Wednesday, 7 September 2016


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My Fair Princess
The Improper Princesses #1
By: Vanessa Kelly
Releasing August 30, 2016. 
In My Fair Princess (The Improper Princesses #1) by Vanessa Kelly, Gillian Dryden's family are looking to see her settled down with the right man. However, being the wild woman that she is, she's ignorant on what is acceptable when interacting with people of the Ton. Can the Duke of Leverton, Charles Valentine Penley, manage to teach her what she needs to know to be successful in her quest to find a husband?

Right from the beginning, this book was riveting, fast-paced and immediately drew me in with what Gillian is trying to accomplish in her quest for revenge. Will she get her wish? Will everything work out alright? However, it was from the moment that the hero and heroine met that had me quickly flipping the pages, wanting to discover how the growing relationship between Gillian and Charles would develop.

The dialogue was intense due to the main characters back stories, especially that of the heroine, because she's the illegitimate daughter of a prince and people can be nasty about that fact. However, there were also some light-hearted moments that had me smiling or laughing. Most especially, the moment that Gillian and Charles meet. The heroine certainly knows how to make an entrance. 

Both the main characters were incredible, as to were the secondary characters in Gillian's family and Charles's sister. For the first time in a long time, Gillian finally knows what acceptance is. That there are people that don't rush to judge just because of who her father is. Charles's sister was one of those people, and I liked how she encouraged Charles to pursue Gillian. As for the heroine, she's strong, brave, wild, and I liked that she doesn't allow the hurtful things people say to get her down too much. That she's willing to stand up for what she believes in and stand up for those that don't have the courage to stand up for themselves. I also liked how protective she is of her mother; a woman that seems quite fragile because she believes she didn't do right by Gillian when she was young.

While Charles, he's confident and determined to help Gillian be able to interact socially without offending anyone. Since she's prone to swearing or getting herself into trouble, if someone says something she doesn't like, which is proven when she stands up to a man being nasty towards her new friends and after what some men take from her that she's determined to get back. Moreover, I liked how protective he is of Gillian, and how determined he is to prove to her that she's not alone anymore. That she can rely on someone besides herself.

Overall, Ms. Kelly has penned a delightful novel that encompassed a strong romance, a heroine that took me completely by surprise and a hero that charmed me from start to finish. The way this story ended was perfect, as Charles proves to Gillian that he'll always be there for her. I would recommend My Fair Princess by Vanessa Kelly, if you enjoy historical romance mixed with a dash of suspense.


First, Vanessa Kelly brought readers The Renegade Royals. Now, in a delightfully witty new series, she introduces The Improper Princesses—three young women descended from royalty, each bound for her own thrilling adventure . . .
Despite being the illegitimate daughter of a prince, Gillian Dryden is happily ignorant of all social graces. After growing up wild in Italy, Gillian has been ordered home to England to find a suitable husband. And Charles Valentine Penley, the excessively proper, distractingly handsome Duke of Leverton, has agreed to help transform her from a willful tomboy to a blushing debutante.
Powerful and sophisticated, Charles can make or break reputations with a well-placed word. But his new protégée, with her habit of hunting bandits and punching earls, is a walking scandal. The ton is aghast . . . but Charles is thoroughly intrigued. Tasked with taking the hoyden in hand, he longs to take her in his arms instead. Can such an outrageous attraction possibly lead to a fairytale ending?
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      “Letitia, I’m the one who should be insulted. You rejected me once, and now you’re propositioning me in the middle of a ballroom. Did you really believe I would fall for your tricks again?”

