Wednesday, January 17, 2024

Review & Giveaway - - The Lily of Ludgate Hill

The Lily of Ludgate Hill
by Mimi Matthews
Belles of London - Book 3
Publisher: Berkley
Release Date: January 16, 2024
Reviewed by Santa

Lady Anne Deveril doesn’t spook easily. A woman of lofty social standing known for her glacial beauty and starchy opinions, she’s the unofficial leader of her small group of equestriennes. Since her mother’s devastating plunge into mourning six years ago, Anne voluntarily renounced any fanciful notions of love and marriage. And yet, when fate puts Anne back into the entirely too enticing path of Mr. Felix Hartford, she’s tempted to run…right into his arms.

No one understands why Lady Anne withdrew into the shadows of society, Hart least of all. The youthful torch he once held for her has long since cooled. Or so he keeps telling himself. But now Anne needs a favor to help a friend. Hart will play along with her little ruse—on the condition that Anne attend a holiday house party at his grandfather’s country estate. No more mourning clothes. No more barriers. Only the two of them, unrequited feelings at last laid bare.

Finally free to gallop out on her own, Anne makes the tantalizing discovery that beneath the roguish exterior of her not-so-white knight is a man with hidden depths, scorching passions—and a tender heart.

Santa Says:

The Lily of Ludgate Hill by Mimi Matthews is the third book in her Belles of London series. It, along with the first two, is a five star read. Lady Anne Deveril is one of The Four Horsewomen christened with this name by the ever infuriating Mr. Felix Hartford. Their relationship is a caustic one but it wasn't always like this. They grew up together as his grandfather’s lands ran along her family's. And one Christmas, when Lady Anne was barely out of the schoolroom, they shared their first kiss. But tragedy struck when her father died and Lady Anne and her mother went into mourning. Hart was ready to propose but Lady Anne asked him to let them mourn for a year. Hart agrees and sets off with his grandfather the Earl of March for an expedition to the Himalayan mountains. 

Upon his return Lady Anne refuses his suit because her mother’s grief was so deep that it nearly brought her to her knees. Anne felt she could not abandon her mother; instead she, too, continued to wear uncompromising black and dabble in the spirit world along with her. Her only reprieve from this world was riding her horse, the friendships she had with the other four women and the barbs she exchanged with Hart.

Hart is devastated and for the next six and a half years carries on as a gregarious, ne'er do well. At least that was the facade he presented to the outside world. His personal life was complicated to say the least. His father left behind a mess that he has had to deal with. His grandfather and stodgy uncle have no idea that he has been earning a living by going into <gasp> trade.

Anne’s friendship with the other women who have stories of their own in this series is Anne's lifeline. It is Anne's concern over her friend Julia’s having been swept away by her Captain Blunt to a remote part of the island that brings her reluctantly to Hart’s door. She asks him to write about suspected hauntings at the Captain's castle. She hopes her mother sees the article and would want to investigate giving Anne a chance to check up on her friend. Hart agrees on the condition that at the end she attends his grandfather’s holiday party in bright red and not oppressive black. Her mother bites and wouldn’t you know it only Hart is available to accompany the ladies. YES!  Cross country journey and close proximity for the win!

Not to make light of this story. Anne and Hart struggle mightily to uncover and rediscover their love for one another. For all of the banter that these two engage in, it is the poignant moments they share that really kept me in this story. Lady Anne’s emergence out of her blacks into the bright colors of their love.

This is book three of this series. It was delightful to have characters from the first two books appear. Needless to say, I can’t wait for the next installation. Mimi Matthews is a joy to read. Her attention to details of Victorian England is flawless and her depth of character is flawless, as well.


Thanks, Santa! This sounds like a series I need to add to my reading list.

Readers, have you read any of Mimi Matthews' books?

Are you reading the Belles of London series?

Do you enjoy books set in the Victorian era?

One randomly chosen person who posts a comment before 11:00 PM, January 18 will receive a print copy of The Lily of Ludgate Hill.

*U.S. only

*Must be 18


  1. New author , new series
    I’ve read more books set in the Regency period. I do like Victorian period historical too.
    Santa, thanks for sharing your wonder review. I will look for Mimi’s work.

  2. Another new to me author and I have not read any of this series. First - thank you for the review. I am less interested in the era of a book's setting than I am interested in the characters. If the writing is well done and I like the characters, then I am all in for a book. Your review has made me interested, so I will look into Ms Matthews' books.

    1. I don't think you'll be disappointed!

  3. I have read several of Mimi Matthew's novels. I enjoy her writing and the era greatly. This series is captivating and wonderful. The Belles of London is my favorite series and I enjoy the Victoria era greatly.
    Thanks for your feature and great review.

  4. I haven't red Mimi's books yet. The Victoria era was a time of great changes - they are fun to read and learn what was going on.

  5. I am a Mimi Matthews fan. I have read the previous books in this series along with her book, Gentleman Jim and have five other titles downloaded on my Kindle app I’ve yet to read - Work of Art, Convenient Fiction, Holiday by Gaslight, Lost Letter and Viscount and the Vicar’s Daughter. Guess I would say that I am a fan of Victorian fiction!

    1. I have enjoyed all her books, so far!

  6. I love Mimi Matthews' books! The Belles of London series may be my favorite so far. Really looking forward to reading this, great review!

  7. absolutely loved siren of sussex!

  8. This is another series I want to read! Now more than ever!

  9. I want to read this series. I love books set in the Victorian era.


  10. I have not read any of her books yet. I love the Victorian Era as well as the othe historical eras too

  11. I like reading books set in the Victorian era. I appreciate Mimi Mathews' attention to the details, especially around horses, as I am a horsewoman. The previous two books in the series were great reads and I hope the same for this one.

  12. This series sounds pretty interesting! I have some of Ms Matthews' other books on my e-reader but haven't had a chance to dive in yet!

  13. Never read any books by Mimi Mathews but this one definitely sounds intriguing. I do enjoy books set during the Victorian era.

  14. I have not yet read any Mimi Matthews books. This book sounds like that is an oversight I must correct.
    There seem to be so many more Regency books out there that Victorian books get overlooked. I will have to start looking for them more often. Those I have read have been set in the US and I've enjoyed them.