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A Daring Arrangement

(The Four Hundred #1)

3.76  ·  Rating details ·  1,449 ratings  ·  285 reviews
Set in New York City’s Gilded Age, Joanna Shupe’s Avon debut introduces an English beauty with a wicked scheme to win the man she loves—and the American scoundrel who ruins her best laid plans…

Lady Honora Parker must get engaged as soon as possible, and only a particular type of man will do. Nora seeks a mate so abhorrent, so completely unacceptable, that her father will
Mass Market Paperback, 372 pages
Published October 31st 2017 by Avon
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Average rating 3.76  · 
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 ·  1,449 ratings  ·  285 reviews

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Nov 30, 2017 rated it it was ok

ARC provided by Avon in exchange for an honest review.

“The plan was simple. If her father wanted her to find a husband, she’d find the most outrageous man in New York, a fiancé noteworthy and unsuitable enough to land in the papers.”

Friends, I am not sure if this is because I just don’t read that much historical romance, or that I just couldn’t connect with these characters or story, but this just did not work for me. Honestly, I think I’m going to try a Tessa Dare book, and if that doesn’t
I've given this a B+ so that's 4.5 stars.

I’ve read all of Joanna Shupe’s novels (I believe) and have enjoyed them to differing degrees. Looking back at my review of her début novel,The Courtesan Duchess, I said that while flawed, it was an engrossing read and that I was looking forward to reading more of her work. Several books later, I’m still reading her and while we’ve had our ups and downs, she’s firmly on my radar and is pretty much a ‘must read’ author for me these days.A Daring
ARC provided by Edelweiss and publisher for an honest review.

I'm not going to rate this one, I just couldn't get into this book and I tried till the halfway point and finally gave up.

I'm not sure if it was the writing style or the characters, who just didn't appeal to me.

Something just didn't click (view spoiler). Probably just
DNF @32%

Lost interest, to be honest. I didn’t like the heroine, Nora. Actually, i couldn’t connect to either main character. I didn’t like the execution of the premise. And I didn’t like the constant references to English and American stereotypes.
“Nora is steel and spice, with centuries of British female resourcefulness in her genes.” Yes, that summed up what he knew of Nora thus far.


“Most of those places are in dangerous neighborhoods hardly suitable for an English lady.“


“This isn’t
2.5 stars

The basis for this is a fake engagement, which I can usually get behind but the heroine was in "luv" with another man for over half of story which is what I can't usually get behind. I had a really hard time feeling it between the hero and heroine. The hero felt a little same old, same old and his family relationship with his mother and sister had them feeling like caricature villains. The heroine had some incredible obtuse moments with not understanding how situations could be
Lover of Romance
Aug 19, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review was originally posted on Addicted To Romance

This is the first time I have ever read this author and all I can is IMPRESSIVE....I was really blown away by this book and I am not sure if I will give this book the credit it deserves but I am going in full speed ahead anyway.

In A Daring Arrangement we have a story of a couple, that are brought together in a night of birthday parties, drinking, horses and a fake engagement...intrigued yet?? Well you all should be because the beginning of
Oct 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The fake fiancée is one of my favorite tropes, so I was pretty eager to get to this one.

I love love loved Nora and Julius. She’s strong and stands up for herself. He’s charming and there’s way more than meets the eye. Together they have excellent banter and a crap load of chemistry. It was fun to read their relationship grow and change from lust to love.

Plot wise, it was entertaining. I enjoyed seeing the shenanigans they got into and the various other threads outside of their relationship
Nov 25, 2017 rated it it was ok
Lady Honora "Nora" Parker needs to get back to her down-low lover in England so she finds herself a scandalous fiancé, the notorious Julius Hatcher. Julius, meanwhile, needs access to Upper Crust New York society. Their agreement being mutually boner-ficial, they develop raging feelings for one another. Julius repeats that he will not marry Nora while she decides she's in love with him and ends things with the penniless artist. They bone and break up. There's a near death experience which ...more
Nov 19, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I've given this a B+ for content and a B (just about) for narration at AudioGals

I enjoyed reading Joanna Shupe’s recent Knickerbocker Club series, named for the group of wealthy, powerful men determined to make their mark on late nineteenth century New York. The author did a terrific job in those books with her descriptions of the city’s Gilded Age – which hasn’t been used very often as a setting for historical romance – so I was pleased to discover that her new series – The Four Hundred
This was fun! It really IS refreshing to read "different" historical romances. And I liked the set up and the characters. (view spoiler)
Mar 13, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: hr
I am underwhelmed by the 'daring' arrangement between the main characters. The lack of conflict and tension in the storyline is the key reason that it took me a while to finish the book.
"Nora, I want you — not your hymen."

