Title: Maid to Match
Author: Deeanne Gist
Blurb (from Goodreads):
From the day she arrives at the Biltmore, Tillie Reese is dazzled--by the riches of the Vanderbilts and by Mack Danvers, a mountain man turned footman. When Tillie is enlisted to help tame Mack's rugged behavior by tutoring him in the ways of refined society, the resulting sparks threaten Tillie's efforts to be chosen as Edith Vanderbilt's lady's maid. But the stakes rise even higher when Mack and Tillie become entangled in a cover-up at the town orphanage. They could both lose their jobs...and their hearts.
This is on my list of favorites for the year! Deeanne Gist is always one of my go-to authors for romances that really deliver the goods. This book is no exception.
What made this story unique was the setting. Biltmore is an awe inspiring place even today. Back when Edith Vanderbilt actually lived there it was a miracle. I loved reading about the sound of the electric lights or the innovative heating system ... and all the other things that make Biltmore and the Vanderbilts so unique.
On top of one of the best settings ever, she created some truly powerful characters. Tillie is smart and ambitious. She has a plan for her future and that plan doesn't include falling for the new useful man ... Even if he is too handsome for words, thinks of what she needs before she asks, knows when to be silent and then talks to her like a real person. Nope, her plan includes waiting on rich ladies and being part of their life so she can travel. She'll do whatever they want, whenever they want... but she'll be able to wear fine clothes and go to balls ...
Mack wants freedom, space to roam (he hates city life) and to take care of his family. He's hot-headed and quick with his fists. His sister and younger brothers were sent out to other families and an orphanage and he finds out they're not really getting the care they need. In fact, his sister is being beaten. He needs to fix the situation - and fast. He detests money and those who have a lot of it, but working at Biltmore may be his only way to get his sister out. That's when he meets Tillie ...
This story has plenty to offer. It was so interesting. You not only have a great romance with a wonderful backdrop - but there was also the story of the orphanage and what was going to happen to the children there. The author did a great job of addressing the whole idea what our priorities should be while also showing that not all people who have money are greedy, selfish pigs. lol
This is a funny, warm, genuine, book. I pre-ordered it a long time ago and I can tell this is one I'll be re-reading. The author is also hosting a trip to Biltmore estate. You can find out more about that here: Getaway With Dee
Don't forget that I have the giveaway for A Love of Her Own. It ends midnight on the 27th. :o)