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Cadenza (Rockliffe, #6)
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(Rockliffe #6)

4.47  ·  Rating details ·  167 ratings  ·  44 reviews
The performance finished in a flourish of technical brilliance and the young man rose from the harpsichord to a storm of applause.

Julian Langham was poised on the brink of a dazzling career when the lawyers lured him into making a catastrophic mistake. Now, instead of the concert platform, he has a title he doesn’t want, an estate verging on bankruptcy … and bewildering re
Kindle Edition, 380 pages
Published November 22nd 2018
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4.47  · 
Rating details
 ·  167 ratings  ·  44 reviews

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Mar 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: historical
Another winner!

Another book in this series with two great romances!

Arabella is rich, but doesn't want to go to London, while her cusin Elizabeth is poor but would like to go to London. While Arabella has a good reason for not wanting to go, Elizabeth just want to see how the glittering life is. So, what they do? Obviously they siwtch places! Elizabeth will go to London pretending to be Arabella, while Arabella will go in the country to be goveness/housekeeper for a widowed Earl.

But, while they t
Mar 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing

Oh how I enjoyed this one. Julian Langham was one of those hero’s that you couldn’t help but fall in love with. He was quiet, shy and ever so kind. His true passion was playing the harpsicord but within a blink of an eye he gave that up to do the right thing. He became Earl Chalfont (which was a bit daunting) and the guardian to three young children named Tom, Rob and Ellie. All of whom I came to adore. For me these three children really made this story extra special.

But Julian’s bleak outlook w
Nov 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
After five books in her fabulous Rockliffe series, Stella Riley is finally (and sadly) bringing the series to a close.

But what a swan song! CADENZA has two compelling love stories at its centre. And who knew that, as well as being an historian (English Civil War – more about that later) of some considerable repute, she is also a knowledgeable and talented musician who has quite simply astounded me with her scholarship, research, and personal knowledge of the world of classical music, and in part
Oct 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
4.5 stars

This sixth book in Stella Riley’s Georgian Era Rockliffe series introduces a handful of new characters and, as in Hazard (book five), weaves together a pair of romances. While the seemingly omniscient Duke of Rockliffe has a pivotal role to play in them both and there are cameo appearances by characters from the other books in the series, Cadenza works very well as a standalone;  anyone new to the series and unfamiliar with all the relationships and strong ties of friendship among Rock
Nov 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
For the first two thirds of this story I was absolutely delighted. There's so much to like: (1) Two romances with appealing characters, (2) a connection to Riley's English Civil War novel GARLAND OF STRAW, (3) the Duke of Rockliffe, (4) clever use of music and the harpsicord, (5) heartwarming, and not annoying, inclusion of children, (6) the Duke of Rockliffe, (7) Riley's top-notch writing, and (8) the Duke of Rockliffe.

First, the romances. There are two and at first I thought they were planned
Lady Wesley
Jun 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2019-faves, listened
Stella Riley writing. Alex Wyndham narrating. Of course, it's five stars.

This is the final book in Riley's Rockcliffe series, and every volume has been a joy to listen to. Treat yourself and listen to them all in order.
Nov 27, 2018 rated it liked it
3 to 3.5 stars. I liked the read, but it wasn't completely successful for me. Without giving spoilers, the basic trope was a bit of a stretch for me. It was one of those 'suspend your disbelief' stories. The setup was just something I personally found unlikely, and a little hard to believe that it would occur in this way. There were two parallel stories (which I don't mind) but unfortunately it became a little confusing. Sadly I soon began mixing up the characters of cousins Arabella and Elizabe ...more
Mar 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I totally, completely and utterly adored this 6th in the Rockcliffe series. Another double romance that had me swooning and laughing out loud. Between Stella Riley’s superb writing and fabulous characters as well as Alex Wyndham’s delectably, dreamy narration - I was in book heaven!! (view spoiler) ...more
Carol *Young at Heart Oldie*
Cadenza is the sixth and sadly the final book in the superb Rockliffe series and, as I have come to expect from Stella Riley, I was totally enchanted by this beautifully written story.

