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The Best Intentions

(Country House Party #2)

3.79  ·  Rating details ·  1,028 ratings  ·  105 reviews
Customers who enjoy the traditional Regency Romances of Georgette Heyer, Barbara Metzger, and Carla Kelly will enjoy this witty Regency romp by New York Times bestselling author Candice Hern. The Earl of Strickland is a handsome widower in search of a new wife to be a mother to his two young children. Having lost his one true love, he is determined on a practical, dispassi ...more
Kindle Edition, 233 pages
Published May 9th 2011 (first published 1999)
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3.79  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,028 ratings  ·  105 reviews

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Sep 01, 2010 rated it really liked it

This was such a fun and delightful type of traditional regency that holds a special place in my heart. Everything was plain fun from the very top-lofty Earl to the unconventional young miss that are surprised when they fall in love with one another.

Miles, Earl of Strickland wants a loveless marriage and a mother for his two daughters. Hiding his emotions behind very correct in his thoughts and manners, and losing his first love and wife, he doesn't believe he'll ever love again. His life is ch
I loved this book. It was lovely, cute and charming. I read it in almost a day, just like the previous book in the series A Garden Folly, but I preferred this one. It had a bit more substance than the other one, and the two leads did not spend their time fighting and arguing (or French-kissing). I already liked the Earl of Strickland in the previous story, better in fact, than the Duke of Carlisle, the hero of AGF, so it was wonderful to get to read his story. It can be read as a standalone, but ...more
Miles Strickland, the Earl of Prescott is furious with his sister Winifred. Winifred has written to inform her brother that she will be arriving for a month-long visit with two female cousins in tow: one a girl just out of the school room and the other her older, widowed sister. Miles can see through his sister's matchmaking plot and he has no intentions of marrying a young girl whose thoughts of matrimony undoubtedly include love and romance. Miles is done with all that. He buried his heart wit ...more
DNF at 20%
Honestly it's a good story, but the writing style annoys me a bit and life is short.
Just too much nitty gritty details that I found distracted from the flow of the story.

Ex. The story starts with a conversation between the Earl and his friend over breakfast that takes 9 pages. The dialogue was interesting but it's interspersed with detailed accounts of what they are eating and how much of it they ate and how they ate it. I can see the details supporting the Earl's OCD problem. But I co
I was misled by the good reviews once again. I was expecting more: more laughs, more sweetness. Taking that aside, it was a good regency novel.

I did not know this was the 2nd of a series, but thankfully it is not necessary to read the first one to read this. Hannah, the clumsy heroine, was likeable most of the times. She loves architecture, and to read books, and she is not interested in marriage and clothes and that kind of things. And I mean, she really isn't, not like other novels where heroi
Lady Wesley
Jan 03, 2012 rated it liked it
Nice little story about a widower falling in love when he didn't want to. I liked the heroine a lot; also the children were cute. Nothing special, but an enjoyable read for 99 cents.
A low angst sweet romance in which the heroine was totally likeable. I suspect she would not think much of me at all because I have zero interest in architectural styles, Anglo-saxon or otherwise and when ever this book took to prosing on about some such thing I skipped those passages. It did make be google 'St.Biddulph' only to find that it was fictional. Really if you're going to write pages and pages about the style of a particular church you should at the least pick one thats real.
Jun 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed
This is part two of the Country House Party series. In part one we meet Miles, the widower Earl, when he proposes and is rejected by our heroine Catherine. In part two, he is back in his country home, and his sister has arranged for two sisters, Hannah, a young intelligent albeit non-ladylike girl, and the other a beautiful, demure widow. It is the widow is who is intended to be a match for Miles, but you know what they say about best laid plans!

I really loved this story. I know it's been panned
Edited to add a very favourable review from a Regency web site I adore: ... check it out!

