Love on a Midsummer Night

Written by Christy English
Review by Lucy Bertoldi

Having loved Christy English’s eloquent novel on Eleanor of Aquitaine (To Be Queen), I couldn’t wait to read more by this author. I was curious to see whether a lighter historical romance based on fictional characters could still carry the “English” brand in terms of prose, accuracy, and flowing storyline. I would also need to be captured by fine-tuned historical details to immerse me into the plot.

A quick and light read, yet delightfully substantial, Love on a Midsummer Night did not disappoint! The book begins with a young Arabella Darlington at her much older husband’s funeral. Arabella’s husband had been a wealthy, miserable nobleman who never loved her. Now that he is gone, there is still no promise of freedom for Arabella. She is taunted by Hawthorne, her late husband’s nephew and presumed heir, who wants it all from Arabella.

Escaping Hawthorne’s clutches would be difficult if not for the help of Raymond Oliver, the Earl of Pembroke, Arabella’s first and only love. However, Raymond resents Arabella for having deserted him back then to forcibly marry another. Arabella still loves Raymond but promises herself to never again submit to any man.

Throughout the story there is an underlying message of hope and strength of character. Level-headed and determined to reach her goals while remaining independent, Arabella is a woman of substance after all. With just the right blend of love and descriptive period details, romance aficionados and historical buffs alike will definitely enjoy Love on a Midsummer Night.