Cover Image: Something Fabulous

Something Fabulous

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Member Reviews

I just truly did not like this book  - mainly because Belle was just the worst and I found very few redeeming qualities in her. I know it was intended to be funny, but the humor did not land for me at all. It could be me and not the book as the farce also did not work for me.
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I really enjoyed this, I was a bit apprehensive after reading some other reviews but maybe I just didn't take it as seriously as some because I found it amusing and quite sweet. I loved both Bonny and Valentine, I definitely related to Valentine and felt he represented demisexuality quite well but I'm not sure if that is what the author was going for so won't say 100% that is what he is. But yeah I enjoyed a lot. I love Alexis Halls writing style, I find it so easy to read.
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As the first book I’ve read/listened to by Alexis, I was delighted to do so.

I had run out of audiobooks on Libby that intrigued me, so I checked out Kindle Unlimited and it didn’t disappoint.

As a huge regency era fan, in all forms, I have never read anything that was solely LGBTQIA+. It is becoming my duty to consume all and any form of LGBTQ and this was the best way to start.

The narrator was exceptionally brilliant. They definitely understood the assignment.

Bonny is the most charismatic and lovable character. Valentine is grumpy and a wonderful character.

I have come to the conclusion that I waited too long to read anything by Alexis and that’s a shame so prior to this review, I’ve preordered the next 2 books that come out this year. And all seems right in the world 🥹
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Everyone is absolutely mean and horrid and this is truly an unpleasant book to try and read. I love Alexis books normally but not this one
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I was thirsty for a fun og dry wit historical romance and then I saw that this book also was a queer book, I was sold.

This book made me laugh out loud and shed a few tears along the way. SOMETHING FABULOUS has a brilliant comedic timing and a lot of ridiculous scenes, but also tender moments and a vulnerable personal journey for the main character. 

I loved Valentine and how I wanted to slap Valentine upside the head and shake him, but Valentine also broke my heart repeatedly. 

And then where was Bonny. Bonny was just such a warm, lively and kind person, who was made of a lot of romance, hopes and dreams.

I fell in loved with Valentine and Bonny and their relationship and I fell in loved with SOMETHING FABULOUS.
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I've really enjoyed many of Alexis Hall's contemporary romances, so I was really excited for Something Fabulous. Unfortunately, I really am just not a historical romance reader so this one ultimately did not work for me. I will be looking forward to reading more of his contemporary work in the future.
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I feel like my expectations were way too high when it comes to Alexis Hall books after the ridiculously wonderful Boyfriend Material, which is probably the reason why I was left slightly disappointed by Something Fabulous.
It was a fun time, full of banter and fabulous (pun intended) moments, but overall I just needed more from it.
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I’m really torn about how to rate this one. On the one hand, I love Alexis Hall’s writing. Witty, fast dialogue and adventure abound here. I could imagine this making for a really, really fun movie. I also loved Valentine and Bonny! Give me a stuck-up duke and a free-spirited romantic, and I’m all in.

The book’s general treatment of Valentine got on my nerves, however. At first, I enjoyed the ‘gothic heroine parody’ that was Arabella’s character. The further into the novel I got, though, the more frustrated I grew with her vilifying of Valentine (and the way others bought into it). It felt excessive. Which I realize was the point. But it wasn’t much fun to read about at a certain point. 

Those frustrations aside, this was a very fun historical rom com romp that I’d recommend to any romance reader.
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I read a lot about this book before diving into it and it seems clear from his own admissions on the subject that Alexis Hall was hyper-concerned about the patriarchal power dynamics at play in the period in which this book was set.  However, it's clear that this was a bit of an over-correction on his part, resulting in a pretty unlikeable female character who unnecessarily and unforgivingly makes the life of the main character totally miserable.  That said, there are a lot of things to like about this book - the romance, the humor, Hall's trademark wit - but I hope he's willing to try to find more creative ways to play with traditional power structures in future historical romances so that his characters don't feel so totally anachronistic and villainous.
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Something Fabulous was so good! It was so funny but also filled with so much heart. I loved the characters of Valentine and Bonny. They were written so perfectly and their relationship was everything. Bonny was so hilarious and I kept having to put the book down so I could laugh harder. I highly recommend all of Alexis Hall's books, but espeically this one!
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I didn't know what to expect from this book but overall really enjoyed it. Alexis Hall always surprises me as a writer and this book is no exception. This book is light, frivolous, fun, and I can tell that Alexis Hall enjoyed writing it. It's described as "ridiculous" by the author and it definitely is, in the best way possible. If you're looking for a serious angst-filled historical this book is not for you. If you're looking for ridiculous fun, then definitely pick up this book!

Thank you NetGalley for a copy of this book!
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Honestly, this book was not for me. I strongly disliked how Valentine was so hated for just laying low and living his life! Bonny is just straight up mean. I don't understand why reserved individuals are essentially told "smile more" and their life will be better. Valentine didn't need to be fixed. I just felt like this whole book was him apologizing (or attempting to) for doing the right thing. 

There was zero attempt to try to understand where he was coming from, and it was frustrating. I just thought it was weird to introduce a demi character in a historical setting and then spend the whole book treating him like a lesser being and insinuating that he needed to change. More of the book could've been spent allowing him to self-reflect. I feel like any attempt to reach out was immediately squashed with abuse. 

I liked the first 50 or so pages, but then the rest of the book just made me angry. Valentine was just so mistreated, and it was honestly heartbreaking. I don't think that was the author's intended effect, but it made me strongly dislike this book. I just feel like the modern sexuality was forced on this historical character. While it was funny at times, it just didn't work for me, for the reasons stated above.
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Hall’s story begins with Valentine, the Duke of Malvern, proposing marriage to Miss Arabella Tarleton. Valentine is the epitome of the sinister duke who is both the hero and villain of so many of Heyer’s works: cool, handy with a sarcastic phrase and utterly sure of his own appeal. Which is why it’s such a shock when he’s woken up in the night by Arabella’s twin brother, Bonaventure, who says his sister has run away. Bonny knows where she is headed, so Valentine finds himself propelled into an adventure to prevent his fiancée’s supposed ruin.

