This month I spent a lot of my time in the Bridgertons world. It was my first time ever reading the series, but I wanted to make sure I got through before the Netflix adaptation aired (which was yesterday). So today I thought it would be fun to look back at the whole series and rank them from least favourite to favourite and well, here we are. So without further ado, let’s get into it.
When He Was Wicked
I’ve seen a lot of people say this is their favourite in this series, but I just don’t see it personally. For me, Francesca is the most boring member of the Bridgertons—it really didn’t feel like she had any personality and honestly, I kept forgetting she existed. I found Michael about as equally exciting and I just wasn’t that interested in reading their story. So this didn’t necessarily get on my nerves as some of the others you’re about to see, but I just didn’t really have any feelings about it at all. It’s definitely not the worst historical romance I’ve read and not even the worst I’ve read this month. It’s still to Quinn’s usual high standard in terms of her writing, so it wasn’t painful to read but it wasn’t particularly fun like most of the other books on here.
To Sir Phillip, With Love
I love Eloise, truly. She deserves the world and more. She’s consistently been one of my favourites when she’s turned up in other books. She’s a little bit daring, a little determined and she’s not afraid to say what she’s thinking. That’s exactly what we want! But Phillip? Ugh, I’d happily leave him. The idea of him sounds great—he’s a botanist and honestly, that sounds cool but turns out he’s just a massive dickhead. He treats Eloise like shit. He treats his kids with about the same amount of love and affection leading to a whole bunch of what the actual hell moments. He also talks frequently about how he just needs a ‘happy wife’. Honestly, if you’re someone who gets triggered by depression, suicide, abuse and people just being the worst, skip this one. Not even Eloise could make this one.
On The Way To The Wedding
I was really excited for this one after having loved Gregory’s appearance in It’s In His Kiss—he seemed like a lot of fun and I was ready for some top quality banter. I did like him in the start, he’s sort of a softer character and I loved the idea that here he was believing in love and desperate to find it. I hated most of the other characters in here, the Bridgertons excluded of course. Lucy is boring and wishy-washy, her uncle and her father-in-law to be are downright awful and her friend Hermione just infuriated me. You know what? I take that back, I also liked her fiancee, he was entertaining. I hated how much back and forth there was on Lucy’s part. And in all honesty, this felt like a really early book in Quinn’s career rather than the final book in this series. The only thing that saves it for me is Gregory.
An Offer from a Gentleman
There isn’t anything inherently bad about this one. It didn’t annoy me or bore me, and I liked both Benedict and Sophie well enough. So it’s down here on the list mostly because of how much I loved all the others, and in comparison, this didn’t really stand out. I do have to admit that a big reason for that is the fact that this follows a sort of Cinderella storyline—the awful step-family, the ball, the ‘I must find my true love’ thing. I love the Cinderella movies, from the animated to the live-action and so forth, but I’m just not a fairytale retelling kind of gal. I don’t know what it is about them but I’m much more for the history retold/alternate history kind of thing than straight-up fairytales. So this was cute but ultimately not my cup of tea.
Romancing Mister Bridgerton
Again with this one, Colin? Absolutely gorgeous, adore him. Probably my second favourite Bridgerton brother. Penelope? Also gorgeous, she’s completely brilliant and I loved seeing her grow throughout the books and to see her finally get her own story. But there is a massive plot reveal in this one, and honestly? I wasn’t overly impressed by it. I knew that the reveal was coming but I would’ve been quite happy to just not have it revealed especially as it didn’t really affect any of the later books. Seriously, as far as I can remember, it gets mentioned very passingly in To Sir Phillip, With Love and then never again. I think it really added something to the books and afterwards, it was just kind of missing something.
It’s In His Kiss
Hyacinth’s little cameos in the previous book really don’t give her the credit she deserves. As the youngest, she kind of gets played off as the annoying little sister but she is so much more than that. She’s fierce, she’s extremely intelligent and she cares so deeply for those around her. Gareth is surprisingly wonderful as well. And perhaps my favourite character in the whole series gets her time to shine too—that is, the wonderful Lady Danbury, of course. This kind of felt like a return to the things I loved most about the first two books—the banter, the mischief, and a compelling side-plot to bring the characters together. I would quite happily reread this one time and time again.
The Duke and I
Ah, where it all began! I truly fell in love with this book from the very beginning and I’m so glad it happened that way. I think Daphne was the perfect Bridgerton to begin the series with and as you can see, the story definitely held up to the rest of the series. For me, part of the reason I enjoyed this one so much is because of how likeable Daphne is—it’s easy to want to know her story and the rest of her family as well. I love that we get to learn little things about each of her siblings which then get built on when we get to that person’s own story. Looking back at this one now that I’ve read them all, it really feels like I’ve been on a journey with this family, almost as if I know them and now I’m kind of sad that it’s all over. I guess that means I can reread my favourites in 2021, right? If you want to hear more of my thoughts about this one, check out this discussion Angel and I did.
The Viscount Who Loved Me
Pretty much from the moment I started this one I knew it was going to be a favourite. I had already really liked what we had seen of Anthony in book one, but I fell well and truly in love with him during this one. On top of that, I just love how Kate and Anthony play off one another and the banter between them and I love when they appear in later books as well. This one is also just filled with the kinds of tropes I love—the whole enemies to lovers thing, the pining, the prettier younger sister thing and all of the rest. I mentioned the banter just before, but I also have to say this is probably one of the funniest in the series, right up there with The Duke and I. And I have to say out of all of the historical romances I’ve read so far, this probably has the best way in which the characters get together—ugh, it’s just so good!
Do you agree with this list? What’s your personal ranking of the series?