I came close to clicking "liked it" but the spectre of Balogh's An Unacceptable Offer loomed ... the age gap was pretty huge ... I couldn't decide whether the older sister was an eeeeeevil wicked stepsister or just misunderstood. What else: the secondary couple was difficult to get behind. Basically the younger brother slept with a married woman before he went off to
Oct 09, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
not good...esp the secondary story..
the h is willful and childish and a whiner throughout never liked her ...oh so soft of her to build a gud relationship vit children...
and she was not soo much artful as she was willful and determinedly childish...yet she was whining about people not seeeing her as a lady..come on one must at least put some effort on it....

and the H ...was ..i did not get him.. i only understood that yes he loves his kids and wife a lot...throughout the story there was his love
Sudha Bellamkonda
You don’t expect to find feminist icons in a regency romance. But the self-assured ladies that manage to preserve their courage and kindness, integrity and compassion, in an era with strict societal norms is the draw for me. None of that here.

Candice Hern probably thinks packing the story with crypts hidden in apses, mysterious sunken ambulatories, unadorned arches that convey the simple faith of the converted Saxons would add gravity to an insipid and unkind 20-yr-old brat who mentions the cor
Michele Bolay
I really like Hern's books and have been delving into her backlist to see what I have missed, but this was not one of my favorites. Just too many differences between the hero and heroine, especially age. And Hannah's 19th-century "Manic Pixie Dream Girl" got to be just a bit much for me. I love a bookish, scholarly heroine, but it felt like Hern was trying just a bit too hard to make Hannah quirky! and fun!
Jun 08, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Hannah was a delightful heroine-always getting into scrapes and generally being unlike a lady. She was also everything Miles did NOT want in a wife, so of course they fell in love.
Scott Roberts
Nov 22, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classic-novels
The book cover looks nice.
Hannah, nrly 20, & widowed 25 YO Charlotte ("Lottie"),
her 1/2 sister attended a country house party. Hannah,
a scholar of sorts, had a fascination with the Saxon
architecture in the area, especially the church in the
small town.

Miles, widowed hero & earl hosted the party. His bestie
Joseph, elder sister Winnie & spouse attended, as did
younger bro George recently resigned as a career army
man. Miles had 3 and 5 YO daughters who from the start
had rapport w/ Hannah and not Lottie. Winn
A wonderful, wonderful book!

This is the second book in the series, and it was just as good, if not even better than book 1. It had elements of Cinderella and Much Ado About Nothing. It was beautifully written with excellent pacing, wonderful characters, humor, wisdom and charm. Candice Hern is an excellent writer. This book was so enjoyable, I read it straight through. I'm disappointed it's finished, because I loved the characters so much. No one was painted as a cartoon villain. Each character
Feb 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
4.5 stars

I love traditional regency where there is lots of chemistry and no sexual content and the author is able to convince me the story could actually take place in that era. This is one. Even though she is very independent and has her own interests, she wasn't a character out of our time gowned and placed in Regency time.
Al'inizio ho odiato la protagonista, giovanissima e priva di qualsivoglia maniera o cognizione e ho voluto bene alla sua sorellastra che deve sopportare una sorella minore incapace di filtrare tra cervello e bocca, che si comporta in modo che nessuna ragazza dell'epoca avrebbe mai fatto eppure vien sempre perdonata e la trovano tutti pure simpatica. Poi è un pochino migliorata dopo la metà del libro perchè ha iniziato a vergogliarsi di certe sue uscite comunque io il vedovo di se ...more
Dec 29, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed this book. It was fairly predictable, but still a good read.
Feb 28, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: romance
This was a fun companion to "A Garden Folly". Ironically, I was looking forward to the first one more but I actually enjoyed this one more.
Oct 25, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A good enough read. The heroine spends a lot of time feeling sorry for herself [woe is her] the hero is a bit repressed, and I got tired of all the old building data, but it's easy to skip.
Sep 25, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I loved this story. Candice Hern writes a great Regency story with great characters. It was cute and funny. I enjoyed both books in this series.
Hell is paved with good intentions.” ― Samuel Johnson