The entire book is like that. All the characters speak like they're trying to mimic aliens mimicking humans. Joanna Shupe has a unique way of making normal things sound plain weird, either by giving too much detail, being too frank, or repeating herself to the point of intolerability. There's this probing insight into the hero Julius's character:
His mathematical skill at calculating the odds made him nearly unbeatable.
Yes, calculating odds requires maths.
Sophie Barnes
Sep 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What a fantastic start to a new series!

This is the first Gilded Age romance I've ever read and I have to say, I wish there were more! Especially if they're this well written. A Daring Arrangement starts off with a bang, making the reader eager to know where this thrilling ride of a novel will take them.

Lady Honora Parker (Nora) has been shipped off to New York by her father after deliberately getting caught in a compromising position with the man she wants to marry - a struggling artist named
Moon Love
Aug 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Lady Honora Parker is brilliant. I mean she's smart, cunning, and sassy. I loved the way she went about trying to get what she wanted. Pair her with Julius Hatcher, who is also brilliant and smart, and the two were incendiary. He is totally a match for her! I loved how the attraction between them flared bright and fast, but they didn't act on it right away. It was one of the hottest slow burn romances I've ever read. My anticipation of their passion had me on edge the entire I was reading. And ...more
Elizabeth Boyle
Oct 08, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The author was kind enough to send me an advance copy of her debut book with Avon, A Daring Arrangement, and I was delighted to read it. So much fun to read a romance set outside of the Regency and this one is doubly good as it is set in New York with an English heroine and a wealthy American outsider. I liked the way these two got to know each other and fall in love. This is the first in a series and I will be looking forward to the upcoming books.
Nov 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A Daring Arrangement was a very enjoyable historical romance with an incredibly strong heroine, a fake fiancé, and a beautiful setting of New York City's Gilded Age.

Lady Honora Parker is in need of a fiancé as soon as possible, but only a certain type of man will work. Nora must find a man so unacceptable that her father will reject the match allowing Nora to marry the man she loves. Nora knows just the man and approaches financier Julius Hatcher, a man known for his outlandish behavior. Julius
Feb 09, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: romance
This is the first book in "The Four Hundred" series which is set in and among the elite of the Gilded Age in New York City. (The "four hundred" were the top four hundred members of New York society as determined by Ward McAllister, crony of social queen Mrs. Astor. Apparently, poor Mrs. Astor's ballroom could only hold 400 people, so she had to make sacrifices. You know how it is. Sigh.)

The romance between our lovers in this story was standard fare for this genre (and I obviously like the
Sissy's Romance Book Review
A Daring Arrangement by Joanna Shupe is the First book in the New Series called "The Four Hundred". This is the story of Lady Honora Parker and Julius Hatcher.
Honora thinks she is in love with Robert a struggling artist. When she comes up with a plan to be caught in a compromising position so that she can marry back fires. Instead, her father ships her off to America. But Honora comes up with a new plan to get Robert by being shown to be involved with Julius. Honora just has to
Nov 18, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read a bad review about this book and considered not reading it. I'm so glad I gave it a try. This book is perfect for me. I don't think I care as much about historical accuracy as some do. I also don't care about American vs British rivalry in the romance world. So what I do care about is great chemistry between the characters, maturity or at least growth in character, and a little mystery or excitement never hurts. I really adored both main characters. Very sweet book. The scene where they ...more
Lakshmi C
3.5 stars

Miss Rail
Personal Review at
Honora Parker is forced away from England by herfather, theEarl of Stratton, in order to find a respectable husband in New York.

Her first love, a struggling london artist, will never do...or so does her father believe.

