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The Secrets of Sir Richard Kenworthy

(Smythe-Smith Quartet #4)

3.63  ·  Rating details ·  12,910 ratings  ·  1,428 reviews
Sir Richard Kenworthy has less than a month to find a bride. He knows he can't be too picky, but when he sees Iris Smythe-Smith hiding behind her cello at her family's infamous musicale, he thinks he might have struck gold. She's the type of girl you don't notice until the second—or third—look, but there's something about her, something simmering under the surface, and he ...more
Mass Market Paperback, 378 pages
Published January 27th 2015 by Avon
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Mariana Fonseca JQ said that she wants to keep Frances forever young in her mind, so she's not writing her story :(…moreJQ said that she wants to keep Frances forever young in her mind, so she's not writing her story :((less)

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Khanh, first of her name, mother of bunnies
I've read a lot of historical romance. I have read of a lot of rakes, a lot of rogues. A lot of alpha-males, a lot of assholes.

Rarely have I encountered a more loathsome, pitiful piece of trash as the love interest in this book.

Julia Quinn introduced me to HR. She made me love the genre, and I've been so disappointed in her books lately.
Jan 31, 2015 rated it did not like it
Well it makes sense that this guy's name is Richard because he's a real Dick!

Seriously, I didn't like him.

10 things I hate about Dick:

1. He chose Iris for being plain, desperate, and lowly.
2. He planned to compromise her reputation.
3. He manipulated her while pretending to court her.
4. His supposed "guilt" that he felt did nothing to make him do the right thing.
5. He made her feel undesirable.
6. He refused to tell her the truth when she called him out on his motivations.
7. He was gaslighting he
Feb 20, 2015 rated it liked it

Though not quite as bad as I'd imagined, nevertheless the hero really is a tool of the first order. Hereinafter, this shall be known as The Dick Award and Sir Richard (Dick) Kenworthy the inaugural winner.

Sir Richard Kenworthy is in a hurry to find a bride and marry. Iris Smythe–Smith, though not quite yet on-the-shelf, suits Richard's specifications for a wife and plans for a quick betrothal.

What started out as a typical and delightful Julia Quinn novel, became less so in the second half of the
Rating: 1.5

I’ll keep this short because I am raging right now.

After finishing this book I only have one word for it: NOPE.

I’m pissed off.

I cannot even begin to tell you just how pissed off I am. I don’t even want to know what Quinn was thinking because this is so horrific and I cannot. Gone is the humor that characterizes her novels and instead we have painful rejections and awkward interactions mixed with selfish sisters.

That sorry excuse of a relationship. I’m sorry. Iris deserves better than
Drew Doll
Jul 19, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: rushed-to-end
I cannot believe I am saying this about a Julia Quinn novel but I absolutely hate this book.

There is nothing even remotely appealing about Sir Richard Kenworthy. He is a sniveling, cowardly little rat. I understand there is an underlying theme of loving your family so much you will go to any lengths to protect them but when those lengths include lying and deceiving a spouse to their detriment you have gone too far. The more I read of this book the more I hoped Devil St. Ives would show up to hor
Magdalena aka A Bookaholic Swede
This book surprised me quite a lot how good it was in the beginning. Most romance books I usually read tend to be not to my liking. But I just loved the humor at the beginning of this book. I was really happy to read a book that started off that great. Then something happened, the humor disappeared and instead, the story took a more, “serious” tone, I can’t even say it was especially romantic. Because in my opinion, it’s hard to like a man that tricks you into marriage and then don’t explain why ...more
Feb 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing

For as many disappointing reviews I've seen around of Julia Quinn's newest book, I was surprised how much I really. really liked the whole thing. I shouldn't be surprised though - I am not in the same sphere of people who think Quinn has gone downhill since her Bridgerton books.

I especially applaud this book because it tackles forgiveness in a relationship without the crime that begs forgiveness being infidelity. You know, sometimes it's just that people you love disappoint you in major ways
Sher❤ The Fabulous BookLover
1.5 I'm DONE with JQ Stars

I'm officially breaking up with Julia Quinn.


Which is sad because she was my auto-buy HR author for years. JQ is the one who introduced me too the world of historical romance, her Bridgerton series is to die for and her book When He Was Wicked is in my top 5 all time favorite HR books, right up there with Devil in Winter.

