Miss Billings Treads the Boards

Written by Carla Kelly
Review by Shannon Gallagher

Miss Billings Treads the Boards offers enormous promise but sadly falls short. In this Regency romance, Henry Tewskbury-Hampton, Fifth Marquess of Grayson, runs into some excitement when he is attacked en route to a party and finds refuge with Bladesworth’s Company of Actors. Katherine Billings, meanwhile, is en route to a new position as a governess and learns that her new employer is unsavory in the extreme. Katherine disembarks, determined not to go through with her new placement, when she is also swept up by Bladesworth’s Company. Without any other options, she agrees to join them. Henry is enamored with Katherine, and while he connives to stay with the actors, as luck would have it some men turn up looking around for the missing Marquess. Henry becomes Hal, a working actor and husband to Katherine, now Kate, as a ruse to continue hiding. Throughout the novel both Hal and Kate experience emotional growth, but the novel ends with work still needing to be done. Both main characters lack depth, and the plot is far too contrived to be plausible or believable. That being said I found the novel entertaining but not engrossing in the least.