First Line Friday — The Siren of Sussex

31 Dec

Happy Friday! Can you believe tomorrow is a whole new year?! I am hoping 2022 will be a brighter year for everyone. I do know my reading prospects are good. 😉 One of the first books I will be reading in the new year is The Siren of Sussex by Mimi Matthews. Matthews is a new-to-me author, although I have several friends who count this author as a favorite. Find out all about her newest Victorian-era novel below.

Here’s the first line:

Evelyn Maltravers entered the dimly lit shop in Conduit Street.

Victorian high society’s most daring equestrienne finds love and an unexpected ally in her fight for independence in the strong arms of London’s most sought after and devastatingly handsome half-Indian tailor.

Evelyn Maltravers understands exactly how little she’s worth on the marriage mart. As an incurable bluestocking from a family tumbling swiftly toward ruin, she knows she’ll never make a match in a ballroom. Her only hope is to distinguish herself by making the biggest splash in the one sphere she excels: on horseback. In haute couture. But to truly capture London’s attention she’ll need a habit-maker who’s not afraid to take risks with his designs—and with his heart.

Half-Indian tailor Ahmad Malik has always had a talent for making women beautiful, inching his way toward recognition by designing riding habits for Rotten Row’s infamous Pretty Horsebreakers—but no one compares to Evelyn. Her unbridled spirit enchants him, awakening a depth of feeling he never thought possible.

But pushing boundaries comes at a cost and not everyone is pleased to welcome Evelyn and Ahmad into fashionable society. With obstacles spanning between them, the indomitable pair must decide which hurdles they can jump and what matters most: making their mark or following their hearts?

USA Today bestselling author Mimi Matthews writes both historical nonfiction and award-winning proper Victorian romances, including Fair as a Star, a Library Journal Best Romance of 2020; Gentleman Jim, a Kirkus Best Indie Romance of 2020; and The Work of Art, winner of the 2020 HOLT Medallion. Mimi’s novels have received starred reviews in Publishers Weekly, Library Journal, Booklist, and Kirkus, and her articles have been featured on the Victorian Web, the Journal of Victorian Culture, and in syndication at BUST Magazine. 

In her other life, Mimi is an attorney. She resides in California with her family, which includes a retired Andalusian dressage horse, a Sheltie, and two Siamese cats. Her next romance, The Siren of Sussex, will be out in 2022 from Berkley/Penguin Random House. To learn more, please visit

3 Responses to “First Line Friday — The Siren of Sussex”

  1. Cindy Davis December 31, 2021 at 11:15 am #

    I have heard great things about Mimi Matthews but have not read her yet. I hope to in 2022. Here is my Friday post:

    • rbclibrary December 31, 2021 at 12:58 pm #

      I haven’t read any of her books either. Looking forward to this novel.

  2. Paula Shreckhise December 31, 2021 at 3:02 pm #

    Just read a novella by Mimi!

    My first line is from The Mozart Code by Rachel McMillan:
    November 1946. Schloss Schonbrunn, Vienne
    Simon Barre had left his best revolver back at his family estate near Wilmington, Sussex, along with his Barrington surname.

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