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A Change of Fortune (Ladies of Distinction, #1)
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A Change of Fortune (Ladies of Distinction #1)

3.97  ·  Rating details ·  3,874 Ratings  ·  625 Reviews
Lady Eliza Sumner is on a mission. Her fortune was the last thing she had left after losing her father, her fiancé, and her faith. Now, masquerading as Miss Eliza Sumner, governess-at-large, she's determined to find the man who ran off with her fortune, reclaim the money, and head straight back to London.

Mr. Hamilton Beckett, much to his chagrin, is the catch of the seaso
Paperback, 320 pages
Published November 1st 2012 by Bethany House Publishers
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Oct 11, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Anyone who needs a good laugh!
Recommended to Anne by: Alice, Soph, Aerykah & many others!
"'She has high expectations of life. I could not fill those expectations. I've never been presented to the Queen,' Hamilton said.
'Because we live in America and don't have a queen.'"

Set in 1880 New York high society, A Change of Fortune is the most over-the-top, far-fetched, implausible, funny and loveable book I have ever read.

Recently, I had the joy of reading Edith Wharton's The Age of Innocence, in which I discovered the compelling world of late 19th century New York, and accordingly, I wa
Rebekah Gyger
Jan 04, 2013 rated it it was ok
I really wanted to like this book. The cover is great and my sister read it and told me it about the funniest book she had ever read. But I couldn't get into it.

The people were unrealistic, with all of high society actually speaking to and fine with a governess attending one of their parties. I could understand some of them not being snobs about it, but not all.

Also, the dialogue.... What can I say about it but that everyone talks way to much. Maybe they should stop to take a breath. With almost
Jacob Proffitt
Feb 13, 2013 rated it did not like it
Shelves: unfinished
When, after four chapters, the refrain "ow, ow, ow, please make it stop" repeats in your head, it's time to put the book down. Authors of historical romance please note: if the background of your heroine can't have happened because of a half-dozen impossibilities it becomes blindingly obvious that you have failed to do even cursory research. Peers cover for peers. It's the heart of the system. There's no way that peers are going to buy "he squandered his wealth" without a corresponding, visible ...more
Aug 08, 2013 rated it it was amazing
First and foremost, I loved the fast paced adventure and the perfectly achieved balance of humour and romance which was slotted into the story! It was brilliant. Thanks very much to my wonderful friend for the recommendation - you know me so well!

I was hooked from very early on, page one in fact, as the first meeting between the hero and the heroine, Hamilton and Eliza, is very funny! Not to mention how shortly after this the very same Hamilton and Eliza happen to run into each other whilst bre
Emily Rachelle
Oct 30, 2012 rated it it was ok
{Review is of an ARC}

This book was highly praised by a friend of mine, and the cover looked beautiful and very high-end and professional.

Before I start being a Debbie Downer, let me point out that there were moments when this book had me laughing out loud. So it's not all bad... just mostly.

The story premise was good. The writing was not. Everything felt choppy and confusing, and there were several times when I had to take a break or reread something just to understand what was going on. I reall
Dec 01, 2012 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: for-review
I'm almost at a loss as for what to say about this book. I liked the idea of the book a lot. Eliza Sumner is in America, posing as a governess and trying to find the man who stole her fortune. I thought it was an excellent premise. Unfortunately... it went downhill from there. I'm not really sure what the point is of writing a historical fiction novel if there's not going to be much historically accurate. There was hardly anything that the characters did that seemed accurate to the time period. ...more
Oct 17, 2012 rated it really liked it
Historical novels can often have a hard time capturing and keeping a snarky, fun-loving, sarcastic heroine without making her seem too soon for her time. So kudos to “A Change of Fortune” for very much succeeding in creating a cast of memorable characters.

It’s a fun loving story with characters that don’t take themselves too seriously, but also have serious situations working against them to create constant conflict. From being arrested to a little girl who speaks her mind, to a scheming match m
Jan 21, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: hidden-gems, kindle
As I read this I tried to figure exactly what it was about it that didn't grab my attention. The conversations were witty and the story even somewhat interesting at times. But then I realized. Everything important in the story was revealed through dialogue. There were descriptions here and there, but nothing that really created a setting. Also, most of the characters were fickle, except for maybe the little girl Piper who was probably more mature than anyone else. The whole story didn't seem to ...more
My copy is an ARC received from Goodreads First Reads Giveaway.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book! It started off pretty quickly and gave the reader a basic play-by-play of what was going on all within the first few chapters, which I liked. Very Jane Austen-like. While I don't mind an author building up to their plot, there are some stories that just need to hit the ground running so the reader isn't sitting there, tapping their fingers like, "Okay, so when is this book actually going to begin?".
Shannah Mauney
This is the first book I have read by this author, and it was delightful.