In this series, Ms. Riley has created some of the most memorable heroes and Julian definitely belongs to their exalted ranks. He is such a complex character and surely one of the most refreshingly unusual heroes to grace the pages of a Historical Romance. He is gentle, kind and shy, with a sweet smile, guaranteed t
Oh how I loved this one! Even though I know I love Stella Riley's books, I wasn't expecting to love this one as much as I did. It started out very well but it developed so fantastically it comes very, very close to upsetting The Player as my favorite in the series and almost my favorite character in Rockliffe *except this will never happen*.

And, as always, Alex Wyndham and his sex-and-melted-chocolate voice is a pure pleasure to listen to, quite literally. *swoon*
Kim Rozzell
Nov 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A lush historical romance with vibrant characters and exquisite period details.
A hero so lovable it hurts!

A shy daydreamer with an amazing musical talent finds out that all his dreams will have to be postponed (perhaps forever) because he is responsible for a failing estate and three illegitimate orphans.
A daring girl (Arabella Brandon), hoping to avoid an unwanted season in London, changes place with her poorer cousin, and ends up accepting a post as a housekeeper/ governess.
Destiny mingled with determination and love are the main ingredients of this masterpiece by Mrs.
Barb in Maryland
Not a real review, but a smattering of impressions---
I feel I should give this 5 stars because the author made me love the harpsichord! However, that alone will not get me to bump up my rating.

A few thoughts:
Several of the reviews I read were not favorable to Arabella Brandon--Pfui!! I say. I loved her! And I totally disagree that her cousin Elizabeth Marsden (with whom she switched places) would have been 'better' for Julian.
The author gives us two (for the price of one!) romances-- to me it
4.5 stars. 5 for the first 2/3 of the book, 4 for the last 1/3. But have to round up to a five because of the Duke of Rockliffe. If only we all had a friend like him. For the best review of this book and one that matches my thoughts almost exactly, please see OLT's review.

What I loved:
2 romances in one book
The Duke of Rockliffe and glimpses of characters from previous books in( the series.
The time spent at Julian's home.
The time spent in London before the "big reveal".
Julian and Arabella.
Mar 27, 2019 rated it liked it
I had a tough time warming up to the characters. I found Julian a bit too submissive and shy for my taste. I loved the beginning but felt like something was missing, perhaps the fact that there were two romantic couples made me unable to connect to all four characters.
Dec 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Another lovely, lovely story by this wonderful writer

At the risk of sounding a bit too ‘fan girl’, I believe that, in Cadenza, Ms Riley demonstrates once again the skills that make her, for me at least, the best writer of historical romantic fiction. Her mastery of setting, plot, dialogue and characterisation are again laid before us in a beautifully intricate composition rivalling any of those played or devised by Julian Langham, the hero of this story.

As with the previous five books in the Roc
Feb 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Another brilliant story from Stella Riley and so well narrated by Alex Wyndham. Just looking forward to Max’ story now.
Feb 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I love Stella Riley. Her books are truly a joy to read - for me. In her last Georgian "Rockliffe Series" book, "Hazard", she introduced a character who was really an asshole. And treated his sister horridly, and I mean that. But the way he was written also gave me pause ... As a character, I wanted to know more about his back story - because as horrible as he was - he was also intriguing. So when "Cadenza" came on my radar I was thrilled - another "Rockliffe" book. And Kilborne/Sherbourne in it ...more
Lisa Matheson
Dec 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Great read

Always want more from this authoress!
Each book is great!

