Bridgerton Books Ranked Best to Worst
Over 2021 I’ve become a big fan of the Bridgerton books by Julia Quinn. I read all seven books in the series in the first two months of the New Year. But today, I want to share a post on the Bridgerton books ranked best to worst.
So, in order of best to worst, these are how I would rank the Bridgerton book series.
My favourite book in the Bridgerton series is Book 3, Benedict’s story. This is a Cinderella re-telling, and whilst there are some problematic elements (he basically kidnaps the leading lady at one point…) there is a really romantic line flowing throughout the story. One of the best bits about the Bridgerton series is the use of comedy. A lot of the characters are sarcastic and witty, which is my favourite kind of comedy, and Benedict’s character is the King of Sarcasm.
My second favourite is The Viscount Who Loved Me which follows Anthony, the eldest of the Bridgerton siblings. The best thing about Anthony’s story is the eldest brother’s vulnerability. He is terrified he is going to die at a young age, just like his beloved father, and therefore he doesn’t want to marry for love as he doesn’t want to leave his wife widowed and lonely.
Of course, no one knows when they’re going to die, and when he falls for a strong woman, Kate, she has to persuade him to love her and not be afraid. It’s a really sweet love story – although on occasion you want to shake Anthony for being so stubborn and brooding.
The Duke and I is the first book in the series and the basis for the Netflix series. Daphne is the fourth Bridgerton sibling and the first sister. Back in the Regency period, it was true that women married young – in their early 20s – and men married later – in their 30s/40s – so it made sense to have Daphne’s story is the first in the series.
She is an occasionally vain character but her romance with Simon, the Duke of Hastings, is very passionate and the trope of ‘fake dating’ is a lot of fun when you place it in the regency period. Quite an unexpected romance in a way, and a fantastic introduction to the Bridgerton clan.
The fourth book in the series is my fourth favourite. Technically this is classed as ‘Colin’s Story’ when really it is Penelope’s Featherington’s story. Penelope is the Bridgerton’s neighbour and best friend of Eloise. She has known the Bridgerton’s forever, and has been in love with Colin just as long.
The best element of the book, in my opinion, is Penelope’s friendship with Lady Danbury, the witty old matriarch of the ton who knows everyone’s business. Lady Danbury has an exterior of ice but a heart of gold, and loves to help the wallflowers – like Penelope – find the love of their lives. She’s really supportive of Penelope and Colin’s relationship, even when Colin isn’t aware that Penelope loves him. And the biggest twist… which I won’t reveal… was fantastic!! If you know, you know.
The last four books in the series are my least favourite of the Bridgerton books. The books start to get quite formulaic in the latter half of the series, and the stories change in pace. But Francesca’s story is unique to her siblings because she is already married when we start the book. Francesca married for love within 36 hours of meeting her husband at a party and has just discovered she is pregnant when the story starts. But then tragedy strikes: her young husband dies of a suspected aneurysm and she loses the baby.
Francesca flees to her husband’s estate in Scotland and his cousin and best friend, Michael Stirling, also Francesca’s friend goes abroad instead of taking on the role of Earl. However, as the year’s pass, he returns and goes to fulfill his new role as the Earl and reunites with Francesca who has been running things in his place… of course, Michael has always been in love with Francesca, but how could he marry his best friend’s widow?
Eloise Bridgerton is probably my favourite character from the Bridgerton Netflix series. She is so innocent and sarcastic, with a biting wit. I love her. Her character is very similar to the first four books in the series, but then when it comes to her own book in the series she becomes a little more dull and typical ‘weak female’.
In Romancing Mr Bridgerton, Eloise had started a secret correspondence with an older man and had run away to be with him. When she arrives, which is a surprise to him, she discovers he has two children and isn’t as romantic or honest as he was when he was writing her letters. He’s not looking for a wife so much as a governess for his children. Eloise has to break down his barriers, connect with his children, and try and keep her reputation intact after running away.
Gregory’s story is the last in the series, and it feels quite separate from his siblings. Because he is the younger son he’s been at school for nearly all of the previous books – except Hyacinths – so we know his character the least compared to the other’s who pop up in the books all of the time. By the time we meet Gregory all of his siblings are married with family’s of their own and it’s hard to care about Gregory and his obsession with a woman who is already engaged to be married – because she has to save her family finances and is being blackmailed.
And finally, my least favourite book in the series is Hyacinth’s story. And I’ve got to be honest, I can’t even remember what happens in this book! Looking over the book blurb I’m slightly reminded. Hyacinth is incredibly outspoken and wild, compared to her other sisters, and she meets Gareth St Clair who has a family diary, written in Italian which he is trying to decipher, and Hyacinth offers – demands – to help. It’s a bit of an enemies to lovers romance if I remember correctly, she’s quite a hard character to like, but Gareth ultimately falls for her.
But there we have it. That is the Bridgerton books ranked from best to worst. Do you agree with me? Which book is your favourite or least favourite? If you could write your own Bridgerton books ranked post what order would you put them in? Let me know in the comments below.