Wow. I never thought I'd say this about a Lisa Kleypas book, but this one was just okay. Yep.
With this series we've moved on to the Bow Street Runner...moreWow. I never thought I'd say this about a Lisa Kleypas book, but this one was just okay. Yep.
With this series we've moved on to the Bow Street Runners and their paths to true love and we start out with adventurous Grant Morgan. He's called to a crime scene where a drown woman's body awaits him to be investigated with signs of strangulation on her neck. Only she isn't a dead body, she's very much alive! What? Oh yes. The people who are at the crime scene, including the one who rescued the woman from the Thames, were not aware that she was still alive. Grant recognizes her in an instant as the very well known and desired courtesan Vivien Duvall, who once spread gossip around that she rejected his attentions when he was the one who rejected her. So he plots his revenge, thinking he'll bring her home, use her and then discard her. But things don't go the way he wants when it turns out Vivien has lost her memory and is acting like an innocent! Grant's heart goes to her and he has a hard time believeing whether she really lost her memory or this is all an act. Meanwhile he tries to solve the mystery of her attempted murder with help from his super cool boss whose book I'm dying to read and a few other Bow Street Runners.
The plot was okay, and I thought with Lisa Kleypas' storytelling abilities it could become even better. But sadly I have to admit, I felt like I was reading an average historical romance with a bit of mystery added to it. Where was the extreme emotional struggles of a vulnerable hero? Where was the loveable, compassionate heroine? Don't get me wrong, I liked both the hero and the heroine but they certainly could've been better. Especially knowing the past men and women Lisa created, I thought I'd fall for these two from the first page. Because I always do. From the first moment they appear I love the heroes and the heroines in her books. In this one? I'm sorry to say: okay.
Grant had a lot of potential to be a dramatic hero. He had a sad and lonely past which to my disappointment was mentioned once in passing and never returned to again with feelings and revelations. He's street smart, he's dealt with criminals all his life and he has a few scrapes ro prove it. Also, the rough and tough personality. Which, again, we didn't delve into very much. Why not? Tortured heroes make the best lovers, don't they? So why not elaborate their pained pasts and let them deal and resolve them with the help and encouragement from the heroine?
Which brings me to Vivien. Yes, she was very innocent, so in contrast with her personality before the attempted murder. And she wasn't annoying, but she wasn't the strong and passionate heroine I've expected from a Lisa Kleypas book either. She wasn't an innocent-turned-strong heroine like Evangeline Jenner, or a lively and compassionate one like Beatrix Hathaway. Where was her power to help her man come to terms with his past and move on with her?
I've heard from a few friends whose tastes I trust that this wasn't as good as the other Lisa Kleypas books and I did read it without letting that affect me and in the end, I do agree with them. As much as I still enjoyed this book, there was definitely a spark missing. The usual Lisa magic wasn't in this story. But I hear the rest of the series gets much better and I hope so. I feel weird rating a Lisa book with anything less than 5 stars!(less)
Loved this book. Really did. It was definitely better than the previous one in both its characters and storyline.
Sir Ross, aka Monk of Bow Street -see...moreLoved this book. Really did. It was definitely better than the previous one in both its characters and storyline.
Sir Ross, aka Monk of Bow Street -see the potential already?- encounters the beautiful and strong Lady Sophia who applies for the job to be his assistant at Bow Street. But of course they both have their secret pasts and their own pains to get over. There's a bit of everything in this book. Revenge, regret, fear, love, heat and secret admirers.
I liked Lady Sophia. Even though she had a shady past she wasn't afraid to face the consequences and troubles that brought up. She wasn't the kind of heroine to shy away from her problems and she was the strong woman who had to play helpless to get what she wanted which bothered her but it was nice to read for me. She was determined and no matter how cruel and cold she tried to feel about ceratin things, she just was that much warmer. And I liked her.
Sir Ross..Do you even have to ask? He was nicknamed the Monk of Bow Street for God's sake! So you can see that I'm going to his extreme sensuality with this. His apetite for passion was breathtaking. I mean I know all Lisa Kleypas heroes have their own passionate ways but Sir Ross must've been the one who was most creative and insatiable. That bouncy horse thing? Remember that anyone? Or rather, able to forget, anyone?
But other than his wickedness in bed, and out of it, he was also a good hero. The one I'd expect from a Lisa Kleypas book. I liked his mature and rational character but he could also tap into his emotions. In fact, as much as he tried to appear like a cold, rational person, he was rather more in touch and grasp of those emotions. When he found the thing worth fighting for, he wasn't afraid to leave the rules behind and follow it. Gotta love that in a man.