I just couldn’t resist throwing in this famous quote by the great literary genius, poet, essayist, moralist, literary critic, biographer, editor and lexicographer of the 18th century, Samuel Johnson. His moral and literary influence on Jane Austen has been well documented by scholars. Austen’s inspiration on her beneficiaries including Georgette Heyer, the greatest Regency romance novelist of the 20th century, and now the next generation with
Miguelina Perez
Jan 20, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
If Candice Hern’s best intention was to bring us a magical story, then she has most definitely succeeded. Best Intentions is a story about magic—the Magic of Love—finding it when you least expect it and being given a second chance at it.

Miles Prescott, Earl of Strickland, needs a wife, but more than a wife he needs a mother for his two young daughters. A year after his wife’s death, the Earl’s sister, Winifred, decides it is high time that he remarries, so she descends upon his home with her hus
Review originally posted at Tea, Toast & Books.

In Brief: Widower Miles needs a mother for his children, but has no interest in looking for love again, believing he can never feel for anyone what he felt for his wife. Besides, he’s far too proper and starched for that sort of thing. When his sister brings a widow and her younger sister to the estate for a visit, he knows a setup is in the works. Hannah has her head in the clouds, but not for romance — she’s far too focused on her study of arc
Burgandy Ice
Apr 20, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Lol... this is a laughing fun romp into regency era with delightful new characters.

Hannah is unlike anyone I've ever read about from this time period. She is resistant to ladylike improvements and she obviously needs some. Her mom never taught her to think before speaking, primarily, and thoroughly enjoyed her antics. Some of what Hannah enjoys is simply fun and delightful, but in other ways... she's completely clueless. She doesn't understand men or attracting positive attention. I honestly won
Susannah Carleton
Jan 07, 2012 rated it really liked it
I hadn't planned on rereading this book at this time, but I'd just finished A Garden Folly, and this book just happened to be one I'd downloaded for the Kindle app on my phone, so I couldn't help myself.

Miles Prescott, the Earl of Strickland, recently decided it was time to remarry and give his daughters a new mother, but his first foray (in A Garden Folly) was not a success. Now, however, his sister, Winifred, and her family are coming for a month-long visit---and bringing with them two ladies
Apr 09, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: romance, ebook, reviewed
I found this book entirely charming, clean enough to recommend to anyone, and with a core of honest affection that I sometimes miss.

Miles is a grieving widower who loved his wife very much. However, he has decided to remarry, and given his emotional state, he thinks it would be unfair to marry a young woman who expects the kind of passion he no longer feels like he can supply.

Hannah is a clumsy, impetuous nerd. She really is. She has an enormous geek on about architecture, and I find it entirely
May 21, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this book. It takes place at a month long "house party". I always love books that revolve around a house party where there all different types of characters and interactions.

In this book Hannah and her sister, Charlotte, are invited to the house party in hopes of making a match between Charlotte and the host, Miles, the Earl of Strickland. Charlotte is a beautiful and graceful widow and Hannah is a young, free spirit interested only in medieval architecture. Other characters in
Dec 22, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What a cute book! I loved it and read it in a day.

I preferred it over A Garden Folly which was the first book in the series (although this book can be read independently). This book wasn't all about kissing as book 1 was but had more substance. We remember the Earl of Strickland from the first book, still on the lookout for a wife to be a mother to his girls and determined that she should be older due to his lost hopes in book one. The flirtatious, beautiful widow Charlotte seems like the right
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Candice Hern is the award-winning, bestselling author of historical romance novels set during the English Regency period. Her books have won praise for the "intelligence and elegant romantic sensibility" (Romantic Times) as well as "delicious wit and luscious sensuality (Booklist). Candice's award-winning website ( is often cited for its Regency World pages, where readers inter ...more

Other books in the series

Country House Party (2 books)
  • A Garden Folly (Country House Party, #1)
“To forgive is one thing," she said at last. "To forget is nearly impossible.” 0 likes
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