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Otherwise Engaged

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4.61  ·  Rating details ·  209 ratings  ·  156 reviews
She’s never been afraid of breaking the rules—until she risks breaking her heart

Constantly stifled by the rules of Society, spirited Rebecca Rowley enjoys finding ways to quietly—or not so quietly—rebel. But riding bareback and avoiding nosy neighbors are nothing compared to the thrilling secret she is keeping from her family.
When Rebecca’s quick thinking saves the life o
...more
Paperback, 262 pages
Published October 12th 2020 by Covenant Communications (first published October 2020)
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Average rating 4.61  · 
Rating details
 ·  209 ratings  ·  156 reviews


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Melissa Tagg
Aug 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This book was absolutely charming! I'm torn between what I loved most: The author's writing voice or that perfect, swoony first kiss scene. :) I love books where I'm able to just immediately settle in to the story and the characters and that was this one to a T. A perfect summer evening read on the patio with just the right mix of humor and romance.
Staci
Aug 26, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2020
Delightful Regency novel! This is my second Joanna Barker novel and will certainly not be my last.

Rebecca Rowley is a bit of a free spirit and enjoys activities such as bareback horse riding that would be frowned upon by most of her contemporaries. In that vein, she becomes engaged to the son of a man that is disliked by her family. The engagement is kept a secret and she is separated from her fiance geographically while Rebecca works out how to share the news with her family.

Meanwhile, a newcom
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Aimee (Getting Your Read On)
I just love when a book engages my interest from the very beginning and doesn't let go. That's what this book was- engaging and interesting. The characters were enjoyable and the plot was layered. Oh, and isn't the cover pretty?

Rebecca is a fun character. She longs for adventure and freedom. Yes, she is a bit on the obstinate side but she is kind and never tries to purposely hurt anyone. I loved her passionate side and how much she loved riding her horse- fast! Her family is protective of her bu
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Lauren
Oct 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Yes. Yes. And Yes. I am happy to say that this book is definitely Joanna Barkers best work (and I’ve really liked everything she’s put out thus far)

I was romanced thoroughly as I followed Rebecca and Lieutenant Averys tumultuous yet deliciously beautiful relationship. I was turning pages late into the night...losing much needed hours of sleep but not finding it in myself to care. Great romantic tension, kissing scenes, and character development all rolled up into one charming book that is now a
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Esther
Jun 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Oh my goodness, I absolutely fell in love with these characters. Rebecca Rowley is engaging and full of life. Lieutenant Avery is perfect in every single way a man of the time should be (although I don't know how to spell lieutenant, so he does have that strike against him I suppose -thank you spell-check. But I promise in every other way he is dreamy.) If you have been following Joanna's books up to this point you are going to absolutely adore this one. If not... well... now would be a great ti ...more
linda hole
Aug 27, 2020 rated it liked it
Omg it must be something wrong with me. I did not love this book. It was just ok. I really liked the male Main character. I felt less about the female.main character. She annoyed med a little bit. With her inmatureness and ways i guess. But thank you to netgalley for letting me read this e arc
Amy
Jun 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Rebecca Rowley declares herself “deliriously happy”, well that’s exactly how you are going to feel as you finish the final page.

As a beta-reader I fell in love with this story long ago, and that certainty remains. This is one incredible regency-era romance.

Everything about this story, from its deeply developed characters, to the multitude of sub-plots running along together makes for the very best of story telling.

You will love Avery, his character is so fresh and engaging - his heart so true
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Jenn
Aug 22, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Oh my heart! I loved this book! Where to begin?!

So I'll start by saying that Rebecca is amazing. She grows so much throughout the story but still remains true to the person that she really is. She's brave, adventurous and full of life. But she does have flaws and those cause some problems in her life. Not being completely honest with her family and with herself puts her in some sticky situations. I love how in the end she decides to be honest with herself and that is what ultimately leads to her
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Julie Carpenter
This book was such a delight to read! I was torn between wanting to slowly read and savor every moment, or rush as fast as I could and devour it all. Tough decision. In the end I was middle ground and thoroughly enjoyed the story.

