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Girls Before Earls

(Rogues to Lovers #1)

3.79  ·  Rating details ·  603 ratings  ·  246 reviews

To survive her difficult childhood, Miss Hazel Lively relied on two things:a tough outer shell and a love of books. Now, at the age of twenty-eight, she’s finally realized her life-long dream of opening a school for girls. She’s hoping that the wealthy families who flock to the shore for the summer will entrust their daughters to Bellehaven Academy―and hel
Mass Market Paperback, 307 pages
Published December 28th 2021 by St. Martin's Paperbacks
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Average rating 3.79  · 
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 ·  603 ratings  ·  246 reviews

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 Danielle The Book Huntress
Oh, I loved the heck out of this book! Anna Bennett writes delicious heroes. Hazel and Blade felt so right together. I felt so much sympathy for what they'd gone through together and I am so glad they found each other. I loved the girls too. This was such a fun read, and I had a smile on my face when I finished it.

When I want a lighter Regency romance that hits all the notes, I know I can pick up an Anna Bennett and get exactly what I'm searching for.

Reviewed for Affaire de Coeur Magazine. http:
Barbara Rogers
Barbara’s rating: 3.5 of 5 Stars
Series: Rogues to Lovers #1
Publication Date: 12/28/21
Period: Regency – Bellehaven Bay, England
Number of Pages: 313

This was a very nicely written opener for a new series. The plotting and pacing are well done and I really liked the characters. I will mention that the quick and easy social acceptance between classes is anachronistic. Those characters all add greatly to the story, but I can’t picture the young woman who makes her living by catching and selling fish b
Sandra Hoover
Having grown up alone in a school for girls, Miss Hazel Lively knows how beneficial the experience can be for young girls - especially those with no where else to turn. She has finally found the means to open Bellehaven Academy, a school for girls, a place where the wealthy are willing to pay dearly for their daughters to learn the necessary skills for their coming out season . . . and a place where Hazel plans to take in less fortunate girls and offer them a safe haven like she received. Admitt ...more
Addie H
I received an ARC from NetGalley and the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Expected publication Dec 28th 2021

(Tropes: Spinster, Work Relationship, Love Triangle-ish, Forbidden Love, Opposite Attract)


I suspect a lot of people will quite enjoy this as it ticks a lot of boxes and tropes. But to me it was just that. It ticked a lot of boxes and tropes I have read a hundred times before, and nothing about the two characters really stood out to me. It felt very formulaic, and after a while
Julie - One Book More
Girls Before Earls is an entertaining and layered historical romance with great messages about family, grief, society, and love. Miss Hazel Lively is a strong, independent woman who has devoted her life to helping young girls. Adamant that all girls, regardless of social class, deserve the same opportunities, Hazel opens a school to girls of all social stations. A lover of books and learning, Hazel is determined to make her school a success, and when the Earl of Bladenton enrolls his niece, it s ...more
Dec 08, 2021 rated it really liked it
Miss Hazel Lively is finally realizing her life-long dream of opening a school for girls, and she must maintain a flawless reputation in order to attract new families. Gabriel Beckett, Earl of Bladenton, is determined to enroll his troublesome niece at Hazel's Bellehaven Academy. Blade makes an offer that’s impossible for Hazel to refuse, but she has a condition of her that leads to their close proximity and flirtation.

This is the first book in the Rogues to Lovers series. It's a charm
Jun 10, 2022 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: romance, regency-era
I read this entire book the last time I was sick simply because of the title, which checks out: this book is, indeed, about girls before earls.

There are two things you need to know about the protagonist, Hazel Lively. First, she will put nothing (I repeat NOTHING) above her vocation, which is running a school for girls in a seaside town. Secondly, she always wears a fichu. I had to look up this item of clothing because it plays such a prominent part in the story (the word "fichu" appears 21 tim
Christi | christireadsalot
Girls Before Earls is the start of a new series, Rogues to Lovers, by Anna Bennett. I loved this super sweet story so much and cannot wait for more in the series! I adored everything in this read…the romance between the Earl and the headmistress, being set outside of London, the small seaside village life, the real friendships the heroine has with the women and schoolgirls in her life.

Miss Hazel Lively is 28 and has finally realized her life-long dream of opening a school for girls. Orphaned at
I received an Advance Reader Copy from the publisher, via NetGalley. This in no way impacted on my view.