Lady Eliza Sumner has traveled to America under the guise of a governess to recover what is rightfully hers. Agatha Watson's matchmaking mama arranged a dinner party from which Agatha was strangely "ill" and Eliza was forced to step in. Enter Mr. Hamilton Beckett, the handsome man Agatha's mother has decided would suit her daughter, and his brother Mr. Zayne Beckett. Sparks fly the first time Eliza meets Hamilton and things
Sep 16, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites, to-re-read
Wow! This was really really good! I laughed the WHOLE time! :D The plot moved along quickly and never lagged or got boring. I couldn't put it down! I loved the intricate, humorous plot, and the charming characters! I cannot wait to read the other 3 books in the series. Ben and Piper were adorable, and Hamilton's mother was hysterical ("Everyone, out!"). I also really liked the hero's brother, Zayne. He was funny and really sweet, and made for a great secondary role. Agatha was a really fun secon ...more
Oct 24, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Breezy. Rollicking. Energetic. These are just some words that come to mind after finishing A CHANGE OF FORTUNE. From first to last, this story was thoroughly engaging. I couldn't put it down! I laughed out loud throughout this book, and sighed with a big ol' sappy grin on my face when I reached the last page. Jen Turano is a fresh new voice in historical romance; if you love Karen Witemeyer, Lisa Bergren, Deeanne Gist and the like, then this book belongs on your favorites list. A highly enjoyabl ...more
Oct 29, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I wanted to read this novel since a long time and It really worthed the wait . It was super fun. I enjoyed every minute while reading it .
This book was absolutely adorable. I loved all the characters as both the primary and secondary characters were well written. Moreover, the romance between Eliza and Hamilton was sweet, and in typical Jen Turano style, I was laughing the entire way through this novel. I also liked the faith aspect and how the book was about trusting that there's a plan to life. That was very insightful, and with a lot of cute humorous moments (mostly due to those adorable kids Piper and Ben) this book was a sati ...more
Lisa Norato
Aug 03, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Author Jen Turano writes with sparkle and whimsy in a debut novel that had me thoroughly engaged with her characters and their very often comical exploits. Eliza Sumner has ensconced herself in the height of New York society disguised as a pudgy Victorian governess who shall go completely unnoticed…or so she believes. Eliza is hardly unnoticeable and the confession of her true identity—that of being Lady Eliza, daughter of a late earl—is soon drawn out by one of her charges.

A few years younger
Jan 02, 2013 rated it it was ok
When Lord Sefton dies, his remaining child, Lady Eliza, is left with nothing. Her father's man of affairs has embezzled her vast fortune and left for America. Eliza sets out to find her fortune when English Authorities refuse to believe that it has been stolen. She is shocked to find that the assets are not the only things lost. The man of affairs has spread negative rumors regarding her father's handling of the family's vast wealth. Her fiance deserts her and society wants nothing to do with a ...more
Dec 19, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Stunning. Absolutely stunning. How could I enjoy a book like this any more than I already do? The answer to that is simple. I can't. I laughed and giggled and smiled like crazy. I also sighed, bit my nails, and covered my eyes in embarrassment for the characters. I don't normally enjoy books where one of the main characters already has children, but Ben and Piper were delightful. I could not keep myself from laughing at their antics.
Zayne had to be one of my favorite characters. While he was no
Jul 10, 2014 rated it really liked it
3.75 rating. Just shy of 4 for being a bit light and a wee bit silly, but...
I was a little hesitant about the series simply because the small version of the books looked like they might be too melodramatic for me (they do look more interesting in person). I went into the library in a hurry this evening and, since my new library card has not yet gotten to me, I am limited to checking out one book at a time. Being in a hurry, I grabbed the first thing that looked interesting. And I've read it all
Sep 17, 2012 rated it it was ok
Shelves: read-2012
This books seemed a little to contrived to me. The characters were quite modern in mannerism for an 1880 setting and the the way events unfolded was awkwardly put together. There were some parts that made me laugh so it wasn't all bad, but as a whole not a book I would go back to or readily recommend to others.
Lady Eliza Sumner has lost everything. Her fortune, her fiancé... her life. The only thing she can do to recover at least her money and jewellery, is to fly from England to America to chase the man who stole everything from her family. She pretends to be a governess, the plain Miss Eliza, and starts doing her researches. However, her goals are not so easy to reach, especially when the dashing Mr. Hamilton Beckett crosses her path and endangers her plans.