Nora doesn't agree and figures out a plan to get back to Robert:

Present her father with the mostdisreputable man in New York as an alternativematch.

A man so scandalous her father will agree to let her marry Robert.

The perfect candidate?Julius Hatcher!

Thing is, plans don't always
Cecily Wolfe
Oct 31, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Once again, Shupe delivers a delicious diversion. I adore this historical period, and she creates a fantastic love story within it that just kept me turning those pages.
Sep 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I won an arc copy in a drawing and, I must say, I love this book! The author's descriptions are great, and really give insight to the decadence of The Gilded Age. I love the plot. The mystery - boy, what a twist to the ending!
Sep 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Coffee Dates with A Daring Arrangement

First Date:I was craving a historicalromance when HarperCollins brought this book to my attention. I had not read Shupe, but dove in after reading the synopsis. From the very first chapter, I was hooked. I love the arrangement trope and upon meeting our heroine and hero I never set this book down until my third date was complete.Lady Honora Parker has been sent to America to stay with her Aunt after her father discoveredshe was in love with a starving
Jen (The Starry-Eyed Revue)
This was my first Joanna Shupe novel and I quite enjoyed it. Though I pretty much always enjoy the fake relationship trope to some degree, I really liked how it was handled in this story: gorgeous daughter of a duke makes a deal with a roguish American financier that should get her sent packing back to England post-haste...what could go wrong? Fires, former paramours, and bad deals from the past...that's what. Not to mention an English-bred lady with debauchery on her mind and a rogue trying to ...more
Sep 21, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
A trope that usually doesn't bother me—character X falling in love with character Y while supposedly in love with/committed to character Z—really bothered me here. I also didn't understand why Poppy was introduced and played up and then just kind of disappeared. It almost felt like she was set up to be a villainess and then dropped in favor of someone else. And the hero's big vengeance storyline was rather easily and neatly wrapped up at the end in order to get to the HEA. In short, there were a ...more
Barbara Rogers
Oct 17, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: edelweiss
Series: The Four Hundred #1
Publication Date: 10/31/17

What an engrossing start to a new series! The writing is excellent, the setting is elegant, the characters are interesting and engrossing, the villain is unexpected and the HEA is hard-won – what more could you ask for in any book.

This story is set in a different time and place than I usually enjoy, but I loved it anyway. America’s Gilded Age had brash Americans making and spending money hand-over-fist. It was the day of the Astor’s and the
Edwina " I LoveBooks" "Deb"
This is my first Joanna Shupe book. I am having mixed feeling about the storyline but not the author. I will read more books by her.

Lady Nora Parker the only child of the Earl of Stratton has been caught kissing and artist and her father immediately sends her to America. She is too stay with her Aunt Beatrice and Uncle James Cortland. Nora is after all the daughter of a distinguish Earl and from a aristocratic family. Her father will never allow her to marry a lowly poor artist. The story
Jan 03, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I suppose this idea could work, if properly executed. A young lady is caught in a compromising situation with a man unworthy of her, and is sent to exile with her aunt in the former colonies. She concocts a harebrained scheme (fake engagement to a scandalous-but-oh-so-dreamy man) to get shipped back to England. Of course, things don't go as planned...

Why this didn't work: There was something about these characters that didn't gel with me. The hero is initially (and briefly) appalled that she's
Oct 22, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-2018
I started this book several times and struggled to get into it. The setup felt forced and that really affected my engagement. Being familiar with and enjoying this author's work, and knowing that subsequent books were more highly favored, I wanted to get through this one. I decided to go for audio and see how things developed. Sadly, I never had much ability to connect with the characters and therefore the story. But I'll still give the rest of the series a try.
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Award-winning author JOANNA SHUPE has always loved history, ever since she saw her first Schoolhouse Rock cartoon. While in college, Joanna read every romance she could get her hands on instead of attending classes, yet still managed to graduate with a journalism degree. She

Other books in the series

The Four Hundred (3 books)
  • A Scandalous Deal (The Four Hundred, #2)
  • A Notorious Vow (The Four Hundred, #3)
“This is New York City and we can spot a fraud a mile away.” 0 likes
“Life was much too short to play by anyone's rules but her own.” 0 likes
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