I don't know what's going on, but lately her books have not been doing it for me. I'm so pissed off right now so I'll try to keep this short and simpl
May 16, 2014 rated it really liked it
I ended up giving this a B- at AAR, which I think is closer to 4 stars than 3.

I’ve seen a lot of very mixed reactions to this book, which is the final novel in the author’s Smythe-Smith Quartet. All the negative comments I’ve seen concern the actions of the hero, the eponymous Sir Richard, who - it’s true - perpetrates a rather despicable deception on the heroine. But when I reached the end of the book, I found I was thinking of him as a decent man who had been backed into a corner and who made
Jun 23, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: audible

I LOVED Iris Smythe-Smith! She was great. Definitely no shrinking violet or in her case iris! LOL Good thing because while Sir Richard Kenworthy was charming he could also be a bastard.

Right from the beginning you know there is a BIG secret that Sir Richard is hiding. Iris can sense it but for the life of her she can't figure it out. One thing leads to another and rather quickly these two are married.

Shortly after Sir Richard and Iris arrive at his family home it doesn't take long for the two o
3.5 stars

I read a lot of romance and I've read a lot of romance from the '70 and '80s so when I began hearing of a "secret" that was throwing everyone into a frenzy in this story, my imagination went wild. I'm going to put what I was imagining in spoiler tags so as not to ruin anything people who haven't read the book may be imagining.(view spoiler)
Paige  Bookdragon

"Love is when you forgive the unforgivable "

Well, color me impressed. I have read so many books in a lifetime that I'm not usually easily shocked when it comes to a story plot but Julia Quinn is definitely someone you shouldn't take for granted.


Excuse me for sounding so smug, but it's so hard not to gloat when you are in possession of an entertaining book. The Smythe-Smith series is an absolute delight and the characters are adorable. (Unicorn, anyone?)

This started off really, really well. I love her writing, and the fact that it's always fast-paced and full of banter and quick-witted replies. The start to this book was no different, because even in spite of the forced marriage thing I still enjoyed it. Mostly because Richard was aware that what he was doing was reprehensible and he did feel sorry. But then it all sort of went south pretty fast. It started dragging a little, right around the time they arrived at Maycliffe and the reveal of the ...more
Review posted: Happily Ever After - Reads
Blog rating: C

Richard Kenworthy needs a wife and fast. We don’t know why initially he’s in such a rush to get married. Only that he needs to quickly find the right kind of woman and he thinks he has in Iris Smythe-Smith. The fact that he sees her first at the annual (and still tragic) Smythe-Smith musical and he still wants to meet her should have warning bells going off all over the place. Iris is definitely skeptical and being someone who observes and n
Here are some of my thoughts:
• I really like Iris. She is so sensible (which I am as well). I find myself rooting for her throughout the book because she is really trying to do her best given her situation, while Richard is being difficult and confusing. She is also family-oriented (as all the Smyth-Smiths seem to be) and intelligent.
• Richard. I like him, but dang he makes things unnecessarily complicated at times. His actions make sense during his *secret* situation, but Iris definitely stepp
Feb 08, 2015 rated it did not like it
Sometimes I find myself really liking the Julia Quinn novels that most are decidedly indifferent to (and, conversely, failing to love some of her most popular ones!) So, despite reading a few ominous reviews of this book from readers whose opinions I trust, I was prepared to form my own opinion. Sadly, that opinion turned out to be that this is the worst Quinn novel I've ever read. The humor is painfully forced and unfunny, but the large stretches of dull dreariness are even more unpleasant to s ...more
LOVED LOVED LOVED this one!!!!!
Apr 14, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: books-owned-read
I have, from the very first book in the Smythe-Smith actually from the very first Bridgerton Saga novel I read (of which this is a companion series to that Saga, the events often tangling with those 8 novels in many ways) loved the idea of the Smythe-Smith family.  My own family being somewhat large and sprawling I can very well understand how it feels to be labelled "One of many" or to be generalized as "Oh one of those kids".  

Its sometimes a blessing - how often do casual acquain
Feb 18, 2015 rated it did not like it
Shelves: 4-hours-tops, romance
The Secrets of Sir Richard Kenworthy a.k.a. "Am I really reading a Julia Quinn novel?"
(view spoiler)
Alex Morrison
Worst. Hero. Ever. Iris deserved way better than this.
My favorite in the series.
I listened to this one on audio and I must say that Rosalyn Landor is a brilliant narrator.
Not a book I enjoyed overmuch. The hero's idea to save his sisters and his motivation to marry the heroine - really fast - were. Just. No. Interesting plot-line. But. No.

