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Unmasked by the Marquess

(Regency Imposters #1)

3.93  ·  Rating details ·  2,620 ratings  ·  554 reviews
The one you love…

Robert Selby is determined to see his sister make an advantageous match. But he has two problems: the Selbys have no connections or money and Robert is really a housemaid named Charity Church. She’s enjoyed every minute of her masquerade over the past six years, but she knows her pretense is nearing an end. Charity needs to see her beloved friend married w

ebook, 320 pages
Published April 17th 2018 by Avon Impulse
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Cat Sebastian Her book (which I'm currently writing) is due to come out in the spring of 2019. Sadly, no Boston marriage!
Her book (which I'm currently writing) is due to come out in the spring of 2019. Sadly, no Boston marriage!

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Average rating 3.93  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,620 ratings  ·  554 reviews

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Dec 12, 2017 marked it as to-read
I beta read this book. It's *hella* queer. Trust me. ...more
nemo the emo ☠️ (pagesandprozac)
NB historical romance 😍😍😍😍😍😍
Whitney Atkinson
Jun 17, 2021 rated it really liked it
What a cool book! It's been a while since I've read a historical romance that wasn't immediately forgettable. I love that this book pushed the boundaries of gender expectations of the time period, and even though there were some shaky plot points and unresolved questions I have surrounding the main character being nonbinary (including that I don't think this is ownvoices), I loved rooting for Robin and Alistair. I don't have much else to say other than it was a quick read and I enjoyed the writi ...more
Apr 02, 2018 rated it really liked it
I've given this a B- at AAR, so that's 3.5 stars rounded up.

Unmasked by the Marquess, the first in Cat Sebastian’s new Regency Imposters series, marks something of a departure for her in that, unlike her previous books, it isn’t a male/male romance. The two protagonists are a man and a woman – but the fact that this isn’t a standard m/f romance quickly becomes apparent when we learn that our heroine – a former housemaid named Charity Church – has actually been living as a man for the past si
3.5 stars

I have seen so many people rave about this book, so I was excited to finally read it. We have a bisexual hero and a non-binary love interest (though Robert/Charity/Robin goes by she) and when they meet, Alistair is unaware that Robin is not who she claims to be. There are a lot of secrets regarding Robin's past and some aren't revealed until later on in the book.

First, I really loved the chemistry between Alistair and Robin. They are insanely attracted to each other but there's a lot o
Katherine Fabian
May 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Gloriously queer, gloriously funny, gloriously meta. What a satisfying book, what a satisfying romance.

I do love how both this and the last queer regency romance I read could be subtitled “Wow yes I totally owe a debt to Georgette Heyer and when she’s great she’s great but also HERE ARE MY MILLION FEELINGS ABOUT WHEN SHE’S NOT GREAT OMG.”

Heyer: Oh boy, love me some super cishet cross dressing shenanigans where everyone is cishet because actual queers are disgusting.

Sebastian: Okay, fine, that
Jul 23, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Horrified it took me this long to read such an absolutely terrific book.
h o l l i s
This review can also be found at Romantic Historical Reviews.

While my rating for Unmasked by the Marquess is the lowest I've ever given to a title by Cat Sebastian, I don't want any misunderstanding here: it has nothing to do with the fact that this wasn't an m/m romance and any disappointment regarding that fact. I'm not disappointed at all. I knew going into this, her first book in her Regency Imposters series, that this story was an m/f pairing with a twist. Unfortunately, I just wasn't fully
When I saw that Cat Sebastian wrote a m/f historical romance I thought she would be the one author to pull it off. I love her m/m books for their rational characters who face problems head-on and work hard on their relationships. When I saw that this features a nonbinary heroine and a hero who actually falls for her in her male get-up I was SO excited! I thought, YAY, finally a nice spin on HR! But I guess it wasn't meant to be...

I absolutely LOVED the beginning. Seeing Alistair just accepting t
Apr 24, 2018 rated it liked it
3 to 3.5 stars. Two unconventional MCs. The hero, a marquess, who privately accepts that he is attracted to both women and men, although he hasn't actually been with a man for some time. The 'heroine', a foundling orphan raised as a charity girl, is a cross-dresser, and has lived the last several years in the guise of a male, including some years at university. And when they meet, they are attracted to each other from the start.

