Carols and Chaos review ✓ 103

Carols and Chaos

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Ld be a disaster for either of them But staving off their feelings for each other becomes the least of their problems when a devious counterfeiting scheme reaches the gates of Shackleford Park and Kate and Matt are unwittingly swept up in the intrigue A companion book to Suitors and Sabotage For my fellow Downton Abbey and Jane Austen enthusiasts I could not think of a perfect book to get you into the holiday spirit CAROLS AND CHAOS is an absolutely charming story with characters you’ll fall madly in love with and a delicious sprinkling of mystery and adventure

read º eBook or Kindle ePUB È Cindy Anstey

A lady's maid and a valet become entangled in a yuletide counterfeiting scheme in this romantic Christmas YA adventure1817 The happy chaos of the Yuletide season has descended upon the country estate of Shackleford Park in full force but lady's maid Kate Darby barely has the time to notice B I’ve been a fan of all of Cindy’s books so I was eager to get to this one I liked Kate and Matt They’re both good and loyal people I loved the pride in their jobs and ambition for There are a lot a lot a lot of other characters in this story and it took me a minute to realize it was a sort of continuation of the previous book Plot wise it was sort of a mess For me there were too many moving parts too many repetitive scenes and not nearly enough dialogue When Kate are Matt are together and talking the story came alive Sadly those scenes were short and a lot of the time was spent in their heads as each day dreamed about the other Overall it was a cute story but it dragged than the other books And while I was curious to see how it played out sadly I was bored as well Huge thanks to Swoon Reads for providing the arc free of charge MARTINIQUE. : Produits du terroir et recettes traditionnelles romantic Christmas YA adventure1817 The happy chaos of the Yuletide season has descended upon the country estate of Shackleford Park in full force but lady's maid Kate Darby barely has the time to notice B I’ve been a fan of all of Cindy’s books so I was eager to get to this one I liked Kate and Matt They’re both good and loyal people I loved the pride in their jobs and ambition for There are a lot a lot a lot of other characters in this story and it took me a minute to Rêve de Guyane realize it was a sort of continuation of the previous book Plot wise it was sort of a mess For me there were too many moving parts too many

