad, who tells him that he can always cheat on his soon-to-be wife, like all men do.

Still, it was cute how he confided in his family and Emily's aunt when he made stupid mistakes.

There are also other women in the story, but they never had a chance against Emily, Nick is just crazy about her. And seriously, how could he not be? She's amazing. And it's very sweet how he tries to prove to her that he will be a faithful husband, which is the biggest reason she doesn't want to marry: every single man around her is a cheater. Except her former fiancé, Peter Marshall, and that's pretty much why she wanted to marry that man.

She also has her laudanum addiction, because, even though she has stopped drinking the little potion, she stills craves it from time to time, and is worried about what Nick might think of her.

This is a very beautiful story about recovery, trust and understanding. Definitely worth the read :)

Any similar stories you might recommend?

Thank you for reading! Bye-Bye! 


  1. Replies
    1. You're welcome! I loved reading your book :)

  2. You don't read too many historical fiction kind of novels which deal with addiction which is why this one sounds so unique to me! I would love to try it, and it seems like Emily's character is one you can easily appreciate.

    1. Yes, it's a very original story! :) and Emily is so lovable <3

  3. This sounds wonderful! I really want to read it now ♥
    Amy xx

    Little Moon Dragon

  4. This sounds like a good book, will add it to my must read list!

    Meme x

  5. This one sounds really good! And I adore the cover :-)


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