Rebecca was such a well written and developed character. Her spunk was fun. I was laughing multiple times over her antics. And then on the other hand I loved watching her interacting with her family, neighbors and friends and seeing the kindness and love she offered the
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Melissa
Sep 25, 2020 rated it really liked it
This was so well done. Normally I do not really go for the whole 'I already have someone but I am going to accidentally fall in love with someone else" idea. The woman or man come off fickle and messy. This worked and it worked because Barker got you so into her head and thoughts that you completely understood this girl and all her choices. It was so well done and very character driven. I really enjoyed this heroine. I understood her and her motivations. I liked her spirit and dang I liked how t ...more
Kailey
Oct 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed this book! Loved Rebecca and Nicholas from the start. I enjoyed how spunky Rebecca was. I didn’t want to put this book down! I would recommend this book for fans of Kristi Ann Hunter. It had the right amount of humor and romance to it.




I received a complimentary copy from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. All opinions expressed are mine alone.
Inspirationalfictionreader
Sep 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This is my first Joanna Barker story and I can definitely say, it will not be my last. I absolutely loved this story! There’s really nothing I could complain about! The main characters were wonderful, the secondary characters were well developed, and the plot was just different enough to make it fresh and new.

I loved both Rebecca and Nicholas. I normally do not like love triangles, but this one was done so well that it didn’t bother me at all! I loved how Nicholas and Rebecca’s relationship slo
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Sarah Monzon
Sep 25, 2020 rated it really liked it
A sweet regency with everything you’d expect from a book from that time period. The kissing scenes were on fire and I appreciated the character arcs through the progression of the story.
Lucinda
Aug 30, 2020 rated it it was amazing
What a lovely story with such engaging characters and an excellent writing style!

Rebecca is a free spirit. She's just returned from a holiday and is keeping her secret from her family. After saving a girl from drowning, she becomes friends with the girl's older half-brother and guardian.

I've read other books by the author and have come to appreciate her writing and characterization. Rebecca and Nicholas are nuanced alone and they truly shine together. The supporting characters are well rounded
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Mara
Oct 20, 2020 rated it it was amazing
What's a young lady to do when she finds herself attracted to a man her family would never approve of her marrying? Get secretly engaged of course! Rebecca Rowley is a spirited young lady who goes against the constraints of her time by riding without a groom, secretly riding bareback and keeping her engagement a secret from her family. She plans to break it to them in due time, after she and her betrothed, Edward Banbridge, find out why their families, who were once close associates, now despise ...more
Christine
Sep 08, 2020 rated it really liked it
This was a sweet regency era romance with quite the love triangle. Will Rebecca choose Edward, with whom she had a whirlwind romance during the season, or Lieutenant Nicolas Avery, the boy next door. Romance fans will enjoy the banter between these characters. While the plot was relatively simple, it kept my interest throughout and I had to see how the romance worked out in the end. Nicolas was swoon worthy and it was great to learn more about him as the book progressed. Rebecca had obvious weak ...more
Annie Jakes
Aug 22, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Let’s get real for a minute. There are a lot of regency romances out there. And I’ve read a very large number of them. I enjoy them. I do. There is just something about a man in a cravat.

But we also need to recognize that many regency romances are similar. We’ve seen these tropes, these characters, and these conflicts before.

But Joanna Barker has changed the game.

I have never read a heroine the likes of Rebecca Rowley before, and she is glorious. Her drive for adventure and her zeal for life a
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Lindy Thompson
Aug 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing
"Love was real and strong and brave.
Love was sacrifice and compromise. Love was everything I felt...everything that had brought us together and bound our hearts as one."

I stayed up way past my bedtime finishing Joanna Barker's Otherwise Engaged. It is absolutely beautiful. Rebecca is unlike most regency romance heroines; she is adventurous, brave, fiesty, and curious.
While on holiday in Brighton, Rebecca becomes secretly engaged to a man she knows her family will never approve of. Can she keep
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maiaisreading
Sep 25, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Otherwise Engaged by Joanna Barker 5 stars

This is my first Joanna Baker book but it won’t be my last. I truly enjoyed the story of Rebecca. Her secret engagement with Edward, bareback riding and her unique acquaintance with the Avery’s are some of the exciting elements of the story.

I felt frustration, anticipation, thrill, laughter and happiness while reading her story. I love the camaraderie between Rebecca and Nicholas. I look forward to some serious and numerous funny conversations and intera
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Lori
Aug 30, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I must say I truly enjoyed this delightful tale! I laughed until I cried because of Rebecca's antics. She's unlike no other young lady that I've ever met.
The only thing that I didn't like was the constant apologies that at times I just shook my head.
Lt. Avery was interesting to say the least. I liked him from the get go I loved his humorous side even tho he is in the navy. His handling of Olivia was somewhat to be desired but given the circumstances I thought he did ok.
I thought that even tho
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Tressa (Wishful Endings)
Loved it! Review to come.
Lynsy
The ARC of this book was provided by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

My heart is full. That was my first thought after finishing this novel. The second was that I needed to pre-order the paperback immediately.

