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Review: When He was Wicked by Julia Quinn


Rating: ☆☆☆☆
Title: When He Was Wicked
Author: Julia Quinn
Series: Bridgertons #6
Genre: Historical Romance
Audience: Adult
Format: Audiobook
Narrator: Rosalyn Landor
Length: 11 hours (368 pages)
Publisher: Avon
Release Date: June 29, 2004
Source: Library
Content Warnings: death, grief, miscarriage, infertility, chronic illness


In every life there is a turning point. A moment so tremendous, so sharp and breathtaking, that one knows one’s life will never be the same. For Michael Stirling, London’s most infamous rake, that moment came the first time he laid eyes on Francesca Bridgerton.

After a lifetime of chasing women, of smiling slyly as they chased him, of allowing himself to be caught but never permitting his heart to become engaged, he took one look at Francesca Bridgerton and fell so fast and hard into love it was a wonder he managed to remain standing. Unfortunately for Michael, however, Francesca’s surname was to remain Bridgerton for only a mere thirty-six hours longer—the occasion of their meeting was, lamentably, a supper celebrating her imminent wedding to his cousin.

But that was then… Now Michael is the earl and Francesca is free, but still she thinks of him as nothing other than her dear friend and confidant. Michael dares not speak to her of his love… until one dangerous night, when she steps innocently into his arms, and passion proves stronger than even the most wicked of secrets…


I really didn’t know what to expect from this book since Francesca was a bit of an enigma in the Bridgerton family and the previous book was not the best in the series, but I enjoyed this book a lot! It was a unique choice to focus this book on Francesca’s second chance at love rather than her first marriage, and her search for a new husband led to some heartfelt conversations between her and her mother Violet.

I found Michael instantly likable, and the chemistry between him and Francesca was palpable. I always love mutual pining and the perception of forbidden romance since Francesca’s first husband was Michael’s cousin. Their grief over time develops into genuine friendship and eventually attraction, but they both feel guilty about their feelings toward each other. While I understand their reservations and I’m always a fan of romantic longing, this dragged on a bit too long.

Even though I found the story a little slow, Francesca and Michael are now one of my favorite Bridgerton couples!


Author: Caroline | Carolibrary

Hello! I’m Caroline! I am a teacher, a book lover, and a nerd. My passions include reading, writing, bookstagram, barre & yoga, baking, binging TV shows, and Star Wars. I love stories in all formats because they can transport you to a different world while helping you understand the world around you. I have always found books to be a particularly magical source of imagination.

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