Unmasked by the Marquess
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...more
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 six ...more
There is not a single word in that exclamation I am not excited about! I need!
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 ...more
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 ...more
I absolutely LOVED the beginning. Seeing Alistair just accepting t ...more
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 ...more
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 ...more
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 ...more
I quite liked the MCs, and whenever they were both on the page, the book was very entertaining. ...more
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, ...more
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 ...more
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 ...more
*what's a Cat Sebastian book without at least one adorable fluffy animal?
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...more
In Unmasked by the Marquess, we follow Alastair, very arrogant and prideful marquess, falling in love with Robert Selby, who’s in fact an orphan Charity Church brought up in the Selbys family and now Charity and the late Robert’s sister Louisa are trying to marry off the said sister.
The story is full of mischief, funny scenes and heart-warming scenes. Alastair does come of as big-headed cold-hearted fool at first, but he slowly changes. Import ...more
So, the book. The first half of our couple is Robert Sel ...more
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 ...more
How often do you see an m/f romance between a bisexual man and a non binary woman??? I really enjoyed this! No surprise, though, as it's from one of my favourite historical m/m authors.
Here we find the common "woman disguised as boy" trope used to tell a story about a nonbina ...more
However, she then turned around and screwed the pooch by adding in the "you will grow to hate/resent me, so we need to break up and be miserable" trope. I LOATHE that trope, it's overused and really who the hell cares? A lot of true loves split up in the future, be happy NOW while you can, you stupid female.
Overall it was a well written ...more
Read my full review on my blog.
Content Warnings (view spoiler)[
Death of an ex from illness, death of a parent, both in the past. Carriage accident leading to injuries, including a head injury. Blackmail. Misgendering. Gender policing, pressuring non-binary MC to act/dress like a cis woman. Spectre of potentially being outed. Internalized bi antagonism. Internalized trans antagonism. Sex on the page. (hide spoi ...more
(So, I was a little tired when I wrote that huge two word review last night...)
A really enjoyed this story. Robert/Charity is more than just a woman dressing in men's clothes. So few historical stories are written about people who are genderfluid or agender or (as I learned from the afterword here) AFAB (Assigned Female At Birth) (even though I remember my Mom the nurse and I having a conversation about that very thing when I was about 25) -- as Anna Zabo says in their rev ...more
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, ...more