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Miss Wonderful (Carsington Brothers, #1)
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Miss Wonderful (Carsington Brothers #1)

3.66  ·  Rating Details ·  3,939 Ratings  ·  286 Reviews
Alistair Carsington really wishes he didn't love women quite so much. To escape his worst impulses, he sets out for a place far from civilization: Derbyshire - in winter!

Once there, he hopes to avoid all temptation, and repay the friend who saved his life on the fields of Waterloo. But this noble aim drops him straight into opposition with Miss Mirabel Oldridge, a woman ev
Kindle Edition, 358 pages
Published (first published 2004)
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Christina ~ Brunette Reader

4,5 "Delightfulness is in the Details" Stars

When Mr. Alistair Carsington brings, together with his impossibly handsome persona, a breath of London flair and a wave of Industrial Revolution to her peaceful corner of 1818 Derbyshire, Miss Mirabel Oldridge, spinster extraordinaire and local authority, is more than a little outraged. What business does the maddening toff have disrupting her land as she's always known it for monetary gain?
And what business does the maddening female have flaunting "
Feb 03, 2009 Dina rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Knowing that several readers think that this book is one of Ms. Chase's weakest releases, I didn't have high expectations when I started reading it and I admit I decided to read it only because I wanted to read the next books in this series and I'm OCD about reading series in order. Well, I owe my OCD a big thanks, because I really enjoyed reading this book.

The Right Honorable Edward Junius Carsington, Earl of Hargate, is worried about his 3rd son, 29-year-old Baffle to All Human Understanding,
4.5 stars

She began unbuttoning her pelisse. "I am one and thirty years old," she said. “I should like to gather my rosebuds before the petals shrivel up and fall off."

Really, this book ought to have been titled “MISTER Wonderful”, because its hero, Alastair Carsington is an absolute dreamboat. He’s handsome, witty and charming – of course – but beneath the surface veneer lurks the heart of a true romantic, a kind, generous man who is troubled by a past he can’t remember.

At twenty-nine, Alastair
Dec 20, 2012 Mo rated it liked it
This one was only OK. Ending up skimming the last 20% which is not good.... not sure why it did not do it for me.

Jan 19, 2012 Audrey rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: historical
I thought this book was okay, but you know there are problems when you're more interested in seeing what happens with the (very marginal) secondary romance than you are with the main one. I'm not up for writing a long-winded review right now, so here are my impressions, in mostly single- or double-syllabic words:

Alistair Carsington - Overcame the dandy impression admirably to the point that I really liked him. I continued reading because I wanted to know more about him. I retained a bit of skept

So, seriously, I got bored. Up until that last chapter. That hanky panky scene was hot, hot, hot.

Tammy Walton Grant
4.5 stars **Mildly spoilerish**

Believe it or not, I liked this one better than Lord of Scoundrels. (Well, except for the scene in LoS against the lamppost in the rain, but I can't have everything, can I?)

I loved the whole book -- loved Alistair and his "dandy-ish-ness", loved Mirabel and her penchant for jumping his bones whenever she could, (view spoiler) got a charge out of the story, smiled at the secondary characters and all the refe
 Danielle The Book Huntress (Back to the Books)
Although even mediocre Loretta Chase is better than most authors, I found myself disappointed after reading this, for there had been a very long break in which Ms. Chase wasn't gracing her world with excellently written romances. It was just on the dry side. I had to try really hard to get involved with Carsington and Mirabel, although they both were perfectly nice people and I didn't dislike them. I guess I just have very high standards for the author who wrote my favorite book of all time. So ...more
Lady Wesley
Loretta Chase fans have waited so many years for audio versions of her books, so how wonderful ("wonderful," heh) is it that Kate Reading is narrating her Carsington Brothers series? This one is zooming to the top of my TBL list.
*Buddy read with Stacia. You can read her thoughts here.*

Since I loved Silk Is For Seduction so much, I wanted to try out some of Chase's other series with the hope that they'd be at least enjoyable, if not epic.

To say Miss Wonderful was a disappointment would be inaccurate, because it wasn't quite that big of a let-down. At the same time, it wasn't even half as interesting as Silk Is For Seduction. Mostly, it was just boring.

The narration was tedious and the details dreary. I found myself skimm
Juliana Philippa
I'm SO glad that I read this book! My first Loretta Chase novel was Lord of Scoundrels, which I know is universally loved by the historical romance community, but which I had immense issues with. The book was actually quite good in some ways, but the problems I did have with the story were too aggravating to overlook.