For about 65% of this, I thought it was a nice, sweet book. But then, all of a sudden, I couldn't stop reading it. I had to get everything resolved and everyone in their proper place. It's funny how you can be so scared about not getting your happy ending when y
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Ashley
Sep 15, 2020 rated it it was amazing
LOVED this Regency romance! The characters were fun and relatable. The story was interesting and kept me wanting to read. I loved the sweet romance build up. It is a bit of a love triangle, which I know people don't typically love that trope, but since one of the members is not present for most of the book, it makes it better than normal. I loved Lt. Avery. Rebecca is kinda dumb, but what girl isn't on occasion. Good side characters and swoony kisses. Clean, Regency.
Chalon Linton
Jul 15, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Barker wows again. Otherwise Engaged will pull you in from the opening scene. Rebecca and Nicholas are both flawed and beautiful and you can't help but want to turn page after page.
Becky
Aug 28, 2020 rated it it was amazing
First sentence: Of the many things that could be depended upon to make a young lady swoon, a love letter certainly made the list. I perched on a low rock in the center of the quiet meadow, one knee tucked to my chest, the skirts of my riding habit spread about me.

Premise/plot: Rebecca Rowley has returned home engaged--secretly. Her fiancé, Edward Bainbridge, is the son of her father's former business partner. And that partnership didn't end well. Both families are extremely bitter and unforgivi
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Tandie
Oct 08, 2020 rated it really liked it
This was pretty sweet. Our heroine, Rebecca, is a bit of a rebel. She’s taught herself, secretly, to ride bareback. She learns to shoot a gun. All very scandalous things for a proper lady. She’s even entered into a secret engagement with a gentleman from an enemy family! She left him in Bath, and has come home determined to change her family’s mind.

Rebecca jumps into a pond to rescue a cranky 11 year old girl from drowning. Her brother, Nicholas, shows up and doesn’t make a good first impression
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Vibliophile
Oct 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing
(4.5 stars) - from youthfully "in love with love" to discovering soul deep love

Rebecca has the passionate & impulsive soul of a romantic. Her joie de vivre brightens everyone's life, though it was once almost the death of her. She's nearly twenty, but still has some maturing to do.

Her secret relationship with her affianced Edward seems to be almost a romantic figment of her imagination.

When the practical & more philosophical Lieutenant Avery moves to the neighboring estate with his young sister,
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Amanda Marie
Sep 18, 2020 rated it really liked it
This is one of those historical romances where you have an idea of how it is going to end but getting there is the story.

Rebecca Rowley is not exactly the most ladylike young lady in all of England. She likes to ride bareback and she has a mind of her own. She has no qualms about jumping into a lake in her riding habit to rescue the downing neighbor girl, Olivia Avery. And that is how she meets Lieutenant Nicholas Avery, Olivia’s older brother.

But Lieutenant Avery isn’t the one who has captured
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Karen Thornell
Sep 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Joanna just keeps getting better and better! And she started off fantastic, so that says a lot! Reading this book, I couldn't help but ask myself: How does she do it? How does she take a story that has to be so intricate to be successful and get it down just the exact paths it needs to be on? It was phenomenal.

I fell in love with Nicholas as Rebecca did (though I think I figured it out a little faster than she did ;) ) and by the end, I felt like I'd become best friends with vivacious, brave Reb
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Ashley Johnson
Aug 29, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Oh my goodness! This is was perfection! It was absolutely everything I look for in a romance and I loved it! I adore historical romances that feature characters with personality and humor and this one provided both in the most charming way! I’m not one for love triangles and I don’t really feel as though this one actually was, so don’t let that thought deter you from this swoon worthy romance! Nicholas was absolutely flawless. I loved his dry humor and quick wit! Rebecca and Nicholas had the bes ...more
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Joanna Barker was born and raised in northern California. She discovered her love for historical fiction after visiting England as an eleven-year-old, and subsequently read every Jane Austen book she could get her hands on. After graduating with a degree in English, she worked as an acquisitions editor before devoting herself full-time to writing. She enjoys music, chocolate, and reading everythin ...more

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