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A Defense of Honor

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When Katherine "Kit" FitzGilbert turned her back on London society more than a decade ago, she determined never to set foot in a ballroom again. But when business takes her to London and she's forced to run for her life, she stumbles upon not only a glamorous ballroom but also Graham, Lord Wharton. What should have been a chance encounter becomes much more as Graham embark When Katherine "Kit" FitzGilbert turned her back on London society more than a decade ago, she determined never to set foot in a ballroom again. But when business takes her to London and she's forced to run for her life, she stumbles upon not only a glamorous ballroom but also Graham, Lord Wharton. What should have been a chance encounter becomes much more as Graham embarks on a search for his friend's missing sister and is convinced Kit knows more about the girl than she's telling. After meeting Graham, Kit finds herself wishing things could have been different for the first time in her life, but what she wants can't matter. Long ago, she dedicated herself to helping women escape the same scorn that drove her from London and to raising the innocent children caught in the crossfire. But as much as she desperately wishes to tell Graham everything, the risk of revealing the truth may come at too high a price for those she loves.


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When Katherine "Kit" FitzGilbert turned her back on London society more than a decade ago, she determined never to set foot in a ballroom again. But when business takes her to London and she's forced to run for her life, she stumbles upon not only a glamorous ballroom but also Graham, Lord Wharton. What should have been a chance encounter becomes much more as Graham embark When Katherine "Kit" FitzGilbert turned her back on London society more than a decade ago, she determined never to set foot in a ballroom again. But when business takes her to London and she's forced to run for her life, she stumbles upon not only a glamorous ballroom but also Graham, Lord Wharton. What should have been a chance encounter becomes much more as Graham embarks on a search for his friend's missing sister and is convinced Kit knows more about the girl than she's telling. After meeting Graham, Kit finds herself wishing things could have been different for the first time in her life, but what she wants can't matter. Long ago, she dedicated herself to helping women escape the same scorn that drove her from London and to raising the innocent children caught in the crossfire. But as much as she desperately wishes to tell Graham everything, the risk of revealing the truth may come at too high a price for those she loves.

30 review for A Defense of Honor

  1. 3 out of 5

    Kellyn Roth

    Original Review After I Just Finished It: 4.5 stars? Not sure, might even be five after I think about it. At first I was seriously like, "I like blackmailing people! Why'd they have to stop blackmailing?" Then *coughs* I remembered that blackmailing is wrong. Oh well, I suppose it couldn't go on forever. ;) It was really great! Actual Review: Originally posted on Reveries Reviews. Title: A Defense of Honor Author: Kristi Ann Hunter Series: Haven Manor, #1 Genre: Christian Historical Romance Era: 1810s (Reg Original Review After I Just Finished It: 4.5 stars? Not sure, might even be five after I think about it. At first I was seriously like, "I like blackmailing people! Why'd they have to stop blackmailing?" Then *coughs* I remembered that blackmailing is wrong. Oh well, I suppose it couldn't go on forever. ;) It was really great! Actual Review: Originally posted on Reveries Reviews. Title: A Defense of Honor Author: Kristi Ann Hunter Series: Haven Manor, #1 Genre: Christian Historical Romance Era: 1810s (Regency) Setting: England, London and countryside Publisher: Bethany House Publishers Source: from the publisher in exchange for honest review Overall Rating: 5/5 stars A Defense of Honor by Kristi Ann Hunter WHOA! If you thought Hawthorne House was good, get ready for something even more fantastic! Hunter’s Haven Manor series looks to be the most fantastic thing she – or any other author – has come out with in a while! Let’s just get right into things before I start fangirling. PLOT: 5/5 *incoherent screaming* OH MY GOODNESS! This plot is so amazing that it makes all the other amazing plots ashamed of their lack of amazing! I don’t want to give spoilers, so I won’t go into it much. I couldn’t put it down! It was paced perfectly, it was entertaining, it made sense … When a book doesn’t have a ton of issues (none that I can remember), there’s often not a lot to say. However, I was so, so pleased! CHARACTERS: 5/5 THE CHARACTERS WERE AMAZING! :D I got so into Kit’s mind that I forgot the difference between right and wrong. xD So yep. Kudos to the author; I think I’ve got a book hangover. Both Kit and Graham were excellent characters! I’m so excited to read an update about their lives in the next books. ;) Other amazing characters who I loved to death: Daphne, Aaron & Oliver, Jess, Priscilla … they’re all so much fun! Basically, all the characters were amazing! I cannot put into words how excited I am to see them again in the next book! SETTING: 5/5 As far as I could tell, there were no major inaccuracies in the book and the setting was well-portrayed. There are some very unconventional characters, especially for the era, but Hunter pulls it off perfectly. No complaints! WRITING: 5/5 I LOVE HUNTER’S WRITING STYLE!!! It is basically the best, most amusing third person limited I have ever had the honor to read! *jumps up and down while waiting for the next book* CONTENT: 3/5 Language: n/a Violence: n/a Sexual: lots of talk about unwed mothers and their illegitimate children; handled super well. A couple kisses, none too detailed. Mentions of evil men, philanderers, etc. A story about a woman being seduced by a man is told in minor detail though nothing about the actual sex is mentioned. Other: talk about childbirth, pregnancy, and nursing 3/5. Not recommended for readers under 14. A story about a home for illegitimate children & women who help couldn’t have been handled with more taste. OVERALL: 5/5 I can’t tell you how much I love this story. I ADORE A DEFENSE OF HONOR! Please let the time until the next book comes out go quickly because other I WILL DIE. ~Kellyn Roth, Reveries Reviews

