My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Known around London for her notorious escapades, Lily Lawson is not above playing dirty when it comes to her sister’s happiness, and she is determined to stop Penny’s marriage to the cold and reserved Alex Raiford. Alex’s fury knows no bounds when Lily begins to interfere with his plans, but he cannot help the desire he feels whenever she is near and he becomes intent on possessing her, body, heart and soul.
An enjoyable love/hate romance with some interesting if harsh insights into Georgian society. Nevertheless, there are a couple of tropes that do not appeal to me namely the fact that the heroine has a child with another man and she keeps this secret from her love interest.
The chemistry between Lily and Alex sizzles on the pages and their banter and shenanigans are laugh-out-loud funny at times. That said, under the surface humor there are several harsh and troubling themes, including women’s rights (or the lack thereof), child abuse and human trafficking. All of which demonstrate that the Georgian period was not all dukes and balls and soirées.
Lily is a charming heroine although her reckless behavior is not always consistent with her characterization as a woman desperately searching for her missing child. While she is determined to find her daughter, she also takes unnecessary chances and risks her life repeatedly. This does not make sense as what would have happened to Nicole if Lily had died?
Alex is my favorite type of hero. A man who conceals his huge heart and tremendous capacity for love beneath a dark, cold and brooding facade. It is clear from the start that he is in dire need of something or someone to shake him from his doldrums, and Lily is just was the doctor ordered.
This is also the book in which Derek Craven, widely considered to be Kleypas’s most incredible hero, is introduced. While much as been said in many a review and an article about him, I am not as certain of his appeal as he comes across as self-absorbed and manipulative. Perhaps my appreciation for him will increase once I read his book, which is next.
In sum, a delightfully entertaining read as is to be expected from Lisa Kleypas.