Thursday, October 2, 2014

BLOG TOUR: The Governess Club: Sara & The Governess Club: Louisa by Ellie Macdonald

Today is an extra-large post for your reading enjoyment! I'm hosting *BOTH* books on Ellie Macdonald's The Governess Club book tour - both The Governess Club: Sara and The Governess Club: Louisa. Sara was available on September 2nd, and Louisa will be available on October 7th. From Avon Impulse, these are books 3 and 4 in The Governess Club series, and I'm so excited to share excerpts from both as well as my thoughts on them. 

For all the stops on The Governess Club' Virtual Book Tour, check out Tasty Book Tours.

The Books


Sweet Sara Collins is one of the founding members of the governess club. But she has a secret... She doesn’t love teaching. She’d much prefer to be a vicar’s wife and help he local community. But this quiet mouse doesn’t want to upset her friends, and she resolves to help in whatever ways she can.

Nathan Grant is the embodiment of everything that frightens Sara. Which is why she can’t understand why the handsome but reclusive and gruff man is so fascinating to her. When Sara decides it’s time to take a chance and experience all that life has to offer, Nathan is the first person she thinks of.

Will Sara’s walk on the wild side ruin her chances at a simple, happy life? Or has she just opened the door to a once-in-a-lifetime chance of passion?

The Governess Club: Sara is available now!


Sara looked at him to find the gleam in his eyes had returned, as well as the wicked smile. He leaned in, close enough to kiss her. “Rule number two, Miss Collins.” His voice was soft and dark, sending a thrill down her spine to flutter in her stomach. She swallowed. “Yes?” Her voice squeaked.
“No night rails allowed.” His wicked grin remained as he pushed her into motion. Sara automatically kept walking, but the one time she looked back, he was still standing in the doorway, watching her.


Louisa Brockhurst is on the run - from her friends, from her family, even from her dream of independence through The Governess Club. But sometimes it’s easier for her to hide from those she loves in order to escape the secrets of her past.

Handsome but menacing John Taylor is a former prize-fighter turned inn-keeper who is trying to make his way in society. When Louisa shows up at his doorstep he’s quick to accept her offer to help - at a price. He knows that she’s hiding something and he can’t help his protective instincts around the beautiful woman. 

Their attraction grows, but will headstrong, fiery Louisa ever trust the surprisingly kind 
John enough to tell him the dangerous secrets from her past that keep her running? Or will the power of her feelings scare her into running yet again?

The Governess Club: Louisa is available for pre-order now!

Find the SERIES on Goodreads

My thoughts:

I was glad to have the opportunity to read both Sara and Louisa together because it's always more fun to binge read a series than to have to wait and wait and wait - bonus for readers that these were published a little more than six weeks apart!

So, Sara? I fell in love with Sara very quickly. I felt extremely protective of her - she's portrayed in these very vulnerable ways. It was impossible for me to put down the book, waiting - hoping! - that someone would figure out her secret. 

I didn't love the device used to distinguish between Nathan's more refined thoughts and his 'primordial', more base ones. But it was an effective way to communicate his conflict and the development of both his sense of possessiveness towards Sara and the re-emergence of his conscience. I'm not sure Nathan was my favourite hero, but he was pretty appealing in the end.

I don't know why, but I was surprised by how erotic this book was. It was a very hot read, perhaps particularly in contrast to the innocent vulnerability of its heroine. Kudos to Sara for embracing the sensual moments that she was so starved for, and for grabbing those opportunities for indulgence. 

This is the first time I've read a fictional portrayal of the darker side of pre-20th century politics. Kudos to the book and the author! I really enjoyed that component and part of me wished that this element had come into play more directly in the story.

Of all the characters in the novel aside from the hero and heroine, I wanted to get an impression of Louisa as I knew I'd be reading her book next. Oh boy - I found her to be quite unappealingly antagonistic. I didn't care for her at all and wondered how I would handle reading her story next....

Sara also ends on an abrupt note, so I was glad to pick up Louisa right away.

While initially I had some reservations, ultimately I liked that Louisa took a rish with such a prickly and unlikeable heroine. Perversely, I found her to be more likeable and not so awful whenever other characters in the book were ragging on her. She knew what she wanted and pushed for it, and I appreciated that about her, though I often reminded the book that she could be so much more effective at getting what she wanted and winning people over if she was a little sweeter. Yes, yes, I talked at this book. 

I quite liked John. He was unusual on some fronts - a hulking man, bald with a beard. I thought he was all kinds of awesome, to be honest. 

I didn't find this one to be quite as erotic as the first book, though I do think there's a rather intriguing undercurrent of Louisa taking charge in the bedroom, as it were. Nothing as blatant as so many romances are these days, and I think that subtle touch made it all the more interesting.

This last book in The Governess Club couldn't be farther removed from the title concept as it focuses on the inner workings of running an inn. I loved these details - the discussions around how to improve it and capitalize on various things. Fantastic material.

One thing that both books did really well was provide a non-aristocratic period romance that also stayed away from the academic/scientist and spy/agent trends. I loved the details about politics and inn-keeping and am now keen to read more books along these lines!

Bottom line:

I liked The Governess Club: Sara more than Louisa, but I did enjoy them both. I think they bring something to the table that I haven't read in other historical romances. Strongly recommend!

5 stars for Sara
4 stars for Louisa
For fans of lower/middle class historical romances

The Author

Ellie Macdonald has held several jobs beginning with the letter t: taxi-driver, telemarketer and most recently, teacher. She is thankful her interests have shifted to writing instead of taxidermy or tornado chasing. Having travelled to five different continents, she has swum with elephants, scuba dived coral mazes, visited a leper colony and climbed waterfalls and windmills, but her favorite place remains Regency England. She currently lives in Ontario, Canada. The Governess Club series is her first published work.

Find her on the web:

The Contest

Avon is hosting a tour-wide giveaway of two copies each of books 1 and 2 in the Governess Club series (featuring Claire and Bonnie). Rafflecopter your chances to win!


  1. I liked this reviewer's comments. I've been so busy reading excerpts and teasers and blurbs that I didn't quite fully realize that these romances are about the middle or working class...not the titled aristocracy. I mean, the titles give it away (governesses)...but I just didn't quite think about it. Now that I am, I'm intrigued even more with this series. It's very unusual to write about the working class in romances of this period. Thanks for the post!