Lady Osbaldestone’s Christmas Goose by Stephanie Laurens
Published by Savdek Management Pty Ltd on October 19, 2017
Genres: Historical Romance, Regency Era, Holiday Romance
Source: Self Purchased
A lighthearted tale of Christmas long ago with a grandmother and three of her grandchildren, one lost soul, a lady driven to distraction, a recalcitrant donkey, and a flock of determined geese.
Three years after being widowed, Therese, Lady Osbaldestone finally settles into her dower property of Hartington Manor in the village of Little Moseley in Hampshire. She is in two minds as to whether life in the small village will generate sufficient interest to keep her amused over the months when she is not in London or visiting friends around the country. But she will see.
It’s December, 1810, and Therese is looking forward to her usual Christmas with her family at Winslow Abbey, her youngest daughter, Celia’s home. But then a carriage rolls up and disgorges Celia’s three oldest children. Their father has contracted mumps, and their mother has sent the three—Jamie, George, and Lottie—to spend this Christmas with their grandmama in Little Moseley.
Therese has never had to manage small children, not even her own. She assumes the children will keep themselves amused, but quickly learns that what amuses three inquisitive, curious, and confident youngsters isn’t compatible with village peace. Just when it seems she will have to set her mind to inventing something, she and the children learn that with only twelve days to go before Christmas, the village flock of geese has vanished.
Every household in the village is now missing the centerpiece of their Christmas feast. But how could an entire flock go missing without the slightest trace? The children are as mystified and as curious as Therese—and she seizes on the mystery as the perfect distraction for the three children as well as herself.
But while searching for the geese, she and her three helpers stumble on two locals who, it is clear, are in dire need of assistance in sorting out their lives. Never one to shy from a little matchmaking, Therese undertakes to guide Miss Eugenia Fitzgibbon into the arms of the determinedly reclusive Lord Longfellow. To her considerable surprise, she discovers that her grandchildren have inherited skills and talents from both her late husband as well as herself. And with all the customary village events held in the lead up to Christmas, she and her three helpers have opportunities galore in which to subtly nudge and steer.
Yet while their matchmaking appears to be succeeding, neither they nor anyone else have found so much as a feather from the village’s geese. Larceny is ruled out; a flock of that size could not have been taken from the area without someone noticing. So where could the birds be? And with the days passing and Christmas inexorably approaching, will they find the blasted birds in time?
First in series. A novel of 60,000 words. A Christmas tale of romance and geese.
Lady Osbaldestone’s Christmas Goose is the first book in “Christmas Chronicles” series and I will say that when we chose this for a buddy read I really didn’t know what to expect with this one going into it and I will admit that I stayed far away from looking at any reviews, I just wanted to be surprised with this book here and as much as I found enjoyment out of this book, Its definitely not a full four star read for me. This book is not very long, for the price you pay, its less than half of what I normally read so I do feel the kindle price should have been a bit lower considering. But also there is more to this book than just a “romance” so I do want to make that clear especially to those that prefer just romance focused on anything that they read that you might fight the focus of it less than expected.
The story begins with Lady Osbaldestone who has taken charge of her grandchildren and taken them to one of her country estates, which she has been neglecting of late. But her grandchildren are causing ruckus and drama, and then with Christmas time closing in, all the geese in the area have completely vanished and so she takes her grandchildren along to discover what happened to them. But then she discovers two single people who need each other and endeavors with the help of her grandchildren, to matchmake them together.
I found the set up of the story to be so endearing and adorable in a handful of ways and I truly loved Lady Osbaldestone, she is hilarious. I know she is in other books that this author has written but let me tell you I don’t read this author as much as I think I probably should. I do love the “realism” that she displays in her stories as far as the era is concerned. I never have a issue with how she writes regency era romance because she doesn’t sugar coat it or modernize it of feminize it, she just writes it where it feels more real to the time period without taking anything from the characters or their endeavors. I found in this story while the romance wasn’t super focused, I loved the focus we gained on the characters that are involved within the story. From the local folk, to the minister, to the grandchildren, and to our main couple.
Now lets talk about the romance for a moment. I ADORED seeing these two together. You couldn’t see two more opposite personalities than these two to be honest. Eugenia and Christian are delightful characters but so unique from each other. Eugenia is kind and compassionate and responsible and has a deep love for the Christmas season. Christian, is a military hero vet, but is scarred and has a lame leg because of the war and basically hides within the shadows of his own home. Until his whole community including a woman he has known most of his life forces him to breathe life and brave the community and not fear it. I actually enjoyed seeing Christian and Eugenia have their romance build here, I never felt quite satisfied as I wanted but it was cute and endearing.
Overall I found Lady Osbaldestone’s Christmas Goose to be a story of lifting others with the Christmas spirit, a mystery of geese chasing and a sweet spirit filled romance that was beyond endearing.