1814 promises to be another eventful season, but not, this author believes, for Anthony Bridgerton, London’s most elusive bachelor, who has shown no indication that he plans to marry.
And in truth, why should he? When it comes to playing the consummate rake, nobody does it better…
—Lady Whistledown’s Society Papers, April 1814
But this time, the gossip columnists have it wrong. Anthony Bridgerton hasn’t just decided to marry—he’s even chosen a wife! The only obstacle is his intended’s older sister, Kate Sheffield—the most meddlesome woman ever to grace a London ballroom. The spirited schemer is driving Anthony mad with her determination to stop the betrothal, but when he closes his eyes at night, Kate is the woman haunting his increasingly erotic dreams…
Contrary to popular belief, Kate is quite sure that reformed rakes do not make the best husbands—and Anthony Bridgerton is the most wicked rogue of them all. Kate is determined to protect her sister—but she fears her own heart is vulnerable. And when Anthony’s lips touch hers, she’s suddenly afraid she might not be able to resist the reprehensible rake herself…
What is The Viscount Who Loved Me about?
The Bridgertons series jumps up from Daphne to her eldest brother, Anthony. Anthony has been resisting marriage for years due to unresolved trauma regarding his father’s untimely death. However, recognizing that he will need to have children to ensure his family titles pass on, Anthony decides that he will finally get married. He selects a beautiful debutante as his future bride and discovers that her sister, Kate, must be persuaded first. Kate, for her part, believes she will not find a marriage match when her sister is the diamond of the season. Unfortunately for them both, an unfortunate moment caught in the country results in Kate and Anthony being bound together.
Genre: Historical Romance
Just like the rest of the series, this novel is set during the beginnings of the Regency Era.
Tropes: My Sister is the Pretty One
Kate finds that she is nothing compared to her sister, Edwina, with whom she is sharing the season. Thus, she has a bit of a complex over the idea that anybody could find her attractive at all in comparison.
Plot: Are we supposed to like Anthony?
I’m sorry, but Anthony Bridgerton acts like an asshole pretty much the entire book. He’s really only nice to Edwina because he thinks she’ll make an easy wife to get along with, and then he’s only nice to Kate (briefly) in order to ensure Edwina accepts his proposal. Then he’s just a stubborn ass for most of the rest of the book.
Quinn is genuinely talented at conveying the romantic interests between her characters, and I did enjoy Kate and Anthony together once they started to get along. I enjoyed the initial game they played as well, and most of Lady Bridgerton’s interference. The family dynamics are always fun to see, and I liked that Anthony’s story gives all of the siblings a bit more backstory about their father since his fate was not particularly important in Daphne’s story. It was also entertaining to get some of that antagonism in the beginning. Anthony and Kate don’t have any real animosity towards one another, but their rivalry in the start is pretty fun.
One thing that is mildly weird is that all the books, this one included, seem to have weird moments that focus on Penelope Featherington while ignoring just about everybody else. I know the spoilers reason why this is, but it’s still a weird thing that happens consistently.
I didn’t like Anthony’s stubborn superstition that he will die young. Especially when faced with Kate’s own childhood trauma, Anthony’s behavior as a result of his trauma feels somewhat overdramatic. They both work through their feelings in the end, but I definitely felt that Kate’s lack of memory better explained her odd behavior than Anthony’s conviction that he would die young did his.
Though this story is very much a carbon copy of the first book in the series, there were just enough differences to be a solid second book. Anthony is a little on the dumb side in terms of his stubborn refusal to believe he might not die young but at least his stubbornness is different from Simon’s. I did enjoy the antagonism to friendship to affection that Anthony and Kate enjoyed, though I am getting tired of female protagonists that can’t tell at all that a man is attracted to them. The naivety that’s popular in characters like Kate is a little overdone and got on my nerves a few times. Otherwise, I thought it was nice to get a bit more of a personal history from Anthony than we got with Daphne.