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Once Upon a Maiden Lane

(Maiden Lane #12.5)

3.83  ·  Rating details ·  1,879 ratings  ·  265 reviews
A stand-alone novella from New York Times best-selling author Elizabeth Hoyt!

Miss Mary Whitsun is far too intelligent to fall for the rakish charms of a handsome aristocrat. But when the gentleman in question approaches her in a bookshop, mistaking her for his fiancée, Lady Johanna Albright, the flirtatious encounter only raises more questions. Could Mary, a servant raised
Audiobook, Unabridged, 5 pages
Published November 14th 2017 by Hachette Audio
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Average rating 3.83  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,879 ratings  ·  265 reviews

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Oct 21, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017-releases
This novella was great. But now I'm sad. Because this is the last installment in the Maiden Lane series. 🙁😭😩 Such a wonderful series!

***Review posted on The Eater of Books! blog***

Once Upon a Maiden Lane by Elizabeth Hoyt
Book 12.5 of the Maiden Lane series
Publisher: Forever
Publication Date: November 14, 2017
Rating: 4 stars
Source: eARC from NetGalley

Summary (from Goodreads):

Miss Mary Whitsun is far too intelligent to fall for the rakish charms of a handsome aristocrat. But when the gentleman in q
h o l l i s
So much better than the "final" book in the series. This was both unexpected and lovely; such a wonderful and sweet little happily ever after for her. As a result of this closed chapter I now have hopes for more novella additions for some of the younger side-characters we've seen throughout the series (Josephhhh). ...more
Sher❤ The Fabulous BookLover
3.5 Stars
*ARC provided by the publisher.*

I'm always a little weary of historical novellas cause I feel like it's not enough to really delve deep into the characters. I want to see their journey, their heartaches, their pain and their happiness. But as you know I love my Maiden Lane series so I decided to jump on this one.

Even though I wasn't wowed, I still enjoyed this story and it was a nice happily ever after. I do think this is a good read if you're looking for that quickie fix and to maybe c
Sep 25, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I've given this a C+ at AAR, so that's 3.5 stars

While Duke of Desire is the final full-length book in Elizabeth Hoyt’s long-running and incredibly popular Maiden Lane series, that wasn’t quite The End, as the author is treating us to a novella or two to round the series off and, in Once Upon a Maiden Lane, brings us back to where it all began – the streets and slums of the St. Giles area of London.

Some of the reviews I’ve read of Duke of Desire made mention of the fact that the book didn’t r
Nov 29, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: historical
A cute addition to the maiden Lane series!

This is the story of Mary Whitsun who we met in the previous books.

Hers is a Cinderella-kind story. There's a twist, obviously, and it was short, but I liked it.
Nov 08, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 1700s, series, historical
3.5 stars

I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

"I want to learn all of you. I want you to know me in return. When I next kiss you, I want you to welcome my lips like a lover instead of a stranger."
A novella listed as #12.5 in the Maiden Lane series, you could still read this as a standalone. Mary grew up in the orphanage featured in the series and we've seen glimpses of her and a couple other c
Nov 12, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: historical, romance
I was pleased one of the Mary’s from the Home for Unfortunate Infants and Foundling Children got her own romance!

Mary Whitsun may have grown up in an orphanage, but she didn’t grow up without love thanks to Lady Caire and all the others running the home. But still, the possibility of being a lady, and having a family sounds too good to be true, yet that’s what has happened to Mary. Out on a day off she runs into the impossibly handsome Lord Henry Blackwell, and her life forever changes.

While o
Robin (Bridge Four)
I always liked Mary Whitsun from the very first book in the Maiden Lane series so it was great to see her finally get her own story.

This was a very cute tale that involves a long lost baby and an arranged marriage. I really liked Henry Collins. He wasn’t one of the normal dashing rogues that we have had in the past. He is just a good son and decent guy who has known his entire life who he is supposed to marry until he finds the woman that could be her twin the middle of a book store.

Harry is rel
Sam (AMNReader)
Cute, refreshing. I was pretty impressed by the ability to get a sense of the characters in such a short time.

sigh. Novellas.
Anna's Herding Cats

Reviewed for herding cats & burning soup. (review live 11/14)

Resist Elizabeth Hoyt? Surely not! When I saw Once Upon a Maiden Lane? I was all ohmigosh! I neeeeeeded it!

And, oh, it made me smile. And tear up a little, too.

