Once Upon a Kiss by Jayne Fresina {Amanda’s Review}

Posted 9 February, 2015 by Amanda / 7 Comments

Once Upon a Kiss by Jayne Fresina {Amanda’s Review}Once Upon a Kiss by Jayne Fresina
Series: Book Club Belles Society #1
Also in this series: How to Rescue a Rake
Genres: Historical, Regency, Romance
Pages: 416
Format: Paperback
Source: Library

In the sleepy village of Hawcombe Prior, five young ladies of the local book society are reading a salacious romance called Pride and Prejudice. Upon finishing the book, the ladies race to find their own Mr. Darcy, and the handsome, mysterious Darius Wainwright is the perfect mark.

Justina Penny can't understand why her fellow Belles are starry-eyed in the newcomer's arrogant presence. But if the town's only eligible bachelor marries anyone, it should be her sweet, beautiful sister. And it's up to Justina to make it happen. How could this plan possibly go wrong?

Fresina makes me laugh out loud.

Thoughts on Once Upon a Kiss

I’ve been hit or miss with historical romances lately — a natural side effect of randomly selecting books off the library shelves — and I really wanted a hit after the last miss, so I chose Once Upon a Kiss. This isn’t my first Jayne Fresina, and I felt reasonably certain she’d deliver.

And she did. Oh, how she did! And better yet, I knew it by the first paragraph of the second chapter.

You see, characters and tension drive the plot of any book, and Jayne Fresina does such a good job of introducing Darius and Justina that I knew, even before they met, sparks would fly. I wasn’t disappointed. Darius is quiet, regimented, and likes structure. Justina is, quite naturally, the exact opposite.

Once Upon a Kiss has more than a few laugh out loud moments, for Justina attracts trouble without even trying, and you can’t help liking her. Darius is, well, he’s Mr. Darcy, but still very much his own character.

Justina and her friends from their book club (which I’m glad, by the way, that this is the beginning of a series that will feature them) are reading Pride and Prejudice. Once Upon a Kiss is a cheeky Pride and Prejudice retelling (at least, that’s how I’d consider it; I’ve not seen anything anywhere that says it actually is), using the book itself to highlight what’s going on with the characters.

This book pokes fun at romance novels and characters in them in a way that’s quite hilarious and meta. And yet, Once Upon a Kiss is a sweet and lighthearted romance that was fun and adorable and I already want to read the rest of the series, even though the next book isn’t even out yet.


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7 Responses to “Once Upon a Kiss by Jayne Fresina {Amanda’s Review}”

  1. Oh my gosh, I need to read this right now! And luckily I’m not reading anything. I can never say no to a Pride and Prejudice influenced book, but I’ve never read a historical romance P&P retelling. But I am going to fix that right now. And I’m not working today (since I worked all six days last week), and there’s a snow storm, and what better time than to veg out and read something like this?

    Thanks so much for reading this and reviewing it today. Talk about perfect timing. :)
    Quinn @ Quinn’s Book Nook recently posted…Review: Noble Intentions by Katie MacAlisterMy Profile

    • Hope you enjoy! And there’s no better time to curl up with a book than during a snow storm. (I only wish I was doing that tomorrow instead of working while it snows.)

    • Yes! I picked up the fourth book in her other series this morning (or was it yesterday? I’ve forgotten…) because I’d forgotten (it’s a trend!) I hadn’t read it yet. But soon!

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