How you would think it was ok to sacrifice someone else's chance at happiness and shackle them to you for life is beyond me. When that person was not well-known to you, and had done you no harm and had aways been sweet towards you makes it worse. Iris simply did not deserve to be used in this way. But use her our noble hero doe
Sarah (needs a break from reviewing)
18/11 - There were a couple of hilarious scenes in this, especially the one at the second Smythe-Smith performance. The wait for the revelation of Richard's secret was quite frustrating, although once we met Fleur I guessed the first part, but not what Richard's solution was. His solution goes against what is considered right these days, but in the 1800s it would have been one of the few solutions that would allow an unwed mother to keep her reputation, if not her child. It would certainly have ...more
Cee (The Mistress Case)
Second Read: April 25, 2016

Rating: 2.5 Stars. The book pained and sickened me as much as the first time.

First Read: Feb 2, 2015

Main thought: Not one of JQ's best. Quite disappointed. Not certain how to rate this.

For once she was going to let herself be happy without knowing why.
Because sometimes it was best not to question a gift. Sometimes one simply had to be glad for it without knowing why.

My initial reaction: Well, this is awkward. I’m confused about what I’ve read so far. I could practical
Jane Kriel
Jan 18, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc
This was a departure from Julia Quinn's usual novels, less bubbly sparkly moments and more angsty with a plot revelation/twist. It actually seemed much more similar to other regency romance novels on the market at the moment. Usually the conflict and romance in Julia Quinn's work is driven from the characterisation, rather than plotting twists but here there were secrets (as to be expected from the title) that the characters had to work through.

I liked Iris, she was an interesting combination o
May 19, 2014 rated it liked it
My trouble with this latest entry in the Smythe-Smith Quartet series is the author's unsettling adherence to her trademark witty and frothy writing style and pacing while telling a much darker story. The lightness of the romantic early chapters ends abruptly, the duplicitous hero is revealed painfully, and the romance is never credibly resurrected. Perhaps, this less than happy result is due to the the constraints of maintaining the tone of an established series. ...more
linda hole
Feb 04, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
i just loved this series so much
Ririn Aziz
4.5 stars

To tell the truth, the beginning was okay but I have had some little problem digesting the middle part, that is...the part where Richard keep trying to conceal the secret from Iris. It was really really unfair to her and really really stupid action(s), really. I had some difficulty trying to read pass that part, dragging by little by little bit at a time.

But after the truth was out, the pace picked up really fast. I can't put the book down. The actions, the drama, the emotions...all is
Dana aka ♥Belladonna♥
This book was just...

Exactly what I needed to read right now.
Suad Shamma
Feb 23, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own, 2015
I cannot believe how long it's been since I've thoroughly enjoyed a historical romance! I can't even remember the last time I read one. I have surely surpassed these romances, although I sometimes reminisce about the wonderful times I spent reading them - Julia Quinn, Lisa Kleypas, Julie Garwood being just a few of my favorite authors - but I just can't seem to be able to immerse myself in the storyline or the characters anymore. The Smythe-Smith series has not been one of my favorites by Julia ...more
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#1 New York Times bestselling author Julia Quinn loves to dispel the myth that smart women don't read (or write) romance, and and if you watch reruns of the game show The Weakest Link you might just catch her winning the $79,000 jackpot. She displayed a decided lack of knowledge about baseball, country music, and plush toys, but she is proud to say that she aced all things British and literary, an ...more

Other books in the series

Smythe-Smith Quartet (4 books)
  • Just Like Heaven (Smythe-Smith Quartet, #1)
  • A Night Like This (Smythe-Smith Quartet, #2)
  • The Sum of All Kisses (Smythe-Smith Quartet, #3)

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“An eternity later, they reached what he thought might be the end, and King Henry waved his turkey leg in the air, loudly proclaiming, “This land shall be mine, henceforth and forevermore!”
And indeed, it seemed that all was lost for the poor, sweet shepherdess and her strangely changeable flock. But just then, there was a mighty roar—
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Richard stole another look at Iris; her mouth was hanging open as Henry leapt over a cow and ran behind the piano, only to trip over the littlest sheep, who was still licking the piano leg.
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