Only a Promise (The Survivors' Club, #5) – Mary Balogh
Ralph Stockwood escaped the Napoleonic Wars with only the scars on his body. He lived. But he can never forgive himself for the friends who didn’t. Being a member of the Survivors’ Club has helped Ralph keep his head up, but even they can’t help him find his way forward in a world so full of the change that he detests.
After a few London seasons and a scandal that she won’t soon forget, Chloe Muirhead never wants to see the city again. She keeps telling herself that she is perfectly happy being a companion to her grandmother’s best friend, the Duchess of Worthingham, who lives a quiet life in the country. But deep down she knows that’s not true, and when an opportunity comes knocking, Chloe finds that she cannot say no. She only asks that Ralph makes her one promise: that he will never make her return to London.
This fifth novel in Mary Balogh’s best selling Survivor’s Club series is tied with the fourth, Only Enchanting, for being my favorite. Phoebe is possibly my favorite of the heroines. She is spirited and witty, and that’s always nice in a historical fiction. While this story focuses more on the secrets people keep than forgiveness, both are essential to the plot of the series as a whole. Phoebe never wants to return to town, and while Ralph doesn’t particularly care, he is a man of duty, and this causes numerous problems.
Near the end of the book, there is a large party and the much of the ton is in attendance. It may be the only real ton party we see in the series actually, I forget, but at this party we get little cameos from not one, not two, but three of the Bedwyns! The Bedwyn family makes up the central characters of Balogh’s Slightly series, which is one of my absolute all-time romance favorites. I think I actually shrieked when I saw their names on the page. It’s crazy that after reading the Slightly series nearly 5 years ago I would still recognize their names, but I did! I might have actually shed a single tear of happiness as well, just because I was so excited. The Bedwyns and their dry humor are just fantastic and never fail to make me smile.
The romance, miscommunication, secrecy, and mistrust are simply so well done in this book, and the character development is superb. Highly, highly recommend.
HHC Rating: 5 Stars
Other Reviews in this Series & By This Author: The Bedwyns/ “Slightlys”:: Book 0.5 – One Night for Love Book 0.75 – A Summer To Remember Book 1 – Slightly Married Book 2 – Slightly Wicked Book 3 – Slightly Scandalous Book 4 – Slightly Tempted Book 5 – Slightly Sinful Book 6 – Slightly Dangerous Book 6.5 – Once Upon A Dream The “Simplys”:: Book 1 – Simply Unforgettable Book 2 – Simply Love Book 3 – Simply Magic Book 4 – Simply Perfect The Huxtables:: Book 1 – First Comes Love Book 2 – Then Comes Seduction Book 3 – At Last Comes Love Book 4 – Seducing And Angel Book 5 – A Secret Affair The Survivors’ Club:: Book 1 – The Proposal Book 1.5 – The Suitor Book 2 – The Arrangement Book 3 – The Escape Book 4 – Only Enchanting Book 5 – Only A Promise *(This Review)* Book 6 – Only A Kiss Book 7 – Only Beloved The Westcotts:: Book 1 – Someone to Love Book 2 – Someone To Hold Book 3 – Someone to Wed Book 4 – Someone to Care Book 5 – Someone to Trust Book 6 – Someone to Honor Book 7 – Someone to Remember Book 8 – Someone to Romance (2020) Book 9 – TK – Harry