Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Quick Looks: A Wallflower Christmas

A Wallflower Christmas
By Lisa Kleypas

The Premise: Rafe Bowman, American millionaire, cad, and brother to Wallflower Lillian, is in England looking for a bride. Though he has no real desire to marry, his father has commanded that he make an advantageous match, and has chosen Lady Natalie Blandford for his son. For her part, Lady Natalie understands that this is as much a business arrangement as anything else, and is willing to give Rafe the benefit of the doubt, especially since he is so attractive and charming. Her companion, poor relation Hannah, is not so sure. When Lillian invites her to tea so that the Wallflowers can quiz her about Lady Natalie, she readily accepts, planning to do a little investigating herself. When Hannah and Rafe meet, she decides that he is all wrong for Natalie – he is arrogant, boorish, and ill mannered. As far as she is concerned, he has no idea how to behave in polite society. Rafe decides that Hannah is far too prim and proper, and is determined to get a reaction out of her. When he takes advantage of a private moment to kiss her, Hannah is both horrified and intrigued. But more than anything, she is convinced that this man is in no way appropriate for her elegant cousin, and devoutly hopes that Natalie will agree once they are all thrown together at Lord Westcliff’s Christmas house party.

What I Liked: I confess I am a fan of the Wallflowers, so I liked seeing them again in supporting roles. Rafe is a delightful hero, and though Hannah started off a little prissy she really grew on me quickly. As always in a Kleypas novel, the secondary characters had a lot of depth and really added something to the story.

What I Didn’t: It would have been nice to see a little more of Natalie’s other suitor; that storyline felt a bit rushed.

Overall: This was a nice, short Christmas love story, great for taking a break from the holiday madness.

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