I liked the MCs, and whenever they were both on the page, the book w
Apr 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: eagerly-read

I consider Sebastian's take on Heyer's Frederica a job well done. I loved reading this. She might not have Heyer's wit yet but she has other attributes she uses well. The fact that she showed me clearly, made me feel in fact, how really uncomfortable Charity Church was in her clothes, is a feat.

And furthermore she made me think, what makes us women, men, whatever, biology? society? If we are one thing and dress differently then prescribed by society, what are we? Gender seems to be rather unfix
Sep 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: lgbt
See my Rant Here for pre-rating...

Well, it appears to have disappeared. Anywho, tl;dr: Pre-rating due to troll(s) who gave it 1-star before it was even finished, let alone published.
Bookphenomena (Micky)
4.5 stars

This is my first book from Cat Sebastian, but I had no hesitation picking it up because my friends have been recommending her work for a year and I’ve just not got to her books until now. UNMASKED BY THE MARQUESS didn’t disappoint with this unexpected story that was delightful, emotional and beautiful.

If you want traditional characters from HR, then this probably isn’t what you expect but if you hang around for a few pages, you’ll be sucked in like me. I know Cat Sebastian writes mainly
Elizabeth May
May 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Bisexual hero. Non-binary hero(ine). Witty, smart, romantic, gorgeous. Cat Sebastian is an auto buy for me at this point.
Apr 04, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: r2019, stars-4-0
The cover might be selling a ‘usual’ kind of Regency romance but this LGBT novel features instead a trans/non binary couple.

Women dressing as men for a plethora of reasons is not a new thing, but here it did ‘feel’ totally different. Robin does not identify as a woman and is more ‘herself’ in the garbs and role of a man. As for the Marquess, he too does not fit the social norms, being attracted to both genders. Their journey is compelling, but the plot did dip a little in the middle, and I woul
A Fun, Non-Binary Romp through Regency England.....

I’m one of those people who skims over things like instructions, directions, and book blurbs. Thus being the case, I didn’t really know much about this book I had preordered months ago; Cat Sebastian being one of my favorite authors.

What I got was my first regency romance with a non-binary character in the form of Robbie/Robin/Charity. Born female, but finally settled into her skin once she donned men’s clothing whilst attending Cambridge in pla
3.5 stars!
It's easy to focus on the rarity of a non-binary MC in this mainstream romance, and I am too particularly impressed this story is published by such a Big Name publisher. I do hope this is the first of many inclusive books to come!

This story is first and foremost a historical romance. Someone who usually don't like the genre isn't likely to enjoy this book. True to the genre social differences and other realities of life in the time period are toned down or simply ignored for the sake
Apr 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Hello, good day, and welcome to a review of the most delightful romance of 2018! If you haven't purchased Unmasked by the Marquess yet, please do so. Then read the book and come back to join me in general happy shrieking over how great this novel is.

I will wait.

Unmasked by the Marquess is a book that, above all, exudes hope and vitality, even in situations that seem very hopeless. Often while reading, I had to wonder how on earth everything would work out. How could Alistair, a straitlaced lord,
Sam (AMNReader)
Jun 20, 2018 rated it really liked it
Not my favorite CS, perhaps my least favorite (which is likely still shelving it in my top 75 romances). It wasn’t the threads and complication for me, but I felt like it took a good 20-35% to sink my teeth into. In the end, it was lovely and sweet, though Charity’s decision irked me at the end (view spoiler), I indeed understood it, but felt something missing. All in all, ...more
Sep 29, 2018 rated it liked it

Currently on sale on Amazon and Kobo and various other places for $.99.


So, this book. I don't know. I want to like it (non-binary rep!) but, well, I'm not wild about it. Mostly, I don't like either of the main characters. I really dislike Alistair (although he does get better as the book goes on) and I feel really meh about Charity/Robert/Robin.

Alistair starts out as a pretty intense twit who is willing to actively harm others who are in worse
I'm not sure I have the proper words to describe how much I loved this book. The writing flowed easily and had moments that I can only describe as poetry.

