Oh, how I loved my introduction to an incredible author named Grace Hitchcock!! “My Dear Miss Dupré” was such a unique, enjoyable, entertaining novel that I found myself thinking about it all through the day, waiting until I could finish up my duties and return to the world of New York high society, in the year of 1883. As the first book in the new Bethany House series entitled “American Royalty”, this story definitely sets very high standards for the sequels to live up to.
Although the plot for “My Dear Miss Dupré” may sound a bit silly, ridiculous even, it is carried off with such grace and charm (and interwoven with strong elements of faith) that it never for a moment feels unbelievable. The basic concept is that in order for Miss Willow Dupré to carry on the leadership of her father’s hard-won and highly lucrative sugar business, she must have a husband join her side – within six months! And so ensues a competition unlike any the city of New York has ever known – thirty suitors are selected to vie for her hand, and as Willow eliminates them one by one, she becomes one step closer to crowning a king to join her as queen of the Dupré sugar empire! But not all is as it seems in this unlikely competition, and the competitors are holding more than a few secrets of their own. Although it’s hard to believe, I did not know for sure which beau Willow would choose until the end – and the interwoven mysteries that kept popping up had me continually guessing as well.
I adored this book from start to finish. Not only because it was so marvelously unique and original, but also because the characters felt like real, imperfect, seeking individuals. Willow carries off an incredible feat by participating in such an impossible competition, though not without making some pretty awful blunders along the way. But this is what makes her so relatable! (Even if you have never had thirty suitors vying for your hand all at once – which I’m hoping you have not, lol!!). If you are looking for a fresh new voice in Christian Historical Fiction, with so much potential to expand into an unforgettable series, I highly recommend this first installment in the “American Royalty” series.
“Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.”