As for the two of them together, they made quite a good couple. They were both passionate and not afraid to explore. They both had their fears and doubts but that didn't stop them from hanging on to each other and hope.
There was also a slight mystery involving Lady Sophia as well which was quite nice and surprising. It allowed the storyline to advance and it was nice to wonder.
And in some certain part of this book, was anyone else reminded of a previous hero in a similar situation? Say, a certain gypsy? I remember reading the almost exact description for him by another doctor :D
Overall, I loved this book. It was definitely better than the one before. Characters were more in sync and we were able to know more about their pasts. I realize now that this series is different in its characters and storyline than Lisa's previous work that I've read. There's more action involved and I think I like that in a historical. (less)
If I had thought Sir Ross was an insatiable and creative man, Nick Gentry just blew me away.
Our infamous crime lord/thief-taker was offered a job by h...moreIf I had thought Sir Ross was an insatiable and creative man, Nick Gentry just blew me away.
Our infamous crime lord/thief-taker was offered a job by his brother-in-law at the end of the previous book to work as an official runner. This story takes place three years later, when Nick Gentry is dispatched by a man with an ugly soul, Lord Radnor, to find and bring back his runaway bride, Charlotte Howard. It takes Nick surprisingly longer than he probably imagined to find Lottie Howard but when he does, he's faced with a dilemma. Because Lottie Howard is a strong woman who's been able to evade him for 2 months and she is beautiful, smart and completely down-to-earth. So, in a moment driven out of passion he makes an offer to her, and in a moment of desperation Lottie accepts.
I have to say these two people really blew me away as both separate characters and as a couple.
Lottie is a remarkable strong person. She's run away from an arranged marriage to a man who's much older in age and a complete dictator in everything else. Her family practically gives Lord Radnor total reign over Lottie's life in exchange for his financial support and the noose tightens and tightens when finally Lottie can't take it anymore and runs away. I admired her courage. Her spirit. No matter what, she couldn't help but think of herself as selfish because she believed she abandoned her family, when in fact it was her selfish, horrible, law and order: svu episode-worthy parents who were the abandoning ones. I can't express my disgust in her family enough so I won't even try it. So when faced with a choice between marriage to the dictator and marriage to a practical stranger, it's no surprise she goes for the stranger. A stranger she's somehow also attracted to, a stranger who promised her no title but a better life than the one she would've had with Radnor.
I just can't put into words how much I loved Lottie's character. She was passionate, loving, understanding and good natured. But she was also extremely strong, she knew what she wanted and she was good under pressure. She was a woman who could hold her own when faced with a difficult situation. She was definitely a perfect match for Nick Gentry.
And Nick Gentry..Ah, Nick..Again, I've got limited ability to describe just how much I adored this man. He wasn't your usual hero for all his faults in the past along with the ones done to him, but he certainly came through when it mattered. In the three years that have passed we see that Nick has actually changed and matured a bit. He's following rules, with maybe a few exceptions here and there but hey, no one can blame him, and he's more compassionate towards others. He still has a difficult relationship with his brother-in-law but they manage with the help of his sister Sophia. We also find out that he's great with children which makes his place in my heart a whole lot bigger.
Nick was a hero who was both easy and difficult. He's got secrets that he keeps from everyone, he hates and fears vulnerability so much that he even skips sleep most of the time because he believes it renders him unprotected and vulnerable. Of course he has reason for this but he's not opening up to anyone else. On the other hand, he's teasing, playful and my God he must be the most skillful and knowledgeable hero of fiction about sex. This would be the part I smile and wink at you and get lost in my dreamland for a while.
Back to the reality of my review, I also loved these two as a couple. They complemented each other even when they didn't know it. I admired Lottie's attempts to drag the truth out of him and finally unburden him after so long. I loved the passion between them. I loved the fact that they cared so much. They reminded me again why I love Lisa Kleypas couples.
There was everything in this book, it was complete with the story, the characters, the drama, the revelations, the love and the action and mystery. This is what I've been waiting to read from the start of this series.(less)
**spoiler alert** 'Wallflowers' series will always be my first love in historical romance. And even though I've only read the first two books so far,...more**spoiler alert** 'Wallflowers' series will always be my first love in historical romance. And even though I've only read the first two books so far, I have this distinct feeling that I will forever cherish these stories, the romances and the wonderful characters.
With this book, we're told the story of Lord Westcliff, close friend of Simon Hunt -the previous book's hero- and Lillian Bowman, the sharp-tongued wallflower.