  2. 5 out of 5

    Clara

    Loved loved loved loved loved *insert here all heart emoticons* I adore it when a book catches me by surprise. This might have seemed like a big chance Kristi Ann Hunter was taking, but I also believe it is her best yet - and that's saying a lot because I completely adore the Hawthorne series! Graham Wharton is bored. He doesn't understand what the fuss is all about in London's high society balls, luxuries, and extravaganza. After all his travels, there hasn't been much catching his attention while Loved loved loved loved loved *insert here all heart emoticons* I adore it when a book catches me by surprise. This might have seemed like a big chance Kristi Ann Hunter was taking, but I also believe it is her best yet - and that's saying a lot because I completely adore the Hawthorne series! Graham Wharton is bored. He doesn't understand what the fuss is all about in London's high society balls, luxuries, and extravaganza. After all his travels, there hasn't been much catching his attention while he waits to become the next earl - which he isn't in any hurry to do because he loves his parents very much and wishes them many years to come. The highlights of his days come in the form of Oliver, Lord Farnsworth, and Mr. Aaron Whitworth. They share a special brotherhood that goes beyond blood and social position. Said brotherhood comes with responsibilities, so when Oliver is dead set on a hunt for white chalk horses, Graham can't oppose, no matter how ludicrous the situation sounds. The small village of Marlborough at first seems to be even more tedious than his present life, but tales of tree boys and hidden treasures just might inspire Graham's adventurous spirit once more. That, and the chance the uncover the mystery surrounding the Lady in Green, Kit. Or, as Graham soon finds out, Mama Kit, who shares a manor with Mama Daphne and Mama Jess and a bunch of rowdy children. Kit doesn't assimilate herself with the honorable Katherine FitzGilbert anymore. That title was lost in a moment of selfishness and greed, and now she's paying the price. After running away from those who should have protected them, Kit and Daphne had destiny smiling on them thirteen years ago and were given the opportunity to start Haven Manor as a form to help other women abandoned by society. However, Kit's heart is burden with regret and shame. Wallowing in self-punishment, Kit does her best to keep busy and not think of the "what-ifs". What these brave young ladies have started is honorable, there's no doubt. When work is sown with self-punishment, though, love has trouble growing. And day-by-day Kit feels weighed down by much sorrow. Too much to let her see it is slowly killing her inside and not letting her enjoy the exuberant life around her. As her path crosses with Graham, there's fear and vulnerability. Until his attention towards the kids, his respect for their cause, his tenderness starts breaking down Kit's wall and hope creeps in. But there's much Graham doesn't know; too much she can't tell for she can't allow herself to feel guilty in any form. Kit is taking control of her life in order to serve and protect the children and the women. She is certain she knows the best way to protect them from a society that only scorns and betrays them, after using them. Nevertheless, when her actions are put to light, will she let the truth set her free or will she let herself be kept captive to pay a price she wasn't made to pay? I was surprised how current the story thread actually is. Bluntly put, mistakes haven’t stopped being made because we don’t live in the Regency era anymore. We still live in a world that easily points fingers and we all have that sense of wanting a life of honor. If we honestly and truly search for this abundant and honorable life, what we might discover is that the best gifts might be fragile, but they are worth fighting for; especially when grounded on faith. And apart from this, we can't find freedom, which has already been given to us. If we would only be brave enough to embrace it. Fans of the Hawthorne series will have a blast hanging out with Jess again and I'm very much intrigued to learn what this feisty girl's story is. Though Daphne's kindness and sweetness has stolen my heart as well and I believe she something special to share :) *I received a review copy from the publisher. All opinions are my own.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Beth

    Such a lovely start to what promises to be an engrossing series! I admit, I'm pretty attached to the Hawthorne family, but the inhabitants of Haven Manor are proving to be stiff competition. Kit, Daphne, Jess (who readers will probably recognize from the Hawthorne books) are easy-to-love characters, not to mention the sweet rambunctious nature of the children in their care. Graham is endearing from the start, easily climbing over all of the barriers that the three ladies, especially Kit, have se Such a lovely start to what promises to be an engrossing series! I admit, I'm pretty attached to the Hawthorne family, but the inhabitants of Haven Manor are proving to be stiff competition. Kit, Daphne, Jess (who readers will probably recognize from the Hawthorne books) are easy-to-love characters, not to mention the sweet rambunctious nature of the children in their care. Graham is endearing from the start, easily climbing over all of the barriers that the three ladies, especially Kit, have set in order to keep themselves and the children hiding in seclusion. As the son of an earl, he is restless and lacking purpose, but not lacking a good heart and a desire to help others. There were a few times that I wished for Kit not to feel quite so distant (although that did make me empathize with Graham), but eventually I was won over by her genuine struggles and loved her all the more for them. Children in stories are hit or miss for me because sometimes they just end up sounding just like the adult characters. The children in this story feel realistic, and I found myself completely charmed by them. One thing especially spoke to me throughout this story. One being that God places value on everyone, whether the world does or not - what a comforting, needed thought that is right now. Kit deals with a lot of guilt and shame, something that many find overwhelming and are unable to defeat without support. There is a lot of urging to reach out for help if you need it, but often those who need help most can't find it in themselves to do that - others must reach out to them and be observant to their cries of help. I didn't mean to go on this tangent, but the message that there is so much hurting in the world and sometimes one kindness or one relationship can make all of the difference is so important. I enjoyed the change of pace from the ballrooms and society-driven needs of London. Most of the setting is in a quiet country village that radiates peace, tranquility, and safety. The subject matter of illegitimate children is handled quite well, painting a realistic picture without going into sordid details. Hunter doesn't shy away from the consequences of their indiscretion and is very honest about the huge difference and double standard of those consequences for the woman involved. Kit's work with these women offers them hope in an otherwise hopeless situation. This combined with her overall realization that she doesn't have to bear it all makes for a emotional story. Along with Kit and Graham, this story introduced several intriguing and lovable secondary characters. Of course, Daphne's story is next, and I can't wait to read that. Jess is no less deserving of her own story, and I even like the quirky Priscilla. Oh, and I must mention Graham's best friends, Oliver and Aaron. I especially loved Aaron and wouldn't mind seeing him again. Historical details, a thoughtful plot, and endearing characters make this first book in the Haven Manor series a winner for me. I received a complimentary copy of this novel from the publisher and was not required to post a review. The opinions expressed here are my own.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Victoria Lynn

