An enchanting collection containing the first three novels in New York Times bestselling author Julia Quinn’s beloved Bridgerton series set in Regency England—The Duke and I, The Viscount Who Loved Me, and An Offer from a Gentleman—now a series created by Shondaland for Netflix
The Duke and I
When Daphne Bridgerton and Simon Basset, Duke of Hastings, agree to a fake courtship, they think they’ve found the perfect solution to their problems. Romantically associated with one of London’s most desirable catches, Daphne’s prospects among the ton will soar. For avowed bachelor Simon, an attachment to Daphne will deter would-be brides and their ambitious mamas. Their plan works like a charm—at first. But amid the glittering, gossipy, cut-throat world of London’s elite, there is only one certainty: love ignores every rule. . .
The Viscount Who Loved Me
London's most elusive bachelor, Anthony Bridgerton is determined to wed. But one obstacle stands in his way—his intended's older sister, Kate Sheffield, who is driving Anthony mad with her determination to stop the betrothal. Kate is quite sure that reformed rakes do not make the best husbands, and Anthony Bridgerton is the most wicked rogue of them all. She’s determined to protect her sister—even as she fears she may not be able to resist the reprehensible and oh so desirable rake herself . . .
An Offer from a Gentleman
Sophie Beckett never dreamed she'd be able to sneak into Lady Bridgerton's famed masquerade ball—or that she would be spinning in the arms of her "Prince Charming"—the debonair and devastatingly handsome Benedict Bridgerton. But when the clock strikes midnight, Sophie’s enchanting evening ends. Since that night Benedict has been able to think of nothing but the bewitching young woman, and he’s sworn to find and wed his mystery miss. Yet will another unexpectedly steal his heart—and his chance for a fairy tale love?
The talk of the Ton!
These books are honestly so splendidly written you feel like you’re a part of the Bridgerton family! I can’t say that I love them enough!
So glad the books are nothing like the tv show
I watched the Netflix show, and didn’t like it (the level of voyeurism is so creepy that I was able to watch the whole first season in one night by simply adjusting the playback speed to 1.75 during all the sex scenes).
So I got the feeling that they had tweaked the story just for revenue (sort of like what happened to the blockbuster Pride&Prejudice of 2005). I decided to read the books to find out for myself, and I was right. No, it was actually worse, sadly.
The Bridgerton show is veeeeeery loosely based on the novel. They made up an eerie amount of stuff (I can’t think of a reason other than trying to lure more audience), including characters that are completely invented, or different from their original purpose. (And I’m not talking about the colour-blind cast, which I did not mind at all). Plus, Lady Whistledown was revealed right at the very end of season one, and (despite having guessed her identity a couple of episodes back), I lost any motivation to watch yet another season.
Anyway, about the books:
First things first, DO NOT READ THE 2nd EPILOGUES IF YOU DO NOT LIKE SPOILERS! Go back and read them after you’re done with the whole series.
Now for the actual subject of this review.
I find the stories kind of plain (like the witty author declares: girl meets boy, stuff happens, girl marries boy), but the dialogues are brilliant - which IS the way I like them.
There’s little in life that is predictable (thanks, covid), and I find consolation in friendly quips, lovers’ tiffs, a good duel, and knowing that things are going to be alright in the end.
There are some racy parts, which are very à propos and blend in nicely with the excitement of the narration (contrary to the tv show, where sex scenes are just randomly sprinkled just to add colour, thus depriving them of the appropriate importance and depth). Definitely a page-turner!
The controversy about the forced insemination is very interesting, and I think it’s (you guessed it!) better developed in the book, for the show makes it look like they hadn’t talked about it before, but in the novel it’s clear that a) it was not planned, and b) it brought a fated (and very human) closure to a vicious circle that didn’t seem to have a way out. The proverbial straw that broke the camel’s back.
In the end, I am glad to have read vol. 2 and 3 before Netflix ruined them for me (and I usually LOVE Netflix, that’s probably why I’m so upset about this!)
I will certainly read about all the other siblings (already pre-ordered the upcoming collection)
Save your money
I enjoyed the série on Netflix and decided to read the book. It is rare but the série was more enjoyable than the book. For me a great romance novel, the author will set the scene, create the emotion and tell the story; well in the case of the 1st book, the 2 first elements are missing.