Heiress Without a Cause (Muses of Mayfair, #1)
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Heiress Without a Cause (Muses of Mayfair #1)

3.72 of 5 stars 3.72  ·  rating details  ·  865 ratings  ·  129 reviews
One title to change his life…

A disgraced son with a dark reputation, William “Ferguson” Avenel is content to live in exile – until his father dies in the scandal of the Season. With rumors of insanity swirling around them, his sisters desperately need a chaperone. Ferguson thinks he’s found the most proper woman in England – and he won’t ruin her, even if he secretly desir...more
ebook, 257 pages
Published January 13th 2012 by Spencerhill Associates Ltd
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Grade: C--- (very nearly a D+, but it wasn't quite a "Lady Alexandra's Excellent Adventure" level of bad.

The entire premise of this book is a big ol’ Hot Mess, with all the requisite confusing plot contrivances to force the action and motivations into something vaguely resembling logic.

I came very, very close to DNFing, but some swoon-worthy sentences (and the irrelevant fact that the author claims to be an Iowa girl) gave me hope that the writing might somehow overcome all the early red flags.

HR is not usually my thing but a few friends have convinced me to dip my toe into the genre. To date I haven’t read many but my shelf of HR’s is steadily growing.

This is Sara Ramsey’s first book introducing us to a group of ladies who have named themselves the ‘Muses of Mayfair’, we also get to meet their families, friends and a few other characters. This first story tells us about Lady Madeleine Valliant, who at the age of 29, is considered to be a spinster and ‘left on the shelf’. Madeleine l...more
Jen (Red Hot Books)
At 28, Madeleine is a spinster, firmly on the shelf. But there is more to her than the prim and proper exterior she shows the ton. For the past few weeks, she has been assuming an alter-identity as an actress to live her passion on the stage. Obviously, when Ferguson -a newly minted Duke- asks her to help his younger sisters come out into society, he has no idea she is anything less than the model of propriety.

Then Ferguson visits the theater. He is taken by Madeleine's alter ego and quickly fig...more
Ferguson is the new Duke of Rothwell, and he loathes it. An unexpected turn of events lands him the dreaded title and all that comes with it. He wants to marry his sisters as expeditiously as possible, so he can be off again to do whatever he's been doing for the last decade, and as far away from London as he can possibly get. He seeks the one person he's told can help him achieve his goal in a timely manner.

Lady Madeleine is happy to settle down into spinsterhood, and the freedom she finds in...more
Just okay. Almost did not finish, but I had the free time, so I trudged on. Love the theater aspect of Madeleine, but somehow never warmed up to Ferguson as a hero. From the start there was already too much going on, too many characters I had to keep track of, and many of them never felt like real people (Caro and Westbrook). Later on I started to like Ellie more than Madeleine, and Alex than Ferguson, and when the reader is more interested in the secondary characters than the main ones, perhaps...more
Jess the Romanceaholic
This is a Quickie Review. For the full review, please visit The Romanceaholic.

Expected Release Date: January 23, 2013
Publisher: Spencerhill Associates, Ltd.
Imprint: N/A
Author’s Website:
My Source for This Book: Amazon.com
Part of a Series: Yes, Book 1, Muses of Mayfair
Series Best Read In Order: N/A
Steam Level: Steamy
Pet Peeves: Unrealistic Behavior: Historical, Vindictive Ex
Favorite Tropes: Courting Scandal, Hero In Pursuit

There are a lot of historical romances out there with a heroine courting sc...more
I reviewed this novel for my blog at www.bookworm2bookworm.wordpress.com

...starts slow, but boy does it pick up! Loved it...

This is Ms. Ramsey's début novel and first in the Muses of Mayfair Series (Madeline
Vaillant, Prudence Etchingham, Amelia Staunton and Ellie, Marchioness of Folkestone) and she starts off with Lady Madeline Vaillant's story.

The book opens up with our heroine attending a ball at Salford House, which is the home of her cousin Alexander Staunton, the Earl of Salford, his mothe...more
Romancing the Book
Reviewed By~robin
Review Copy Provided By~Netgalley

I simply loved this book. From the first page to the last I was enthralled with the characters that seemed to spring to life on the pages. I even read as I fixed dinner as I was not able to put it down. Evan though I neither an orphan nor French, I as a woman and a need to follow a dream; was able to relate to the characters.

Madeline wants to act. So act you may say, but it isn’t that easy; not in London and definitely not in 1812. Still Madeline...more
I'm so happy to have found this author. Her first book was engaging enough to keep me reading...and to read the sequels. Sara's writing definitely improves, and I don't say that disparagingly. We all (usually) get better the more we do something. I'm thoroughly hooked on her books now.

