I love Regency romance, so of course when I saw Who’s That Earl by Susanna Craig on NetGalley, I immediately requested it. I loved the cover and the premise: a second chance romance between a solider-turned-nobility and a writer! I was not let down with this fun, steamy read. The plot was predictable, but the romance and entire cast of characters were lovely.

Note: This post contains affiliate links. When you click on and/or purchase from some links, I make a portion of the sale. This helps keep Bitch Bookshelf running.

The summary, from Amazon:

“Evocative writing, a delightful Scottish setting, and fully realized characters made this a joy to read. This spy hero and writer heroine touched my heart.”
New York Times bestselling author Sabrina Jeffries

From rising star Susanna Craig comes a fresh new series filled with high-stakes intrigue and thrilling historical romance that is perfect for readers looking for a fun new twist on their favorite love stories…

“Marvelous…Craig delights with a fast-paced, intrigue-filled plot and expertly developed characters. Regency fans will eagerly anticipate future installments.”
Publishers Weekly  STARRED REVIEW

Will scandalous secrets stand in the way of a second chance at love?

Miss Jane Quayle excels at invention. How else could the sheltered daughter of an English gentleman create lurid gothic novels so infamous someone wants their author silenced forever?  Fortunately, Jane has taken steps to protect herself, first by assuming a pen name, and second, by taking up residence at remote Dunnock Castle, surrounded by rugged scenery that might have been ripped from the pages of one of her books. Her true identity remains a secret, until one dark and stormy night . . .

After years of spying for the British army, Thomas Sutherland doubts the Highlands will ever feel like home again. Nevertheless, thanks to a quirk of Scottish inheritance law, he’s now the Earl of Magnus, complete with a crumbling castle currently inhabited by a notorious novelist. When the writer turns out to be the woman Thomas once wooed, suspicions rise even as mutual sparks reignite. As danger closes in, can Jane and Thomas overcome their pasts to forge a future together?

Praise for Susanna Craig:
“Will leave you breathless, and eagerly wanting more.”
New York Times bestselling author Jennifer McQuiston

“Susanna Craig kicks off her Love and Let Spy series with a story that has it all—captivating characters, sensual romance that scorches the page, and intrigue that kept me up reading all night. Historical romance readers will find plenty to love in Who’s That Earl.”
USA Today bestselling author Christy Carlyle

“Susanna Craig creates a delightful story full of wit and intrigue.”
USA Today bestselling author Ella Quinn

“With Who’s That Earl, Susanna Craig is off to a great start in her new Love and Let Spy series. The settings and characters come alive, the romance is full of spark, and the prose is as smooth as the best Scotch whisky.”
—Sherry Thomas, author of the Lady Sherlock series

 “With gorgeous, contemplative phrasing, absorbing characters and a clever and unpredictable story line, The Duke’s Suspicion is a remarkable must-read.”
—Kathy Altman, USA Today

50 Romance Novel Reading Challenge

I chose this book as my first choice for my 50 Romance Novel Reading Challenge, created by Love, Sawyer. The prompt was Week 13: Historical Romance. This book takes place in the 1800’s and his therefore a historical romance.

Buy Who’s That Earl here.

Publication date: August 18, 2020

Gosh, what a lovely read! Susanna Craig really writes excellent characters in this one. Our romantic leads are Thomas and Jane. These two first met and fell in love seven years ago, but circumstances stopped them from sharing more than a few kisses. Since then, Jane has set out on her own. Her father disowned her when he found out she was writing steamy gothic novels. Jane has become a famous writer during the past seven years, albeit under the pseudonym Robin Ratliff. In order to live independently, she claims to be a widow working as Ratliff’s transcriber while Ratliff travels for research.

Thomas, on the other hand, has been serving in the army. A letter changes all that when he finds out a distant relation has passed away, leaving him with a title. When he goes to his ancestral home to get things in order, he is surprised to find that the current tenant is Jane, the woman he hasn’t been able to stop thinking about for seven years. While the two get to know one another again and Thomas comes to terms with his new title, they also must deal with a series of death threat letters sent to Robin Ratliff in regards to his salacious novels.

The plot of this one was predictable, but the romance was steamy and refreshing. I was rooting for these two to get together so hard, and was not let down when it came to the love scenes. The entire cast of characters were lovely. Thomas spent his childhood summers in the Highlands were this story takes place, and the townspeople were his friends growing up. There are some sweet side romances hinted at, which I don’t think will be fodder for the rest of this series, but I would still love to read about.

I also love that Susanna Craig includes a more diverse cast of characters than we have seen in Regency romances in the past. Jane isn’t the cookie cutter English rose heroine. She thinks of herself as plain. Thomas sees her as anything but, though as a reader you can assume she is average-looking. It’s something she’s heard her whole life, even from those who love her. She’s also plus-sized, and I adore the loving, sensual, celebratory way her body is described by the author. In addition, the side cast includes Black characters – Thomas’s friend Theo (who is a total dreamboat) and his mother. Up until recently, I haven’t seen diverse representation in Regency romance, but that’s just not accurate for Britain (and in this case, Scotland) during the 1800’s.

Overall, this was a 5 star read for me. My thanks to NetGalley, Susanna Craig, and Lyrical Press for giving me a copy in exchange for my honest review.

Who's That EarlWho’s That Earl by Susanna Craig
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

What a fun read! I found the plot itself to be predictable, but loved the main characters and their romance. The side characters are lovely, too. This one is so steamy and fun! Thanks to the publisher, author, and NetGalley for giving me a free copy in exchange for my honest review, and look out for my full review at bitchbookshelf.com.

View all my reviews

Interested? Buy Who’s That Earl.
And don’t forget to add me as a friend on Goodreads!

Publication date: August 18, 2020


Bitmoji Image