This book was so fun! I really enjoyed rea
Humorous and sweet; I liked this one! :)
Anne B
Dec 18, 2012 rated it really liked it
It is a rare book that can make me laugh when it comes to Christian fiction. Really that's because I haven't many Christian authors who incorporate humor well into their writing. This morning I finished reading A Change of Fortune by Jen Turano. On the back of the novel, it identifies this book as her first published novel.

I enjoyed it. It's a Christian historical romance fiction book. The story centers on Eliza Sumner who has traveled to America in the late 1800s to reclaim her lost fortune. T
Margaret Chind
In my world of reading lots and lots of Christian Historical Fiction I am always split in feelings when a new author comes along. Either I’m going to love them and be very enthusiastic about their new career and want to spread the word desperately or I’m going to want to love them and fall short. No need to worry here! Full length novel whirlwind of witty amusement is what I found here. Plenty of chuckles, snickers and even a few snorts (I’d rather you not repeat that…) kept me enraptured beyond ...more
Dec 14, 2012 rated it really liked it
One reason I enjoyed this book? It kept me laughing! A Change of Fortune was my first read by Jen Turano and so glad I picked this up from the library.

There were many parts where I wanted to start singing "All the women who are independent, Throw your hands up at me!" I always enjoy a strong female lead and this book provided not only that, but a funny one too.

The mayhem, the relationships, the scheming mamas...all of it combined for an entertaining and delightful read that kept me turning page
Cloie Rainilla
I love sugary reads. This one was absolutely perfect. Okay not exactly perfect or else I would have given it more stars. This book definitely makes me want to read more historical fiction during the 1800's to 1900's. The relationship between Eliza and Hamilton is adorible and is candy to my brain. The only problem for me was the adding of a few characters. Felt unnessary and rushed. Anyways I recommend this one to those who like sweet and simple.

3.5 Stars
Sep 16, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
This was such a fun and easy read that was also clean. I really enjoyed the characters and their charming wit. Laughing through a book is so much fun, and this book gave me that pleasant experience. I look forward to reading more from this author.
joy *the clean-reader extraordinaire*
if christian historical fiction were written by oscar wilde...this would be it.
AlegnaB †
4.4 -- This book reminded me of screwball comedies from the 1930's. I loved it!
Lydia Howe
I read this book via Overdrive (e-books from the library), cause I had seen someone who's views I respect mention something on Goodreads about enjoying one of Jen Turano's books.

Overall, I don't have a huge amount to say about the book. It was interesting, and for the most part it kept my attention. The premise was also one that grabbed me right from the start. The execution of the plot wasn't really all that noteworthy in my opinion, though.

For the most part the characters had me liking them,
Aug 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Historical romance fans, romantic comedy fans
Oh what I truly delightful read! Romantic comedy with a dash of suspense in a historical setting, it just doesn't get any better than this. Jen Turano is definitely one of my authors!
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Jen Turano is a graduate of the University of Akron with a degree in Clothing and Textiles. She pursued a career in management for nine years before switching to full-time motherhood after the birth of her son. When she's not writing, Jen can be found watching her teenage son participate in various activities, taking long walks with her husband and dog, socializing with friends, or delving into a ...more
More about Jen Turano

Other books in the series

Ladies of Distinction (4 books)
  • A Most Peculiar Circumstance (Ladies of Distinction, #2)
  • A Talent for Trouble (Ladies of Distinction, #3)
  • A Match of Wits (Ladies of Distinction, #4)
“Miss Sumner, may I inquire as to why you're lounging on the floor?" Mrs. Watson asked.
Miss Sumner uttered something which sounded very much like "it should be obvious" before she lifted her head. "You really must compliment your staff, Mrs. Watson. This floor is remarkably clean.”
“... That's why you're going directly back to the house. The last thing we need is for you to end up in jail again, and I'm quite certain disassembling another lady's hair falls under the category of assault.” 21 likes
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