Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “To Have and to Hoax” as Want to Read:
To Have and to Hoax
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

To Have and to Hoax

3.81  ·  Rating details ·  90 ratings  ·  51 reviews
In this fresh and hilarious historical rom-com, an estranged husband and wife in Regency England feign accidents and illness in an attempt to gain attention—and maybe just win each other back in the process.

Five years ago, Lady Violet Grey and Lord James Audley met, fell in love, and got married. Four years ago, they had a fight to end all fights, and have barely spoken
Kindle Edition, 1st edition, 368 pages
Expected publication: April 7th 2020 by Atria Books
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about To Have and to Hoax, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about To Have and to Hoax

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.81  · 
Rating details
 ·  90 ratings  ·  51 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of To Have and to Hoax
jess ✨
Oct 27, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: arcs
To Have and to Hoax would be the kind of book that in normal circumstances would annoy me beyond reason. Main characters acting in a very childish way, refusing to sit down and talk even though this would solve things so quickly (but there would also not be a book to read, of course) but this was not the case.

The main reason I enjoyed and had such a good time with this book was that was incredibly self-aware. Both main characters were extremely immature, especially once they started their
Nov 21, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
1812, In Regency England Lady Violet Grey is 18 years old “with a respectable fortune and unimpeachable bloodline” and quite curious in nature. Warned by her mother that her curiosity would only ruin her.

It seems as her ruining process starts with Jeremy Overington, Marquess of Willingham and “notorious rakehell.” Before she knows, his mouth is covering hers. Then over the Marquess’ shoulder, she sees the most handsome man she’d ever seen. In “a shaft of light,” she recognizes the handsome face
Arielle ⭐ Cursebreaker ⭐
And to think I almost didn't read this book. I have rarely ever had a publisher reach out to me via e-mail with a widget for a book that I didn't already request or show interest in. As I was going through my g-mail last night I stumbled across an e-mail from a person in marketing from Atria and saw they were giving me the chance to read this book. I kind of grumbled to myself at first because well, I'm always in way over my head with ARCs to read but THANK GOD I decided to read the blurb. This ...more
Kari | Books For The Living
Overall, I enjoyed this one. I really liked the world Waters created with these cheeky and charming characters. This was a unique twist on a married romance as the couple has only been married for one year before a massive argument results in their 4-year estrangement. Some of the argument has to do with a miscommunication (heads up there if those sorts of things bother you in romances), but a lot of the estrangement was a result of personal obstacles the characters needed to overcome in order ...more
Oct 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Started off my fall beach week vacation by reading a book written by a friend, and super-excited to be able to recommend it to all and sundry. Regency romance with sexy tension, lots of humor, and room for sequels. Loved it.
Oct 20, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: edelweiss
I thought for sure that I would love this one, but while the premise is excellent, the execution left me frustrated. If you don't like books where the two main characters cannot communicate and could resolve the issue with an honest conversation, you'll likely be frustrated too.
Violet and James met, fell in love, and married very quickly. After a blissful first year of marriage, they get into a quite stupid argument where James believed that Violet had manipulated him into marriage and Violet
Dec 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: arcs
THIS REVIEW & MORE Paws and Paperbacks

ARC provided by the publisher through NetGalley.

Had the publisher not reached out to me about this book, it probably would have missed my radar altogether. I haven’t seen the title on any upcoming lists, I hadn’t hear of this debut author, and in all honesty, one look at that cover and I would have skipped right over this (please can it get a makeover?). That being said, I am extremely thankful that I received that email about this upcoming rom-com,
Oct 05, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
You know that feeling you get when you finish a new book and then immediately think, “Well, damn, now I need to go yell about this to everyone”? I’m at that stage right now with the super delightful TO HAVE AND TO HOAX despite the fact that I barely finished less than ten minutes ago. Comparisons to THE HATING GAME are often overused and have lost all meaning at this point, but it’s an apt comparison to make here. Think Sally Thorne, but set in the Regency era with more pettiness and a pair who ...more
Dec 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What a tender, gratifying, hilarious romance! I loved the smart teasing that was never mean, and always made me giggle. I loved that their friends were a constant source of gentle but wise reminders to just talk it out, for heaven's sake, and all of their various entanglements hinting at more potential novels to come. I loved their ridiculous stubbornness and plots that were absurd enough to be funny but not so absurd that they lost me. I thought James's character especially was really ...more
A husband and wife that have been forced into a marriage after being discovered on a balcony alone engage in a one up battle with each other after an argument. After once being truly in love early on in their marriage, they have spent four year barely acknowledging each others existence. It all comes to a head as they try to out-do each other in a battle of making the other person regret their actions.