The premise for this book was engaging, and the characters were likeable enough, although some more careful editing would have helped. I got tired of reading the duke described as having "autocratic tendencies". Se...more
I probably liked this more because I read that some reviewers felt there was too much sex and not enough plot. I disagree.

Lady Madeleine feels firmly on the shelf, sitting with the wallflowers at each ball, wearing her spinsters cap. But she has a secret, she is secretly acting at an obscure theatre in Seven Dials for two weeks.

Ferguson is quite frankly more difficult to pigeon-hole. A decade ago he engineered a disgrace so that his father would exile him to Scotland. Now his father has died, in...more
Tam B.
I enjoyed this book. I liked that our heroine wanted to act and found a way to do so and more over our hero supported her endeavours and recognised her talent. I liked at the heart of the book were friends who defied convention (and of course are likely fodder for future books).

Our hero was fairly typical in some ways. He'd closed himself off from family and London and relationships due to his father. He is incredibly reluctant to revisit the idea of being involved with people and places as he's...more
I quite liked the book and Ramsey's writing was captivating.

The love story between Fergueson and Madeleine was well constructed and I particularly liked that for once it was the man who was sure of his feelings and not fighting them and the woman needed more time.
I can't say much about the historical accuracy but even if it was incorrect I wouldn't mind, it all fit beautifully together.

My only criticism is that Madeleine's motives were unclear for too long. Why did she fight her feelings? What...more
This was fine, just, I didn't get much emotions from it? Regency romances always have rakes, and dukes, and wallflower spinsters, and the spinster is always such a special person! This doesn't deviate from that course. The theatre thing stretched the imagination a bit too much, but I guess it added a bit of fun to the book. I thought Madeleine's (view spoiler)...more
This was such a good book! I have only read one other book by Sara Ramsey which was "Scotsmen Prefer Blondes" and I really liked that one too. It is so much fun to find a new author that writes historical's as well as Sara Ramsey does. I can't wait to read her next book "The Marquess Who Loved Me".
This review is from my website, http://smallfiction.com

Can I say how much I loved this book? Because I loved it bunches. I have no idea when I downloaded this e-book. I must have been when Pixel of Ink was running a freebie because it has been a while since I’ve bought a Regency Romance novel. I’m sad that it sat in my kindle for more than a year (probably) and my eyeballs didn’t get to read Ms. Ramsey’s words. I didn’t get to learn about Mad and Ferguson and their (amazing) families until now.

Meagan Catherine
Full review will be published on By the Book Reviews in March. Partial review below:

I loved everything about this book, from the setting to the characters to the plot! I love how Madeleine goes against what is expected, and even allowed for her, in order to fulfill her dreams. Ferguson left town to get away from his father, but he left a string of broken hearts behind him, one of which is determined to see him pay for what he did to her. When he finds out Madeleine's secret, he is determined to...more
S.R. Roddy
I really enjoyed this story. The passion and chemistry between the two main characters was hot. The author did a great job with the background and character build. I especially enjoy the way the author shows both sides to Madeleine’s personality. She has both fire, with a flare for dramatics and a quiet dignified nature. Two very different sides all wrapped up in one passionate woman.

The characters were likable for the most part. I disliked Madeleine’s cousin Amelia. I felt she was shallow and p...more
I think it took me about 5 pages to fall in love with the main characters, I was really sucked into the storyline of the heroine who wanted nothing more than to act but what would society think about her? So she plays the part of Hamlet under another name.

But she's a spinster and probably never will find a husband, not that she really seems to mind it, but one day a young earl attends her and ask her to chaperone his twin sisters, to debut them to society this season ... and he finds out that ....more
This book was pretty good. Thought it would be a bit slow and there were definitely times where I felt like the storyline was dragging a little but overall it flowed well and kept me turning the pages.

Will say that the writing style was fun for me. Can't remember when I have put so many bookmarks in a book lately, just because there were some great lines that I just have to go back and read over and over and not because they are funny but because they delve you even deeper into the psyches of th...more
This was a free book on Amazon, so I took a risk on an author I had never read before and gave it a try. I liked it! Is it the most historically accurate book? NO. Not even close. But, I felt it was a unique spin on the courting scandal/bored aristocrat/I'm not worthy of her love plot devices. The writing is well done and I felt the characters were well developed. Overall, it was a fun way to spend a few hours and escape into a world of theater, scandal, and hawt lovin. I recommend it to other a...more
My first book from this author.
Though it was not absolutely awful on every aspects, there was nothing in it that I really liked enough to make up for the glaring flaws and to give me incentive to try another book from this author. Maybe, if I come across another one for free, with a not to outlandish summary, maybe, I'll give it another chance. Otherwise, most probably not.
Historical realism is definitely totally absent from this book. Locations, character motivations, circumstances and actions,...more
I decided to read this book because it was free and I thought it might be an easy light-hearted read, I didn't really expect to enjoy it but I ended up really liking 'Heiress Without a Cause'. The novel has been described as erotic fiction against a regency background but I don't know that I would call it erotic fiction. I was nearly halfway through the book before there was a single sex scene and even after that there wasn't a massive amount of sex. More than anything it used sex as a means to...more
Original review posted here: http://angcartwright.booklikes.com/po...

