Graphic novels are honestly one of the best ways to tell a story and Ruined is the perfect example of that.
There are a few romance subgenres that don’t get enough love and one of those is historical romances. Maybe it’s due to the different societal expectations and roles for characters but they never seem to be in the spotlight.
Thankfully, this new release from Sarah Vaughn, Sarah Winifred Searle, and Niki Smith is aiming to change that. This adult romance graphic novel has the potential to do so much for both genres.
I’d like to thank First Second for sending me a finished copy and putting this one on my radar so let’s get into my thoughts and feelings on Ruined.
Ruined is a gorgeous historical romance you’ll immediately fall for.
If you’re at all familiar with historical romance books, you’ll know the concept of being “ruined” which is being with a man before marriage. This only applies to the women in historicals and this book takes that idea and flips it on its head.
Ruined follows Catherine as she’s marrying Andrew. It’s clear from the start that it isn’t a love match but Catherine fears she’s undesirable while Andrew is focusing on her dowry yet it doesn’t end there. Even though it seems that the two will never get along, they end up forming a friendship.
Of course, things start to get complicated as Catherine wants to be in a relationship out of love and is dealing with some insecurities after some past events Andrew shared. Ultimately, these two end up standing in their own way but it seems incredibly realistic for the time period. It’s clear they’re trying to do right by the other person but just don’t know how.
Despite that, the connection and tension between Catherine and Andrew are undeniable. I truly couldn’t get enough of watching these two fall for each other. While I did want to shake them at times, Ruined was such a treat and it was surprisingly steamy. If you’re not looking for any explicit content, then I’d skip out on this one.
Ruined was such a fun take on the normal historical romance genre, has a beautiful art style, and tells a compelling story amidst the romance. I adored seeing these three collaborators and I hope they decide to write another book in this series. If not, I’d love to read another project from them. If you like historical romances and graphic novels, I don’t think you can go wrong in grabbing this one or adding it to your Christmas list.
Ruined by Sarah Vaughn, Sarah Winifred Searle, and Niki Smith is out now where books are sold.
Will you be grabbing a copy of Ruined on your next shopping trip?