Lord Westcliff, I already loved from the previous book. Sure, he was cynical, seemed to be a bit hard-headed, but he was loyal and totally checking Lillian out in their half naked rounders game! Marcus, Lord Westcliff is the kind of man who's used to be in charge and have control over his life, and on some occasions, the lives of others. But don't let this description fool you, because he's actually a very tender man who only wants the best for those he loves and he's cold and distanced only for the way he's been brought up by the man he calls father. I'd say 'tough love' but that sperm donor of his had nothing even remotely related to love in his actions towards his son.
Even with such a man as a father Lord Westcliff seems to have grown up pretty well. He may be difficult sometimes but he also knows the meaning of true family and friendship and loyalty, and thanks to Lillian's appearence in his life, love. Needless to say I absolutely loved Lord Westcliff and I was so happy to read him find his happiness.
Now, Lillian was also a character I loved so from the previous book. Then again, I don't think there's any one of these people I have even doubted a little from before. I just loved her sharp tongue! She was the kinda heroine that if she was told in modern times would no doubt be a kick ass heroine. I very much enjoyed how she constantly challenged those around her and how crazy she made Westcliff! I'm a complete lover of bickering love -something I might've mentioned a few times before :P- so this couple was top notch for me.
Apart from the main couple, I loved the appearences from Annabelle and Simon, and was so happy to find out they're expecting.
I loved the whole perfume mystery, it was something I very much enjoyed reading and when it was revealed that the secret ingredient was in fact Lillian herself, it was an 'awww' moment for me.
I thought Daisy and Evangeline were explored more in this, we got hints here and there about their personalities. I know we already know them, especially Daisy since she's Lillian's sister and more extroverted than Evangeline. But Evie is still a bit closed. I'm really looking forward to knowing more about her and reading her fall in love and rid herself of that horrible family of hers.
Which brings me to Lord St Vincent. I did think he was adorable when he appeared, even though he made passes at Lillian and was clearly trying get himself some sort of financial releaf. He's a versatile character, a man who's unpredictable but I gotta admit I didn't expect his kidnapping, secretly marrying and forcibly seducing Lillian plan. At all. Even after they found her, and even after he was attacked by Westcliff I still expected a marshmallow explanation about the way he acted. I sure look forward to how he'll atone for his actions. Because a player like him sure would make a good match for the shy wallflower.
There were many scenes that did things to my insides. I just love how Lisa Kleypas writes love scenes, the intimacy is just beautiful. And the way the characters connect with each other, the lovers fall for each other is just as beautiful and smooth.
Needless to say I cannot wait to read the rest of this series. I already made up a nice space for all the books on my bookshelf!(less)
**spoiler alert** I think it's become quite impossible for me to give this series any rating other than 5 stars. I'm already feeling blue because the...more**spoiler alert** I think it's become quite impossible for me to give this series any rating other than 5 stars. I'm already feeling blue because the next one will be the last of the series.
This book of the Wallflowers quartet tells the story of the womanizer Lord St. Vincent and the shyest of all wallflowers, Evie Jenner.
I love Evie. From what we've known of her so far, she was very withdrawn, shy around other people but she has the heart of gold. We've already told a bit about her overbearing family but I didn't know things were this bad for her. I couldn't believe the things her brute uncles did to her, she was a sure victim of violence and negligence. They practically tortured the poor girl by using physical and emotional pressure, and even denied her food when she didn't act to their liking. If this was a tv show it'd be Law and Order: Svu.
So I could totally understand and support her decision to make an offer of marriage to St. Vincent, who, very recently had kidnapped and tried to force Lillian into marriage himself.
I felt so bad for Evie, for all she's been through, I think I wanted her to be the happiest. I mean, of course I wish for all Wallflowers to be happy and all, but Evie was such a tortured heroine that I wanted to get into that book and strangle those uncles of her myself. With bare hands. Perhaps a few kicks to the groin to ensure they'd suffer to the fullest.
St. Vincent, on the other hand, was a more closed box. We first met him when he was his most nonchalant and playful and flirty, and then he turned into the kidnapper and finally the last hope for Evie. I have to say I was angry with him by the end of the previous book. He did deserve to fall to his knees for a woman. Or get shot, whatever :)
But of course I couldn't stay mad at St. Vincent for long. He was so considerate and charming to Evie, even before they got married, when they were travelling hastily to Gretna Green. I guess he was waiting for the right woman to melt his heart.