    4.5 stars Let me just off this review by saying that I want to applaud Miss Hunter for writing about such a difficult subject with such ease and delicacy. The story itself was beautiful and I have to say that this hero was one of my favorites that I have read in a while. The heroine, Kit, was lovely as well, though I personally did not relate to her in some ways, I found myself loving her heart and motive, regardless of whether her actions were the right ones or not. I was rooting for all of the 4.5 stars Let me just off this review by saying that I want to applaud Miss Hunter for writing about such a difficult subject with such ease and delicacy. The story itself was beautiful and I have to say that this hero was one of my favorites that I have read in a while. The heroine, Kit, was lovely as well, though I personally did not relate to her in some ways, I found myself loving her heart and motive, regardless of whether her actions were the right ones or not. I was rooting for all of them and incredibly intrigued by where the story would go and what would actually be the reasoning behind all of the seemingly odd circumstances. I was very fascinated as I turned page after page how Miss Hunter would handle each of these predicaments. And I was pleasantly pleased with how much she handled without being graphic in the least. This is the kind of fiction that I seek to write. Uplifting and beautiful while still shining a light on the indecencies of and social injustices of the times. The story was a little hard for me to follow in one or two parts, but that might have been because I was struggling to find time to read, so this book was spread out over a month. The characterization was excellent, enjoyable, and I loved the diversity of the types of personalities and motivations. The ending had me crying. That hasn’t happened in a while either. I found myself overwhelmed by the sweet feelings that the book invoked in my heart in the second to last chapter. I would highly recommend this book to mid to late teens and adults. Due to subject matter, if you are younger than that, I would recommend asking your parents. It was incredibly well handled in my humble opinion, but it is centered around a group of illegitimate children. Content: Frequent mentions of illegitimacy. Mentions of women being swept away by men and mentions of the consequences, while everything in between was left to the imagination.

  5. 3 out of 5

    Dawn

    My thoughts: This book wasn't nearly as light as some of the author's other books. Yet I was captivated with it. I loved the characters in this book from Graham and Kit to the people they encounter. I'll admit that this book was a little slower than the others the author has written, but this book was really good. I truly enjoyed it. I received a copy of the book from the publisher in order to share my honest opinion about it. My thoughts and opinions are my own. Recommended to fans of Jody Hedlund My thoughts: This book wasn't nearly as light as some of the author's other books. Yet I was captivated with it. I loved the characters in this book from Graham and Kit to the people they encounter. I'll admit that this book was a little slower than the others the author has written, but this book was really good. I truly enjoyed it. I received a copy of the book from the publisher in order to share my honest opinion about it. My thoughts and opinions are my own. Recommended to fans of Jody Hedlund, Julie Klassen, Jane Austen Rating - 5 stars

  6. 5 out of 5

    Dana Michael

    Wow! This book by Hunter is a wonderful and original story. I love Regency Era books and this one is very unique. I've never read one like this. I loved it. I think anyone who loves this genre will really appreciate and enjoy this story. The characters are so likeable and I felt as if I was there with them in their quest to make the lives of the children better. They were very selfless and loving. They were also flawed and not perfect. However, Graham the hero was pretty much perfect in my book. Wow! This book by Hunter is a wonderful and original story. I love Regency Era books and this one is very unique. I've never read one like this. I loved it. I think anyone who loves this genre will really appreciate and enjoy this story. The characters are so likeable and I felt as if I was there with them in their quest to make the lives of the children better. They were very selfless and loving. They were also flawed and not perfect. However, Graham the hero was pretty much perfect in my book. I loved his wit and his charm. For some reason, I kept picturing Hugh Grant as Graham. (young Hugh Grant) And, as I said the story line was very original. I really enjoyed the story and I cannot wait for the next installment in the series. *I was given a copy of this book by the publisher and was not required to leave a review. This is my honest opinion.

  7. 3 out of 5

    Melissa

    4.5 stars, RT Top Pick The first novel in Hunter's new Haven Manor series is both gripping and heartwarming at the same time. It is fascinating to read about these situations, which have so many parallels to the present day, yet because this book is set in the 1800s, it has more impact and can be quite challenging to the reader. Hunter communicates her storyline with such grace and passion, showing light on God's mercy and how He can restore any broken situation for His glory. When Graham, Lord Wh 4.5 stars, RT Top Pick The first novel in Hunter's new Haven Manor series is both gripping and heartwarming at the same time. It is fascinating to read about these situations, which have so many parallels to the present day, yet because this book is set in the 1800s, it has more impact and can be quite challenging to the reader. Hunter communicates her storyline with such grace and passion, showing light on God's mercy and how He can restore any broken situation for His glory. When Graham, Lord Wharton, encounters a mysterious woman at a ball, he is intrigued because she seems so different from the other women. She resists all attempts at communication, but even afterward, he cannot stop thinking about her. When his friend enlists Graham to help look for his missing sister, Graham is stunned to encounter the woman again in an unexpected place. Katherine "Kit" FitzGilbert shunned London and all of its society trappings many years ago after a terrible incident. She has made it her life's mission to help women and their children live fulfilling lives even after the unspeakable happens to them. Can Graham and Kit ever see eye to eye and learn to trust and help one another? https://www.rtbookreviews.com/book-re...

  8. 5 out of 5

    Rachael

    “The most precious gems are forged from pressure. God brings beauty from adversity, when you let him.” A terrific read that touches the heart. Children in books is one of my favorite things, and it generally guarantees a heart touching story. It’s happy and sad, wonderful and glorious, yet heartbreaking as well. What is the right way to handle the illegitimate children and the mothers? This book proves that there is no easy answer to that question, and not every situation has the same answer. The “The most precious gems are forged from pressure. God brings beauty from adversity, when you let him.” A terrific read that touches the heart. Children in books is one of my favorite things, and it generally guarantees a heart touching story. It’s happy and sad, wonderful and glorious, yet heartbreaking as well. What is the right way to handle the illegitimate children and the mothers? This book proves that there is no easy answer to that question, and not every situation has the same answer. The one thing that is known is that God loves them all. The characters in this story are incredibly well done, the subject is a difficult one that was handled so incredibly well by this author, and the story is one that evokes compassion and empathy. Adoption and foster care are two subjects so very close to my heart. We adopted a toddler who needed a family so this story felt so personal! It’s hard to say sometimes what is exactly the right way for wrong in this world to be handled. It is easy to say that Ms. Hunter did a terrific job in handling the subject in this well done novel. To me, though I liked the characters, the plot is what pulled me in to the story...the adventures of the children were a delight as well. Please don’t miss this story that, though historical, deals with a topic that still resonates today in many ways. “ The very idea that anyone would tell Benedict or Blake or young, quiet Arthur that they were curses who never should have been born made Graham’s hands curl into fists...he did feel incredibly, unbelievably blessed.” I received this book from the publisher. All opinions are my own.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Sarah Monzon

    I loved this book...in fact it’s making it as one of my favorite books of the year. Yes, I’m that confident even though it’s only June. This is my favorite book by Kristi Ann Hunter. Yes, I’ve read them all. I loved the slow romantic burn, and that first kiss? Swoon!! I loved the plot which was unique and not something I’ve read in Regency over and overnight again like some plots/tropes. I can’t wait to read more books in this series!