Cindy Anstey È 3 characters

Etween her household duties caring for her ailing mother and saving up money to someday own a dress shop her hands are uite full Matt Harlow is also rather busy He's performing double duty acting as valet for both of the Steeple brothers two of the estate's holiday guests Falling in love wou Kate Darby is looking forward to Christmas of 1817 Shackleford Park is hosting visitors both upstairs and down and they are also hosting a dinner for the staff and their families Kate has much to do and falling in love is not on the agenda but Mr Ernest and Ben Steeple bring along their footman Johnny and handsome valet Matt Harlow Matt really liked Kate when they met before and is eager to renew their acuaintance A romance is frowned upon in Shackleford Park and Matt also has plans for the future Matt's friend Johnny is eager to impress Camille LaPierre a ladies' maid but he lacks money to buy her little sisters a gift When he sells his worthless ring and receives only counterfeit coins in return Johnny is furious He's determined to find the man who cheated him and get his ring back The villagers don't take kindly to strangers asking uestions but Johnny insists When he fails to return home Matt is worried Everyone else assumes Johnny is sleeping off a hangover somewhere but Matt thinks his formerly wayward friend has reformed The longer Johnny is gone the Matt worries Only Kate believes him and together they set out to find the missing footmanThe first third of this book is really slow and failed to capture my attention I didn't know the characters from Suitors and Sabotage and I really didn't buy into the romance Why does Matt like Kate so much before they even meet again and why does she fall in love with him so uickly? I don't really know aside from physical attraction The romance aspect was just boring When the mystery is finally set up the book gets interesting I did figure out where Johnny was but not the rest of it The plot moved along at a uick pace after that and I enjoyed the mystery than the romance Historically speaking the story should have or could have been set in Victorian times or Edwardian times and been the same I didn't get much Regency history in this story It is set at Christmas and includes some of the Christmas traditions of the period but the Christmas celebrations were secondary to the plot I would have liked time spent on the historical details and period correct language The writing style is just too simplistic for me The characters are pretty flat I liked Kate well enough She's determined to make a better future for herself and her mother but not single minded She's kind and sympathetic to her mother's loneliness issues Kate is also a good listener and trusts Matt's instincts about his friend Kate seems well known and liked in the village Matt is a nice person and has the same goal as Kate but romance seems impossible given their situations I don't really like the way Matt flirts and teases Kate but she accepts it and responds in kind If you like flirty banter you'll love Matt If the characters had been better developed I may have liked them both better Johnny is a stereotypical young footman He was into gambling and other bad things when he was younger but Matt believes Johnny has reformed It's sad that Johnny's reputation meant no one believed he was in danger Johnny is brash and stupid at times He rushes in without thinking I don't believe he loves Camille but just wants her attention because she's beautiful and has a good job The villains are truly villainous I was shocked at the level of violence in this young adult novel One villain in particular can not be right in the head They are truly sadistic and enjoy hurting people One is level headed and practical and the other is greedy I really didn't like Kate's mother Dame Darby She's manipulative and doesn't appreciate all the help her sons give her I found her unrealistic for the time period For a lower class woman she should let her daughter do her job and be proud of her sons' accomplishments instead of bugging Kate to come help her all the time The housekeeper is unrealistically sympathetic Kate's friend Marie is constantly cranky without good reason She just got promoted to ladies' maid what does she have to complain about? She is a good friend to Kate though in her own way The butler is properly rude and snooty He isn't a likable character but he may be the most realistic of all the servantsThis story is unusual as it focuses only on the points of view of downstairs characters but we do get to meet the upstairs family None of them seemed realistic The young ladies and gentlemen would have been raised to accept their stations and their preordained roles A young man of aristocratic birth would NOT be an architect A younger son would join the navy the army the law or the church A young lady giving art lessons would be beyond the pale No young lady wanted to work for a living They're all so kind and nice to the servants even when the footman runs off I think it's a bit of a stretch that they would have a search party out except that there's a second crime that may have led to Johnny's disappearance and the Home Office wants to catch who is responsible Find Johnny find the villains All in all it's a nice pleasant forgettable story I believe this author's books are not for me or for the true Regency aficionados However if you enjoyed Downton Abbey and the unrealistic idealized world that story is set in you will probably enjoy this novel MARTINIQUE. : Produits du terroir et recettes traditionnelles roles A young man of aristocratic birth would NOT be an architect A younger son would join the navy the army the law or the church A young lady giving art lessons would be beyond the pale No young lady wanted to work for a living They're all so kind and nice to the servants even when the footman


10 thoughts on “Carols and Chaos

  1. says:

    DNF at 50%Honestly I just couldn't care less for these characters and I was super bored even through listening to the audiobook so byeeeeeeee


  2. says:

    I have read Love Lies and Spies I know it was a completely different book but that was such a hooking story and narration The amount of love going there was something that gets me to this day That was why I was hoping for huge improvements over Carols and Chaos Carols and Chaos tells the story of a lady’s maid and a valet getting tangled to a coin counterfeiting It sounds seriously engaging And swoon worthyHoweverI can’t help but cringe a lot and feel mortified for the events that just happened here The beginning seemingly was not that engaging at all The narration was tolerable And as it goes it diminished but halfway through it became staggeredThe dialogue was what made me feel embarrassed I read through and between the lines I see that there is a strong chemistry that isn’t forced upon But whenever they open their mouth and goes on banter with each other I couldn’t brush off the feeling of forcing it way too muchEspecially when they were getting close in their hunt for the culprit and when they are interacting with the culprit I can only take much I wanted to abandon it And pick up another romance read The interacting among these gentlemen and lady was horrid It was unnatural and contrived The setting was exceptional; I love that is set out in the past in an older time I get to see and feel these places of how it was then And that it gives a romantic touch I like that aspect of it There is an undeniable chemistry between the two lovebirds and I love the ending and the ending alone It was worth swooning over however the thing I mentioned above happened I hope that there were changes that had gone through with the finished copy I received a complimentary copy through NetGalley All views and opinions are my own and don’t necessarily reflect the author the author’s work the publisher nor any other group of people nor receive any monetary compensation for doing this review


  3. says:

    I’ve been a fan of all of Cindy’s books so I was eager to get to this one I liked Kate and Matt They’re both good and loyal people I loved the pride in their jobs and ambition for There are a lot a lot a lot of other characters in this story and it took me a minute to realize it was a sort of continuation of the previous book Plot wise it was sort of a mess For me there were too many moving parts too many repetitive scenes and not nearly enough dialogue When Kate are Matt are together and talking the story came alive Sadly those scenes were short and a lot of the time was spent in their heads as each day dreamed about the other Overall it was a cute story but it dragged than the other books And while I was curious to see how it played out sadly I was bored as well Huge thanks to Swoon Reads for providing the arc free of charge