I loved the way he treated Evie. It might've seemed like he was indifferent and careless towards her, but Lisa Kleypas gave enough hints here and there to let us know that he felt much different inside. After all, he was a player, he wasn't used to loving someone with such intensity and by the end of the book this is made more clear when he constantly refused to acknowledge his true feelings and the true intensity of those feelings for Evie.
Even though I knew this was supposed to end happy, I have to admit I was on edge reading those pages after St. Vincent got shot for Evie. But I also loved those parts the most in the book because we got to see St. Vincent at his most vulnerable and I know my heart melted for him. He was a bad patient though :) I loved his childlike personality in those pages.
Needless to say these two were a perfect match. Who better to reform an infamous rake other than the shy beauty?
"Really, someone should tell St Vincent that he's a living cliché. He has become the embodiment of everything they say about reformed rakes." - Oh Lillian! :)
Which brings me to Lillian and Wescliff. I was so glad to see them, for a while I wondered if we were ever gonna see any of the other wallflowers but of course when things go bad, Wescliff to the rescue! It seems like he's always there to help save the day, great man, soon to be a father. I was so happy to hear that!
Lisa Kleypas enchants me with her writing. There's something about the way she writes the romance and the characters that they come off the pages and sit with you while you read and laugh and shed a single tear with them.
I can't wait to read the next one where the adventurous Daisy finds her happily ever after.(less)
**spoiler alert** Another wonderfully written book by Lisa Kleypas. The tune of these books is a bit different than the Wallflowers I think, because,...more**spoiler alert** Another wonderfully written book by Lisa Kleypas. The tune of these books is a bit different than the Wallflowers I think, because, for starters, we have two Gypsies who have an altogether different culture, who also happen to have adapted to the English life well. And then there's the Hathaways. They're not the usual English family with their eccentricities. But that only makes you love them more. So, when you put them all together, you get a nice historical series with a different taste. But it's a good different, and I think Lisa Kleypas needs a pat on the back here for not repeating herself with a similar stroyline with slightly different characters. She managed to create a whole different world in her previous one and I think that's why she'll remain as my favourite historical romance author.
Going back to the book itself, this beautifully written one tells the story of Win, the fragile invalid sister, and Kev, the Gypsy boy who was adopted by the family who later came to be one of them.
I'll start with Win. I have to admit she surprised me. In a good way though. From the previous book, she seemed like a mature girl who, in my opinion, acted as a buffer for her older sister Amelia. As opposed to her sister's frantic nature, she was more serene. Perhaps that had to do with the aftereffects of her illness, nevertheless her picture was one of a quite one.
This book had a different tone for the way it was told with the flashbacks and leaps in time. I enjoyed the past moments with Win and Kev, it made me see the basis of their relationship and made me understand both of them better. I was able to see Kev before he was rasped by the Hathaway family, and Win, before the scarlet fever has claimed her strength.
And then there was the two year gap that we jumped, while Win was away in France to get her long awaited treatment and when she came back, she was the same sweet Win, but also very different. I was glad to see she not only got her strength back, but she was also a very determined woman. All the change that happened in her was in good direction. Her efforts to make a life for herself with the man she loved were enviable. I was also glad to see that even though she was repeatedly rejected by Kev, she still had her dignity and determination attached.
Which brings me to our hero. Oh, how I love a tortured man..They are the best ones to fall for, because when they do, it's so intense it makes your heart beat faster and your blood rush.
I think we can divide Kev's life in two, 'before Hathways' and 'after Hathways'. His 'before' is very painful, filled with horrible memories where he's forced to beat and perhaps even kill other children for the entertainment of others. And sorrow, pity or tears are not allowed. He's brought up as an animal and he comes to the Hathaways as a wounded one. A wounded animal is tricky. You should approach with great care but once you gain the trust, I think, there's no coming back.
And the Hathaways earn Kev's trust. His loyalty too. Even though it seems like the biggest reason for him to stay with them is Win's tender heart that he longes to have, it's nice to see that he cared for all of them, parents included. And after all the trauma and hardship the family had gone through, he was a nice steady existence among the Hathaway siblings.
These two, Win and Kev, made me shed tears in the previous book and they sure went on to nudge my heart in this one. Kev had many beautiful words and thoughts, "I love you. I love every part of you, every thought and word..the entire complex, fascinating bundle of all the things you are. I want you with ten different kinds of need at once. I love all the seasons of you, the way you are now, the thought of how much more beatiful you'll be in the decades to come. I love you for being the answer to every question my heart could ask." Just so beautiful..
