The Mistletoe Countess is a slow burn read. When I was first reading it, it was taking a bit to get into it. So I set it aide for a bit and when I picked it back up, it was easier to get into and I found myself enjoying the slow burn. It was a story filled with fluff, comedy, and even a bit of mystery.
Gracelyn Ferguson lives in America and has an older sister Lillias. The year is 1913 and it has been arranged that Lillias will marry Fredrick Percy (Lord Astley) and return to England with him. It is an arrangement that will benefit both parties but almost falls apart due to complications with Lillias. Grace offers to take her sisters place and become Lady Astley. Suddenly, she is swept into a new world that she is not used to and one that may have something very sinister laying right under the surface.
Grace is such an adorable character. She starts out a little naïve but makes up for it with her larger than life personality. She is full of life and longing for an adventure of her own. She thinks marrying Fredrick may be just be that grand adventure when if they do not fall in love. For Fredrick this marriage is a business arrangement- a way to save his family’s estate from financial and social ruin. Grace surprises him and brings out a side in him that he has tried to hide. He has always felt like he will never measure up to what is expected of him. Grace makes him feel like there is something for him to offer to her.
When this story starts Grace and Fredrick are complete strangers. Well except for that surprising kiss they shared in the library when he thought he was kidding Lillias. And trust me, you can see the potential from that kiss! Their relationship is a slow burn though built in companionship first, then friendship, and eventually romance. It was really beautiful to watch it unfold and watch them bring out the best in each other. There were several swoon worthy quotes throughout. It was worth the slow build up!
The main thing that brings Grace and Fredrick closer is actually the fact that their lives are in danger. There have been “minor” incidents which have put both of them in danger. Together, they try to figure out what was going on and who is out to get them. It turns out they make a good team together and there is alot more going on within Frederick’s family estate than either of them knew. This is a Gothic style mystery with a few twists to keep the story interesting.
The Mistletoe Countess was an unexpected holiday read for me. Grace and Fredrick meet and marry prior to the holiday season but all the event following occur during it. This includes decoration their home with plenty of mistletoe for sweet hidden kisses. The slow build up makes everything worthwhile and shows exactly why these two characters are meant to be together. I recommend this story to anyone looking for a sweet holiday romance with a touch of mystery.
Rating: 4 Stars
**I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.**