Love Engineered by Jenna Dawlish is set during the Industrial Revolution (late 1800’s) in England. During this time great advances in agriculture, industry and science were occurring with some of the greatest minds meeting together in London. Unfortunately, none of those great minds were female. Louise Thomas is a female interested in engineering who attends lectures given by the men in the field to further her education and because she has questions she wants answered. A wealthy noblewoman with no family, she is allowed to attend but is seen by both the engineers and upper society as an eccentric. While Louise has all the creature comforts she could desire, she has no one to share her interests or her life with. Louise finally meets someone who sparks her interest, engineer Sir Charles Lucas, a man who is considered one of the greats of his day. Through Charles, Louise meets and becomes instant friends with his sister Jane. As Louise’s friendship grows with Jane, so does her relationship with Charles. Just when Louise starts to think she can open up to Charles, an enemy from her past threatens to destroy all her new-found happiness.
Louise is a woman surround by people who serve her faithfully because of her wealth but she is all alone in the world, with no one to laugh with. Louise is an self-educated woman who very insecure about herself because of being hurt in the past by people who just want her money. She has built walls around her heart, partly in response to being hurt and partly because there really isn’t anyone to share her life with. As Louise becomes friends with Jane, her relationship with Charles starts to grow into something more. I really felt for Louise, she is a lonely woman who wants more in life than to just dress trendy and find a titled husband. She has a studio where she works on her own experiments and pursues her own line of thought. She has a large country estate where she works to better the lives of those who live on it and works hard to assist those in need. But don’t think that Louise is one of those obnoxious heroines who only does good, she has built walls around her heart and her life and in some ways is trapped in a lonely world of her own making. Her friendship with Jane is one of the only relationships with another woman where she allows her to see the real Louise.
Charles is a great engineer but he struggles to know how to trust and who to believe. After meeting Louise he thinks that she is just too good to be true and must therefore be a meddling female who doesn’t keep her nose out of other people’s business. When he hears conflicting stories from an old classmate, Charles believes the worst about Louise and makes her promise to end her friendship with Jane. Charles then starts to really see what Louise does with her life and the pieces start to fall into place to get him a better picture of who she really is. I really liked the story, it was a quick read. However, I LOVED finding out after I finished the book that the story is based on the real life of Louise and Charles Lucas. That a woman as progressive and scientific as Louise really lived her life and there is an award in England given to deserving engineers named after her made me want to reread the entire story.