Cover Image: The Matchmaker's Lonely Heart

The Matchmaker's Lonely Heart

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Member Reviews

The Matchmaker’s Lonely Heart is a Victorian romance which will delight readers with its fascinating characters and action-packed storyline.

The heroine in this book is Amelie Hampton, a naïve girl who is focused on being an independent woman and therefore works as a columnist for the Marriage Gazette. The story starts when she decides to secretly observe a blind date between two people who are meeting due to the Gazettes matchmaking adds and discovers one of them is none other than Harold Radcliffe, a gentleman she has been pining over at her book club. It is when she is spying the couple that she meets Michael Baker, a strong and dashing detective who is investigating the suspicious death of Mr. Radcliffe’s late wife.

The narrative will explore the investigation that will see Michael Baker and Amelie Hampton join forces to solve the mystery behind Mr. Radcliffe’s character, but it is not the unknown that will keep the reader glued to the book’s pages. This book is unputdownable due to the electrifying dialogues and scenes between Michael and Amelie. Their romance captivated me from the very first scene until the last one and it was the main reason why I couldn’t put this book down.

In this story, there is much more happening then a romance between two characters, so its pace is quite fast, but also extremely satisfying due to the banters between Michael and Amelie. Their dialogues and reactions to one another made me laugh, sigh and even cheer out loud for their happiness. I loved their arguments as much as I loved their romantic gestures, and I couldn’t wait to read the next scene as soon as the one I was reading was over.

As mentioned before, for me the mystery was secondary in the sense that it existed to allow the romance to be built, but I also liked the way it was written. Even if there was no surprise in the end, I enjoyed every step taken by these characters to solve the mystery because every scene was beautifully written, entertaining and surprising. The reader may know who did it, but he never knows what will come next in the investigation.

The writing in The Matchmaker’s Lonely Heart is excellent as it made me visualize every scene and every character. This was the first time I read anything from Nancy Cambell Allen but it will certainly not be the last.

Summing up, The Matchmaker’s Lonely Heart is an entertaining mystery where the romance takes a predominant role and will captivate most readers. The main characters are enticing, and the secondary make the reader want to see a sequel. I highly recommend this book.

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Victorian romances are so much fun, add to that the murder mystery aspect and there is so much to take in with this first installment in the Matchmakers Proper Romance series. With every turn of the page Allen takes you further into the mystery of the plot, grabs your attention with the main couple and their close friends, and keeps it all moving.

Allen shows you how times were changing as the Victorian era progressed as more and more women became independent and contributed many great things to the world. Amelie and her cousins are the perfect examples of women back in the day. There are fun interactions, interesting scenarios in which things go awry and romantic moments that have you rooting for Amelie and Michael.

If you enjoy romance in the Victorian era, sketchy side characters tangled in the mystery and a charming main couple who's romance builds as the story goes, this is a book to pick up. If you enjoy audio the narrator for this book does an excellent job with all the characters and keeping readers engaged.

*I received a complimentary copy from the publisher. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

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I’m such a sucker for historical romances. I can’t get enough of them. This was another I really enjoyed. It was a nice break from all the adult fantasy I’ve been reading lately.

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Matchmaker Amelie loves to secretly observe the couples she matches. When one such observation goes awry, she meets up with police chief, Michael and has a difference of opinion on who the guilty party really is.

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This was another great book by Nancy Campbell Allen. This author is able to create a world with vivid colors and dimensional characters while I read. It's a great place to visit, at least in my imagination. I can see past the romance to the hard lives that people of that time had to endure. Women had to hide their capabilities and were expected to be second class citizens. The star of the book, Amelie was relatable and easy to love. This story did have some violence, death and murder involved, but no sex.

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I initially DNF'd this but later came back to it when I was in a different frame of mind and quite enjoyed it! I enjoy a tiny bit more steam and chemistry in my romances than this one had (it does not have any physical intimacy occur throughout other than a kiss very late in the book) but the plot and characters were compelling and complex, the mystery was a good "hook" and kept me interested throughout the story.

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I want to thank Netgalley and the author for gifting me the ebook. A cute romance. Highly recommend. Good weekend read

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really enjoyed this story. a different story for me and liked it very much. good read and enjoyed it all.

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A murder mystery with a touch of romance. Amelie at 21 is shy and naïve. She writes a lonely hearts column, Essays on Eternal Bliss, for her aunt's Marriage Gazette. One night Detective Michael Baker realizes they are watching the same man, one he suspects has murdered his wife, while she has set him up on a blind date with one of her readers. Michael is a jaded pessimist, older, she mentions elder people with authority, and he wonders how old does she think he is?! After his best friend and brother-in-law dies on the job, he considers his job too dangerous to marry. The suspect is a member of her book club and Michael asks Amelie to bring him along to the next club meeting. The mystery is entertaining but the romance is very low-key involving one kiss. They aren't even together all that much. I did enjoy Amelie and her two female cousins. All wanting more out of life than was expected for young ladies. I recommend the audio book. Exquisitely narrated by Justine Eyre.

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Murder and matchmaking bring Detective Michael Baker and Amelie Hampton together to stop a killer before he strikes again.

A charming novel set in Victorian England, interlaced with murder and mystery. Amelie is a romantic and writer for her Aunt Sally's Marriage Gazette, her matchmaking leads her to Detective Baker who is investigating one of the perspective lovers.

