Winner of Best Novel and Best Romance Novel - 2013 Whitney Awards
Kate Worthington knows her heart and she knows she will never marry. Her plan is to travel to India instead — if only to find peace for her restless spirit and to escape the family she abhors. But Kate’s meddlesome mother has other plans. She makes a bargain with Kate: India, yes, but only after Kate has secured — and rejected — three marriage proposals.
Kate journeys to the stately manor of Blackmoore determined to fulfill her end of the bargain sooner rather than later and enlists the help of her dearest childhood friend, Henry Delafield. But when it comes to matters of love, bargains are meaningless and plans are changeable. There on the wild lands of Blackmoore, Kate must face the truth that has kept her heart captive. Will the proposal she is determined to reject actually be the one thing that will set her heart free?
Set in Northern England in 1820, Blackmoore is a regency romance that tells the story of a young woman struggling to learn how to follow her heart.
“Readers will be absolutely captivated by the beautiful imagery, sizzling tension, and mesmerizing plot.” — Publisher's Weekly
“Blackmoore is light and easy to read, perfect for a day at the beach or over tea and crumpets served in the best china.” — Foreward Reviews
Unabridged audio book
By Melissa, Submitted on 2015-02-25
A book that is hard to put down. I absolutely loved reading Blackmore.
By Lisa, Submitted on 2015-02-25
I believe that Julianne Donaldson has become one of my favorite author's. I will be looking for anything and everything she writes.
Blackmoore is a beautifully written story. Kate Worthington comes from a dysfunctional home. She lives a life of privilege. But the price is high for her comforts. Her mother is more concerned with wealth and making pushing her daughters into marriages of convenience and profit than of their emotional stability or well being.
Kate's goal is to be a very different person than her mother. She doesn't want to flirt with anyone and everyone or have a marriage of disdain. She wants to be free, to live a life of adventure, to make her own decisions.
Henry is her closest friend. He is also the one that she loves. There are circumstances that are keeping them apart. She wants to travel to India with her aunt to keep herself and Henry free.
I really enjoyed that Julianne used chapters revisiting Kate's life. It helped me to understand her and the reasoning behind her decisions. It also showed how much compassion Kate has for others. It made me feel sorry for the young girl who endured many things.
This is a book that I would love to revisit again. It is a clean romance that reconfirms my faith in the power of love and the possibility of a happily ever after.
By Renae, Submitted on 2015-02-25
The lucid descriptions bring me back to a classy embarkment of a tale of romance that keeps you turning the pages, wanting more. Donaldson paints a beautiful picture on every page of this novel, I was captivated and impressed with not only the story line, and the exciting twists in the main characters story, but the author's willingness to open your eyes to the secrets, and heart of one adventurous Kate Worthington.
The main character, Kate Worthington, struggles with a secret she promises never to tell, her only sacrifice ends up being the only man she really truly ever loved. Her heart belongs to BlackMoore and has since the day her friends Henry and Sylvia told her of their manor on the cliffs. Secrets and mysteries are uncovered slowly, but in good fashion as the author keeps you salivating for more of Kate Worthington and her desires to be free.
To read a classy romance, filled with chivalry set in a classy time is a breath of fresh air, Donaldson writes freely and confidently, and I would recommend this book to anyone looking for an escape, but beware, your time getting to know Kate and her secrets goes by all to fast as you will not be able to put this book down.
By Kelli, Submitted on 2015-02-25
Loved this book. I couldn't put it down. I stayed up way late into the night. I guess I shouldn’t have started reading it after dinner. I was even reading it when I was cooking meals that’s how much I hated to put it down. It's one of my new favorites. Right up there with Pride and Prejudice.
I loved how the author developed her characters. She made them so real. She has vivid descriptions throughout the book. It made it very easy to picture what she was talking about. I kept waiting for Kitty and Henry to realize how they felt about one another. I loved how we were kept in suspense as to why Kitty said she would never marry. I found myself sad, getting angry and laughing at some of the characters. I loved the scene with the grandfather. It reminded me of trying to talk to my grandmother.
This is a book that I will let my kids read. It is a wonderful, well written and clean romance story.
By Heidi, Submitted on 2015-02-25
I love Julianne Donaldson's books! They are some of my favorite books ever. Even though there is only two so far, I hope there will be many more. I truly loved this one just as I did Edenbrooke. This one though touched my heart in unique ways. Maybe it's because I really felt for Kate and her desire to determine her own future. Maybe it's the way she struggled to figure out what her heart really wanted and what the right thing to do was. In any case, I loved Kate and Henry and their love story. I did have a hard time reading about their mother's however, both of whom were selfish jerks who cared much more for appearances and position, and society than about the happiness of their children. The way they tried to manipulate and use their own children made me want to seriously punch them in their respective noses, and I am not a normally violent person.
