It's 1582 and eighteen-year-old Will Lacey's family is in trouble. After years of wasteful spending, his late father has run Lacey Hall to near ruin. Tasked with marrying his family back into fortune, the new Earl of Dorset is all set for a season at court to woo not just the Queen but potential brides with his jousting skills. But when Ellie – a strong-willed girl with nothing to her name but a worthless Spanish title – catches Will's eye, he faces a bigger battle than he could ever have anticipated. (from GoodReads)
I love a good historical fiction novel and luckily for me The Other Countess fit the bill exactly. I always have low expectations with this genre because I have read some bad historical books, but this story had a believable romance and was rich in detail.
The Tudor court is one of my favorite time periods to read about and The Other Countess is perfect because it's set during the reign of Queen Elizabeth I. Elizabeth doesn't have that big of a role in this story, but she's in some scenes which is nice. The book focuses on three characters: Ellie, whose father is an alchemist so they are poor; Will Lacey, the earl who is trying to restore his family's fortune; and Jane, whose family is trying to find her a suitable husband. The book switches point-of-view between these three characters, although the majority is on Ellie.
The romance is similar to Pride and Prejudice, where the two main love interests (Will and Ellie) don't like each other until they get to know one another better. Will was more antagonistic toward Ellie than she him, so it was nice to see him mature and outgrow views he held back when younger. Ellie was a strong female protagonist, which is always nice to see, especially during this time period.
Overall, I really enjoyed The Other Countess. The setting was well-created, as well as the characters. I enjoyed the romance and the plot. I'm also really excited that there are two more novels in this series!
Rating: 8 out of 10.
FTC: received from Random Buzzers