Stephanie Burkhart's Reviews > His Christmas Pleasure

His Christmas Pleasure by Cathy Maxwell
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Feb 03, 11

Read from January 23 to 30, 2011

Maxwell pens an intriguing historical romance with "His Christmas Pleasure." Andres Ramiego is a Spaniard now living in England. Using his father's title of baron, he hopes to open up doors for himself in English society. However, when he meets the enchanting Abby Montross, all that he values comes into question. Will honesty win Abby's heart?

Set in London, 1812, Andres is a handsome man and the English ton value his appearance above all. He's followed by married women and courted for his style. In an effort to gain some perspective, he steals away to a private study during a ball. The door opens just as he's admiring a pistol and it appears he might be intending to harm himself. A beautiful young woman knocks the gun out of his hand and they fall to the floor. Andres learns that his rescuer's name is Abby Montross.

Abby is twenty-five and unmarried. She's in love with Freddie Sherwin, but Freddie is engaged to her cousin. Abby's father intends to marry her off to a much older man with thirteen children.

Andres realizes that they can help each other. Abby comes into her inheritance of 2,000 pounds a year upon her marriage, and Andres needs the money to establish his stables in Northumberland. In turn, he saves Abby from marrying a man she'd be miserable with. Abby agrees to the marriage. The couple leaves London with the intent to elope. However, Abby's father is hot on their heels and the chase to Scotland is on. Can Andres and Abby find happiness with each other?

Maxwell's writing is crisp and engaging. The plot is intriguing as well as suspenseful. I was on the edge of my seat during the chase up to Scotland as I had no idea what the outcome would be.

Maxwell's descriptions and dialogue had a nice authentic ring to them, allowing the reader to paint the setting of the story in their mind.
The best part of the novel was the characterization. Andres has not always done the right thing, but he's true to his feelings, and this allow his character to grow into a better man. Abby looks at the world realistically except when dealing with Freddie. Andres teaches her to be true to her own feelings. The supporting cast of characters are deliciously entertaining.

If anything, while the story culminates at Christmas, I thought the title didn't quite fit the story.

The novel is sophisticated for romance readers with love scenes that are sensual and embody the love Andres and Abby discover. Overall, I enjoyed the story very much. "His Christmas Pleasure" is a page-turner.
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