Thank you so much to Atria and Netgalley for letting me read an eARC of To Love and to Loathe! I had won a copy of To Have and to Hoax in a Goodreads giveaway earlier this year, so I was really excited to read this one after I finished that one!
To Love and to Loathe 4/5 Stars
Summary from Goodreads:
The widowed Diana, Lady Templeton and Jeremy, Marquess of Willingham are infamous among English high society as much for their sharp-tongued bickering as their flirtation. One evening, an argument at a ball turns into a serious wager: Jeremy will marry within the year or Diana will forfeit one hundred pounds. So shortly after, just before a fortnight-long house party at Elderwild, Jeremy’s country estate, Diana is shocked when Jeremy appears at her home with a very different kind of proposition.
After his latest mistress unfavorably criticized his skills in the bedroom, Jeremy is looking for reassurance, so he has gone to the only woman he trusts to be totally truthful. He suggests that they embark on a brief affair while at the house party—Jeremy can receive an honest critique of his bedroom skills and widowed Diana can use the gossip to signal to other gentlemen that she is interested in taking a lover.
Diana thinks taking him up on his counter-proposal can only help her win her wager. With her in the bedroom and Jeremy’s marriage-minded grandmother, the formidable Dowager Marchioness of Willingham, helping to find suitable matches among the eligible ladies at Elderwild, Diana is confident her victory is assured. But while they’re focused on winning wagers, they stand to lose their own hearts.
With Martha Waters’s signature “cheeky charm and wonderfully wry wit” (Booklist, starred review), To Love and to Loathe is another clever and delightful historical rom-com that is perfect for fans of Christina Lauren and Evie Dunmore.
Let’s start by talking about the things I enjoyed about this book. I really liked seeing Violet and Audley again and all of the supporting characters really. I was really excited about Diana and Jeremy’s book, especially since it started with a wager and morphed into Diana helping Jeremy gain his confidence back in the bedroom and Jeremy helping Diana show other men that she was interested in lovers. It was great that so much of this book took place in the country (at a country house)! And I absolutely loved Jeremy’s grandmama. Such a fierce and fun character who knows just how to manipulate everyone into doing her bidding! Now for the one thing that I didn’t like- I felt like parts of the middle of the book were so drawn out and slow and ugh sometimes I just wanted to skip ahead to the good parts because I was a little bored. It wasn’t too, too bad, but it did make it so that this cute historical romance with fantastic characters which totally could have been a 5 start read became a 4 star read, max. I felt similarly about To Have and to Hoax though, so it could just be that this is how books set in that period are written and it isn’t my favorite writing style. It won’t keep me from reading other books in this series though!