Instead, it’s Valentine who’s destroyed. The whole duke archetype is deconstructed piece by piece in a series of comic mishaps unfurled with impeccable authorial control. Because being a duke is a story, and if people don’t believe you — if you’ve borrowed a gardener’s coat and left your valet behind and given away your signet ring — then they quickly stop treating you as a duke at all. The takedown is terrifyingly thorough.

Except, of course, that Valentine has fallen for Bonny, a gorgeous chaos muppet who survived a lonely childhood by telling himself as many wild romantic stories as possible. Stories about men loving other men, and marrying handsome dukes. As he rebuilds his sense of identity, Valentine asks: What kind of story does he really want his life to be?

At seven to one, there is an unusually high ratio of queer characters to dukes in this book. I’ve often been in a room with multiple queer people, but I have never met more than one duke. So refreshing to see a romance approach these proportions realistically.
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A rompy road-trip regency romance (say that five times fast). Valentine Layton, the Duke of Malvern, has been promised to marry the daughter of one of his father’s good friends. His parents have since passed and he feels like he finally needs to make good on that commitment and propose to her. What he didn’t count on was that Arabella and her twin brother Bonny have a flair for drama. When his proposal isn’t romantic enough, she runs away. Bonny then forces Valentine to accompany him through the country to find her. Lots of zany hijinks ensue and through out their trip Valentine and Bonny begin to fall in love. 

The romance itself was really sweet. I kind of got sick of Bonny and Valentine chasing the sister around and was hoping they would just let her go at some point, but other than that a fun, campy historical with a very large cast of LGBTQIA characters.
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When I first came across this book, I was so excited. A historical romance from Alexis Hall? Sign. Me. Up! Unfortunately, after actually reading the book, I was left feeling disappointed and angry.

Valentine Layton's father had one wish: for him to marry Arabella Tarleton. Valentine is determined to honour his father's wishes and proposes to Arabella, who unfortunately wanted something more romantic than just a standard proposal. So she runs away with her girlfriend, Peggy, who sometimes dresses as a man. Arabella's twin brother, Bonaventure aka "Bonny" wakes up Valentine in the middle of the night and forces him to go after Arabella, but not before laying into him for not being romantic enough during his proposal. Valentine is close to losing it, dealing with the Tarleton twins' antics. But then he starts to question everything he knew about life, love and himself.

I hated this book. Plain and simple. Every single character in this book can go to hell for what they have done or said to Valentine. Seriously. This wasn't funny or romantic in the slightest. Valentine gets criticised for every single thing he does or says, he gets tied up because Arabella convinces strangers that he's dangerous, he gets shot at, ridiculed, and so on. And then in the end, it's somehow Valentine who has to apologise for just trying to do the right thing. I was driven close to tears at certain points for how cruel everyone was to Valentine. Even Bonny, who claims to love him, thinks he needs to change and be someone else. That isn't love!

Hall really missed the mark with this one. Just an awful awful book.
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Alexis Hall + historical romance is the perfect pairing. The witty banter alone will keep you entertained, but add in the grumpy sunshine and SHENANIGANS, and I was extremely happy. I did get annoyed at the lengths Bonny would put up with his sister, but it didn’t take away from my enjoyment too much. If you want laughs and warmth, here you go!
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I absolutely loved this. It was so fun and hilarious. I loved the outrageous hijinks and the two main characters and how much banter they had with each other. Multiple times this book had me laughing out loud. It was just great.
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I received an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.

"If we lived life as though it were a novel, we'd spend all our time becoming embroiled in improbable adventures and spouting nonsense about filling our vast and empty souls with joyful aches."

This was my first Alexis Hall book and it's safe to say it will not be my last. This laugh-out-loud funny historical romcom follows Valentine (who is really a Duke), when his fianceé flees after his proposal he finds himself chasing her across England with her imaginative twin brother Bonny.

The first thing to say about this book is that it was extremely funny. I found myself laughing aloud on multiple occasions. I really enjoyed Hall's self-aware humour.

This book was incredibly beautifully written. I highlighted many phrases and paragraphs in this novel because I could not get over the beautiful writing. Hall is a master of language, I was surprised a book could be so poetic while also being humorous and even sexy at times.

That being said this book wasn't perfect. I felt like the pacing was a bit off in this one with them constantly catching up to Arabella then losing her again and the third act break up happening with just three chapters from the end. It didn't always flow naturally.

I also found some of the characters extremely difficult to like. Valentine makes a lot of bad decisions but he grows on you especially when he is able to admit his mistakes. I imagine many would struggle to like Arabella. Some aspects of her actions were understandable when you put yourself in her shoes but other times she takes things too far and it becomes extremely difficult to sympathise with her. That said I'd be interested in continuing in the series to see if she redeems herself later. Bonny and Peggy were extremely likable and I am so excited to read Peggy's book next.

Overall this was a highly enjoyable and beautifully written book. I recommend it to any adults who enjoy historical romance, romcoms or both!

Content Warnings: homophobia, violence, explicit sex
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I love Alexis Hall's writing so was eager to read SOMETHING FABULOUS. Historical romance is a weakness of mine especially when it features a grumpy/sunshine relationship and this book definitely did not disappoint. Full of heart and wit.
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I am 100% here for everything and anything Alexis Hall writes. Something Fabulous had all the banter, all the mystery, and a simply fabulous cast of queer characters. Seriously this is a must read
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