The story reminded me that sometimes choices have to be made between what we want and what we want most. Kate and Henry must both face some difficult choices. Choices of the heart and choices of the mind. Kate desperately wants to escape what she calls her 'cage' and experience the world and her aunt's invitation to accompany her to India seems like the perfect opportunity, if only her mother would agree. After making an agreement with her mother, she sets off for Blackmoore, soon to be Henry's home, determined to avoid marriage, but Henry has other plans. I loved the scenes with Kate and Henry, they made me smile. And nobody writes heart-wrenching kissing scenes like Julianne Donaldson. Another book for the favorites shelf.
By Cathy, Submitted on 2015-02-25
This book is awesome! I love Kate, I love how her family calls her Kitty, but she's stubbornly trying to reinvent herself as Kate. I love the idea of a large estate on the ocean with tons of secret passages to hide in. I really loved all of the characters in this story, they are all so complex, at first you think that their motivation is something other than it ends up being. Julianne Donaldson is a master of making you think you are where the story takes place, I could imagine the setting of the house Blackmoore on the moors of England with the ocean behind. The plot is complex, and engaging. The story didn't end at all how I thought it would. And, of course, I love the cover too! I can't wait to read the next book by Julianne Donaldson!
By Shauna, Submitted on 2015-02-25
ROMANCE AT IT BEST!
SO. SO. SO. GOOD!
And I could go on and on about this breath-taking book, for it truly is a definite must-read for anyone who loves a good love story like I do.
Kate has been keeping secrets from her two best friends, Henry and Sylvia. Secrets too terrible to reveal. Secrets that have made her determined to never marry!
Instead she will travel to India with her aunt and leave the trapped feelings she has of being at home.
But Kate's mother has always wanted her daughters to marry...so she bargains with Kate. Kate must receive, and then deny, three marriage proposals at the summer gathering in the Blackmoore manor before she can travel to India.
Can she find 3 men to propose to her?
Can she find the escape her heart so desires?
Read this fabulous book to find the answers found in this one woman's secretly locked heart...you will be so happy you did!
By Andrea, Submitted on 2015-02-25
I have Edenbrooke but have to admit, I haven't read it yet. Busy, busy, busy, I guess. I got Blackmoore as an ebook and it was easy to carry with me so I started it and just couldn't put it down. I don't read a lot of fiction, but when I do, I want it to be light, uplifting, heartfelt, and sweet. This was all of those things --- the perfect "something" to lift me out of the (sometimes) drudgery of the world. I thoroughly enjoyed it and am on to Edenbrooke now!
By Mindy, Submitted on 2015-02-25
Kate Worthington comes from a loveless family. Her mother and her sisters only want what is best for them, even at the expense of others. Kate is nothing like them. What Kate wants most in the world is to go to India. Her deplorable mother wants her to marry Mr. Cooper. That disgusts Kate, mostly because she said she will never marry. Her best friends are Henry and Sylvia Delafield. Every year they go to Blackmoore, the estate which Henry will inherit, and Kate has always wanted to go. She finally gets her chance, but she makes a deal with the devil. Her mother.
Everything about this book is beautiful. The story, the setting, the characters, even the not so nice ones. As much I loved Julianne's first book, Edenbrooke, I loved Blackmoore even more. I was instantly taken into Kate's world. Although she is a stubborn character, I enjoyed her sense of adventure and I loved that she knew what she wanted. Even though it may not be what her heart wants. I enjoyed her walks in the moors, her exploring the manor, and I especially loved it when she was with Henry. There is a scene where they are on the beach together talking that I read several times. There are some complications with her relationship with Henry. I can't give anything away, but I could not put this book down until I was finished. I had tears in the eyes many times, and the tears at the end were from happiness.
5 out of 5 stars. Edenbrooke won Best Romance for a 2012 Whitney Award and Julianne also won the Whitney for Best Novel of the Year for a new author.
By Heather, Submitted on 2015-02-25
An absolutely stunning second novel by Julianne Donaldson. This book is a treasure that will remain forever on my shelves and be shared through generations. Julianne has taken Jane Austen's style and period and crafted a novel that is poetic, deep, haunting and classically romantic. I re-read Blackmoore in preparation for my post, and those who know me well will know that I have only read a handful of books twice through. I think I can honestly say it was better the second time than the first. There is just so much to be discovered and unfurled. There are so many levels of symbolism, sentiment and character development that one could safely read and re read Blackmooore over and over again.
Kate Worthington is a voice we can all relate to, a women on a quest to discover who she really is and how to escape her cultural traps. She feels misunderstood and misplaced within her family of ill behaved women. When a series of revelations about her mother and her childhood friend Henry lead her on a path of change, she decides it is time to lock up her heart for good. Her deepest desire is to visit Blackmoore, the summer estate of Henry's family and to make a trip to India with her Aunt Charlotte. Her dreams are almost dashed when she rejects the unwelcome arrangements of her mother, but Kate has a plan...one that just might break the heart of her admirer and break the chains of her entrapment.