  10. 5 out of 5

    Tricia Mingerink

    I enjoyed the book, but not as much as some of Kristi Ann Hunter's previous books, though I doubt any of them will quite reach the heights of her first book with all the spy intrigue and danger. I listened to the audiobook version and the narrator was ok, but not my favorite, which probably didn't help when influencing my enjoyment of the book. This book was still good. A little bit of danger. A little mystery. It handled the tough topic of illegitimate children and how they come about delicatel I enjoyed the book, but not as much as some of Kristi Ann Hunter's previous books, though I doubt any of them will quite reach the heights of her first book with all the spy intrigue and danger. I listened to the audiobook version and the narrator was ok, but not my favorite, which probably didn't help when influencing my enjoyment of the book. This book was still good. A little bit of danger. A little mystery. It handled the tough topic of illegitimate children and how they come about delicately without too many details. Still, I overall enjoyed it and I'm excited to get more of Daphne's story in the next book! Though, I really, really hope we get stories for Aaron and Lord Eversly (not sure on spelling since listened to the audiobook) someday! And Jess, of course.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Andrea Boyd

    I've read all of Kristi's books and have loved every one of them. But this is my favorite! Cannot wait to get my hands on the next one!

  12. 5 out of 5

    Sarah

    I loved this book! Now I need to know - does the rest of the series follow Jess and Daphne, or Aaron and Oliver? All of the above? Other characters we haven’t met yet? How does Graham and Kit’s venture turn out? What drove Jess to that London alley where she met Kit? Why did she leave Ryland and Miranda? Will we see any of the Hawthornes again?

  13. 3 out of 5

    Kathy * Bookworm Nation

    3.5 Props for the original storyline! I loved that I haven't read a story like this in all my regencies. I liked the storyline and setting. I haven't read it yet, but I think it would probably be a good idea to read the prequel, A Search for Refuge, I did feel a bit lost or that I was missing something in the beginning, I would have liked if Kit's story had been in a prologue or told earlier on in the story. Overall, it was a good read and I'm curious to read the rest of the books in the series. 3.5 Props for the original storyline! I loved that I haven't read a story like this in all my regencies. I liked the storyline and setting. I haven't read it yet, but I think it would probably be a good idea to read the prequel, A Search for Refuge, I did feel a bit lost or that I was missing something in the beginning, I would have liked if Kit's story had been in a prologue or told earlier on in the story. Overall, it was a good read and I'm curious to read the rest of the books in the series. Content Romance: Squeaky clean Language: None Violence: None Religious: Mild-Moderate Other: (view spoiler)[Main plot deals with illegitimate children and the circumstances surrounding all that (hide spoiler)] Source: Netgalley

  14. 3 out of 5

    Alysha (For The Love of Christian Fiction)

    We always talk about all the things we "miss" from the 1800's, but we never talk about the truly terrible things that happened during this time period. Leave it to Kristi to deal with heavy topics with such a flawless execution! Illegitimate children born to aristocracy were a huge issue, that was also taboo to talk about. The men could sire a child and never see a consequence, while the mother of this child would lose her place in society and quickly become an outcast. AND THE POOR CHILD! 😲😞 It We always talk about all the things we "miss" from the 1800's, but we never talk about the truly terrible things that happened during this time period. Leave it to Kristi to deal with heavy topics with such a flawless execution! Illegitimate children born to aristocracy were a huge issue, that was also taboo to talk about. The men could sire a child and never see a consequence, while the mother of this child would lose her place in society and quickly become an outcast. AND THE POOR CHILD! 😲😞 It was a sad time indeed! One we still don't talk a whole lot about, much less read about it. Kristi took on this bear of a topic and crafted a story full of hope and redemption while educating me. You get a foundation for a series that will deal with loads of loaded subjects in this book. We met Kit briefly in "A Search for Refuge" and you can tell she is carrying a heavy weight on her shoulders. 12 years later and that weight has only gotten heavier. Kit had been carrying around so much guilt for 12 years it had completely changed her outlook on life, and God. Yes she still believed in Him, but one might say she was "going through the motions". Throughout the book you can see the change take place on the pages. You can see her shell harden and harden until it finally crumbles and God's love turned her into a new creature. Graham was Kit's opposite in SO many ways. Yes they both grew up in Society, but that's about where the similarities end. Graham had an easygoing life. He had loving parents, good (if unconventional) friends, and he didn't have a "past". He was a gentleman with a good heart! Even when he came across Haven Manor he was patient, relaxed and observant. AND HE HAD A SENSE OF HUMOR! While you can see Kit's armor fall apart, you see a change in Graham as well. You see his faith in himself and God solidify and a purpose begin to take root. This book was FULL of touching moments! One of my ABSOLUTE favorites was the deep conversation between Graham and his father. *tears up a bit just thinking about it* Kristi TRULY knows how to craft a family from ashes of nothingness, and turn it into the PERFECT blend of humor and seriousness! I rated this a 4.5/5 stars. I cannot wait to come back to Haven Manor for I know I will leaved changed again! *I received this book from the author in exchange for my honest review**I was not required to give a positive review**All opinions are my own*

  15. 4 out of 5

    Cheryl Baranski

    A Defense of Honor is book one in the Haven Manor series by Kristi Ann Hunter. If you love the Regency area romance than this is the book for you. This story is one that grabs at the heartstrings. This is a story that is full of love, hope, longing, dreams and what has been. I love the protectiveness and determination of Kit. Then there is Graham oh my. A girls dream guy. Be sure to get your copy of A Defense of Honor today.

