A Lady of High Regard

Written by Tracie Peterson
Review by Nan Curnutt

Mia Stanley considers herself a matchmaker. She’s also a writer for Godey’s Lady’s Book. For a young woman in Philadelphia in 1852, being a matchmaker is acceptable, but being an author is questionable. Mia has set herself two tasks that cause her great difficulties. The first is to find a match for her longtime friend and neighbor, Garrett Wilson, but Garrett has quite another match in mind. Mia’s second task is to write an article to help the plight of seamen’s wives who are being unfairly taken advantage of by rent collectors. Mia’s tasks land her in many different kinds of trouble throughout the book. Mia is in so much trouble, in fact, that her book might better have been entitled “A Lady of No Regard.”

Ms. Peterson has crafted a troublesome handful in her character, Mia Stanley. While Mia’s intentions do seem to be good, her constant thwarting of authority and doing things her own way can get annoying. Whether this is very clever writing or just repetition is not certain. Although the book is discussing serious, violent issues, the lighthearted writing style robs them of some of their intensity.