The Gothic tone and mysterious setting of the moors next to the sea make this a wonderful Fall or rainy day read. Written in Kate's first person point of view with flashbacks from the past, the story line moves swiftly and I admit I read it all in one day. It is amazingly well written and I will recommend it to all my friends.
By Stephanie, Submitted on 2015-02-25
Kate "Kitty" Worthington is determined to never marry. She bides her time waiting to go on a promised and long desired trip to Blackmoore, the estate of her dear friends Henry and Sylvia, Kate knows that once she escapes the confines of her home and the weight of her oppressive mother she can at last be free. Free from marriage to a wretched old man, free from her tedious life and free to go to India with her aunt Charlotte.
Kate's sly mother has other plans for her though, telling Kate that she will be free to go to India only if she receives 3 proposals of marriage and declines them during her visit to Blackmoore. Kate thinks that her mother's bargain shouldn't be too hard...until she arrives at Blackmoore. Upon arrival she discovers that she wasn't really invited and Henry's intended bride is there as well bringing long suppressed emotions to both Kate and Henrys friendship. Afraid that her plans to travel with her aunt are in jeopardy, Kate asks Henry, her friend, confidante, and the man who has secretly held her heart since childhood to help her...with unexpected results.
A true Regency romance, Blackmoore is an addictive read that will have you laughing, crying and romantically sighing...
By Glenda, Submitted on 2015-02-25
I found it very hard to put down; wanting to know how Kate would manage to work things out, despite the devious grasp of her mother. The vivid descriptions of the characters brought them to life in the imagination, and the scenes of the house and countryside made it seem like you were there. Kate could be so frustrating at times and Henry so feeling. Even though I did not agree with all of Kate's thoughts and actions, it made fascinating reading. It showed how family members can affect each other. A page turner!
By Carol, Submitted on 2015-02-25
Kate had some very similar character/thought processing traits to Marianne in 'Edenbrook'. It was almost annoying. BUT the storyline was worth the read and I hope that Julianne keeps writing!
By Korree , Submitted on 2015-02-25
A must read for any romantic!
By Jennifer, Submitted on 2015-02-25
I loved the last third of this book! The complaint I have is that I had to wait until the end for the happy ending these two so deserved. Julianne Donaldson created a world that made me smile, cringe (because of unfeeling parents), put the book away because I just couldn't read another heartbreaking moment, then celebrate because of true love winning in the end. Creating characters that I could see, feel, and had a genuine hope for...that is a good book! I re-read my favorite moments, and found myself sighing, with a small smile even the second (and third) time around. Thanks!
By Joyce, Submitted on 2015-02-25
Julianne has done it again. I loved Edenbrooke and I love Blackmoore. I appreciate the way she makes each character come alive and you either love them or dislike them. I was glad she included the past encounters between Katy and Henry to help us understand their relationship. Very well written. There was just one thing; it left me wanting more at the end, like what happened to certain people. (mom, sister, friend, etc)
By Rachael, Submitted on 2015-02-25
**Warning: Contains Spoilers**
Nothing renders me more useless than a great book and "Blackmoore" rendered me truly useless! I couldn't put it down! I loved the strong, female lead and the male lead was charming.
This book is chick lit so the ending was a little predictable but the how-would-they-get-there kept me turning pages. Kate, in the beginning, stated that she would never marry and I wondered what her motivations were. Julianne Donaldson did a fantastic job at keeping me wondering until I was completely engaged in the story but she didn't make me wait so long for answers that I was annoyed by the not knowing.
Delightful book! I recommend it!
By Vicki, Submitted on 2015-02-25
This is a great love story. I loved how the author writes about flashbacks to explain what Kate and Henry have shared and to bring the reader up to date on their lives. As Kate deals with her trials, we learn about her heart and Henry's. It was interesting, heart wrenching, sad, and happy ending. I loved the description of Blackmoore and would love to visit there.
By Krista, Submitted on 2015-02-25
As with Julianne's first novel "Edenbrooke", I was swept away by all ranges of emotions when reading "Blackmoore". It was so descriptive, I felt as if I were actually with all the characters, seeing and feeling what they were at that moment. Although I had a hunch it would end as it did, I still cried for joy in the last few pages. It has left me craving for more clean, yet thoroughly enticing books from the excellent author!!
By camille, Submitted on 2015-02-25
“Julianne Donaldson is the ‘modern day Jane Austen’ and as such has created another masterpiece that exceeds the brilliance of her first novel. A book that causes the feeling of raw and intense emotions to escape from the pages and to reach into the reader’s soul. The use of Greek, German, and English mythologies and legends adds to the experience that the story leads you on and raises the curiosity in the reader to further their knowledge through research. Blackmoore , like Edenbrookes, leaves you satisfied and wanting more. Keep writing Julianne, keep writing.”
~ Camille Saunderson