February 1, 2021

If You Like Bridgerton, Read This!

You’ve probably seen it, heard of it, rewatched it, or maybe avoided it. Regardless, Bridgerton is everywhere. Can’t get enough of the ballgowns and drama? We got you! Our books that will satisfy your most posh Jane Austen, Old Victorian England daydreams. As an added bonus, all the books we recommend are on the cleaner side, so you can recommend them to your grandmother without feeling uncomfy!

girls leaning up against door archway smiling

Celine starts off our Bridgerton list with The Dark Days Club. Think Victorian romance style mixed with some of the fantasy magic we love. It follows Lady Helen after a housemaid mysteriously vanishes on the eve of her 18th birthday. Our main character starts to come to terms with the fact there is more to life than high society parties and meeting the Duke. Helen meets Lord Carlston, a dark and mysterious character. She finds herself with a difficult choice to make, in a time when most women didn’t usually have a choice at all. Lady Helen is a super girly girl, who must learn how to be strong and fight. Breaking traditional roles by sneaking out at night in order to do “boy stuff”, which was unacceptable at that time. It also features a super slow-burning romance with her love interest.

girl laughing holding stack of books on sidewalk

Anna introduces her first book, The Clockwork Series. The year is 1878. 18-year-old Tessa from London goes on a search for her missing brother that leads her into a dark, supernatural underworld. The shadow hunters are barely winning the fight against darkness, and the subsequent battles can alter the entire course of history. This book contains a diverse mix of demons, vampires, warlocks, and human characters alike. Tessa is a very posh, refined lady of naive tendencies. As the series progresses, she grows to be more determined and tough but always remains a proper woman throughout. The plot has elements of forbidden love, and a bit of a classic love triangle develops where two men both fall in love with her. These are the types of problems we wouldn’t necessarily mind having.

Celine takes us into her last Bridgerton-style recommendation: Rook. This series takes place in what used to be Paris but is now a sunken city. Set in the future but still feels very much like Victorian England. Those opposed to the new revolution become sentenced to death. Except for those who disappear from their prison cells, a rook feather left in their place. Our main character loses her memory and finds herself having to blindly trust instructions in order to survive. She quickly discovers that her fiance isn’t all that he seems, and neither is she. Homegirl is the Rook! Both suspenseful and hilarious, this book is a prime choice for those who love a little humor with their poetic thrills. 

girls laughing and smiling posing together on a street crosswalk

We wrap things up with Anna’s last recommendation: A Great and Terrible Beauty. Set in 1895 — 16-year-old Gemma Doyle gets shipped off to Britain from India following the tragic suicide of her mother. She finds herself at a proper English boarding school, however, a mysterious Indian man is following her for reasons unknown. Gemma also has an uncanny ability to receive visions that unfortunately come to be true. What does this mysterious man want? What is her fate? This novel is chalked full of the most satisfying kind of character development. As well as a beautiful juxtaposition of Victorian England, India, and a fantastical fairy world.

Do you find yourself nostalgic for a time of ball gown dresses and glamor, before women had the right to vote? Travel back to Victorian England with our list of Bridgerton approved recommendations. And travel here to listen to the full podcast episode!

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