Prelude for a Lord by Camille Elliot is a Regency novel so all you lovers of Jane Austen type stories will enjoy this book. It reminded me a lot of Persuasion but with music and mystery at the forefront. This novel gave me my Regency fix in an enjoyable fashion. I wish more authors would write books from this time period!
Twenty-eight year old Lady Alethea Sutherton has been staying with her aunt in Bath for the past year. She plays the piano, harp, and the forbidden violin. Since it's scandalous for a woman to play violin, she can't play in public like she longs, too. So at home she pours her heart out playing on a mysterious violin given to her by a beloved friend. But then a man starts following her around town. Unsure if she is imagining it, she doesn't take much note of it until he stops her in front of her house asking to buy her violin. Then when someone breaks into her room, Alethea is determined to find out what is so special about her violin. A friend of her aunt enlists the help of Lord Dommick to find out the instrument's origins. Alethea is dismayed and wishes it was anybody but him. Would he remember her from eleven years ago?
Lord Dommick, or "Bay" to his friends, is part of a quartet, composes music, and plays flute and violin. He has recently returned home from the war which has scarred him in more ways than one. When he is asked to find out why Lady Sutherton's violin is so important, he becomes intrigued by her. He is amazed that she doesn't seem to care what people think of her friendships or her activities. As they work together to expose the thief, they begin to admire and respect each other. But Bay is sure know one would want a man with so much emotional baggage attached to him. Will Alethea take such a risk?
The mystery was a nice twist to normal Regency fare, and I loved some of the things reminiscent of Persuasion and Pride and Prejudice. The music aspect was another fun twist. I had no idea that violin playing was considered scandalous for women! I hope there is going to be a book for each of the quartet as I would love to read about their stories, too. :-)
I was given this book free from Booklook Bloggers in exchange for an honest review.