The Gist: Mistaken identity! Well, not really. But kinda. But not. lol Henry is browsing a bookstore and spots his fiance's not her. *confusion!* The plain but intriguing maid he's spotted, though, might hold the answers to a decades old
Nov 11, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: novella, historical
Fans of this series will be happy to see maidservant, Mary Whitsun, as our heroine. Raised in the orphanage on Maiden Lane, when Lady Caire wed (from book one, Wicked Intentions), Mary moved in with them and happily serves. She has a passion for reading and saves her wages for months to venture to the book store to select her next read. It’s there that a very strange thing happens – a gentleman swears she is Lady Cecelia, who was kidnapped along with her twin sister as babies. Joanna, the other ...more
Joanna Loves Reading
Nov 15, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: hr, i-own-nook, novella
This was a cute and lovely novella. I very much liked both the hero and heroine and felt their story fit into the novella setting well. They both have integrity and honor, and there is good tension between the two. My only reservation on this was the plot was a bit incredible. Also, and this is quite concerning but it is a novella so let's not worry yet, this was the second book in a row for Hoyt where the sex scene(s) felt lackluster. Is it me? I don't know, but it is typically one of the thing ...more
Princess under cover
Jun 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
That was a nice bit of escape. First time reading it. I suppose it's 4 stars instead of 5 because I felt like too much intrigue was squeezed into one little novella, which made it too unbelievable. I would have liked it better had the author just focused on the love story and the interaction between the two main characters rather than trying to squeeze the plot of a whole novel into the shorter book.

That being said, I've always wanted Mary Whitsun to get her own story and I wondered when she wou
Nov 21, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Mary Whitsun looks like this Earl dude and also like this other chick so it's presumed she's the long-lost oldest twin from this aristocratic family. Henry Collins, Viscount Blackwood is fiancee of the missing girl and is immediately enamored of Mary. Soon, Mary finds herself with a bad case of hot pants, too. BUT THEN, A SHOCKING REVELATION. Will Henry and Mary's lust-feelings survive this totally foreshadowed turn of events? Or will they be parted forever by—OBVIOUSLY IT'S LOVE SO EVERYTHING I ...more
Nov 19, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A solid little novella. Though I do kind of wish Mary Whitsun had gotten a whole book to herself.
Aug 31, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
On her day off as nursemaid to the children of Lord and Lady Caire, Miss Mary Whitsun is visiting a local bookstore when she is interrupted by a handsome gentleman who has mistaken her for his fiancee. Henry Collins, Viscount Blackwell, is shocked by the resemblance to Lady Joanna Albright. He believes he may have found her long lost twin sister who was kidnapped at a very young age. Mary was raised in an orphanage and doesn't know her family. Soon her life is turned upside down when she is beli ...more
A sensual and humorous novella set in Hoyt’s Maiden Lane series. Various familiar faces grace us with their presence when a servant of the Clare’s is thought to be a long-lost daughter of an aristocratic family. A sweet romance and a touch of mystery made this an enjoyable read.
Lori Foster
Mar 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I expected the ending to this to go very differently, but of course Elizabeth Hoyt never does the expected - which is a good thing! I adore Mary Witsun and I'm glad she wasn't required to change too much.
I've really enjoyed going through all the novellas, and I'm anxious for a new single title. Really terrific historical romance!
Juliana Philippa

Setting. September 1747. London, England.

Main Characters.
Heroine: Mary Whitsun (20), orphan
Hero: Henry Collins (~28), Viscount Blackwell, heir to the Earl of Keating

A very sweet novella featuring Mary Whitsun; at first I thought she was the Mary that Silence had adopted, so I was very confused, but she's not—she was one of the "older" Mary's who stayed at the orphanage to help with the other children. (Another reason why it was so freaking stupid that they named all of the girls Mary and all
A (Is For Awkward)
This was something of a coda to the series, and Mary's story would have been a great one for it. But I am very disappointed in this novella. First it ought to have been a full novel. Second at no point is Mary's real background mentioned, and the story everyone keeps repeating is not what was said in the first book of the series. Third the close relationship between her and Temperance that was so pivotal to the first book, and clearly Mary's entire life, just wasn't there apart from a sort of to ...more
Dec 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-in-2017
There are novellas and there are novellas. Most that I have read are average at best. Once Upon a Maiden Lane, however, was a damn fine novella. I cannot help but give it five stars regardless of it being of an abbreviated length. It was quite simply..... splendid!!!

