Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Review: Someone to Remember

Someone to Remember (Wescott - Book 7) by Mary Balogh 

Publication Date: 11/05/2019
Publisher: Berkley Publishing Group
Imprint: Berkley
Genre: Historical Romance
Pages: :272

(Received for an honest review from Berkley)

Mary Balogh on the Web: WebsiteFacebookGoodreads

Cover Art:

Excerpt from Someone to Remember courtesy of Amazon’s Look Inside feature


It’s never too late to fall in love in this enchanting new story, a novella in the Westcott series from New York Times bestselling author Mary Balogh.

Matilda Westcott has spent her life tending to the needs of her mother, the Dowager Countess of Riverdale, never questioning the web of solitude she has spun herself. To Matilda, who considers herself an aging spinster daughter, marriage is laughable—love is a game for the young, after all. But her quiet, ordered life unravels when a dashing gentleman from her past reappears, threatening to charm his way into her heart yet again.

Charles Sawyer, Viscount Dirkson, does not expect to face Matilda Westcott thirty-six years after their failed romance. Moreover, he does not expect decades-old feelings to emerge at the very sight of her. When encountering Matilda at a dinner hosted by the Earl of Riverdale, he finds himself as fascinated by her as he was the first day they met, and wonders whether, after all these years, they have a chance at happiness together. Charles is determined to crack the hard exterior Matilda has built up.


There has certainly been a bit of controversy with Mary Balogh’s latest addition to the Wescott series, Someone to Remember. I won’t focus too much on that, but I will make a few comments later in the review. This is a lovely story of second chance love with an older couple that I thought was beautifully written and necessary to those readers who enjoy the entire Westcott family. We just can’t leave out, Aunt Matilda! 

What I liked:

Matilda Westcott has always done the right thing. She’s taken care of her mother stoically and supported her family unfailingly. Readers have watched her character develop over the course of the first six books in the Westcott series. In early books she comes across as a bit fussy, maybe even a little rigid. But we didn’t know much about her past or how her circumstances landed her where she was. I thought Balogh did a great job of tantalizing the reader with possibilities in the last book Someone to Love where Matilda is reunited with an old love. I’m very happy that she decided to give Matilda a story in Someone to Remember. She brings a secondary character to the forefront so that readers can see a new side to not only Matilda but to the way her family sees her.

The main couple Matilda and Charles are not your typical hero and heroine. At the ripe age of 56, Matilda once again finds love. I thought this was such a beautiful story about love during a later stage in life. Balogh shows their tempestuous love affair from years past and then shows the changes that have occurred to the couple over time. But the one thing that remains is love. 

Charles and Matilda’s love story is told in about ten chapters and each one shows great care and attention to detail. Novella’s are not meant to be long. The stories they tell don’t require as much development as a full length novel. In this case readers already know Matilda well. Balogh is an excellent writer of this historical period and I’m never disappointed in her writing.

What I didn’t:

Charles may have needed a bit more attention. Though readers of the series have had an ongoing relationship with Matilda, Charles is relatively new and therefore exciting. As reader I want to know more about him. Why he was so devilish in his youth. Why he chose one path in the aftermath of love and Matilda chose another. We learn a lot in this quick trip to the Westcott world but I always want more! LoL 😂 

The big controversy involving this book is pretty simple to understand and really could have been avoided in a couple of ways. First, I would always encourage readers to look at the information provided by the book seller you purchase from. Read the publication details. Read the reviews but also take them with a grain of salt because they are subjective. It was clearly noted that this story was a novella. It was never meant to be a full length novel. 

Secondly, the publisher should have corrected the page length number to reflect the number of pages in the actual story and not in the story plus excerpts from the previous books. That was clearly a mistake in hindsight.  Also, the publication details nor the description of the book notes that approximately a third of the length is excerpts. That is a lot. And I’m sure some readers did not feel like they got their money’s worth.

Bottom Line:

Controversy or no controversy this is a very good novella. As a reader of this series I wanted Matilda’s story. I wanted her happy ever after. Balogh gave me a well developed character that I already knew and loved and just told me another story about her. I didn’t need the full length though more time with this family is always appreciated.  I do think Balogh was a bit short changed on how this book was marketed but that is certainly not a black mark on her writing. Read it! It’s good!

Someone To Remember is available now from your favorite bookseller

I’m giving this book 4 out of 5 apples from my book bag

About the author:

Mary Balogh has written more than one hundred historical novels and novellas, more than thirty of which have been New York Times bestsellers. They include the Bedwyn saga, the Simply quartet, the Huxtable quintet, the seven-part Survivors' Club series, and the Westcott series.

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