I received a copy of this book from Bethany House in exchange for an honest review.
Here is the official description:
He Stole the Work She Loved.
Will She Let Him Steal Her Heart as Well?
It’s all her uncle’s fault. For years Charlotte Withersby has been free to pursue her love of plants and flowers by assisting her botanist father. But now that she’s reached the old age of twenty-two, an intrusive uncle has convinced her father that Charlotte’s future–the only proper future for a woman–is to be a wife and mother, not a scholar.
Her father is so dependent on her assistance that Charlotte believes he’ll soon change his mind…and then Edward Trimble shows up. A long-time botany correspondent in the South Pacific, Trimble arrives ready to step in as assistant so that Charlotte can step out into proper society–a world that baffles her with its unwritten rules, inexplicable expectations, and confounding fashion.
Things aren’t perfectly smooth between Trimble and her father, so Charlotte hatches a last gasp plan. She’ll pretend such an interest in marriage that the thought of losing her will make her father welcome her back. Only things go quickly awry, and she realizes that the one man who recognizes her intelligence is also the person she’s most angry with: Edward Trimble, her supposed rival. Suddenly juggling more suitors than she knows what to do with, Charlotte is caught in a trap of her own making. Will she have no choice but to leave her beloved flowers behind?
This book was a very humorous piece of historical fiction. Charlotte Withersby has spent the majority of her life working at her father’s side as a botanist, having lost her mother at a young age. She seems perfectly happy continuing to do that, but her uncle, The Admiral, insists that she come out into society and find herself a husband. The setting is England in 1852, so it seems that Miss Withersby doesn’t have much choice in the matter. The hilarity ensues as she is thrust into society without any sense of what is and is not socially acceptable. While her father has hired a young man to take her place, she sets out to convince her father to bring her back by finding a potential husband that she believes he would not find acceptable. I don’t want to give away what happens but you definitely find yourself rooting for a specific candidate for her affections. There is romance involved but it doesn’t overtake the whole book and became gushy or sappy.
Siri Mitchell is a great writer. I’m not sure if she has a history in botany herself, but her descriptions were definitely convincing. Very well-researched to say the least. I definitely plan to look into more books by this author and I definitely encourage you to pick this one up. You won’t be disappointed.