  16. 3 out of 5

    Heidi Robbins (Heidi Reads...)

    My favorite thing about this book is the contrast of personalities between Kit and Graham. They both have so much to learn from each other and both bring a new and fresh perspective to their friendship and relationship. Graham's cheerful and light-hearted nature brings joy to the children and the women who care for them. Kit's mission and purpose shows Graham a serious side to the consequences of society's dictates and he admires her determination to work towards solutions. There is some danger My favorite thing about this book is the contrast of personalities between Kit and Graham. They both have so much to learn from each other and both bring a new and fresh perspective to their friendship and relationship. Graham's cheerful and light-hearted nature brings joy to the children and the women who care for them. Kit's mission and purpose shows Graham a serious side to the consequences of society's dictates and he admires her determination to work towards solutions. There is some danger and suspense as long-held secrets come to light, and Kit learns over time to do the right thing and trust God to provide solutions as she turns her cares over to Him. There is conflict that comes between Kit and Graham, but I loved what ultimately brings them together as they continue to pursue ways to help those in need. Loving this new series!!! (I received a complimentary copy of the book; all opinions in this review are my own)

  17. 4 out of 5

    Amy

    A riskier darker side to the Regency era we all know and love. A deeply emotive story that will open up an alternate view point, to the challenging world of illegitimacy within the aristocracy during the 1800s . With a unique plot, and genuine heartfelt storyline, Kristi tells a story you probably haven't heard before. With an eye for even the tiniest of details (and I notice, as a British reader) I can tell she has thoroughly researched her subject. This story follows through now 12/13 years on A riskier darker side to the Regency era we all know and love. A deeply emotive story that will open up an alternate view point, to the challenging world of illegitimacy within the aristocracy during the 1800s . With a unique plot, and genuine heartfelt storyline, Kristi tells a story you probably haven't heard before. With an eye for even the tiniest of details (and I notice, as a British reader) I can tell she has thoroughly researched her subject. This story follows through now 12/13 years on from her novella - with a humorous but catchy opener between Graham & Kit. She's back in London, it's a mystery to the reader & to Graham who is certain he has never seen her grace the London scene before. Known as Lord Wharton to his peers, he and his 2 loyal friends - Oliver & Aaron, will find themselves finding a lot more than they bargained for as their search for Oliver's sister takes Graham & Oliver to market town of Marlborough. I loved so much about this story. Yes, it might not be your typical regency tale - and difficult subjects are addressed. This is what made this book so engaging. The fears, the plight, the uncertainty, the secrets, even the means in which Kit, Daphne & Jess are keeping their little band holed up hidden at Haven Manor. They are survivors, and doing what they think is best with the means they have. It isn't until Graham is able to bring a little light, and eventually objectivity that change is made possible - and with that a lesson for all of us. It's ok when we get through our lives the way we see fit, but how much more light can we invite in when we let go of the control we desperately cling to, and trust in a God who can show us a better way. Growth happens. Peace can be felt. I love the authors writing style. Everything is so descriptive without being wordy, she had me right there in the scene, with such clarity, each emotion was felt, the images vivid in my mind. There's an 'almost fly on the wall' experience. That's what I want to find in a book. I got lost in this tale! I'm so excited to see what more is in store in this series! Thank you to Bethany House for a complimentary copy of this book. This is my honest review.

  18. 3 out of 5

    Caitlyn Santi

    Another absolutely splendid novel from Kristi Ann Hunter! I have been eagerly anticipating this first novel in the Haven Manor series since March when I read the prequel novella, A Search for Refuge! I knew A Defense of Honor was going to be fabulous and to say that I was not disappointed would be a humongous understatement, I LOVED THIS BOOK SO MUCH! This story grabbed hold of me on page one and would not let go! When I pick up a book by this author I know I'm in for a super fun, witty ride tha Another absolutely splendid novel from Kristi Ann Hunter! I have been eagerly anticipating this first novel in the Haven Manor series since March when I read the prequel novella, A Search for Refuge! I knew A Defense of Honor was going to be fabulous and to say that I was not disappointed would be a humongous understatement, I LOVED THIS BOOK SO MUCH! This story grabbed hold of me on page one and would not let go! When I pick up a book by this author I know I'm in for a super fun, witty ride that somehow also manages to strengthen my faith, touch my heart, and make me think, and that is exactly what A Defense of Honor did! I will be thinking about this story for a long time to come. I loved Kit, Daphne, and Jess (I loved Jess in A Noble Masquerade, and I was thrilled to get to hang out with her again!) not to mention all the delightful children! And Graham, oh my word! What a noble, Godly, caring, lovable, hilarious, swoon-worthy hero. Kit, you're one lucky lady! These characters have become like dear friends to me and I so look forward to hanging out with them again! I also absolutely loved watching Kit and Graham grow in their faith, the faith journey they took has challenged and inspired me in my own life, and was exactly what I needed to read at this point in my life! I don't want to risk spoiling anything so I will just say that I absolutely adored every moment I spent reading this book, and hated to see it end, but a sigh of happiness escaped my lips when I turned the final page! A Defense of Honor is one of my favorite reads of 2018 so far, I definitely plan on rereading it in the future, and I can't wait for the rest of the series! Highly recommended, I would give it every star in the sky if I could, but alas I am forced to limit my rating to five stars! Seriously, read it, read it, READ IT, you will not be sorry! Thank you to the author and publisher for sending me a copy of this book to help promote it. Which did not influence my review in any way. All thoughts and opinions are one hundred percent my own.