Anyway, although I own other Chase books, I have stayed away from them up till now. I was so pleasantly surprised by Miss Wonderful, however! It was absolutely fabulous, Mirabel and
Katrina Passick Lumsden
I liked this one more than I thought I would. Though, the lack of communication got be to rather annoying. I still don't understand why Mirabel couldn't just talk to Alistair about her misgivings regarding the canal. Her reticence made zero sense considering she wanted to convince him to call off his plans. Thus, she struck me as a bit of a nincompoop. Ah, well, another HR going down in my books as less than it could have been merely due to an irrational, nonsensical heroine. Still, the writing ...more
Stacia (the 2010 club)
Jun 20, 2012 Stacia (the 2010 club) rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Stacia (the 2010 club) by: Dija
I blame my lack of interest on not being in the mood...or something like that. From what I hear, this author writes wonderful Historical Romance and since I like HR, chances are I will enjoy reading this author at another time. For whatever reason, this book didn't work for me.

There was no humor, no fun banter, and no blazing sexual chemistry. If anything, I felt like I was reading an extremely formal book where nothing really happened other than people explaining their previous and current pred
No rating, because I didn't even make it past the first 50 pages. I know I'm the odd one out here (yet again) in not loving this, but absolutely nothing that happened in the first chapters appealed to me:
- heroine came across as to prickly for my tastes, and while I'm sure she grows, I just wasn't in the mood to put up with her snobbishness
- hero had an absurd obsession with clothes that I'm sure is supposed to be funny, but creeped the hell out of me (seriously, every single time he looked at
Sep 14, 2008 Inara rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Actually 3,5 stars.
After a tongue-lashing by this father about his vain and expensive life-style Alistair Carsington, third son of the Earl of Hargate, has to prove to his father that he isnt just a dandy interested only in his wardrobe and who spends his younger brothers inheritance. When hes given the chance by his friend and former comrade-in-arms Lord Gordmor to become partner in a coal-mine project in Derbyshire he jumps at the chance. But first he has to get one obstacle out of the way, he
Jacob Proffitt
Dec 24, 2014 Jacob Proffitt rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: romance, steamy
It's always nice to have a good experience as my first book of the new year. This is my first Chase novel, so I had few expectations (beyond somewhat mixed reviews from friends). I was delighted to find myself enjoying the book so much.

Mirabel was a lot of fun, and not least because she was so atypical of the genre. She's a lot older than usual, coming in at an over-the-hill 31 years of age. I liked that Chase made this feel natural and fit the time period by giving her plenty adequate reason fo
May 16, 2015 Wollstonecrafthomegirl rated it really liked it
I needed this book. It was lovely and well-written and perfectly characterized and period appropriate and All The Good Things. Alistair! Injured hero (catnip etc etc) and seriously impressive multi-layered characterization. Obsessive focus on his appearance to conceal his lingering post-traumatic stress following the war. This leads to some delightful scenes with our heroine, Mirabel, who is somewhat sartorially challenged. He spends the earlier scenes obsessed with her hair as it slowly tumbles ...more
A+ for narration, B+ for content.

I've read some of the others in this series, but not this one for some reason, so when I learned that the audio version was coming out - narrated by the superb Kate Reading - I read the book in order to familiarise myself with the story.

My review of that is here.

Just having the words "narrated by Kate Reading" on the cover is enough to tell potential listeners they're in for a treat. She doesn't put a foot wrong - the narrative is well-paced and wonderfully nuanc
3.5 stars

I knew nothing about Miss Wonderful when I picked it up, other than that it was the first book in Loretta Chase’s Carsington Brothers series, about which I have heard good things.

When first introduced to Alistair Carsington, I had reservations. Alistair is described as a dandy, and typically, I have a hard time in finding a man dressed in ruffles and heels as attractive, and sometimes I even find them repellent.

