Wednesday, 8 June 2016

Review: Marrying Winterborne by Lisa Kleypas

MARRYING WINTERBORNE
by Lisa Kleypas
Series: The Ravenals #2
Genres: Historical
Publisher: Avon
Publication Date: May 31st 2016
Source: Bought
Rating: ★★★★
Amazon - Barnes & Noble
A ruthless tycoon

Savage ambition has brought common-born Rhys Winterborne vast wealth and success. In business and beyond, Rhys gets exactly what he wants. And from the moment he meets the shy, aristocratic Lady Helen Ravenel, he is determined to possess her. If he must take her virtue to ensure she marries him, so much the better…

A sheltered beauty

Helen has had little contact with the glittering, cynical world of London society. Yet Rhys’s determined seduction awakens an intense mutual passion. Helen’s gentle upbringing belies a stubborn conviction that only she can tame her unruly husband. As Rhys’s enemies conspire against them, Helen must trust him with her darkest secret. The risks are unthinkable…the reward, a lifetime of incomparable bliss. And it all begins with…

Marrying Mr. Winterborne

I ...am .... SPEECHLESS.

Speechless because Marrying Winterborne had everything that I was expecting and so much more. This is a book captured the very essence of Lisa Kleypas' writing is. It's romantic, sensual and just so beautifully written. No other author understands on such a visceral level what I desire out of romance novels as Lisa Kleypas does and Marrying Winterborne is one of her best novels to date.

Her books, more specifically her characters, are always so bright and vividly written. From the glimpses that we saw of Helen and Rhys in Cold-Hearted Rake, I knew that these two would be characters that I fell irrevocably in love with. I was right. Helen reminded me a lot of Win from Seduce Me at Sunrise and Evie from Devil in Winter, with her innocence and shyness. She was perhaps even more sheltered than those two ladies were. She gave across this air of frailty and purity and people often underestimate her because of that. But Helen also possessed a quiet strength to her, that slowly and steadily emerged during Marrying Winterborne partly thanks to Mr. Winterborne himself. Sure, she was gentle, kind and a little naive at first, but she exhibited strength and fierceness throughout the book when she learns more about her past. Her love for Rhys helps bring those characteristics to the surface and it was a thing of beauty to watch. All of that made it so effortless to love Helen.

I'm sure you're tired of hearing me say it, but I'm going to say it again anyways: Lisa Kleypas writes the best heroes. Ever. Rhys Winterborne encompassed everything that I want out of a book boyfriend. My goodness. Just thinking about him has butterflies dancing in my stomach. A self-made man, Rhys was ruthless, ambitious and unafraid of obstacles. From meeting him in the first book in The Ravenals series, I expected him to be hard and cold. While he was definitely that around most people, he melted around Helen. He was nothing but gentle and loving towards her. He showered her with care and love and wanted everything good for her. If you can't tell, I have a huge weakness for heroes who turn into puppies around their lady loves. Of course, he was also arrogant, stubborn and determined, but those were all qualities that made him inherently sexy and desirable. Not to mention, he was also a feminist, repeatedly proving that he viewed men and women as equal, which was certainly unusual for a man in his day and age. This author has written many many romantic and swoony heroes, but Rhys Winterborne is certainly at the top of my favorites. I dare you to resist this guy's charm and endearment.

The romance, as I expected, was perfect. Helen and Rhys might be very different in upbringing and personalities, but they fit beautifully together like a lock and a key. Their contrasting personalities was what made this romance work so well. Rhys brought out the bolder and more determined side of Helen and she brought out the kinder and gentle man that lived inside of him. The pages of Marrying Winterborne bled with the igniting passion between them. They shared so many romantic and sensuous scenes, and as always, they were written with not only steam, but also a lot of emotions. Lisa Kleypas' sex scenes never feel gratuitous. Every bedroom scene was a language in itself, communicating the changes the characters underwent and the utter love they had for each other. Rhys and Helen undeniably face complications and obstacles in their relationship, mostly in the form of a secret about her parentage that Helen was advised to keep from him. I was so nervous about how Rhys would react to the revelation. I kept waiting for him to blow up, but he surprised me so much with his reaction. It was so so perfect and it made my heart more than happy.  I'm not the most romantic person in real life, but this author makes me crave romance and swoon.

It's only been 4 days since I've finished Marrying Winterborne, but I've already re-read my favorite scenes over and over again. I think it's safe to say that I am just a tiny bit obsessed with this book and this couple. It's easily one of my favorite books of the year. After getting to know Lady Pandora, Helen's sister, better here, I'm pumped to pick up her book next in Devil in Spring with Evie and Sebastian's son, Gabriel!

Have you read Marrying Winterborne yet? Who is your favorite Lisa Kleypas hero?
Let me know in the comments below!