I enjoyed the brother storyline of Cam and Kev. We had a chance to know, and might I add, adore, Cam more. He fought his way through the hard exterior of his brother and made him openly care for him. Even though it took him only to drink the coffee he despised and to almost die :)
I'm reading and looking forward to the rest of this series with the same intensity as I did with the Wallflowers. And I have to finish with quoting the best part of the book, the last page. The perfect ending to a beautiful book.
"' You are Andrei,' she whispered. It was a name for a warrior. A son of Kev Merripen could be no less. 'Your gadjo name is Jason Cole. And your tribal name..' She paused thoughtfully.
'Jado,' came her husband's drowsy voice from beside her.
Win looked down at Kev and reached out to stroke his thick, dark hair. The lines on his face were gone, and he looked relaxed and content. 'What does that mean?' she asked.
'One who lives outside the Rom.' 'That's perfect.' She let her hand linger in his hair. 'Ov yilo isi?' she asked him gently.
'Yes,' Kev said, answering in English. 'There is heart here.'
**spoiler alert** I wish we had a means to erase our minds of any book's memories and read them again and again just so we can have that first time ex...more**spoiler alert** I wish we had a means to erase our minds of any book's memories and read them again and again just so we can have that first time excitement and pleasure..Even though I feel a bit sad that this series, the 4 Wallflowers' books that is, is over, it will not be the last time I'm with them. As my official favourite historical romance series now, I'm planning to wear the books out until I'll need new copies!
This book tells the story of the dreamer of the Wallflowers, Daisy Bowman, and the man her father pressures her to marry, the long despised Matthew Swift.
As it is clear, this match starts out with the Bowman sisters' prejudice towards our hero and from the beginning Daisy is horrified by the idea of marrying a man her father approves. It's known to us that the sisters do not like the way their father made a life for himslef, focusing only on material things and giving little thought on emotional issues. He doesn't even show any affection to any of his children or his wife and rightfully Daisy and Lillian are compelled to hate the man their father sees as close to a son. But of course our Matthew turns out to be nothing like the girls predicted.
I just have to say I adored Matthew Swift. He was compassionate, passionate, smart. A total gentleman. I loved his first encounter with Daisy when he came to Stoney Cross Park. I very much enjoyed Daisy's shock over seeing the man she so despised for years to have become a man who's well built and quite attractive now.
And as I read and read, and became aware of the longing Matthew felt towards Daisy, the intensity of it, I wanted to get into that book and comfort him myself, Daisy be damned! I think one of the most adorable scenes happened in this book, where him and Daisy wait outside of Lillian's room while she was giving birth, and Daisy discovered the button Matthew was carrying for years with her hair in it. I knew then I wanted him to get everything he ever wanted.
Other than the button incident, Matthew had many adorable scenes, either with Daisy or with all the Wallflowers, like when he helped little Isabelle, Annabelle and Smion's little girl, about her teething, and he knew about Daisy's favourite wine, and when he was trying to convince Llandrindon to marry her, the way he described her..I can go on and on and it still wouldn't be enough to tell how wonderful and sweet Matthew Swift was.
As for Daisy, I absolutely loved and adored her. She was very much like me and some of my friends here :) Her love for books, the fantasy world, her lively spirit, her love for animals, her desire for adventure and her kind and loving personality. Not to mention her crazy side that locked herself with Matthew Swift in his room to seduce him!
It's not that I expected any less but it was great to read their struggle against the hardships that Matthew's past has brought forward. I felt sorry for him for what he's been through and was so glad to see everyone stick by him, even Lillian, who never really trusted or liked him from the beginning. And of course Westcliff, the man who's always around to help save the day. As opposed to what they pointed out several times in the book, he's a good judge of character, save for Annabelle's case :)
Daisy and Matthew really fit well, they were every bit the younger couple. And by the end of the book, when Matthew disappeared when that carriage went down, I wanted to weep with Daisy. I can't imagine going through something like that, where you have no way of knowing whether the person you love is alive or gone forever. I really teared up in those last couple of chapters.
And last but not least, I want to mention St Vincent and Evie. I just love any interactions between these two. A heated look here, a light passionate touch there. It should make people think they're like fire in private. Of course we already know exactly just how fiery they are ;) So it was no surprise I was so utterly happy when I found out Evie was pregnant! That little scene with the secret touch that no one saw except for Daisy, was adorable.