     She struggled to control her temper and made a credible job of it. “Poor Charles, you always were a fool. That, I see, has not changed.”
     “Well, now that we’ve exchanged a sufficient number of insults, I think—”
     Before he could finish, Jack materialized from behind a nearby pillar. “Excuse the interruption,” he said brusquely, “but I need to borrow Leverton.”
     Letitia sneered. “You may have him. He’s quite as rude as you are, Lendale, which I had not thought possible.”
     Jack laughed. “Up to the old game again, eh, Letitia?” He looked at Charles. “She tried it on me a few weeks ago, if you can believe it.”
     Her pale blue gaze brimmed with hatred. “You are no gentleman.”
     “And you are no lady, so we’re even,” Jack said in a cheerful voice.
     Charles thought she would choke on the spot. And he thought he would choke on the laugh he decided to swallow. “I suppose I should be annoyed that I was her second choice. Again.”
     “Consider yourself lucky,” Jack replied. “But enough of this nonsense, old boy. You need to rejoin your party immediately.”
     The vague anxiety that had been lurking around the edges of Charles’s consciousness sprang into sharp definition.
     “Dear me,” Letitia said in a catty voice. “There is a commotion on the other side of the dance floor, and I believe I see your protégé, Your Grace. She seems to be engaged in some kind of dispute with my husband and Lord Andover.”
     When Charles took a hasty step toward the dance floor, Letitia grasped his arm. “Are you sure you want to do that? You know how much you hate scandal, my dear Charles.”
     “Letitia, what did you do?” he asked.
     She shrugged her beautiful white shoulders. She’d almost destroyed him years ago, and now she’d apparently decided to do it to Gillian.
     “Why?” he demanded.
     “Because she decided she wanted you, old son,” Lendale said. “And she clearly thought Miss Dryden was an impediment.”
     “I don’t have time for this,” Charles said, disgusted. He stalked away, trying to ignore Letitia’s mocking laugh. He wove his way through the crowd, moving as quickly as he could without knocking anyone over.
     “Why the hell weren’t you keeping on eye on Gillian?” Charles snapped when Lendale caught up with him.
     “I’d just gone off to get some refreshments, for God’s sake. I’d snagged a footman with a tray of drinks when I saw that Letitia had trapped you in her evil snare.”
     “You shouldn’t have left Gillian on her own, Jack.”
     “She’s your damn responsibility, not mine. Besides, she was with her grandmother the last time I saw her. How the hell was I supposed to know she would get into an argument with one of the greatest morons in London?”
     “You have no idea how many ways that blasted girl can get into trouble,” Charles said. “And speaking of Lady Marbury, where is she?”
     “There she is,” Jack said, all but pushing a corpulent earl out of their way. They ignored his protests as they hurried to join her.
     “Charles, there you are,” she said in a relieved voice. “I stepped away to the retiring room, and I came back to this. You must make Lord Andover go away before Gillian does something dreadful.”
     “I intend to,” he said in a grim voice. Unfortunately, he was still several feet away when he saw Gillian’s lips curve up in a smile that made it clear mayhem was about to occur.
     By the time he got clear of a gaggle of excited debutantes, Gillian was practically standing on Andover’s toes, saying something that Charles couldn’t hear over the din of the crowd. A moment later, she delivered an outstanding right hook that caught Andover under the chin.
     Since the earl was well-known at Gentleman Jackson’s for having a glass jaw, the effect was both predictable and profound. He toppled like a felled tree, straight into a cluster of bystanders, including a footman carrying a tray of champagne goblets. The poor footman tumbled into a middle-aged matron possessed of a well-padded figure, and both went crashing down to the floor, along with the champagne. 
     “What a nice, flush hit,” Jack said in an admiring voice.
     “Do not tell her that,” Charles growled as he elbowed past a pair of girls who were shrieking and fanning themselves in a dramatic fashion.
     Jack shot a sly grin at Charles. “I don’t mean to interfere, old boy, but you might want to drop a word in Miss Dryden’s ear that boxing isn’t usually the done thing in the middle of a ballroom.”
     “Thank you for that extremely helpful bit of advice, you idiot,” Charles said in a blighting tone.
     Jack simply laughed.
     Charles stalked up to Gillian, who stood over Andover, flexing her hand. When she glanced up at him, she let out a sigh. At least he thought she sighed, since it was hard to hear anything in the growing pandemonium.
     Gillian clasped her hands at her waist and patiently waited, a picture of serene beauty in the midst of chaos.
     “Well, Miss Dryden,” Charles said, “now that you’ve provided the main entertainment for the evening, what have you planned for an encore?”
     She flicked a glance around the crowded ballroom that seethed with excitement and gossip. Then she looked back at him and shrugged. “I hadn’t thought that far ahead, Your Grace. I am, however, entirely open to suggestion.”
Vanessa Kelly is an award-winning author who was named by Booklist, the review journal of the American Library Association, as one of the “New Stars of Historical Romance.” Her Regency-set historical romances have been nominated for awards in a number of contests, and her second book, Sex and The Single Earl, won the prestigious Maggie Medallion for Best Historical Romance. Her current series, The Renegade Royals is a national bestseller. Vanessa also writes USA Today bestselling contemporary romance with her husband, under the pen name of VK Sykes.
Author Links:  Website | Blog | Facebook | Twitter Goodreads 



  1. Thank you so much for hosting me, and for the lovely review!

  2. Wonderful review! Thank you for featuring MY FAIR PRINCESS today!

    Crystal, Tasty Book Tours