LADY BRIDGET'S DIARY Maya Rodale
Keeping Up With the Cavendishes, Book 1
Avon
ISBN: 978-0-06-238673-1
March 2016
Historical Romance

England 1824

The new Duke of Durham and his three sisters have descended on London from their horse farm in America. The ton is atwitter with the thought that an American has inherited a prestigious title, and, more important, that his sisters will be appearing in the social scene, and that they're all of marriageable age. James, the new duke, is hardly impressed with the hoopla surrounding his title, but his sisters must learn how to fit into the new, restrictive social world. Thankfully, the widow of the previous duke, the Dowager Duchess of Durham, is available to prepare these country girls for the shock of London Society.

Claire, the eldest sister, Bridget, the middle one, and Amelia, the youngest, already feel restricted, having grown up in the open, carefree world in America. Bridget, in particular, finds the dieting, endless balls and parties, and the inability to express her opinion openly exceedingly difficult. But she is the only sister willing to learn how to fit into society. That is, until she meets the extremely straight-laced Lord Darcy. Of course she meets him at her first ball where she made a spectacle of herself by falling down in front of the entire group. Darcy's brooding, holier than thou behavior sets Bridget's teeth on edge. She makes sure to comment about him in her diary, while also stating the attributes of Darcy's younger brother, Rupert. It's obvious to Bridget that Darcy looks down his aristocratic nose at the jumped up Americans, especially her.

Darcy, serious and polite to a fault, finds Lady Bridget annoying at first, but he then sees the honesty about her as both good and bad. But she seems enamored of his brother, so he will stay out of the way. Except that it becomes exceedingly difficult to do so. And the young lady who is waiting for him to propose is beginning to notice.

When Amelia disappears one day, and Rupert does also after revealing a dark secret to his brother, Darcy and Bridget are thrown together. Bridget's diary entries begin to have less reference to Rupert and more to Lord Darcy.

LADY BRIDGET'S DIARY is the first book of the new Keeping Up with The Cavendishes series and it's loads of fun! Each chapter begins with an entry from Bridget's diary. There is plenty of humor as the Americans slowly begin to deal head on with the ton . Bridget is a delightful heroine with plenty of gumption, and she's unafraid to let people know that. Darcy is mildly annoying at first, until he begins to melt at the honesty of the American girls and their brother. Great supporting players include the often frustrated dowager, the odious Mr. Collins, and the gaggle of young ladies who have no idea how to handle the openness of the upstarts.

LADY BRIDGET'S DIARY is a well written, thoroughly fun story, and I highly recommend it.

Jani Brooks