The Muses of Mayfair series by Sara Ramsey starts with Heiress Without a Cause and is followed by Scotsmen Prefer Blondes. Both are well written and good love stories. Both deal with the common theme of frustration among the young female gentry of being a woman and not being allowed to do anything. However, in Heiress Without a Cause, the heroine, Madeleine, or Mad for short, has found a super secret way to get her thrills by a...more
This book was good, for a Regency romance, except for one small detail... I couldn't stand Lady Madeleine Vaillant, the female protagnist. I found her to be selfish, whiny and unbelievably self-centered. Not to mention ridiculous for her reasons in passing up "Ferguson" Avenel, the Duke of Rothwell, when he made his first heartfelt attempt at winning her heart.

I must say, Ferguson, despite (or maybe because of) his contentious relationship with his family, is a complex, wonderfully written chara...more
William “Ferguson” Avenel has come into his title after he father dies is a terrible scandal in historical London so he travels back to London from his Scottish estate where he has hidden for the past decade.
Lady Madeleine Vaillant has accepted that she is officially a spinster, but that doesn't mean that she won't have a big adventure before she retires from London society. She decides to go on the stage to be everything that a 'Lady' can't be. Madeleine has a need to rebel after all the years...more
Megan Lavey-Heaton

One title to change his life... A disgraced son with a dark reputation, William "Ferguson" Avenel is content to live in exile - until his father dies in the scandal of the Season. With rumors of insanity swirling around them, his sisters desperately need a chaperone. Ferguson thinks he's found the most proper woman in England - and he won't ruin her, even if he secretly desires the passionate woman trapped beneath a spinster's cap. One chance to break the rules... Lady Madeleine Vaillant can't f

I read a review in RT Book Magazine for this book and I instantly needed to get my hands on it. I have also obtained the 2nd book "Scotsmen Prefer Blondes".
I love the charcters in this series. Strong independent women and the men that fall for them. Overall I did give this book a 3-3.5. Compared to other authors who also write in this genre, such as Lisa Kleypas, Julia Quinn, etc, this book was lacking something. I think I wanted more witty banter. I love it when a book can make me smile or bett...more
Heiress Without A Cause by Sara Ramsey is a historical fiction book set around a group of woman who are bored with regency life. They are bored with the season. They are bored with society. However they each manage to have their own special talent. For Lady Madeleine Vaillant the season is especially dull since she is considered a spinster. However Madeline has a well kept secret. She's been acting on the stage. If the ton were to find out she would be ruined. Her life gets more complicated when...more
In Book I of the Muses of Mayfair series, the author features Lady Madeleine Vaillant, a young woman bound by the constraints of the society in which she lives. "Heiress Without A Cause: Muses of Mayfair #1" opens in the spring of 1812 to a ball Madeleine is not the least bit interested in attending.

As she goes through the motions, she dreams of an alternate life she is living in secret as an actress on the London stage. Something she does in disguise that risks her reputation as a lady.

While dr...more
The female main character, Madeline, has always followed societies rules but also has a passion for theater. She LOVES to perform. After almost 30 years, she finally get's her chance to perform even if it's under the disguise of a french widow. However nothing ever goes 100% well and first a mysterious Duke, Ferguson, comes back into London and seeks her help in assisting his sisters debut then that same Duke arrives to her last show which is the spark to the fuse that causes a whole lot of othe...more
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Sara Ramsey writes fun, feisty Regency historical romances. She won the prestigious 2009 Romance Writers of America® Golden Heart® award with her second book, Scotsmen Prefer Blondes. Her first book, Heiress Without A Cause, was a 2011 Golden Heart finalist.

Sara grew up in a small town in Iowa, and her obsession with fashion, shoes, and all things British is clearly a rebellion against her hopeles...more
More about Sara Ramsey...
Scotsmen Prefer Blondes (Muses of Mayfair, #2) The Marquess Who Loved Me (Muses of Mayfair, #3) The Earl Who Played With Fire (Muses of Mayfair, #4) Duke Of Thorns (Heiress Games #1) First Kiss

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