I had such high hopes for To Have and To Hoax, but unfortunately it missed the mark for me. I
Dec 21, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Some people will enjoy this book and other won’t have the patience for it. That is ok. I enjoyed it, but was also frequently asking myself why I kept on going. I was an addict that couldn’t stop. I think that shows some talent of the story. It’s about a married couple that basically just won’t talk to each other about what really is going on so shenanigans ensue. The characters were likable, but I also felt the need to shake them frequently. Secondary characters were on par. I would definitely ...more
Jan 06, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: romance
Thank you Edelweiss for the eARC!

3.5 stars. TO HAVE AND TO HOAX is a hilarious, lovers-to-enemies-to-lovers, historical romance, with lots of hijinks and chemistry. While the ending dragged on a little long, I really enjoyed the criss-crossing revenge plots and banter between the two main characters. Crossing my fingers for a follow-up with West and Sophie!
Dec 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
So fun.
Nov 11, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Based on the description, I expected to love this book. Instead, I nearly DNF'd it about a third of the way through. I got to the halfway mark and skimmed the next several hundred pages and tuned back in for the last twenty and don't feel like I missed anything. This could have been a farce. This should have been a farce. Instead, it was a predictable, boring, frustrating slog that could have been shorter and should have involved a conversation between the protagonists long before one actually ...more
Sue Trowbridge
Dec 26, 2019 rated it really liked it
I received an email from the publisher inviting me to download an advance copy of this book, despite the fact that I have only ever reviewed contemporary romances; I am by no means an expert on Regencies, so I went with the assumption that this meant "To Have and to Hoax" is not just going to be aimed at readers who are already big Regency fans. And indeed, the book & the characters in "To Have and to Hoax" do feel quite contemporary, despite the 19th century setting. That was fine with me; ...more
The Suburban Eclectic
Nietzsche said, “It is not a lack of love, but a lack of friendship that makes unhappy marriages.” To Have and to Hoax does not lack for friendship, alas it is not between the marriage between Violet and James. However, the camaraderie between Violet and James' gaggle of friends are perfect examples of squad goals. But, the star of this tome is the back and forth between the main characters. The banter is quick and light, but with enough zip that will have you tucking a few zingers away for ...more
Jan 20, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: netgalley, historical
This was so much fun! I thought I'd enjoy this book, but I was not expecting to inhale it quite the way I did. I liked both James and Violet a lot, and I appreciated how they both came to realize and either call themselves out or listen to others call them out on their flaws. The whole friend group was very fun, and I see a full series taking shape. A few things pushed the limits of believability, but it didn't impact my enjoyment of the story and they were things I felt fine just going with. ...more
Dot Salvagin
Dec 29, 2019 rated it really liked it
This was a lively romp through the ridiculous game engaged in by this couple. As ridiculous and childish as the game was, the reader longs for these two basically charming, sane, husband and wife to find their HEA. But they keep digging themselves in a deeper and deeper hole.

