Review by Veronica

Series Name: The Damsels of Discovery, # 1 

She wanted to upend him the same way he roiled her peace and made her want what she shouldn’t have. If Thorne kept taunting her with his scowls and rumbly voice and large broad chest, Lucy wished to roil his peace right back.  

The Love Remedy is a fabulous and swoony start to a new romance series. 

When a Victorian apothecary hires a stoic private investigator to protect her business, they learn there’s only one way to treat true love—with a happily ever after.

When Lucinda Peterson’s recently perfected formula for a salve to treat croup goes missing, she’s certain it’s only the latest in a line of misfortunes at the hands of a rival apothecary. Outraged and fearing financial ruin, Lucy turns to private investigator Jonathan Thorne for help. She just didn’t expect her champion to be so . . . grumpy?

A single father and an agent at Tierney & Co., Thorne accepts missions for a wide variety of employers—from the British government to wronged wives. None have intrigued him so much as the spirited Miss Peterson. As the two work side by side to unmask her scientific saboteur, Lucy slips ever so sweetly under Thorne’s battered armor, tempting him to abandon old promises.
With no shortage of suspects—from a hostile political group to an erstwhile suitor—Thorne’s investigation becomes a threat to all that Lucy holds dear. As the truth unravels around them the cure to their problems is they must face the future together. 

I absolutely adored Elizabeth’s The Secret Scientists of London series, so when I heard that she had a new spin-off series coming out, I knew I needed to read it. The Love Remedy was a lot of fun to read. Elizabeth brought all the elements I loved about her previous series and created this new and exciting story about strong, smart, and capable women. Fans of Elizabeth’s writing will be delighted to know that characters from the previous series appear in this book. Elizabeth is a master at creating a lively, exciting, and memorable setting. This story centers around Lucy’s family’s Apothecary shop, another great location to spend time in. This store is always bustling with a diverse and quirky group of people. It was so interesting to see the various reasons why people visit an Apothecary shop; sometimes, the reasons were hilarious, and other times, it was heartbreaking. Mr. Gentry, who often spends time at the shop, is a secondary character who really stole the spotlight. He would often come into the shop with strange and unusual medical facts or claim that he was ill with another obscured disease. He was charming, sweet, and hilarious. I adored everything about him. 

I loved the overall story. Its structure is pretty typical of an Elizabeth Everett book. What I mean by this is that you get a spicy historical romance with strong women who excel in STEM fields, and there is often a mystery element woven throughout the plot. In this book, Lucy hires Thorne to find evidence that her former beau and competitor has stolen her formula for curing croup. The mystery component was interesting, and I loved exploring the world of Apothecary. It is a quieter mystery. The element of danger and heart-racing urgency doesn’t exist in this story. The only real conflict comes from the Guardians of Domesticity, who think a woman’s place is the home. Fans of Elizabeth’s writing will recognize this group because they were the source of major conflict in the previous series. They often protest in front of Lucy’s shop, threatening to make her pay for practicing Apothecary. 

Lucy is a really interesting character. She has this tremendous burden placed upon her and often feels alone in the world. She is responsible for caring for her family’s failing shop and ensuring that her siblings can pursue their own interests. I liked her character. It takes time to get to know her because she has so many walls built up around herself. But that comes from feeling a great sense of responsibility for all those around her. Thorne is different from your typical male hero. He is broody and gruff, but he is also a single dad. He takes the responsibility of raising his daughter very seriously and is involved in his daughter’s life. He walks her to school, reads to her before bed, and just adores everything about her. Thorne’s backstory is quite interesting and has really shaped who he is as a person. I liked both of these characters together and separately. 

The romance between Lucy and Thorne is fabulous. I could see the attraction and chemistry between these two right from the beginning. They both have that wonderful ability to befuddle and rock each other’s worlds. They really have a hard time figuring out where they stand with each other. That sense of befuddlement is pure catnip for me. I loved the dialogue between these two. It was real and raw at times. There is this lusty dance between them. They both know that nothing should happen between them, but that pull gets harder and harder to ignore. And when things finally erupt between them, it gets really spicy. The sex scenes are very hot. Overall, I enjoyed these two as a couple. 

The Love Remedy is a satisfying romance romp that I could not put down. 

Thank you, Berkley Publishing Group, for the ARC in exchange for an honest review.