An Unconventional Courtship -- Becky Lower

A Regency Yuletide

After a disappointing season in London, Sophie Davenport returns home without a marriage proposal. No sooner does she settle back into her country life than she learns her uncle has arranged for her to marry the local vicar’s son, a respectable and utterly forgettable man. He’s returning home immediately after the Christmas holiday and they will wed. She sets about making this last Christmas with just she and her mother memorable.

Jeremy Wyatt hatches a plan to help his friend Thomas and his love, Emma, escape to Gretna Green and marry before her father comes after them. What he’s really doing is avoiding heading to his parents’ home, where he is the son who is always making the wrong choices. But their carriage becomes hopelessly mired in the mud from the incessant rains so Jeremy sets off to find shelter for them at the first house he comes to.

Sophie welcomes the wet and weary travelers, and her mother agrees to house them temporarily until they can free the carriage. Sophie forms a bond not only with Emma, but with Jeremy. However despite the sparks they ignite in each other, they have to maintain their separate paths.  

But love and mistletoe have a way of upsetting even the best-laid plans.

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A Regency Yuletide was a lighthearted Christmas whirlwind romance. Definitely getting me in the mood for the upcoming holidays. Bethann Miller

This is the first Regency book written by Becky Lower and I am completely in love with the characters. Amazon customer


Northern England, December 1822

Being of good English stock, Sophie Davenport loved the rain. At least most of the time, since it made the rolling hills of Carlisle a pretty, bucolic green in the summer. Today however, she took her knitting to the window seat in the library and gazed into the darkening countryside while her fingers flew, making stitches from the fine wool. It had been raining for days now, which, in and of itself, was not an uncommon event during the month of December. But this afternoon the gloom settled over her as if it were a heavy blanket. She had lost so much time by trotting to London for her first season on the marriage mart at the insistence of her Uncle Harry, that she was unable to tend to her gardens and her charitable pursuits this year. He had hoped to foist Sophie off to a gentleman of means, so he could be rid of both Sophie and her mother.

The season had been an abysmal failure, at least in Mother’s eyes. And in the eyes of Uncle Harry, since Sophie had returned home empty-handed. Not one man had danced with her unless you counted pimply-faced Freddie, her cousin, who had done so out of family duty rather than real interest. Sophie, however, breathed a sigh of relief at returning home without sparking the interest of a gentleman, since the men of the Ton were, for the most part, more interested in their own appearances than in hers. If she had to cast her fortunes in with someone, it would most certainly not be with a man who had a larger wardrobe than she.

Her fingers worked furiously, needles clicking together as she made quick work of the row of stitches. She held up her needle and stared at her progress, turning the blue yarn into a usable covering. If she could maintain her current output, she’d have one more blanket done before Christmas for the Female Visiting Society to hand out to some poor indigent. She nodded in satisfaction, running her fingers over her uniform stitches as the rain pelted the window.

“Sophia Davenport, I do declare your eyesight will fail if you keep attempting to knit when it’s so dark outside.” Her mother, Evelyn, bustled into the room.

Sophie set her knitting aside. Any other response would be futile. It was teatime after all, and Mother was a stickler for following the rules. “Yes, Mother.”

Their one maid, Annie, followed with the tea service. “Tis raining hard this afternoon, ma’am.”

“Yes, that it is, Annie.” Sophie rose from her seat at the window and poured the tea. Evelyn added a lump of sugar to hers, and then a spot of milk. “We certainly can do without another flood like the one we had last February. Thank goodness we’re situated on a hill and our little cottage has a sturdy roof.” She glanced at Sophie. “Your father planned for everything.”

“Yes, he did. Except for his passing.” Sophie sighed as she took a seat opposite her mother.