I feel like I must say more things, not only about this book but for the whole series because I loved it so. I cherished every single book, every single couple, every single struggle and every single secret passionate longing. I loved the way they loved. And I'll do everything I can for more people to know about these people.(less)
I absolutely loved this book. This was the first time in a long time I've read a historical romance and it just swept me off my feet, it was that love...moreI absolutely loved this book. This was the first time in a long time I've read a historical romance and it just swept me off my feet, it was that lovely. Definitely a delightful break to the paranormal genre I find myself reading all the time.
The series revolves around four unwed women who call themselves 'wallflowers' and intend to gather their wits to find a husband for each. -Thinking about those times I realized I'm well away from the point of being even a wallflower- Getting back to the book itself, this first one in the series was about the oldest of the girls, Annabelle, who has to care for both her mother and brother after her father's death, and Simon Hunt, the charismatic and flirtatious successful businessman who has eyes on her.
Now, you's think the story has already worked itself out from this plot but no. Since she's running out of time, Annabelle wants to marry a wealthy man as soon as possible in order to care for her family, but that doesn't mean she doesn't get other kinds of offers, the 'be-my-mistress' kind of offers. But of course Annabelle doesn't want to become any man's mistress as then she'd lose all reputation and be forced to live her life in shame. And dear Simon, unfortunately, is one of those men who wants her as his mistress. So there you go, a nice plot to tangle yourself in.
Annabelle was a lovely girl. After losing her father, she feels obligated to marry a wealthy man to take care of her family. She's at such a point that she doesn't even care about the looks, age or any other aspects of the possible bachelors. The other wallflowers, two american sisters who are foreign to the english culture and one very shy english girl who's selfconscious, were also very adorable. It was extremely fun to read these four girls together as they enjoyed each others' company and sometimes mocked the traditions they were bound to.
Simon, on the other hand, was a slightly herder man to understand although after a while it was easy to see his way of thinking. He doesn't come from an aristocratic family yet he's smart and has a knack for business so he made himself a fortune. One flaw he has for this scenario is that he doesn't look for a wife, a marriage. However he finds himself wanting Annabelle with an intensity that is new to him. Simon was definitely an absolute charmer. An adorable man who can be stubborn and harsh at times but definitely loveable. I very much enjoyed his interactions with free-spirited Annabelle. He's the kind of man I could easily find myself falling for, a man who will love me and care for me with such an intensity that tears would sting my eyes.
I'm looking forward to the rest of this series and see how all the wallflowers will finally find love and have their happy endings.(less)
**spoiler alert** I usually try not to include any spoilers for a book that is the first in a series but man, I have to write with spoilers for this o...more**spoiler alert** I usually try not to include any spoilers for a book that is the first in a series but man, I have to write with spoilers for this one because I have a couple of comments about certain parts of the book that I loved so.
I feel like I'm having a Lisa Kleypas month here, I haven't yet found time to squeeze in another author or genre yet! This book sort of picks up from where the Wallflowers series left off. It tells the story of Cam Rohan, the half Gypsy who works in Jenner's, and the oldest girl of the Hathaway siblings, Amelia.
We've already met Cam in the Wallflowers series and with his protectiveness over Evie and his sharp mind, I think it's safe to say that he earned his place in the hearts of the readers. He sure did in mine. Cam was smart, devoted and loyal. He has this half Gypsy side that makes him look at life a bit more untraditionally than the usual English gentleman. And it is this side that makes him an outcast in the society where Gypsies are known as the criminals, trouble makers. I have to say I liked the idea of a hero who couldn't truly belong to any part of his heritage. This may sound cruel but it gave the book a sense of diversity and when he finally got his happy end, it also meant more.
I liked Amelia as well. She's the oldest sister in a family of five, with an older brother who's irresponsable and uncaring. So it's up to Amelia to grasp the control of the family and try to do what's best for everyone. And I guess when you're responsable for a whole family in a world where, as a woman, your actions are limited to finding a husband to support you and those around you, it can get pretty frustrating. So I sympathized with Amelia. I gotta admit, she handled things much more calmly than I think I could ever have.
There were many other characters that we were introduced since they're all going to come together and make the Hathaways series, including the constantly drunk brother Leo, the Gypsy Merripen who's been rescued and taken in by the Hathaways, the fragile sister Win, and the more playful younger sisters Poppy and Beatrix.
Which brings me to my spoilers. First among all the people above I have to mention Merripen. He's another outsider, a Gypsy, who's been with the Hathaway family for years, he's practically become one of them. And 20 pages into the story or something we realize he's in love with the fragile sister Win. I can't believe that we've got so much intensity for those two's relationship before their own book. There are two things in this book that I'll never forget that include Merripen and Win; when Win got the scarlet fever and was bed bound, her complaining about her dirty window and Merripen cleaning it everyday saying something like she should always see a blue sky, and the part where Merripen was figthing with his burn injury after the house fire, and when Win comes in to give him a large dose of morphene in order for them to operate on him and he thinks she'll overdose him as a final act of mercy. I shed tears in those parts. Actual tears, not watery eyes, tears!
And then there's Leo. We got to see that there's so much more to his carelessness and it tore me apart. Even though he was a jerk most of the book, I couldn't blame him. He suffered so much and was in so much pain that neither could I blame him nor could I hate. And the minute I had internet access I went on to check if he has his own book and was extremely happy to see that he does. After such trauma I'd hate it if he was just passed over lightly.
Last but never least, my beloved Wallflowers. It just makes me so happy when I catch a glimpse of them in any of the future books. I loved Evie's appearance and advice to Amelia, not to mention St Vincent's brilliant mind advertising marriage to Cam! And Lillian and Marcus of course, the couple that acts as a bridge for the two series :)
So I loved this book. And I'm so thankful I discovered such a brilliant author who manages to directly speak to my heart with her characters and stories.(less)
**spoiler alert** Ah, what a beautiful little story..The story of Rafe Bowman, another one of the rakes who awaits to be reformed by the right woman,...more**spoiler alert** Ah, what a beautiful little story..The story of Rafe Bowman, another one of the rakes who awaits to be reformed by the right woman, and Hannah Appleton, the right woman.
I didn't think to check who the pairing was in this book before I read it and the blurb on the book mentioned only Natalie, but it was impossible to see the instant attraction between Rafe and Hannah.
I really liked Rafe. It's clear he comes from the same bloodline as Lillian and Daisy, they're such similarly unique characters! He was aodrable and utterly loveable. He was funny and I enjoyed his American ways very much, especially where he explains the ways to make a woman accept his ways by kissing her and then kissing her more until she bends to his will :) Such charm.
And Hannah. She was the proper English lady, though she did have an appetite for excitement. I guess otherwise she wouldn't have been a good match to a Bowman.
The two were absolutely lovely in their interactions and from the very first scene they had together you could see sparks flying and passion blooming to turn to love later on.
And of course I loved seeing the Wallflowers again. I can't get enough of them! I loved that Evie and St Vincent had their share of on-page time, I just adore those two, if I hadn't made that clear already. And Lillian and Westcliff..I couldn't believe my eyes when Lillian thought Westcliff might be interested in another woman but I think I could sympathize with her. I could see how the situation looked from her side but glad they worked it out. And in the stables! Quite a show it must've been for the horses!
I missed Matthew and Daisy, and having already read the first Hathaways book, I knew she was pregnant but I kinda hoped we'd get the news in this book. And I missed a little Simon and Annabelle, but I know they had their reunion celebrated in private.
And I really liked the epilogue, where the supporting cast's futures were summarized neatly for us, because I did wonder what happened to Mr Clark :) And that last few pages gave me a christmas movie ending feeling, where a good solid voice, like the one of Patrick Stewart, lets us know that all was well and everyone lived happily ever after..(less)
Ahem..Getting that off my chest..So glad to be back in LKland :)
I loved this book so much just like the others that I don't even know what to say..Doesn't it suck that the ones you enjoy the most and the ones you wanna express your love for the most are the ones so damn hardest to review?
Already knew Poppy a little, along with her darling sister Bea, but it was great to see her turn into a responsable woman and a wife in this book, rather than part of the eccentric duo that are Poppy and Bea :) She was completely loveable, as are all of LK's heroines and heroes for that matter, and she was so mature in dealing with her situation that I envied her. I don't know what I would've done on her wedding day with all that mess with Bayning and the truth about her marriage to Harry. She handled things masterfully.
And Harry..What to say about Harry..I love Lisa Kleypas' ability to write just the perfect heroes for her heroines. Harry was every bit of vulnerable hero with an ice cold exterior, with walls to keep people away, waiting to be crumpled down by the sensible and down-to-earth Poppy.
All the things that were revelaed about Harry actually made me want to cry, and we could clearly see how he came to be the way he is. The reasoning behind it all and why he would fall head over heels in love with Poppy. I loved the fact that even in his most savage and ruthless state of mind, he could still find the compassion for Poppy when we know he's never been shown how. A perfect match.
And I can't help but mention the secondary characters, the matchmaking hotel staff, because, well, I loved them. I absolutely adored them and I sincerely think every house needs a Chef Broussard with his food metaphors :D I laughed out loud and lost for a while in carrots and watercress and salad..!