  19. 3 out of 5

    LA

    This is the first time I’ve read a book by Kristi Ann Hunter and I have to say that I was immediately hooked on this particular novel. There’s a lot of mysteries that unfold throughout the entire book, a lot of secrets kept and revealed, lives changed, and hearts that begin to heal. The story focuses on one woman’s quest to overcome the guilt of a past mistake that drives her to “save” others from a fate that could be. Kit’s goal is to see children born out of wedlock to the aristocracy of the 18 This is the first time I’ve read a book by Kristi Ann Hunter and I have to say that I was immediately hooked on this particular novel. There’s a lot of mysteries that unfold throughout the entire book, a lot of secrets kept and revealed, lives changed, and hearts that begin to heal. The story focuses on one woman’s quest to overcome the guilt of a past mistake that drives her to “save” others from a fate that could be. Kit’s goal is to see children born out of wedlock to the aristocracy of the 1800s have a chance at a decent life, and to provide a way for the mothers who bore them a second chance. Her heart aches at the thought of any of them ending up in poor houses, begging in the streets, or dying too young. Kit was of noble blood, a legitimate child, but one error cost her family’s reputation and that of her closest friend. Together they flee London and begin a new and different life, but one with a purpose in helping others from the same social status that had once been Kit’s to claim. But what was once a way to atone for the mistake she made, consequences suffered by her friend, turns into bitterness and disdain for the men who have abandoned duty and honor. Lord Wharton, a son to an earl, is bored with his life and looks for excitement. He didn’t bargain on finding purpose to his life when he met the mysterious Kit. Through various circumstances, Graham finds himself drawn into Kit’s secret mission of caring for these children. Ultimately, he and his band of friends show Kit that not all men in the aristocracy can be painted with the same brush stroke she has been using for the past 12 years. This is a challenging story to read as it touches on the point that our good intentions can turn badly if anger, bitterness and vengeance become the driving force behind it. It highlights the effects of guilt, and self-blame. It shows how life can be tossed aside for the love of status and money. But it shows God’s grace and mercy, and the power of forgiveness if we choose to trust Him explicitly with all that we have and all that we are. That we have a choice to recognize the resources available to us as either an entitlement or a blessing from God. And that once we release our control on our lives into God’s hands that blessings, and the unexpected, can happen. I quite enjoyed this novel and look forward to reading more of Ms. Hunter’s works. I received an ecopy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley. All the opinions expressed are entirely my own.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Gracelyn Buckner

    4.5 Stars ~wonderfuls~ the characters I really loved all the characters in A Defense of Honor. I think Daphne was my favorite, although I really liked Kit too. Graham seemed really sweet, as did his two friends (whose names I can't currently remember...). the themes I loved the themes throughout A Defense of Honor. It wasn't really what I was expecting, but that was good. Claiming to be doing things for God, while we're really doing it for ourselves isn't a theme you read about that much. So I was 4.5 Stars ~wonderfuls~ the characters I really loved all the characters in A Defense of Honor. I think Daphne was my favorite, although I really liked Kit too. Graham seemed really sweet, as did his two friends (whose names I can't currently remember...). the themes I loved the themes throughout A Defense of Honor. It wasn't really what I was expecting, but that was good. Claiming to be doing things for God, while we're really doing it for ourselves isn't a theme you read about that much. So I was glad when it was in this book. ~not-so-wonderfuls~ content It wasn't bad, and it was handled in a really good way, but there was a bit more content than I was expecting. I mean, it was about children born out of wedlock... It was handled very well, though. ~personal thoughts~ All in all, I did enjoy A Defense of Honor, and I'd love to read the next book in the series.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Trisha Robertson (Joy of Reading)

    I enjoyed getting to know Graham and Kit. They are unique, well-written characters that won't soon leave your imagination.  Graham has a fun sense of humor and a playful endearing quality that draws you in and makes you want to linger. Kit is more serious. She is determined and practical. She needs a little encouragement to let down her hair and laugh. Graham is just the man for the job. Haven Manor is a hidden gem. A safe place of refuge for those who the elite of society has deemed unworthy, an I enjoyed getting to know Graham and Kit. They are unique, well-written characters that won't soon leave your imagination.  Graham has a fun sense of humor and a playful endearing quality that draws you in and makes you want to linger. Kit is more serious. She is determined and practical. She needs a little encouragement to let down her hair and laugh. Graham is just the man for the job. Haven Manor is a hidden gem. A safe place of refuge for those who the elite of society has deemed unworthy, and has cast aside. Kristy Ann Hunter has given us a new series of Regency-era stories to enjoy. New characters to meet and a fresh look at an often hidden side of the Regency era. While this story deals with the delicate subject matter of the seemingly rampant indiscretions of the nobility and elite class in Regency London, it is handled with grace and points toward the importance of trusting God. With dynamic, original characters and a vivid setting, this delightful story is sure to not only entertain but to also leaves the reader with something to think about beyond the story itself. I give this story 4.5 stars and I eagerly anticipate the next stories in this new series. (I receive complimentary books for review from publishers, publicists, and/or authors, including Netgalley. I am not required to write positive reviews. The opinions I have expressed are my own.)

  22. 5 out of 5

    Fiction Aficionado

    I very much enjoyed the first 85% of this book. The opening chapters held the promise of a romance with a little bit of intrigue and quite a bit of fun when Kit caught the eye of Lord Wharton, a viscount who finds himself thoroughly bored by the predictability of his current social life. Working in counterpoint to this light-hearted side of the story is Haven Manor, a place where Kit and her two compatriots, Daphne and Jess, devote their lives to raising children who might have had a very differ I very much enjoyed the first 85% of this book. The opening chapters held the promise of a romance with a little bit of intrigue and quite a bit of fun when Kit caught the eye of Lord Wharton, a viscount who finds himself thoroughly bored by the predictability of his current social life. Working in counterpoint to this light-hearted side of the story is Haven Manor, a place where Kit and her two compatriots, Daphne and Jess, devote their lives to raising children who might have had a very different life if they hadn’t been born on the wrong side of the blanket. These two elements struck a great balance, and I found myself thoroughly enchanted by Graham as he won over the children and slowly chiselled away at Kit’s walls. As I moved into the second half of the story, I was even more intrigued by the direction it took, throwing in some surprises and giving both Kit and Graham the opportunity to examine their situations in life and their motivation for what they were (or weren’t) doing. I can’t say too much without revealing spoilers, but it included the kind of spiritual thread that made me sit up and take notice—much as it did to Kit and Graham. I do have to say, though, that while I agreed with the spiritual wisdom Graham imparted at one particular point, it did feel a little odd coming out of his mouth. I’m not sure whether it was because it felt a little too modern for the setting or whether it was because it required a deeper spiritual understanding than Graham had shown to that point; maybe a bit of both. But I’ll move on. The disappointment for me was the ending. It felt rushed, but I also felt Graham was extremely high-handed in the steps that he took to resolve things. His genuine enthusiasm and belief that he was doing the best thing for all concerned tempered my annoyance a little bit, but I couldn’t help feeling indignant on Kit’s behalf. Especially since she didn’t seem indignant at all. I’m pretty sure I would have been if I had been in Kit’s place. And for such a promising beginning to the romance, I felt it fizzled at the end. I enjoyed their relationship more in the middle of the story (and that super sweet first kiss) than I did their relationship at the end. Finally, 1% of my disappointment is reserved for the Southernisms that crept in, such as using ‘drug’ as the past tense of ‘drag’ and the phrase, “they’re going to try to figure out who all you have contracts with.” I try not to be too critical of Americanisms that creep into English-set novels, but Southernisms tax my tolerance a little too much, not to mention they yank me out of the story (no pun or bipartisanship intended)! But as I say, I did enjoy the majority of the book, and in light of the developments that took place, I’m keen to see where the next story takes me. I received a copy of this novel from the publisher. This has not influenced the content of my review, which is my honest and unbiased opinion.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Lisa (Bookworm Lisa)

