You have to push aside a lot of minor annoyances to enjoy this book: the unnecessary length, the oft-repeated use of the word 'bemused', the constant leering at female bosoms, the continuous descriptions of "gently swaying hips"... But I did ultimately enjoy it. The story was action-packed, the dialogue amusing, and the plot different enough to keep me looking for excuses to return to the book in spite of many chores needing attention.
I am fascinated by the idea of the beauty/beast sides of the hero, and though the novel could have benefited from heavy editing, I would not have missed the descriptions of Erienne's failed suitors for anything!
This was my first Woodiwiss and probably my last (others are more accomplished at this type of writing). But I don't regret a second of staying up late into the night to finish this tome. A classic it is.