I truly enjoyed every melodrama that turned up on almost every page. This plot was well written and I would have given it more than 4-stars if not for wanting to shake the heroine out of her machinations. At about 60% I was
Sarah Robbins
Dec 21, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was really adorable. Such a cute, lighthearted story where you wanted to find out what happened in the past and how it was all going to turn out. The antics of the main characters were engaging and exasperating. The boom was really clean as far as language, however while most of the boom was pretty closed door it took a turn halfway with a few fairly graphic scenes. Also, the book could have been about fifty pages shorter in my opinion. Overall though a quick, fun read that I'd ...more
Derek Moore
Dec 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Lady Violet Grey meets Lord James Audley and the bickering immediately starts. When sparks begin to fly between the two of them they get married. All is not so great in the marriage. Each one has a major crisis that leads to a comedy of errors. One huge fight leads to a lot of miscommunication and sometimes no communication at all. Martha Waters is an excellent writer who knows how to keep her readers interested. Thank you for the opportunity of receiving this book. I have already passed it on.
Dec 19, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
DNF. I really tried, but I couldn't connect with the characters. I love historical romance and reunited lovers is a favorite trope. But Violet and James came off as vapid, frivolous, privileged, spoiled children with bad dads.

This book is described as a rom-com but because the James and Violet were so petty and immature to each other I felt no sympathy for either of them and found little humor in their actions.

I read to relax and for a little escapism. This book was none of that for me,
Thank you netgalley for providing this ARC in exchange for an honest review.
I really enjoyed this historical romance. Both Violet and James are fordable forces to be reckoned with. A misunderstanding draws them a part for 4 years and one Iill conceived accident prompts a hilarious and blood thirsty plot for revenge. While I did think that it dragged on a bit too much it had the effect it intended. They desperately craved the attention and love from the other and created arguments in order to
Dec 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
"To Have and to Hoax" is an adorable, sweet romance that was a delight to read! The chemistry between the main characters leaps off the page, and the variety of hilarious situations they find themselves in just makes this book so enjoyable. Even the supporting characters were delightful. I enjoyed this book so much that I read it in one sitting.

Thanks to NetGalley for the ARC. All opinions are my own.
Jan 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Oh, man, I loved this book. The banter was perfect. the main characters delightful., and the humor spot-on. The supporting characters were endearing (and/or infuriating) in their own right, and I hope to read their books someday.

Highly recommended.

Thanks to Netgalley for a free review copy of this book.
Allison (The Allure of Books)
I think Martha Waters worked some magic here! Other than bad writing, nothing makes me DNF a book faster than characters acting immature/annoying. But in this case, she made it work. From the beginning, she managed to make me root for these two characters, making the fact that they were acting like silly IDIOTS endearing instead of irritating.

Whatever she writes next, I'll be reading.
Dec 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
AJ's book-reMarks
Dec 29, 2019 rated it really liked it
3.5 stars. My first time reading this author. I really wanted to like this book much more than I actually did, found it a little slow and lacking substance and left me wondering about other secondary characters and their promises.
Shoshana G
Jan 14, 2020 rated it did not like it
Shelves: romance
I didn't finish this. I didn't want to read about lies and trickery. I thought it would be fun and I'm a general fan of the genre but I kept finding excuses to read anything else.

I read an e-ARC through NetGalley.
Jan 07, 2020 rated it really liked it
Really very cute. I have a tendency to dislike Regency(ish) romances for whatever qualities they have which are dissimilar to P&P, cruel of me, I know, but this had very little of the poorly researched etiquette and sensually exposed ankles that mar the genre in general.
Alexandra Ferguson
I received this book from a goodreads giveaway. I liked it very much. I was hoping for a light comedic story and that it what I got. One misunderstanding tore them apart but what they will do to get each other back was just wonderful.
« previous 1 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • The Honey-Don't List
  • The Beast of Beswick (Everleigh Sisters, #1)
  • Love Her or Lose Her (Hot & Hammered, #2)
  • The Widow of Rose House
  • The Worst Best Man
  • You Are Not Alone
  • In Five Years
  • Girl Gone Viral (Modern Love, #2)
  • You Deserve Each Other
  • Love Lettering
  • Privilege
  • If I Never Met You
  • Would Like to Meet
  • Tweet Cute
  • The Jane Austen Society
  • The Ten Thousand Doors of January
  • Big Lies in a Small Town
  • Heartstopper: Volume Two (Heartstopper, #2)
See similar books…
Martha Waters was born and raised in sunny South Florida and is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She works as a children’s librarian in North Carolina and spends much of her free time traveling. To Have and to Hoax is her first novel. Sign up for her newsletter for periodic book news and reading & travel recs: