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A Defense of Honor (Haven Manor, #1)
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A Defense of Honor (Haven Manor #1)

4.38  ·  Rating details ·  291 Ratings  ·  122 Reviews
When Katherine "Kit" FitzGilbert turned her back on London society more than a decade ago, she determined never to set foot in a ballroom again. But when business takes her to London and she's forced to run for her life, she stumbles upon not only a glamorous ballroom but also Graham, Lord Wharton. What should have been a chance encounter becomes much more as Graham embark ...more
Paperback, 376 pages
Published June 5th 2018 by Bethany House Publishers (first published June 2018)
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Kellyn Roth
Jun 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: need-review
4.5 stars? Not sure, might even be five after I think about it.

At first I was seriously like, "I like blackmailing people! Why'd they have to stop blackmailing?" Then *coughs* I remembered that blackmailing is wrong.

Oh well, I suppose it couldn't go on forever. ;)

It was really great!
Apr 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites, reviewed
Loved loved loved loved loved
*insert here all heart emoticons*

I adore it when a book catches me by surprise. This might have seemed like a big chance Kristi Ann Hunter was taking, but I also believe it is her best yet - and that's saying a lot because I completely adore the Hawthorne series!

Graham Wharton is bored. He doesn't understand what the fuss is all about in London's high society balls, luxuries, and extravaganza. After all his travels, there hasn't been much catching his attention while
Such a lovely start to what promises to be an engrossing series! I admit, I'm pretty attached to the Hawthorne family, but the inhabitants of Haven Manor are proving to be stiff competition. Kit, Daphne, Jess (who readers will probably recognize from the Hawthorne books) are easy-to-love characters, not to mention the sweet rambunctious nature of the children in their care. Graham is endearing from the start, easily climbing over all of the barriers that the three ladies, especially Kit, have se ...more
Dana Michael
Jun 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Wow! This book by Hunter is a wonderful and original story. I love Regency Era books and this one is very unique. I've never read one like this. I loved it. I think anyone who loves this genre will really appreciate and enjoy this story. The characters are so likeable and I felt as if I was there with them in their quest to make the lives of the children better. They were very selfless and loving. They were also flawed and not perfect. However, Graham the hero was pretty much perfect in my book. ...more
Mar 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
4.5 stars, RT Top Pick
The first novel in Hunter's new Haven Manor series is both gripping and heartwarming at the same time. It is fascinating to read about these situations, which have so many parallels to the present day, yet because this book is set in the 1800s, it has more impact and can be quite challenging to the reader. Hunter communicates her storyline with such grace and passion, showing light on God's mercy and how He can restore any broken situation for His glory.

When Graham, Lord Wh
Jun 02, 2018 rated it really liked it
“The most precious gems are forged from pressure. God brings beauty from adversity, when you let him.”

A terrific read that touches the heart. Children in books is one of my favorite things, and it generally guarantees a heart touching story. It’s happy and sad, wonderful and glorious, yet heartbreaking as well.

What is the right way to handle the illegitimate children and the mothers? This book proves that there is no easy answer to that question, and not every situation has the same answer. The
Sarah Monzon
Jun 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I loved this fact it’s making it as one of my favorite books of the year. Yes, I’m that confident even though it’s only June. This is my favorite book by Kristi Ann Hunter. Yes, I’ve read them all. I loved the slow romantic burn, and that first kiss? Swoon!! I loved the plot which was unique and not something I’ve read in Regency over and overnight again like some plots/tropes. I can’t wait to read more books in this series!
Tricia Mingerink
Jun 15, 2018 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed the book, but not as much as some of Kristi Ann Hunter's previous books, though I doubt any of them will quite reach the heights of her first book with all the spy intrigue and danger. I listened to the audiobook version and the narrator was ok, but not my favorite, which probably didn't help when influencing my enjoyment of the book.

This book was still good. A little bit of danger. A little mystery. It handled the tough topic of illegitimate children and how they come about delicatel
May 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book! Now I need to know - does the rest of the series follow Jess and Daphne, or Aaron and Oliver? All of the above? Other characters we haven’t met yet? How does Graham and Kit’s venture turn out? What drove Jess to that London alley where she met Kit? Why did she leave Ryland and Miranda? Will we see any of the Hawthornes again?
Alysha (For The Love of Christian Fiction)
We always talk about all the things we "miss" from the 1800's, but we never talk about the truly terrible things that happened during this time period. Leave it to Kristi to deal with heavy topics with such a flawless execution!

Illegitimate children born to aristocracy were a huge issue, that was also taboo to talk about. The men could sire a child and never see a consequence, while the mother of this child would lose her place in society and quickly become an outcast. AND THE POOR CHILD! 😲😞 It
Cheryl Baranski
Jul 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A Defense of Honor is book one in the Haven Manor series by Kristi Ann Hunter. If you love the Regency area romance than this is the book for you. This story is one that grabs at the heartstrings. This is a story that is full of love, hope, longing, dreams and what has been. I love the protectiveness and determination of Kit. Then there is Graham oh my. A girls dream guy. Be sure to get your copy of A Defense of Honor today.
Heidi Robbins (Heidi Reads...)
My favorite thing about this book is the contrast of personalities between Kit and Graham. They both have so much to learn from each other and both bring a new and fresh perspective to their friendship and relationship. Graham's cheerful and light-hearted nature brings joy to the children and the women who care for them. Kit's mission and purpose shows Graham a serious side to the consequences of society's dictates and he admires her determination to work towards solutions. There is some danger ...more
Kathy * Bookworm Nation

Props for the original storyline! I loved that I haven't read a story like this in all my regencies. I liked the storyline and setting. I haven't read it yet, but I think it would probably be a good idea to read the prequel, A Search for Refuge, I did feel a bit lost or that I was missing something in the beginning, I would have liked if Kit's story had been in a prologue or told earlier on in the story. Overall, it was a good read and I'm curious to read the rest of the books in the series.
Jun 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A riskier darker side to the Regency era we all know and love. A deeply emotive story that will open up an alternate view point, to the challenging world of illegitimacy within the aristocracy during the 1800s . With a unique plot, and genuine heartfelt storyline, Kristi tells a story you probably haven't heard before. With an eye for even the tiniest of details (and I notice, as a British reader) I can tell she has thoroughly researched her subject. This story follows through now 12/13 years on ...more
Caitlyn Santi
Jun 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Another absolutely splendid novel from Kristi Ann Hunter! I have been eagerly anticipating this first novel in the Haven Manor series since March when I read the prequel novella, A Search for Refuge! I knew A Defense of Honor was going to be fabulous and to say that I was not disappointed would be a humongous understatement, I LOVED THIS BOOK SO MUCH! This story grabbed hold of me on page one and would not let go! When I pick up a book by this author I know I'm in for a super fun, witty ride tha ...more
Apr 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is the first time I’ve read a book by Kristi Ann Hunter and I have to say that I was immediately hooked on this particular novel. There’s a lot of mysteries that unfold throughout the entire book, a lot of secrets kept and revealed, lives changed, and hearts that begin to heal.
The story focuses on one woman’s quest to overcome the guilt of a past mistake that drives her to “save” others from a fate that could be. Kit’s goal is to see children born out of wedlock to the aristocracy of the 18
Gracelyn Buckner
May 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
4.5 Stars


the characters

I really loved all the characters in A Defense of Honor. I think Daphne was my favorite, although I really liked Kit too. Graham seemed really sweet, as did his two friends (whose names I can't currently remember...).

the themes

I loved the themes throughout A Defense of Honor. It wasn't really what I was expecting, but that was good. Claiming to be doing things for God, while we're really doing it for ourselves isn't a theme you read about that much. So I was
Fiction Aficionado
Jun 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
I very much enjoyed the first 85% of this book. The opening chapters held the promise of a romance with a little bit of intrigue and quite a bit of fun when Kit caught the eye of Lord Wharton, a viscount who finds himself thoroughly bored by the predictability of his current social life. Working in counterpoint to this light-hearted side of the story is Haven Manor, a place where Kit and her two compatriots, Daphne and Jess, devote their lives to raising children who might have had a very differ ...more
May 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I have so enjoyed Hunter's novels that I jumped at the chance to read this one! As the start of a new series this book starts with a great cast of characters. As per typical Hunter style, this book was full of humor but also truth and heart. Kit is a wonderful character and her journey in her personal life very well written. Graham and the children in the book take the story to another level and right when you think you have it all figured out, the story takes a turn. I loved that not everythin ...more
Jun 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A Defense of Honor by Kristi Ann Hunter is an absolute jewel. I have read no other regency book with this particular subject. I loved this story and was enveloped in it from the very first hiding-in-the-plants scene to the very last page. Hunter tackles a very serious, often heartbreaking subject with grace, passion, and humor, when appropriate. I have read several of her other books and have never been disappointed in the time spent reading!

I loved the ladies of Haven Manor (Kit, Jess, and Daph
Toni Shiloh
Jun 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
I thoroughly enjoyed this Haven Manor novel. Lord Wharton makes a dashing hero and one that's not stereotypical. And Kit has such a heart wrenching past that's coated her future. I enjoyed seeing them both grow and see how God wants them to live.