  4. says:

    Mini review Minor spoilersDNFTrigger Warning None till the point I readI have read the author's debut and enjoyed it I was excited to dive into another book by this author Unfortunately I didn't enjoy itThe beginning really confused me For some reason I thought she ran into an employee and not an actual bull The humor wasn't funny either I simply lost interestI do recommend This was a personal thing and I have a feeling other's will enjoy it


  5. says:

    Reading this book immediately took me back to all of those hours binge watching Downton Abbey gah I loved that show I love the upstairsdownstairs drama At the same time it reminded me of Pride and Prejudice specifically the Austen era which I also love and so I uickly became engrossed in this sweet storyThe characters are varied and fantastic Kate is strong willed determined and unperturbed by most of the things thrown her way and Matt is the epitome of a true English gentlemanTheir fast paced romance is full of fun and flirtation but entangled with elements of drama and danger that keep the plot intriguing and moving forward Carols and Chaos is a sweet lighthearted Christmas read that is perfect for fans of Downton Abbey and Austen novels ​As an aside After reading this book I noticed that it's a spin off from one of the author's other books Suitors and Sabotage but I didn't at any point feel as though I'd missed anything by not reading it so I'm happy to say that this can be read as a standalone


  6. says:

    Kate Darby is looking forward to Christmas of 1817 Shackleford Park is hosting visitors both upstairs and down and they are also hosting a dinner for the staff and their families Kate has much to do and falling in love is not on the agenda but Mr Ernest and Ben Steeple bring along their footman Johnny and handsome valet Matt Harlow Matt really liked Kate when they met before and is eager to renew their acuaintance A romance is frowned upon in Shackleford Park and Matt also has plans for the future Matt's friend Johnny is eager to impress Camille LaPierre a ladies' maid but he lacks money to buy her little sisters a gift When he sells his worthless ring and receives only counterfeit coins in return Johnny is furious He's determined to find the man who cheated him and get his ring back The villagers don't take kindly to strangers asking uestions but Johnny insists When he fails to return home Matt is worried Everyone else assumes Johnny is sleeping off a hangover somewhere but Matt thinks his formerly wayward friend has reformed The longer Johnny is gone the Matt worries Only Kate believes him and together they set out to find the missing footmanThe first third of this book is really slow and failed to capture my attention I didn't know the characters from Suitors and Sabotage and I really didn't buy into the romance Why does Matt like Kate so much before they even meet again and why does she fall in love with him so uickly? I don't really know aside from physical attraction The romance aspect was just boring When the mystery is finally set up the book gets interesting I did figure out where Johnny was but not the rest of it The plot moved along at a uick pace after that and I enjoyed the mystery than the romance Historically speaking the story should have or could have been set in Victorian times or Edwardian times and been the same I didn't get much Regency history in this story It is set at Christmas and includes some of the Christmas traditions of the period but the Christmas celebrations were secondary to the plot I would have liked time spent on the historical details and period correct language The writing style is just too simplistic for me The characters are pretty flat I liked Kate well enough She's determined to make a better future for herself and her mother but not single minded She's kind and sympathetic to her mother's loneliness issues Kate is also a good listener and trusts Matt's instincts about his friend Kate seems well known and liked in the village Matt is a nice person and has the same goal as Kate but romance seems impossible given their situations I don't really like the way Matt flirts and teases Kate but she accepts it and responds in kind If you like flirty banter you'll love Matt If the characters had been better developed I may have liked them both better Johnny is a stereotypical young footman He was into gambling and other bad things when he was younger but Matt believes Johnny has reformed It's sad that Johnny's reputation meant no one believed he was in danger Johnny is brash and stupid at times He rushes in without thinking I don't believe he loves Camille but just wants her attention because she's beautiful and has a good job The villains are truly villainous I was shocked at the level of violence in this young adult novel One villain in particular can not be right in the head They are truly sadistic and enjoy hurting people One is level headed and practical and the other is greedy I really didn't like Kate's mother Dame Darby She's manipulative and doesn't appreciate all the help her sons give her I found her unrealistic for the time period For a lower class woman she should let her daughter do her job and be proud of her sons' accomplishments instead of bugging Kate to come help her all the time The housekeeper is unrealistically sympathetic Kate's friend Marie is constantly cranky without good reason She just got promoted to ladies' maid what does she have to complain about? She is a good friend to Kate though in her own way The butler is properly rude and snooty He isn't a likable character but he may be the most realistic of all the servantsThis story is unusual as it focuses only on the points of view of downstairs characters but we do get to meet the upstairs family None of them seemed realistic The young ladies and gentlemen would have been raised to accept their stations and their preordained roles A young man of aristocratic birth would NOT be an architect A younger son would join the navy the army the law or the church A young lady giving art lessons would be beyond the pale No young lady wanted to work for a living They're all so kind and nice to the servants even when the footman runs off I think it's a bit of a stretch that they would have a search party out except that there's a second crime that may have led to Johnny's disappearance and the Home Office wants to catch who is responsible Find Johnny find the villains All in all it's a nice pleasant forgettable story I believe this author's books are not for me or for the true Regency aficionados However if you enjoyed Downton Abbey and the unrealistic idealized world that story is set in you will probably enjoy this novel


