Saturday, December 27, 2008

Lisa Kleypas: Devil in Winter

Devil in Winter: A
Evanegeline Jenner & Sebastian, Viscount St. Vincent

A devil's bargain

Easily the shyest Wallflower, Evangeline Jenner stands to become the wealthiest, once her inheritance comes due. Because she must first escape the clutches of her unscrupulous relatives, Evie has approached the rake Viscount St. Vincent with a most outrageous proposition: marriage!

Sebastian's reputation is so dangerous that thirty seconds alone with him will ruin any maiden's good name. Still, this bewitching chit appeared, unchaperoned, on his doorstep to offer her hand. Certainly an aristocrat with a fine eye for beauty could do far worse.

But Evie's proposal comes with a condition: no lovemaking after their wedding night. She will never become just another of the dashing libertine's callously discarded broken hearts -- which means Sebastian will simply have to work harder at his seductions...or perhaps surrender his own heart for the very first time in the name of true love.

At the end of the last book - It Happened One Autumn, we discover that Sebastian is in need of a bride - the wealthier the better.

Evie's father is seriously ill and her awful relatives treat her like a pile of cow dung, so she escapes and proposes to Lord St. Vincent, hoping that marriage will grant her the freedom to tend to her ailing father.

Sebastian finds the proposal is highly comical. Evie is the shyest Wallflower, with the painful tendency to stutter when talking. While she is unconventionally beautiful with her flame-red hair and freckled face, speaking with her is known to be a trying ordeal. So to have her propose to the cynical Sebastian is unheard of!

However, she asks that they not do the dirty deed in bed, a condition that Sebastian isn't hard-pressed to agree to.

So off they go to Gretna Green!

It is the months after the marriage that is completely fun to read. St. Vincent needs to manage Evie's father's famous gaming business - Jenner's - and look over Evie. He is surprised to find that there is so much more underneath her stuttering and he is strangely attracted to her tenderness.

When I first read the Wallflower series, I loved this Evie and Sebastian's story the most. LK stays true to Evie's shy nature, while bringing out the core of who she (and he) really is (are). One can really see the dramatic change in Sebastian and when they both make their love known to each other - oh, it's grand!

A great read, I'm always thrilled to snap open their story and reread it, just for old times sake.

1 comment:

Holly said...

I heart this book. I'm always thrilled w/ re-reads, too, which isn't always the case. Such a wonderful novel.