After being given a chance at a school, and thriving, Miss Hazel Lively has always dreamed of having her own school, and helping girls, both rich and poor, achieve their own goals. Opening the Bellehaven Academy was a dream, but there's few girls enrolled, and money is tight. What she needs is for a prestigious member of society to choose her school, rather than another finishing school, and w
Niki (mustreadalltheromance)
Orphaned at a young age, Hazel Lively learned to cope by seeking refuge in books and keeping her feelings hidden beneath a tough exterior. Now she has opened the school she always dreamed of in a picturesque seaside resort town in the hopes that well-to-do families who spend their summers there will entrust her with the education of their daughters. The more wealthy patrons she attracts, the more orphans she’ll be able to take in. Hazel just has to keep her reputation pristine and work on raisin ...more
Dec 19, 2021 rated it liked it
Girls Before Earls is a fast-paced, enjoyable historical romance. We've got an earl with a difficult ward, a headmistress with a heart of gold, and a cast of supporting characters who all add some flavor to the novel. That said, it can be frustrating when our main characters don't act in their own best interests. What exactly was keeping Hazel and Blade apart once they both determined they wanted to spend their lives together? Especially considering Hazel's commitment to her young students, her ...more
Sep 10, 2021 rated it really liked it
Advanced Reader Copy (ARC) provided by the Author and Publisher via NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.

I read a novella by Anna Bennett and loved her style and characters, so I went looking for more. Ms. Bennett writes a wonderful Historical Romance with a light touch and wonderful characters. I especially loved that the Bellehaven Academy girls all came together and were the family that Hazel needed when she needed them most.

Miss Hazel Lively was orphaned at a young age and only
Dec 12, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
4.5 stars

This was such an enjoyable read: an engaging romance, interesting characters and cozy setting.

Hazel Lively and Gabriel Beckett, the Earl of Bladenton, meet when he tries to enroll his niece at her school. Off to a rocky start their relationship slowly turns to a friendship with a lot of sizzling tension between them. The chemistry these two had really sold me on this book.

I really enjoyed the port-town setting of this book, as it was not just window dressing but an integral part of the
Oct 01, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Girls before Earls, by Anna Bennett. What a smashing good book this was. I absolutely loved all the characters. Well, Penelope I would place her on her own island. This romantic story spoiled me with all the love from family and friends.
The story showed how not only love, but strength, courage, determination, trust, confidence and believing in the people you care about helped make this book, a book worth reading. First of all I think I’m head over heels in love Gabriel. The man knows how to ser
Mar 09, 2022 rated it it was ok
DNF @ 26%

The niece is the only interesting character to me. The main couple only seem to be getting together because they are attracted to one another, but I don't really feel their chemistry so I'm stopping here.
Dec 16, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Reviewed for Wit and Sin

Anna Bennett has kicked her Rogues to Lovers series with a bang. Girls Before Earls is an entertaining, fun, heartwarming read with a romance that will make you smile and sigh.

As a child, school saved Hazel Lively. Her determination, love of learning, and caring heart have her now opening her own school in the seaside town of Bellehaven. To keep her doors open and take in more girls who can’t afford school, she also needs the daughters of wealthy families to atten

Girls Before Earls is an effervescent, refreshing romance. Miss Hazel Lively has fought for everything she has, cultivating a complex, impenetrable façade. Hazel realizes her dream of opening a finishing school in a seaside town. Hazel is trying to build up the student roster for the fledgling school. Gabriel Beckett, Earl Of Bladenton, or Blade, has a complicated family past. He is the benefactor to his estranged niece. Blade comes to Hazel’s school to offload his troublesome niece. The
May 12, 2022 rated it really liked it
Okay, let me start by saying that I really enjoyed this book…but I'm still lesbianically indignant that a book called Girls Before Earls isn't Sapphic.

For real.

But I did really enjoy it! This was a very cute and engaging read. I loved that Hazel turned her pain from childhood into something wonderful and that she put her whole heart and soul into the school, just to try to give a few girls a better experience growing up than she had. You can see how important it is to her and how much she's will
Lori D
Dec 29, 2021 rated it really liked it
What a girl wants
Hazel had proved herself and been admitted into Miss Haywinkle's School for Girls after her parents had died. Nineteen years later, she was able to open her own school, the Bellehaven Academy of Deportment, and her goal was to help those less fortunate girls as she could, just like her.

What the Earl wants... and needs
Blade, Earl of Bladenton, had inherited his teenage niece at the demise of his brother. After many disastrous schools had ejected Kitty, it seemed his last hope was
Lindsay  pinkcowlandreads
Dec 23, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: arc, kindle-books
This was a fun and fast paced start to a new series!

Orphaned herself, Miss Hazel Lively has set about to make more than a school for her for her Bellhaven Academy, she wants it to become a family. And with the handful of girls enrolled and her assistant they have that connection … but a school can’t survive on care and respect. Bellhaven needs more paying students enrolled.

