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Book Cover Stevie‘s review of The Trouble with True Love (Dear Lady Truelove, Book 2) by Laura Lee Guhrke
Historical Romance published by Avon 30 Jan 18

I enjoyed the first book in Laura Lee Guhrke’s new series every bit as much as all those in her previous series, and was greatly looking forward to learning more about the world of Lady Truelove – as well as meeting some new characters – in this second book. Once again, much of the plot revolves around the Weekly Gazette and its popular column that gives this series its title, but this time there’s a new editor, not to mention a new Lady Truelove.

Clara Deverill is managing her family’s newspaper while her sister is on honeymoon, and has also been tasked with writing the Lady Truelove column, once she’s used up all the pieces her sister wrote before leaving. Clara somewhat resents her duties; now that her sister is married, she is keen to overcome her shyness and find a husband of her own. Unlike her independent suffragist sister, Clara wants nothing more than to raise a family, and now that her sister has married well, she has many more chances to do so. Struggling to decide how best to answer Lady Truelove’s latest letter – from a debutante at least as shy as Clara – she takes herself off to a teashop, where she overhears two men discussing how one can best separate himself from an overly attentive mistress, who has started hinting at the prospect of marriage.

Insensed on the unknown woman’s behalf, Clara rushes back to her office and pens a reply to an imaginary correspondent in a similar situation to the woman in question. Soon after the column is published, however, Clara is confronted by the man whom she overheard offering advice, and who is now estranged from his friends thanks to the Lady Truelove column.

Rex Galbraith has a low opinion of marriage, having witnessed his parents’ increasingly unhappy relationship throughout his childhood. He has a reputation as a rake; however, he has recently had to moderate his behaviour in order to fund his mother’s attempts to extract herself from financial difficulties. Now cut off from both his father’s support and from that of a favourite aunt: who was understandably displeased at Rex and his friend brawling in public over the Lady Truelove column and its consequences, Rex needs to find a new source of income while he attempts to redeem himself in the eyes of his family. He agrees to write a series of Lady Truelove columns: while Clara might disagree with some of the advice he’s previously dished out in her hearing, she can’t deny that he has more knowledge of the situations her readers find themselves in than she does. The pair also hit upon the idea of a fake courtship, in order to both make Rex appear a reformed character, albeit temporarily, and to make Clara appear more interesting to other potential suitors.

While the various schemes the pair come up with mostly work, the unforeseen (by them at any rate) consequence is that they find themselves falling for each other.

This book has a lot going for it. Clara and Rex are likeable characters, who are both keen to do right by their families and friends, even if their ideas of right and wrong differ at times. The ending of the book felt a little rushed to me, but I’m now intrigued as to who will be taking over as Lady Truelove, and which other members of the Deverill family we might meet next.

Stevies CatGrade: B


Dear Lady Truelove,

I am a girl of noble family, but I am painfully shy, especially in my encounters with those of the opposite sex…

For Clara Deverill, standing in for the real Lady Truelove means dispensing advice on problems she herself has never managed to overcome. There’s nothing for it but to retreat to a tearoom and hope inspiration strikes between scones. It doesn’t—until Clara overhears a rake waxing eloquent on the art of “honorable” jilting. The cad may look like an Adonis, but he’s about to find himself on the wrong side of Lady Truelove.

Rex Galbraith is an heir with no plans to produce a spare. He flirts with the minimum number of eligible young ladies to humor his matchmaking aunt, but Clara is the first to ever catch his roving eye. When he realizes that Clara—as Lady Truelove—has used his advice as newspaper fodder, he’s infuriated. But when he’s forced into a secret alliance with her, he realizes he’s got a much bigger problem—because Clara is upending everything Rex thought he knew about women—and about himself….

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Other books in this series:
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