"- There is some doubt as to whether they've had conjugal relations yet. - What gives you the impression that he has not yet, er..sampled the watercress?
- [..]You think there's a problem with his carrot?
- Alors, he is a virile man..she is a beautiful woman..why are they not making salad together?"
This book has amanged to make me cry a little. What a great work of romance with a side dish of tragedy.
This lovely addition to the series -that I'm...moreThis book has amanged to make me cry a little. What a great work of romance with a side dish of tragedy.
This lovely addition to the series -that I'm so sad it's coming to an end soon- tells the story of Leo, Lord Ramsay, the oldest of the Hathaway siblings with a very troubled past, and Catherine Marks, the strict companion to sisters Bea and Poppy Hathaway, who, as it turns out, has just as sad and tragic a past herself.
I'm not giving these books the 5 stars because it's a reflex, I swear I'm not. But if I haven't said it enough already, let me repeat that these books are so well written, so well managed that they mesmerize me.
This story had too many tragedies. I'm not saying it as a bad thing, just that it made me feel so much. We already had knowledge of Leo's past, the fianceé he lost to illness, and the fact that he almost wasted himself completely in the mourning. We were able to witness him gradually making his way out of despair and that deep ditch of self destruction. So the way he felt in this book, about Catherine, was brilliantly already sown into the story. It was such a pleasure to see him fighting for something after all that time he wasted in destroying himself. Leo was a selfless hero, he was caring and understanding but at the same time playful and wicked which was why he was perfect for Catherine.
Catherine Marks was a bit more complicated character. Not in the sense of her problems or her personality, but mostly because of her secrets that we didn't know about until this book. We knew she had secrets, that she was running and hiding from a possibly bad past but I gotta admit, I didn't expect this. I didn't expect a past this fragile and tragic. Her courage is unquestionably admirable. And I loved the fact that Leo was able to see this, able to see the strong soul hidden behind the strict companion.
I had many favourite parts in this book too, just like the others, but one part that actually made me cry was (view spoiler)[when Harry and Leo finally rescued her from outside the window and she hugged Harry and called him her big brother. It just teared me up, these vulnerable siblings who once didn't know what to do with each other now embracing. It was beautiful. (hide spoiler)]
And I just have to say this. Even though this is no part of Married By Morning, the teaser from the next book, was beautiful beyond words. I don't remember any teaser this good, the letters..I admit I read that excerpt a couple of times. I can't wait for the next book now.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)
Oh man, oh man..Here finished with yet another Lisa Kleypas gem..
The story is of the youngest and most eccentric of the Hathaway sisters Beatrix, and...moreOh man, oh man..Here finished with yet another Lisa Kleypas gem..
The story is of the youngest and most eccentric of the Hathaway sisters Beatrix, and the wounded soul, soldier Christopher Phelan.
I bet I don't even need to say this, but I already loved Bea, with her free spirit -a must have for a Hathaway- and her unlimited love for animals. She was such a lovely heroine. She was compassionate, full of love and understanding. I was used to imagining her as this young girl who kept crawling around in the garden looking for all kinds of members of the animal kingdom. And even though she kept that childish side in this book -thankfully-, she was also grown up to be an incredibly mature young woman. Well, as mature as Bea can be :)
As for Christopher, I first felt really sad for him, the situation he was in, then I felt compassion, then came a crush and finally I was in love. As much an expert Bea was in mending the wounded souls of the animals around her, Christopher was that much damaged. He needed someone like Bea, someone to not make such a fuss about the glory in war, someone to distract him from the harsh reality of life. And who better than a Hathaway, right? :)
I absolutely loved the parts with the letters. They were so beautiful and maybe with another book or another author I might've found them dull, but they certainly were one of the reasons I loved the story in this book. Christopher's loneliness and desperation were just coming off the pages. How sad I was, even though I knew it was a happy ending, I kept wishing it for him.
The whole Hathaway family were present, although not much Kev and Win and I really missed them. I loved Cam and Amelia's older son, Rye, and his maturity. There was this one part where Christopher thought he was a miniature adult which I thought was a spot on assessment, not to mention completely adorable.
I absolutely adored the tiny side plotline of Christopher's best friend, yet another wounded soul, Mark Bennett and his sister-in-law Audrey. I wish they had more on-page time.
I'm sad that yet another wonderful series is over. I wish they could come up with a pill or something to get us to erase certain memories so I could erase these books from my mind over and over again. Hmm, maybe someday..(less)