    Kristi Ann Hunter tackles a difficult topic in "A Defense of Honor". The lines of honor are blurred, do two wrongs make a right? I had to applaud the heroine's efforts in this book. Three women work to provide protection, education, and a home for the illegitimate children of nobility. They make it possible for the mother's to reenter society without their reputation being destroyed. Their efforts are honorable and noble, but the methods employed are a bit sketchy. I liked Kit as a character, but Kristi Ann Hunter tackles a difficult topic in "A Defense of Honor". The lines of honor are blurred, do two wrongs make a right? I had to applaud the heroine's efforts in this book. Three women work to provide protection, education, and a home for the illegitimate children of nobility. They make it possible for the mother's to reenter society without their reputation being destroyed. Their efforts are honorable and noble, but the methods employed are a bit sketchy. I liked Kit as a character, but it her love interest Graham who stole the book. He is honorable, noble, and sees people for who they are and not their lineage. He brings joy and happiness to everyone around him. His faith is strengthened in this book and he is the one who ultimately brings Kit more in line to God and His will. This book is full of wonderful characters. I adored the children. Graham is a master at getting them to talk and reveal tidbits of information that the other adults wouldn't want disclosed. It is pretty funny how he does it. He listens, he plays, and he gives them love and attention. This book deals with serious circumstances and consequences but I was not overburdened with the seriousness of the topic. Kristi Ann Hunter is able to write about joy and happiness in difficult times. This book is definitely worth the time to pick up and read. I am looking forward to the books to come. It is a clean read. There is some kissing and talking about past indiscretions, but nothing described in detail. This book is Christian fiction. Soure: I received a complimentary copy. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Melissa

    This huge almost 400 page book was great, it only had one problem and it was a big one. Too many words. This book could have lost 100 pages of unnecessary words. Repeated thoughts, scenes that were unnecessary because they repeat what we already know is happening. I debated giving this 3 stars, but dang the story, the characters, the setting and the truths taught in this book are worth the read. This is a Christian story with a touch of regency England about Kit and her friends who help save wom This huge almost 400 page book was great, it only had one problem and it was a big one. Too many words. This book could have lost 100 pages of unnecessary words. Repeated thoughts, scenes that were unnecessary because they repeat what we already know is happening. I debated giving this 3 stars, but dang the story, the characters, the setting and the truths taught in this book are worth the read. This is a Christian story with a touch of regency England about Kit and her friends who help save woman and there illegitimate children from a awful fate. I loved everything about Kit. She is so real and raw. Graham is just awesome and I loved him. This is a great story of forgiveness and doing that right thing and also love. There is a prequel I would suggest reading, it is good but not necessary. I am excited to see where the next book goes.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Michelle

    I have so enjoyed Hunter's novels that I jumped at the chance to read this one! As the start of a new series this book starts with a great cast of characters. As per typical Hunter style, this book was full of humor but also truth and heart. Kit is a wonderful character and her journey in her personal life very well written. Graham and the children in the book take the story to another level and right when you think you have it all figured out, the story takes a turn. I loved that not everythin I have so enjoyed Hunter's novels that I jumped at the chance to read this one! As the start of a new series this book starts with a great cast of characters. As per typical Hunter style, this book was full of humor but also truth and heart. Kit is a wonderful character and her journey in her personal life very well written. Graham and the children in the book take the story to another level and right when you think you have it all figured out, the story takes a turn. I loved that not everything was black and white right away. I loved how grace was a huge aspect of the story and while this book deals with illegitimate children in history I found many things discussed to be relevant today. I think more emphasis should have been put on the part of repentance. Yes, as Christians grace is important, but one part of the story a young girl doesn't show much repentance on letting herself get carried away with a young man. Now the men that forced themselves on women, that is entirely different. For the young folks that read this book, I think perhaps in this part of the book it could have been more clear or explained differently. But all that to say I couldn't put this book down and whether Hunter is a new to you author, or a longtime favorite I highly recommend! Five stars. "Thanks to Bethany House for offering me this book for free. All opinions are my own."

  26. 5 out of 5

    Melissa

    A Defense of Honor by Kristi Ann Hunter is an absolute jewel. I have read no other regency book with this particular subject. I loved this story and was enveloped in it from the very first hiding-in-the-plants scene to the very last page. Hunter tackles a very serious, often heartbreaking subject with grace, passion, and humor, when appropriate. I have read several of her other books and have never been disappointed in the time spent reading! I loved the ladies of Haven Manor (Kit, Jess, and Daph A Defense of Honor by Kristi Ann Hunter is an absolute jewel. I have read no other regency book with this particular subject. I loved this story and was enveloped in it from the very first hiding-in-the-plants scene to the very last page. Hunter tackles a very serious, often heartbreaking subject with grace, passion, and humor, when appropriate. I have read several of her other books and have never been disappointed in the time spent reading! I loved the ladies of Haven Manor (Kit, Jess, and Daphne). They are strong and full of purpose. In this book, Kit learns to direct her sense of setting things right and protecting the innocent in the path that God would have her to follow. And Graham, oh, yes, Graham, is such a swoony hero – kind, thoughtful, and wanting to make a difference. I highly recommend this first full length book in the Haven Manor series and certainly look forward to the stories that are to come. I received a copy of this book from the publisher for review purposes. All opinions stated are my own.