Capturing much of the nuance of the time period through the manners and language, this book quickly swept me into the thrill and suspense of the mystery. I loved the banter between Michael and Amalie who are both likable protagonists, both are self aware of their "flaws" and have a strong sense of justice. I enjoyed the fresh spin on the mystery, as it was more about proving the crime and culprit's connection than figuring out who had done it.

Overall, a highly enjoyable clean romance and the first in what is sure to be a fantastic series. I look forward to reading about Amelie's cousins and Michael's colleagues in the future, as they are sure to have equally wonderful and thrilling adventures. A suspenseful mystery, mixed with a slow build romance. I loved Michael and Amelie together and their scenes brought a smile to my face. Highly enjoyable and entertaining!

I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

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This book is a treasure. I absolutely loved it. Amelie is one of my favorite characters, ever. She is so witty, smart, kind. A little naïve at first but shows her true strengthens with each turn of the page. And Michael, truly a fantastic hero. Each character is written with care. With a wonderful romance entwined in a suspenseful mystery.

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5 Stars. I adored this book. I loved the Sherlock Holmes vibes and with romance! Suspense, mystery, and romance! A total win!

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The tapestry of mystery and suspense that Nancy Campbell Allen wove with this historical fiction novel kept me riveted. The characters were strong and exciting and willing to do anything to protect those they love. DELIGHTFUL!!

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I thought this one was very well done. The book is steeped in the Victorian setting,taking place in London 1885. Amelie is a lonely hearts matchmaker who so caught up in her work decides to watch a couple through a restaurant window to observe this couple. Little does she know it's a recent widow who's just lost his wife and that she herself is being watched and observed by detective Michael Baker. He will question her as to what she knows about this case. We know who the murderer is right from the start, while most books are not like this proving the guilt in this case proves hard to do.
While investigating the crime together a relationship of mutual respect and maybe a little more develops between Amelie and the detective.
This book kept me intrigued the whole way through. I am looking forward to reading more books in this Proper Romance series.

Pub Date 07 Sep 2021
I was given a complimentary copy of this book.
All opinions expressed are my own.

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This was such a cute story! It's got mystery, intrigue, and romance while still having a very capable and smart heroine and an even more capable hero. The story-telling was well thought out and very detailed, building a great backdrop for the roller coaster of events. Yes- the storyline is pretty predictable but it was written so well that it didn't bother me at all that I knew what dastardly deeds our villain was planning. I quite enjoyed this book and it was a fairly quick read. Perfect for an afternoon escape!

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Before I read this book I heard so many good things about it and it didn’t disappoint. It lived up to everything I expected out of this book! I am so glad I got to read it! Thanks

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This took me a bit to get into, but once I did I didn’t want to put it down. I really liked Michael’s character. And the story was exciting and interesting. I really love this author. She writes really great romance.

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What a delightful book! The humor was on point. The characters delightful. The romance swoony. I highly recommend.

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Let me go straight to the point - to fully appreciate this novel you have to love Victorian mystery romance.

It's the story of Amelie and detective Baker, as the meet and get into trouble while he investigates a man that crosses paths with Amelie. Their story is a very slow burn romance, that eventually gains traction and things are set in motion. It is a sort of coming of age for Amelie, as she leaves her starry eyed ideas and discovers a more well rounded love. My favorite thing about this love story was how serious and charming detective Baker approached her, considering her with great respect as even she viewed herself too much of a dreamer.

I wanted to abandon the book up until the middle, where the actions wasn't fast paced enough for me, but eventually I got to its end. What kept me going were Amelie's cousins & their hopes and dreams as independent women, their camaraderie, her aunt, these supporting characters that make the story more rounded. While this is not necessarily my style, I might read Charlotte & Eva's stories.

It's a nice romance, with quite some action to its end, but I do believe you have to like this type of book in order to fully appreciate it.

I received this in order to offer my honest opinion about it.

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Nancy Campbell Allen is one of my favorite authors so I was really excited to read her new book, The Matchmaker's Lonely Heart! It's a Victorian mystery romance that readers will have a hard time putting down.

Amelie Hampton is a columnist who is trying to help her readers find love and she wants a glimpse of the first meeting of a couple she thinks might be perfect for each other. A detective, Michael Baker, is also watching the meeting, however, because he is certain the "gentleman" a Mr. Harold Radcliffe, is a murderer and he's gathering evidence. Both of them have their opinions about Mr. Radcliffe's guilt or innocence and the book is a rollercoaster of emotion as Michael and Amelie unravel the mystery.

I love how Ms. Allen is able to balance both the mystery and the romance so well. The chemistry with Amelie and Michael starts with a few sparks and slowly burns until the reader is turning the pages just to see if they finally move to the next step with their relationship! The banter between them is as fun as the chemistry and I loved that Michael's life is changed the more he gets to know her. He is grieving a terrible loss, and Amelie is the perfect person to help him see that hiding away his heart so he doesn't get hurt again is a terrible idea. The mystery has some great red herrings to keep readers guessing and a fun supporting cast to keep us all emotionally engaged. And the ending is perfect for both the romance and the mystery itself. This one will join all of Ms. Allen's other books on my keeper shelf and is one of my favorites this year.

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