Thankfully, the term dandy, as applied in Alistair’s case, is used purely to
Not sure about this Alistair character; he is described as a wastrel, loves clothes, and is considered a hero for something he has no recollection for. Qualities usually not given to lead male characters in books. And to boot our heroine is thirty-one, gasp! What have we here Watson? I'm intrigued.
Wow never read someone described so poetically "Her eyes were blue, twilight blue, and for a moment she seemed to be the beginning and end of everything, from the sunrise halo of hair to the dusky bl
Suzanne (Under the Covers Book blog)
To keep Alistair Carsington is a rather expensive endeavour as far as his father is concerned, he seems to have a costly addiction, as his bills testify. So, as any sensible man would, Alistair’s father comes up with a plan to make his middle son pay for himself. Miss Mirabel Oldridge has become accustomed to taking charge, for ten years she has been looking after her father’s affairs as his mind goes further into his botanical pursuits; however, as soon as Mr Carsington arrives wit ...more
Things I loved:
~ Chase's wonderful sense of humor as displayed in the characters banter - wonderfully, delightful!
~ Alistair - he is such a fun and interesting twist on the regency hero. He is a dandy (although there are deep
seated reasons underneath.) He lets his emotions rule him - often to his detriment. He also embraces
those emotions and doesn't try to squelch all feeling as most are written to do in this era.
~Mirabel's quirky inattention to style, her horrible fashion sense and unruly h
Aly is so frigging bored
This book had it's moments...At some parts I wanted to give it 5*, at others I would have gone with 2... In the end it was very nice. The entire series seems interesting.

"Did you think I wasn't attending?"
It was a small, crooked smile, and it made her heart go a little crooked, too, and beat erratically.
As though sensing Mirabel's agitation, her mare Sophy edged away from Mr. Carsington's gelding.
"I thought you had gone to sleep," Mirabel said.
"I was thinking," he said.
"Remarkable," she s
Tracy T.
Mar 26, 2016 Tracy T. rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: did-not-finish
Meh.. Kind of boring and full of filler nonsense. (audible review) Not going to finish this book and I give up.

Okay I am in the minority here I know. But this book is just way to long and full of a lot of filler nonsense. I don't really care for the hero at all. He is boring and not interesting at all. I do like the heroine. She is great, strong and smart. No simpering heroine here that is for sure.

Anyway, after listening to 5 and a half hours I give up. The story is just too boring to me. Nothi
3,5 stars. I really liked both characters but the plot wasn't very engaging and I guess I just wansn't in the mood >..<

If you want a nice otp, some laughs and a light book, Miss Wonderful is the right read for you ^^
Loretta Chase is on auto buy for me. I love her heroes AND her heroines. Her settings are vividly described. Many of her books are set in England, but some are set in Egypt, the orient, etc. This is a great series.
May 11, 2009 Barbara rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I can't even think of a review for this one...Bleh! This is 3 stinkers in a row for's hoping three's a charm.
Aug 30, 2010 Cecilia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: re-read
When I first read this book (as a new release), it did not make much of an impression on me. I'm not sure why; possibly I had just read Lord of Scoundrels and it just didn't grab me the same way. Reading it again now, it's clear to me that I was being a bit dense.

Sure, it's not as dramatic overall, and the hero is not the larger-than-life Dain. However, it's not like those are the only measure of a well-written romance.

What I came to appreciate better about this particular book the second time
Rachna R
Apr 30, 2012 Rachna R rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I want to knock off points for pacing, because I think this book is slow, and I want to knock off points for giving me plottier bits I wasn't all that interested in, but I can't do that because the the way the two leads treat each other is so great, and I'm so unused to seeing that in romance fiction in general, let alone historical romance!! On their own they're pretty wonderful, too - I have very little tolerance for man-pain, but Chase both downplays Alistair's and gives him good reason and e ...more
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Loretta Lynda Chekani was born in 1949, of Albanian ancestry. For her, the trouble started when she learned to write in first grade. Before then, she had been making up her own stories but now she knew how to write them down to share. In her teenage years, she continue to write letters, keep a journal, write poetry and even attempt the Great American Novel (still unfinished). She attended New Engl ...more
More about Loretta Chase...

Other Books in the Series

Carsington Brothers (5 books)
  • Mr. Impossible (Carsington Brothers, #2)
  • Lord Perfect  (Carsington Brothers, #3)
  • Not Quite a Lady (Carsington Brothers, #4)
  • Last Night's Scandal (Carsington Brothers #5)

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“I am not in love with you," she said. "It is an infatuation. I have heard of such derangements happening to elderly spinsters.” 17 likes
“I have always believed that anyone who must violate the law to achieve his purposes must lack either intelligence or imagination, probably both.” 4 likes
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