  27. 3 out of 5

    Toni Shiloh

    I thoroughly enjoyed this Haven Manor novel. Lord Wharton makes a dashing hero and one that's not stereotypical. And Kit has such a heart wrenching past that's coated her future. I enjoyed seeing them both grow and see how God wants them to live. *I received a complimentary copy from the publisher. My review is my own, honest opinion.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Megan

    Being a lover of Regencies, I somehow missed out on reading any books by Kristi Ann Hunter before now. I've heard so many great things about her Hawthorne House series, that I was excited to be able to read and review A Defense of Honor, the start of her new Haven Manor series. Ms. Hunter has a firm grasp of the Regency era, as evidenced in her writing and the many details of the period that she incorporates into the story. Regency lovers will not have anything to complain about in that quarter. Being a lover of Regencies, I somehow missed out on reading any books by Kristi Ann Hunter before now. I've heard so many great things about her Hawthorne House series, that I was excited to be able to read and review A Defense of Honor, the start of her new Haven Manor series. Ms. Hunter has a firm grasp of the Regency era, as evidenced in her writing and the many details of the period that she incorporates into the story. Regency lovers will not have anything to complain about in that quarter. The setting and the detail are what really shine in this book. I found the storyline itself to be rather slow, but it seems the author doesn’t mind taking her time and focusing more on setting and character development. A Defense of Honor has a great cast of characters that readers will fall in love with. All of the children with their different personality traits are adorable. Our hero, Graham, has an easy going nature that one can’t help but love. I especially love the friendships and the side characters. The story itself deals with the heavier topic of what happens to women who have children out of wedlock and the fate of those children. The author refers to everything very discreetly and with grace, but it is still a main theme of the story. A Defense of Honor is a great addition to Christian Regency fiction! I’m excited to read some of this author’s earlier work and see how it compares. I especially love the message that all children are a gift from God, no matter the circumstances they are born into, and they deserve to know it. Content: I would give this book a PG-13 rating due to the heavier topics dealt with in the book (read above). Some examples of the content are: references to children born out of wedlock and indiscretions. Rating: I give this book 4 stars. Genre: Christian fiction; Regency; Historical I want to thank Kristi Ann Hunter and Bethany House Publishers for the complimentary copy of this book for review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I express in this review are my own. This is in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s CFR 16, Part 255.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Cara Putman

    An important story, beautifully told. Touching and relevant to today. The characters will creep into your heart and you will think of them long after you've finished reading the story. It shines a light through the lens of history on an important issue and theme.

  30. 3 out of 5

    Nicole

    A Defense of Honor (2018) by Kristi Ann Hunter is the first book in her Haven Manor series. This book comes in all forms including eBook, and is 376 pages in length. With a full-time job and a very busy six-year old at home, this novel took me two days to read. I received a copy of this book in paperback form from the author via her publisher, Bethany House. In no way has this influenced my opinion of the story. All opinions expressed in this review are my own. I give A Defense of Honor 5 STARS. A Defense of Honor (2018) by Kristi Ann Hunter is the first book in her Haven Manor series. This book comes in all forms including eBook, and is 376 pages in length. With a full-time job and a very busy six-year old at home, this novel took me two days to read. I received a copy of this book in paperback form from the author via her publisher, Bethany House. In no way has this influenced my opinion of the story. All opinions expressed in this review are my own. I give A Defense of Honor 5 STARS. This novel is a Christian Historical Romance set in England in 1816. Kristi Ann Hunter is one of my most favorite Christian authors. I adore her stories. Each one is so good and so unique, I think to myself, “How can she possibly do a better story than this?!” But each story gets better and better. And, A Defense of Honor may be my new favorite. Ruth is one of my most favorite books in the Bible. I love Ruth’s heart. Ruth shows love the way Jesus shows love — completely and without strings attached. And, she knows how to trust God absolutely. Kit is very much a Ruth-like character. She loves the people in her care so much. And her sense of doing what is right and just is laudable. Daily, Kit defends and fights for women and children whom the world views as rubbish. Kit is truly doing the Lord’s work! But is she really? At one point, Kit realizes that her actions aren’t as noble as they seem. Kit is defending and fighting for women and children, but she is doing so with a vengeful heart rather than with a loving one. Kit realizes that her work has led her down a path where she doesn’t even talk to God anymore. She is more about making men pay for their crimes than she is about trusting God’s will in the lives of the women and children she is saving. Somewhere along the way, Kit lost her Ruth-like heart and is on the wrong path. Trusting God is a really big theme in A Defense of Honor. While reading, I became so invested in Kit and her noble cause that I didn’t even realize that she wasn’t trusting God. I was right there with Kit during her freak outs and worry moments. I started stressing about things like finances and food and clothes. When Graham shows Kit that she is actually in the wrong, I was so ready to beat him up. “What are you talking about, Graham!? Kit is wonderful. Leave her alone” is what I wanted to yell at him. But, as he explains to Kit where she is falling short, my mouth gaped in dawning understanding. Oh my word…I stink. I was so invested in Kit because I am Kit. I try so hard to do everything on my own, to take care of everyone on my own, and to fix everything on my own. I go in guns blazing! But where does that get me? In trouble!!! I find I’m backed into a corner with nowhere to go but to God. And this is what Kit realizes. She does have a noble cause. She needs to never stop fighting for the women and children in her care, but she needs to do it with God, not without. I love this message SO much, and I am so grateful I read this book because I clearly needed this reminder. A Defense of Honor is a really great story, and I highly recommend it. I found it to be highly engaging and fast-paced. The characters are well written and very realistic. And, the messages and themes are timely. If you are looking for an excellently penned Regency novel with substance then A Defense of Honor is definitely the book for you.

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