Kitty has been expelled from more boarding schools than her guardian can count. The fledgling Bellhaven Academy is Gabriel
Sep 18, 2021 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this book very much. Hazel is the kind of heroine I love; tough on the outside but a marshmallow on the inside. She is an orphan who had no one and resigned herself to being alone. Blade had loved and lost and been betrayed. Now he is saddled with a grief-stricken niece who cause trouble. I loved how both MC opened themselves to love even though they thought they couldn't be together. The supporting cast of villagers and school-girls was nice too. The only thing that would have made th ...more
Feb 12, 2022 rated it it was amazing
This is an entertaining, well-written, steamy historical romance novel. It has beautiful, vividly described settings, a heart warming romance, likable, engaging, well-developed characters, a strong female protagonist, female empowerment, a lovely, touching description of what defines love, and a happily ever after ending. I am looking forward to reading the next entry in Ms. Bennett's outstanding, new, Rogues to Lovers series with great anticipation. ...more
Nicole Pelcher
Jan 06, 2022 rated it it was amazing
I voluntarily received a copy of Girls Before Earls by Anna Bennett via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

Anna Bennett weaves a sweet love story of two people too guarded for their own good but beyond all odds fall in love with each other.

Miss Hazel Lively was orphaned at the age of nine years old, but thanks to a kind school mistress who saw potential in her she was able to make a life for herself. Armed with with the need to do good in the world, her love of
Jan 08, 2022 rated it really liked it
Hazel Lively became orphan at 9 years old and was sent to Miss Haywinkle's school for girls. Her bookish aptitudes is probably the only thing that saved her from ended up in an orphanage so in a way, maybe books saved her life.

Nineteen years later, Hazel is starting her own school for girls in a seaside town. Her life take yet an other turn when the Earl of Bladenton enter her school to register his 15 years old niece. Kitty became his ward when his estranged brother died and Blade hope Belleha
Addie Yoder
Nov 27, 2021 rated it really liked it
Anna Bennett's books are always just what I need. This story of Hazel, headmistress of a new school in a cozy beach town, and Blade, who recently became guardian to his teenage niece and desperately needs help. Her hard exterior and his determination to stick to his plans are the right amount of conflict and tension to work. Kitty and the other students are such great compliments to this story in the way that small town romances feel right. Her stubbornness to mask hurt and eventual relationship ...more
Carol lowkey.bookish
Nov 30, 2021 rated it really liked it
I liked the opposites attract part of this couple…Hazel and Gabriel do have amazing chemistry.

However, this book had such a creative title, I was looking for a little more creativity with the plot. I was frustrated that this was another romance featuring a man with an irrational reason why he can’t be with the woman he loves. He frustratingly lets himself be manipulated by a woman who keeps the lovers apart.

I liked the ending where the girls come together to “knock their heads together” and make
Oct 14, 2021 rated it really liked it
The girls are the students of Hazel, headmistress of her school. The earl is Gabriel who wishes to enroll his ward there. Hazel makes Gabriel promise to visit his ward every two weeks, which puts the two of them in a more frequent proximity. Spending time together, they find they are attracted to each other. Gabriel must decide to let her in and risk being hurt again. Hazel must decide to put her own desires first. I received an ARC from NetGalley and St. Martin’s Press for my honest review.
Dawn McGill Dalrymple
Feb 18, 2022 rated it really liked it
Loved Hazel's personality a strong female who is business minded and caring, and knows what she wants! Blade is also strong willed and knows what he wants and love is not one of those things! Kitty is the perfect foil for these two as the wayward niece orphan who opens up both of their hearts! Thanks to St Martin's Press for the book to read and review!! ...more
Nov 03, 2021 marked it as did-not-finish
Pub date: Dec 2021
DNF at 34%. After the second time that Hazel chooses to take an action that I thought didn’t align with her character, it jarred me out of the story too much and was unrecoverable! It's too bad, since I really liked where it was going. From the many fabulous reviews this got, it doesn't seem like it was a widespread belief, however.
Oct 28, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: netgalley, 2021
This was just a sweet quiet love story. There was no angst, but I enjoyed it for what it was. Hazel has been through a lot and opening up a school for girls has been her life long dream. Enter Blade and his niece. Blade convinces Hazel to take in his niece, who has been kicked out of two schools already. Hazel has only one condition, that Blade visits his niece every two weeks. Blade and Hazel end up spending more time together the more he visits, and romance soon blossoms between them.

I enjoyed
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Anna Bennett started swiping romances from her mom’s bookshelf as a teenager and decided historicals (with their balls, dukes, and gowns) were the best. So, when she had the chance to spend a semester in London she packed her bags—and promptly fell in love with the city, its history, and its pubs. She dreamed of writing romance, but somehow ended up a software analyst instead.

Fortunately, a few ye

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