Note: This was the story of Mary Whitsun. She has been a part of the Maiden Lane series from the very beginning. Reading her story, which was thankfully a HEA, was truly a delight. Bravo EH!!!!
Lisa - (Aussie Girl)
An enjoyable read as we come to the end point of Maiden Lane which has been one of my favourite historical romance series of recent years.

*** 3.5 stars ***
FV Angela
Review originally posted at

The Maiden Lane series is officially completed as far as full length novels are concerned. However, I think Ms. Hoyt plans to publish novellas now and then so lovers of this series can revisit this world.


Miss Mary Whitsun is far too intelligent to fall for the rakish charms of a handsome aristocrat. But when the gentleman in question approaches her in a bookshop, mistaking her for his fiancée, Lady Johanna Albright, the fl
I really tried to temper my expectations of this novella because I found the past few books huge disappointments, alas it did not help. The plot twists were very very very unrealistic even for historical romance so that kind of detracted from my enjoyment while reading it. I also felt like there was no exploration of the romance between the two he just sees her in bookstore and falls in love? The story was very contrived overall which makes me wonder if Hoyt is really writing t ...more

ONCE UPON A MAIDEN LANE nearly concludes the Maiden Lane series by Elizabeth Hoyt. It is the second last novella in the series. There will be one more after this and it depressing me because I love this series so dearly.

This book is quite fun and that’s mainly due to the hero and heroine. I adored them dearly and I really wished this book was full length. Hoyt does a great job of bringing these characters to life and injecting them with personality. There’s a good amount of banter as well as
4.5 stars - My review cross-posted from Wit and Sin

Once Upon a Maiden Lane is an utterly charming read! Mary Whitsun was introduced to readers in the first Maiden Lane book, Wicked Intentions, so I was delighted that – as the series comes to a close – the now-adult Mary gets a story of her own. Mary is witty, kind, and an overall endearing heroine. Even though she has grown up under the loving care of Temperance, now Lady Caire, Mary has never had a life all her own and there’s something
“I want to learn all of you. I want you to know me in return. When I next kiss you, I want you to welcome my lips like a lover instead of a stranger.”
She inhaled sharply. This was like a waking dream, for this man, this fascinating, handsome aristocrat to speak to her so bluntly.
So passionately.
“Do you want that as well?” He was in front of her now.
“Yes,” she said, opening her eyes to meet his gaze boldly. “Yes, I do.”

3.5 stars!

After the very disappointing Duke of Desire, I was honestly surp
Amy ~ Love At 1st Read
Oct 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I think most, if not all, romance readers grew up in love with fairy tales. Those stories that awaken us to the magic of love. The kind of love that makes everything else fade away. Where good wins out and our heroine and hero live happily ever after. As I’ve grown older, I still want those kinds of stories, just a little more grown up version with characters and plots that are written much more in depth than those favorites of my youth. This Maiden Lane novella has that Cinderella twist to it ...more
RachelW (BamaGal)
Oct 07, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: arc
3.5 Stars. I wasn't really expecting much, even though I've enjoyed the series as a whole; but novellas are usually not enough storyline for my tastes. I was pleasantly surprised by Mary Whitsun's rise from a servant in St. Giles to the rarified world of the gentry...a Cinderella story. I very much enjoyed how it all worked out with Henry. This was a little different from any other HEA I've ever read.

Is the series officially over now?
Lacey (laceybooklovers)
Aww, such a sweet novella!! Plus, we get to see Val, Bridget, and their baby!!!!

Review to come!

Thanks to the publisher for generously providing me an ARC to review.
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Elizabeth Hoyt is a New York Times bestselling author of historical romance. She also writes deliciously fun contemporary romance under the name Julia Harper. Elizabeth lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota with three untrained dogs and one long-suffering husband.

Other books in the series

Maiden Lane (1 - 10 of 12 books)
  • Wicked Intentions (Maiden Lane, #1)
  • Notorious Pleasures (Maiden Lane, #2)
  • Scandalous Desires (Maiden Lane, #3)
  • Thief of Shadows (Maiden Lane, #4)
  • Lord of Darkness (Maiden Lane, #5)
  • Duke of Midnight (Maiden Lane, #6)
  • Darling Beast (Maiden Lane, #7)
  • Dearest Rogue (Maiden Lane, #8)
  • Sweetest Scoundrel (Maiden Lane, #9)
  • Duke of Sin (Maiden Lane, #10)

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