They say that opposites attract. I'm not sure. Are these individuals truly opposites, or do they see in the other what lies beneath the surface of their own selves? Is the brazenly out-spoken female just saying what we all wish we had the guts to say? Is it this bravery that makes her so endearing and desirable to a man who plays by the rules? I believe this is the case when Marcus, Lord Westcliffe, finds himself desiring the unfathomable Lillian Bowman.
Marcus is a serene, straight-laced, proper English gentleman, not to mention the most eligible and wealthy man of the peerage. A true blue-blood. Along comes Lillian Bowman, an American girl, the daughter of a self-made millionaire. Having already read book one in this series, I knew that there was a tension growing between Marcus and Lillian. They made it quite clear to one another that each did not like the other. The verbal battles between the two were numerous. Yet these arguments masked a mountain of sexual tension between the two. The reader knows it is just a matter of time before one breaks down and gives in to these desires. But who will it be? How can this distinguished man align himself for life with such a boisterous woman when he is expected to marry a truly elegant, proper English lady in order to carry on the bloodline? These opposites do attract....but can it last a lifetime? Can they ignore their obligations and follow their hearts?
I loved the heroine in this book. She was no lady....at least not a properly behaved lady of the 1800's. Lillian didn't wait for a man to ask her opinion....she gave her thoughts freely at every turn. She didn't accept what everyone told her was best....she questioned all of the rules of propriety. She was brazen, bold, stubborn, sharp-tongued, and very, very funny. A wonderfully head-strong woman. A gal I would love to hang out with. As for Marcus, he was a hero that I came to love. In book one, I thought he was a pompous a__! But this talented author reveals Marcus' history and the torment he went through as a child, and soon enough, I too was falling for this straight-laced gentleman who is really crying for a reason to let loose.... to reveal some of the rebellious boy within. I couldn't help but melt when he finally uttered what lay in his heart for Lillian:
"Rest. You'll need to regain your strength.....because once we're married, I won't be able to leave you alone. I'll want to love you every hour, every minute of the day." He nestled her more closely against him. "There is nothing on earth more beautiful to me than your smile....no sound sweeter than your laughter....no pleasure greater than holding you in my arms. I realized today that I could never live without you, stubborn little hellion that you are. In this life and the next, you're my only hope of happiness. Tell me, Lillian, dearest love....how can you have reached so far inside my heart?"Lisa Kleypas has an uncanny ability to create believable characters. They are humourous, lifelike, even human! They become people you want to have tea with....chat with....gossip with. The reader connects with them easily. They make us laugh and cry; we feel empathy for them and we identify with them. We fall in love with them and cheer for them when they reach their happily ever after. I thoroughly enjoyed this second installment of the Wallflowers series, so much so that number three is already awaiting me on my E-Reader. With the click of a button, I will be once again immersed into history and immersed into a romance that will sweep me away with a sigh.
"It Happened One Autumn" is book #10 in the 2011 Historical Romance Challenge.