Blog Archives

How the Marquess Was Won (Julie Anne Long, Pennyroyal Green #5)

3 out of 5 stars

Cut to the Chase:
This whimsical Cinderella story between a dashing, trend-setting marquess and a somewhat plain schoolmistress who reforms recalcitrant young girls is an enjoyable and entertaining read that is mostly good… but definitely not great.  Long has a wonderful sense of humor and wit, and the dialogue between our main characters is handled quite well, with references to a variety of literature and mythology, so that we can be duly impressed with the breadth and depth of their knowledge.  The main problem is that Long seems to sometimes get carried away with her own cleverness: some of the incidents with cats, tripping waltzes, and forelocks feel farcical and pull the reader out of an otherwise engaging novel.  Still, it’s a slightly above average historical romance, and is worthwhile for those of us who have run out of other options.

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Prince of My Dreams (Lisa Kleypas, Stokehurst #2)

2 out of 5 stars

Cut to the Chase:
Prince of My Dreams is part fantasy, part romance, split into several sections The initial courtship and marriage between Emma and Nikolai happens rather quickly.  Their interactions are interesting but underdeveloped — part way through the book we flashback in time seeing Nikolai in his great, great, great grandfather’s body, falling in love with Emelia (his great, great, great-grandmother), implying that they are reincarnated soul mates.  I like fantasy, and I like romance, but this was an odd integration of the two and felt more like different novels competing for attention as opposed to a functioning fantasy romance It  falls under the I-don’t-regret-reading-it-but-there-are-better-options-out-there camp.
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Devil in Winter (Lisa Kleypas, Wallflowers #3)

4.5 out of 5 stars

Cut to the Chase:
As usual, Kleypas is great at giving us multi-layered characters with an entertaining supporting cast.  Unlike the previous books in this series, the side characters here feel more secondary, meaning the weight of the story really falls on the two protagonists.  St. Vincent, the nearly irredeemable rake who needs to marry an heiress, is believably complex and interesting, while his muse Evie feels a little too blank-slate, and we’re never quite certain what it is about her that St. Vincent eventually becomes obsessed with. Still, this is a great example of the genre, Evie has lots of plucky moments (like the opening sequence where she proposes to St. Vincent), and it’s well worth the read, though it’s neither the strongest example of Kleypas or the Wallflower series.

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What I Did for a Duke (Julie Anne Long, Pennyroyal Green #5)

4.5 out of 5 stars

Cut to the Chase:
This book has wonderfully drawn characters that are complex, yet easy to relate to – both of our protagonists are at initially cross purposes (she is in love with her childhood sweetheart, he is in love with no one, and wants merely to use her for revenge), but their internal growth/self-realizations, as well as their journey towards each other is wonderfully believable, very passionate and also thoroughly engaging for the reader. There are times when the writing gets a little too cutesy/farcical for me, and the timeline in which the story unfolds makes it borderline unbelievable… all of which pulls me out of the story and makes me give it a less than perfect rating. That said, it’s been a long time since I’ve been this engrossed in a historical romance.

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