Hmmmm. Good read. I really liked the book. The hero (he's a hardened man with a tortured secret/past, charming as hell, he cooks! and he can dance! an...moreHmmmm. Good read. I really liked the book. The hero (he's a hardened man with a tortured secret/past, charming as hell, he cooks! and he can dance! and he's with respect and ambition and a driving force that's allowed him to survive) and heroine (she's loyal and headstrong, brave and capable; was willing to fight for the people she loved, willing to sacrifice without being weak) were both very intriguing, stubborn, and interesting and their love for their siblings -- admirable and piercing ... and I couldn't help but be charmed by these two survivors. The banter was awesome and it kept me on my toes. Lots of moments stand out, of course, one of them being the part where he teaches her the basics of kissing. Wow. I mean, yeah, hot. And to think, that was just a kiss (and that was only the beginning of their many "mind-drugging" kisses). Good Lord, when you get to the actual lovemaking .... Talk about sparks and fire and burning and passion. The journey they had to get to know each other (ie: through the tasks/challenges, their understanding, the way they can tell through the other person's eyes) - - I was so very happy for their happy ending.(less)
Quite possibly one of the hottest, most delicious story of love I have ever read. (And trust me, I have not stopped devouring romance novels since I d...moreQuite possibly one of the hottest, most delicious story of love I have ever read. (And trust me, I have not stopped devouring romance novels since I discovered it at the beginning of this year, and this is definitely listed in my top five.) There is this Something Special about this book that had me laughing and gasping and fanning myself and sighing and crying and everything in between. Sure, the wallflower spinster heroine has been featured many times before, and so has the rakish hero that is sure to win her heart, but in the hands of Sarah Maclean, their personalities and their stories transcends the archetypes and they simply become .... real.
Maybe it's because even though Lady Calpurnia Hartwell has been put 'on the shelf' she hasn't given up on life -- on living HER life. So though reputable and sensible, she allows herself to do the unthinkable and makes a list of things she must do in her life to satisfy her, so she can be happy. Ladies, who here has not put into words (lists!) their dreams of breaking through and accomplishing the very thing that seems out of reach, limiting us, compelling us to live our lives, but barely just. I for one, can relate to her situation of being boxed in, and I can really sympathize with her, and the only thing left for me to do was to root for this person who turned her life around by being proactive instead of just reactive; this woman who is intelligent and kindhearted, principled, loving, Callie. To see her succeed, to live and experience life and happiness, to achieve her dreams, and most important of all, to be loved, and to see herself as who she is: strong . . . impassioned . . . beautiful. All this, without hurting anyone, without being bitter and cynical, and despite her heartbreak, never wavering on her principles and not compromising her belief.
Then, there's our hero, the very man who ignited that spark within our heroine's heart, Gabriel St. John, the Marquess of Ralston, the man who got swept up in our heroine's plight of adventure (seriously, he did not stand a chance, did he?) My dear Ralston, you were made to love her, and love her you did. Charm her and love her. Infuriate her, and love her. Seduce her and love her (oh my, the sexual tension, unspeakable heights of hotness and sexiness). Encourage her, and love her. Open up to her and love her. Open her eyes to see how beautiful she is, and love her. Make sure she gets to live the life she deserves and love her. You saw her for who she is, and damn that pride, and the stubbornness (well, in you both, really), because you truly and magnificently proved to her just what she means to you.
This is one of those unputdownable books for me. One of those books that made me gasp/sigh audibly. One of those books that gave me those blasted butterflies in my stomach that seemed to turn pterodactyl-like in one of those heart-wrenching scenes. I wanted to scream in frustration and shake the person into realization. I was silently yelling at her, 'Tell him! Tell him!' I was begging him to see what was happening as it was happening and I wanted their happiness together to begin as soon as possible, anxious for the misunderstandings to be set right, knowing that True Love awaits. I wanted more of their story, after they got their happily ever after. I suppose, there is nothing left to say, except that Ms. MacLean has succeeded. Superbly, of course, because just as Ralston told Callie that kisses should not leave you satisfied, the same also goes for reading great stories.
I found myself falling in love with the Hathaway clan, and really, who wouldn't? The storytelling was so rich that it all felt very real to me; there...moreI found myself falling in love with the Hathaway clan, and really, who wouldn't? The storytelling was so rich that it all felt very real to me; there was great humor in the story, and I found myself laughing at loud numerous times. It hits you emotionally too, when you find out about Harry's background, and it made me feel so happy that he's found Poppy, and at the same time, I'm also glad that Poppy has someone in Harry (bribery and all, hahahaha). The secondary characters are also compelling. This is the first one I've read of the series, and it makes me so want to read the rest of the story. I can't decide whether to go forwards or backwards, but I think, for continuity's sake, I'm going to go for Leo's story (heh. so much love for Leo and Catherine in this book too!) Oh, Lisa Kleypas. You're really amazing. <3(less)