I have read the whole series and look forward to reading her other works.
Apr 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I have read and listened to every book in the Rockliffe Series, this is the sixth and sadly the last. This is another stunning work of art by Stella and brilliantly performed by Alex. Julian Langham is arguably the best hero in this series, with the exclusion of Rockliffe of course. A music genius and protege all Julian wants is to play the harpsichord and compose music. When he is not playing his music he is thinking about it and he appears to be absentminded and distracted. He forgets to eat a ...more
Feb 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I loved this new book by a favourite author, Stella Riley. Stella is a master at character creation and development and combine that with a passion for research and you have amazing results. This book explores music as an art, a passion and an escape. Music is also a character in this novel and her understanding of its nature and ability to soothe, unite and exillerate are captured. For Julian, music is his language and emotional expression. As always, there is much subtle humour laced throughou ...more
Mar 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
The 6th, and I believe possibly last book of the Rockliffe Series, Cadenza is another triumph from Riley. This time we follow the exploits of Rockliffe's 2 distant cousins, Arabella Brandon and Elizabeth Marsden. Both are invited to spend a Season in London at the invitation of the Duke and Duchess, however, when Elizabeth's father forbids her to go and she finds herself instead facing the prospect of taking up employment as a housekeeper/governess for the Earl of Chalfont, her cousin Arabella p ...more
Dec 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
I read my first Stella Riley novel decades ago (Marigold Chain) which I bought in paperback and then lost. I followed this with Splendid Defiance, Black Madonna and then Garland of Straw which I found by chance in the library and then bought when the great library sell-offs happened. My favourite was. and still is, Garland of Straw. I awaited eagerly for the next but that didn't happen. Of the Georgian novels in their first incarnations I only managed to get hold of a library copy of Parfit Knig ...more
Dec 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing
What a wonderful book to end my year of reading in 2018! Imagine how surprised I was to find myself completely charmed by a story with two heroines I didn't feel much affection for and a hero who was an absolute "prick" in a previous book in this series. Frankly I was stunned Ms. Riley would even try to redeem Ralph, Kilburn, then Sherwood, but she did it with much skill and subtlety. The romance between Ralph and Heroine 1 is cool and moves in a sedate pace without any melodrama about Ralph's p ...more
I have read and cherished all of the books in the Rockliffe series, so much so that when I am reading one of them, I very often snap at my family if they attempt to talk to me. They cannot relate to my passion, but they do understand and forgive me, because it is impossible for me not to get totally immersed in this series. EVERYTHING: the authentic, witty dialogue; descriptions of settings and characters that I can easily envision; interesting historical background; fascinating plots! EVERYTHIN ...more
Nov 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Harpsichord virtuoso Julian's obliviousness to anything besides his music is both a strength and a deep flaw. It keeps him focused on his passion but someone else must manage his affairs for him. Urged by his manager not to make promises of free performances, he is nevertheless taken from Vienna and the world of music he loves when an unexpected and unwanted earldom in England falls at his feet.

For young Arabella, daughter of landed gentry, disaster strikes hard when her betrothed jilts her for
Doris M
Mar 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Excellent. Loved it from beginning to end. I have read most of Stella Riley's books and enjoyed especially the English civil wars series. The Rockcliffe series are a bit of Georgian froth and are quite different, but, again you have wonderful characters and an appealing story to savor. I highly recommend!
Nov 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ebook-owned
Pure bliss.
Riley can’t do wrong, in this reader’s opinion!
Dec 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Brava! An absolutely amazing Georgian romance with two surprising heroines, two very interesting heroes plus a "soundtrack." Julian (hero #1) is both a delightful hero and a good man (the best combination). This time, along with Stella's typical measure of historical accuracy, she provides a wealth of background information on the music. On her site, she lists Julian's recital concert playlist with links to performances by a modern-day harpsichord virtuoso. The story is creative and original wit ...more
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Stella Riley trained as a teacher in London and now lives in Kent, England. She enjoys amateur dramatics, salsa,belly-dancing, reading and travel.
After a break in her writing career, she has now published her back-catalogue [or as much of it as she intends to re-release!] as e-books.
The Marigold Chain, The Parfit Knight, The Mesalliance, A Splendid Defiance, The Black Madonna, Garland of Straw

Other books in the series

Rockliffe (6 books)
  • The Parfit Knight (Rockliffe, #1)
  • The Mésalliance (Rockliffe, #2)
  • The Player (Rockliffe, #3)
  • The Wicked Cousin (Rockcliffe, #4)
  • Hazard (Rockliffe, #5)