Overall Grade: 4.5 ⭐️
To read Louise Bay’s The Mister Series is to be delighted in her complicated heroes. There is no one hero more complicated and mysterious than Andrew Blake in her newest offering, Mr. Bloomsbury. In fact, what does he do before noon? While we find out near the book’s end, the gruff, man of few words, Andrew, dominates the imagination of Bay’s readers. What is most refreshing about her story is its heroine, Sofia, an Italian-bred American who strong-arms her way into his assistant job. From the moment Andrew and Sofia meet, the book explodes even with a rarely speaking Andrew. At the outset of Mr. Bloomsbury, you cannot help but pine for these two to find their stride as their attraction is palpable. Interestingly, it’s difficult to ascertain what that might look like given Sofia’s unwillingness to accept any of Andrew’s chiding, and Andrew’s insistence on maintaining his status quo. As the story progresses, however, Sofia’s challenges ignite something in Andrew that allows him to show her secreted away parts of himself. This allows for them to draw closer, and we earn an Andrew who feels humanized by the end of the book. The messaging of Mr. Bloomsbury is compelling: men supporting women in their chosen fields without reducing them, the economy of speaking and the intentionality of words for their effect, the reconciliation of a parent and a child after decades of hurt and misunderstandings, and most importantly, the flexibility one has to change their personal rules when life changes.
The best parts of Mr. Bloomsbury?
**Sofia and Andrew’s igniting chemistry
**Sofia’s reconciliation with her biological father
**Sofia’s intelligence offering up solutions to Andrew’s problems
**Andrew’s alter-ego and its play for Sofia
**Andrew and Sofia’s spirited bedroom activities
**Andrew and Sofia’s quick fall into forever
Where did the book fall a bit short?
The ending. Not the last chapter. That is a delight. I love when Louise Bay brings the Mister heroes and their significant others together. It’s a couple of chapters leading up to it, the way that Andrew flips a switch and falls headfirst into forever with Sofia. For me, that felt rushed in a way that the rest of the book wasn’t.
Over and over again, Louise Bay crafts heroes and heroines that simply fit together and amuse her readers. In Mr. Bloomsbury, the attraction between Sofia and Andrew is off-the-charts fun, as they learn each other in each passing chapter. I’m a fan of grumpy, sullen, heroes of few words. When you partner him with an intelligent, independent woman? The result is incendiary, and I’m here for that.
In love and romance,