This is the sequel to Romancing Mr. Bridgerton, which starts taking place around the end of this book (but isn't really a follow-up to it plot-wise).
Eloise Bridgerton has been pretty happy as a spinster. She had marriage proposals, and wanted to hold out for love. She didn't find it, but was pretty content. But then her fellow spinster best friend got married, and it threw Eloise into the tailspin that all we modern girls relate to.
Eloise is big on being a pen pal, and for the last year she's been corresponding with a widower who had been married to a distant cousin of hers. When Sir Phillip proposes that they meet and see if they are suited for marriage, Eloise sneaks off to his house chaperone-free (she really didn't want to bring her mother and sister along for this!). Since this is a Regency, you can pretty much figure out what's going to happen after THAT.
At first, it ain't all stars and roses. Phillip, an absent-minded professor-type who was unhappily married to a really really really depressed woman, is smitten at first sight. He never expected to get this lucky with a spinster. However, Eloise is downright disconcerted to find out that he has twin children he NEVER MENTIONED in a year of letter-writing. Said children are fairly bratty, hence why Phillip was soliciting for a marriage to anyone he could get that didn't know what the kids were like. Luckily for him, Eloise's vast experiences with siblings, nieces, and nephews soon help her get the upper hand with the kids. And Phillip gets to work through his issues with having a depressed wife, an abusive father, and figuring out how the heck to be a parent, which is nice.
This one kind of points out to me how Regencies annoy me. Which is to say, the natural processes of becoming a stepparent and going from "we hate you!" to "we love you new mommy!" happens WAY too fast for even remote realisticalness. Not that I couldn't see it happening ever, since the personalities of Eloise and the kids could certainly work that way. But given that in a Regency novel you have to marry off the H/H at least halfway through the novel (i.e. they've only known each other in person what, a week?) before anything can progress, it's just kinda fake. But...what are you gonna do, it's a Regency.
Three and a half stars. Not bad.