*I received a complimentary copy from the publisher. My review is my own, honest opinion.
Cara Putman
Jun 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
An important story, beautifully told. Touching and relevant to today.
Jul 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A Defense of Honor (2018) by Kristi Ann Hunter is the first book in her Haven Manor series. This book comes in all forms including eBook, and is 376 pages in length. With a full-time job and a very busy six-year old at home, this novel took me two days to read. I received a copy of this book in paperback form from the author via her publisher, Bethany House. In no way has this influenced my opinion of the story. All opinions expressed in this review are my own. I give A Defense of Honor 5 STARS. ...more
Paula Shreckhise
A Defense of Honor by Kristi Ann Hunter is a Regency piece set in London and Marlborough in 1816. It is the first of a fascinating new series by Kristi.

Kit FitzGilbert and her friend Daphne are hiding in the countryside after fleeing London society over a decade ago.
Graham, Lord Wharton is bored waiting to become an Earl but wants nothing to do with the frivolous pursuits of most of his peers. In other words, he wants to make a difference.

This novel is anything but boring! Kristi enchants us
Jun 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
"He was being passed over for a bush?"

Lord Graham Wharton craves conversation with a woman who is more than just a pretty face in the midst of a room full of social elites, so after glimpsing a fair headed maiden clothed in a bright green dress slipping in and out of the greenery along the perimeter of the ballroom, his curiosity births "an unbidden and unfathomable desire to defend the unknown woman's honor". Was she in some sort of mortal danger or simply avoiding an annoying suitor? Ironicall
Janell R.
Jun 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
First of all, I love the Regency turn period, and she did a great job with the opening, putting me right in the setting…except I knew how the novella had ended so I was quite intrigued to see what Kit was doing back in a ballroom. That first scene between her and Wharton, one of the best in the book!

So that brings me to secondly, the characters! I loved each of them, including all the children. Jess has got to be a favorite, but I’m anxious to know the continuation of sweet Daphne’s story as wel
Trisha Robertson (Joy of Reading)
I enjoyed getting to know Graham and Kit. They are unique, well-written characters that won't soon leave your imagination.  Graham has a fun sense of humor and a playful endearing quality that draws you in and makes you want to linger. Kit is more serious. She is determined and practical. She needs a little encouragement to let down her hair and laugh. Graham is just the man for the job.

Haven Manor is a hidden gem. A safe place of refuge for those who the elite of society has deemed unworthy, an
Jun 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Hunter is no stranger to confronting taboo subjects in her writing. In this book, she tactfully and tastefully addresses the issue of illegitimacy specifically with the English aristocracy during the Regency Era. The novel's heroine, Kit, has made it her life's mission to assist the women and children often scorned after a clandestine affair due to her own misinterpreted past. I thoroughly enjoyed the comical entrance Graham had into Kit's life (and how their first encounter was carried into oth ...more
Jul 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
The first thing I said to my hubby after I started reading this book was, "It has been WAY too long since I have read a Kristi Ann Hunter book." I absolutely LOVE her style and voice. The humor infused with the stark realities of life. The faith combined with growth. And the adventures...OH, the adventures these characters have is of epic proportions.

The first thing that stood out to me in this story is the completely new-to-me setting and theme. Although set in Regency England, we spend most o
Beth Erin
Jun 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Full review on Faithfully Bookish

Katherine "Kit" FitzGilbert is a fierce and fully committed advocate for young women. Kit has embraced a Robin Hood-esque persona and justified her own questionable actions as the means to provide for the innocents in her charge which sent my reader heart into a tug-of-war between cheering her on and cringing over her choices.

Graham, Lord Wharton, is a delightfully genuine and perfectly imperfect gentleman who reminds me of an earnest young Mr. Knightley. Graham
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Review 1 1 Jun 25, 2018 05:42AM  
What I thought.... 2 4 Jun 04, 2018 12:58AM  
Kristi Ann Hunter graduated from Georgia Tech with a degree in Computer Science but always knew she wanted to write. Kristi is an RWA Golden Heart contest winner, an ACFW Genesis contest winner, and a Georgia Romance Writers Maggie Award for Excellence winner. She lives with her husband and three children in Georgia. Find her online at
More about Kristi Ann Hunter

Other books in the series

Haven Manor (2 books)
  • A Return of Devotion (Haven Manor, #2)
“Grace doesn't work like that, Kit. I know my life's been pretty easy, and my list of sins wouldn't make anyone blush, but I'm not perfect and I've read the Bible enough to know that grace doesn't come because of anything you can do. Jesus didn't die and rise again so you could crucify yourself with guilt.” 1 likes
“He thought that appeasing his curiosity would be enough to make him willing to forget her, but the opposite was happening. Every answer unearthed three more questions about a girl born into his world, yet different than any other woman he’d ever met.” 0 likes
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