  7. says:

    When I was looking for a holiday listen I was tickled to see this offered and jumped at the chance for a suspenseful dip into the Regency world below stairs during Yuletide The gentry are about their revels and so are the servants until a footman goes missing and a fake coin turns up in the nearby market townCarols and Chaos turned out to be a follow up companion novel to Suitors and Sabotage though now the story heads below stairs for a valet and lady's maid to get their own romantic adventure It probably would have had meaning if I'd listened to the first book but this one was still an engaging standaloneIt is December 1817 and Shackleford Park is hosting a houseparty involving Miss Imogene's fiance and his family Imogene's lady's maid Kate Darby is excited to welcome along with her mistress' guests Matt Harlow Ben Steeples' valet Before they can barely get up a flirtation Matt's friend Johnny gets swindled with a fake coin when a red headed stranger bought his ring and then when he goes looking for the man Johnny disappears In between taking care of her mother her duties to her lady the estate Yuletide festivities and thoughts of Matt Kate is bustling about Matt and Kate do their best around their duties to find Johnny and start fearing the worstThe lavish historical backdrop and attention to authenticity was fabulous It was an engaging look of life below stairs during the holiday season and how life in the serving class was conducted The mystery wasn't that difficult though there were some good surprises and suspenseful momentsThe set up of introducing the situation at Shackleford Kate's life as a local girl with family complications and then the addition of the guests at the estate all made this one start slow and keep to that slower pace until near the end when things leaped into dangerKate and Matt were adorable and I was cheering for them to find a way to be together though they were in service at two different houses and as servants had to be careful about their reputations and keep their growing feelings hidden They bantered and flirted but also made a good team There was a charm to their sweet Christmas romanceFiona Hardingham did a bang up job as a narrator for a cast of characters that included men and women and different classes She even did varying degrees in the servant's class to reflect their class structure too Some of her male voices were somewhat pinched but I did enjoy her storytelling voice and her sense of tone and pacing I would definitely listen to of her workAll in all this first time with a new to me author was a big success I enjoyed dipping into her Regency world and want to experience This is marked as YA but I think adult historical romance fans would appreciate this one tooMy thanks to Listening Library for the opportunity to listen to this book in exchange for an honest review


  8. says:

    For my fellow Downton Abbey and Jane Austen enthusiasts I could not think of a perfect book to get you into the holiday spirit CAROLS AND CHAOS is an absolutely charming story with characters you’ll fall madly in love with and a delicious sprinkling of mystery and adventure


  9. says:

    I've pretty much adored all of Cindy Anstey's previous works and this book was no exception I wish I'd realized that this was a companion to Suitors and Sabotage though so I could have re read that book first and refamiliarized myself with the lords and ladies above stairs before setting out to solve this caper with characters from below stairs This was a sweet romance full of Yuletide cheer while also maintaining and air of mystery and while it wasn't the most compelling of Anstey's books thus far I still found it charming A lovely read for this time of year


  10. says:

    Rating 4 StarsI expected this book to be a cutesy light read with all the mushy sappy feels but I did not expect it to have less mush and thrills and dramaticsWill review just need to catch up on some other reviews before returning to this one


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