Alastair seems like an unsympathetic character at first, but further into the story you realize he doesn't really have a cold heart, only ice walls around it.
“Robin, I don’t think I’ll ever have the words to describe what you did for me. I was living a half life until that day you let Louisa’s bonnet loose in Hyde Park. Portia says I was on ic
Cat M
May 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is genuinely EVERYTHING I could want in a book. EVERYTHING.

Sebastian takes the “girl disguised as a boy” trope and turns it on its head, adding wonderful levels of complication and nuance.

For one thing, Charity/Robin is non-binary and absolutely unwilling to return to dressing and presenting as a woman, not even for the opportunity to marry a very proper and somewhat uptight Marquess with whom they are in love.

And even if Robin were willing to give up that identity, they still wouldn’t be
I have mixed feelings about this book, and about the non-binary representation in it.

Read my full review on my blog.

Content Warnings (view spoiler)
Okay, so even if this is the first book of hers that hasn't made me drool with unbridled enthusiasm, I still really enjoyed it, and it's clear to me that Cat Sebastian is going to continue to publish books that I will enjoy reading. I think maybe I was just expecting a lot more from this than it was capable of giving? I don't know. It's also the first non M/M book of hers I read, but I don't think that's why I didn't enjoy this one as much.

So, the book. The first half of our couple is Robert Sel
Jordan Lombard
Title/Author: Unmasked by the Marquess by Cat Sebastian
Series/Standalone: Standalone
Genre/Sub-Genre: Historical Romance
Book Format: ebook
Length: 320 pages
LGBTQ+ Orientation: Gender neutral, bisexual
Abuse/Rape: None
Violence: None
Ratio of Sex/Plot: Heavy on the plot
Well Written/Editor Needed: Well written
Would I Re-Read?: Yes
Personal Thoughts: A well written historical romance you won’t want to put down! I enjoyed how simple, and yet how complicated, this novel was as more secrets we
Mar 04, 2021 rated it really liked it
Shelves: romance-novels
We had a bit of a disagreement on this one! Laine felt that the back half suffered from unrealistic conflict, while Meg thought the unique twist on the "I can't marry you for REASONS!" trope was great. Meg also appreciated the homage to Georgette Heyer's Frederica.⁠

What we both liked? The unexpected setup: Robert Seldon is in town for the sole purpose of importuning the Marquess of Pembroke into sponsoring his sister's entree into the ton. But Robert is an impostor: he was born Charity Church,
May 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
Charity Church lives her life as Robert Selby, the older brother of the beautiful Louisa Selby, who has come to London to make a wedding match. As Robert, Charity goes to an acquaintance of the family, the Marquess of Pembroke, Lord Alastair de Lacey, requesting his help with his "goddaughter". Lord Pembroke is a mean-spirited man, and sees helping Louisa as a way to rebuke the mother of his half-sisters, but he can't help but be intrigued by the young gentleman in front of him. Alastair is the ...more
Oh my gosh, what fun! The way Cat Sebastian spins this tale is truly remarkable and I enjoyed every twist and turn. Tons of surprises, and a very happy ending. Excellent!
He liked her, funny clothes and odd hair and the entire in-betweenness of her. She wasn’t an ordinary woman, but he wasn’t an ordinary man either. They fit together, and it felt right.

Look past the cover (I poked fun on my IG but - her hair and expression, his photoshopped shirt, his shoulder veins?) and this book is… amazing.

When I finish a book I just get a FEELING for what the star rating is. Generally, my ratings go like:
1 - disliked
2 - it was okay
3 - good not great
4 - great, could ha
Apr 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book was everything i wanted from it and more (even if the *fluffball doesn't make an appearance until the last part)
*what's a Cat Sebastian book without at least one adorable fluffy animal?
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Cat writes steamy, upbeat historical romances. They usually take place in the Regency, generally have at least one LGBTQ+ main character, and always have happy endings.

Before writing, Cat was a lawyer and a teacher. She enjoys crossword puzzles, geeking out over birds, gardening badly, and–of course–reading. In high school, her parents went away for a week, and instead of throwing raucous parties,

Other books in the series

Regency Imposters (3 books)
  • A Duke in Disguise (Regency Imposters, #2)
  • A Delicate Deception (Regency Imposters, #3)

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