Book Review: The Gentleman of Holly Street by Lotte R. James

Book Tour with Rachel’s Random Resources

Thank you, Rachel’s Random Resources, for the chance to take part in the book tour for The Gentleman of Holly Street by Lotte R. James.

The Gentleman of Holly Street is a holiday romance novel that comes out on the 29th of November. This 279-page book is the third in the Gentlemen of Mystery series and is published by Harlequin Historical.

Fans of the miscommunication trope will love this book. Mena and Freddie have had close to a decade to figure out where they stand and what they mean to each other, but they will only do that once everything is on the line.

My review will have some spoilers, so do keep that in mind before you go forward. I will be putting the blurb and links just so you can head on over there instead of reading my review!


Will this Christmas…

Change their lives again?

After self-made gentleman Freddie Walton rescued penniless Philomena Nichols at Christmas eight years ago, he never imagined that he would build his empire with her. Yet whilst they have created a life together as friends, Freddie can’t let their special connection become more than that. Not when his dangerous past continues to haunt him… But what happens when Freddie’s feelings for Philomena also refuse to stay hidden?



I read a lot of regency romance and found it refreshing to read a book where the characters weren’t surrounded by wealth at every twist and turn. Mena and Freddie clearly remember where they came from and know they don’t have the luxury of resting. Mena was a great character; she kept moving forward to try and build something without dwelling too much on what she’d lost. In contrast, when Freddie moves forward, he’s still looking at the past, wondering when he’ll have to pay for his sins. The miscommunication trope works well with them because it feels like their fierce independence is a trauma response; Mena doesn’t know where she’ll go next when things fall apart, while Freddie can’t openly care for her because he feels like he doesn’t deserve her.

The book is also set in an exciting time. We see it briefly when the merchants celebrate a friend’s fine new house; they’re now making money in a way where they can buy everything except the title. They know that when it comes to money, the merchants and nobility are now on an equal playing field. This is why Mena views Lady Mary as a potential partner for Freddie; they live in an age where the right amount of money can allow them to marry into nobility; it’ll raise a few eyebrows but they can do it.

(On a side note, does anyone know whether if this was possible in regency England? I know men could have married below their station but wasn’t that a lot harder or impossible for women?)

I don’t want to go into this too much because I’ll spoil the book more than I already have! I will say that it’s not a very gothic romance to me, even if I do see all the holiday romance vibes.

About the Author

Lotte James trained as an actor and theatre director, but spent most of her life working day jobs crunching numbers whilst dreaming up stories of love and adventure. She’s thrilled to finally be writing those stories, and when she’s not scribbling on tiny pieces of paper, she can usually be found wandering the countryside for inspiration, or nestling with coffee!

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