Hmm, I haven't realized I've missed so many ^_^; But not this month!! Actually, this month, I had a few candidates up for review... of course, none fit the monthly theme, but shhhh. I'm just happy I'm reading books from my TBR pile :) At last, I chose the one that I enjoyed most to review today, England's Perfect Hero by Suzanne Enoch.
However, I'm a bit rusty... been awhile I actually wrote a review ^_^; So you'll have to forgive me if it's not coherent...
England's Perfect Hero by Suzanne Enoch
published by Avon in February 2004
Lucinda Barrett's best friends ended up married to the men to whom they delivered their 'lessons in love'. So Lucinda decides to choose someone who definitely needs lessons, but someone who will not complicate her life. And that person is definitely not Robert Carroway.Genre: historical romance
Robert is nothing if not complicated, and though he is the brother of a viscount, he rarely goes about society, and finds the weather and hat fashions ludicrous subjects for discussion. Robert is attracted to Lucinda's unpretentious ways, her serenity and her kindness. When she chooses someone for her love lessons, Robert offers to help her deliver her lessons, but sets out to convince the woman he has fallen for to take a chance on love ... and on him.
Series: Lessons in Love, Book #3
The Story: Lucinda and her two best friends - Georgiana and Evelyn - wrote tips about how a gentlemen should act and then, decided that each would choose a man they know and give him the lesson. As Georgiana and Evelyn ended up marrying the men they chose for lesson, Lucinda hopes the same will happen to her and she sets her caps on Lord Geoffrey, known as the "Adonis," 4th son of a duke and with an army officer. She wishes to marry a man who will not complicate her life and who will understand her devotion to her father, a general.
Robert Carroway was wounded during the war against the French... however, nobody knows the real circumstances of his injuries and he'd rather keep it that way. Still haunted by the events, Robert has become estranged from the Ton. However, there is just something about Lucinda that draws him out... However, his re-admittance among the peers and friendship with Lucinda are jeopardized when rumors that he is a traitor surface and important papers disappear from the House of Guards.
My Opinion: Ugh, okay, my synopsis sucked ^_^; But like I said, it's been a while.
I bought and read this book because of Lori and her entry for the Re-Read challenge. It sounded good and it was, I enjoyed it :)
I love the Carroways, awesome family really. Love the bonds between the brothers, how they cared for each other... How nobody gave up on Bit (Robert), tried their best to care for him but not smother and did not give up on him. Of course, they were worried about him and they can't help but ask him it he's fine... but that's understandable... and Robert tries his best also. He understands why his brothers are so concerned. You know, sometimes, the hero has problem and become all sourly when people cares.
One of my favorite scenes is when Robert's leg hurt after an evening of dancing and cannot walk. His youngest brother Edward comes in and offers to help him, but he's too short. So Edward shouts out that Robert needs help and his leg is hurt and all the older brothers come rushing. :) Very sweet.
I also enjoyed the friendship between the ladies. I liked that Georgiana and Evelyn played a big part in this book. Sometimes, you only see past heroines and all they do is talk about their happiness and pregnancy... but not in this one. In this one, the girls were still there for Lucinda.
Speaking of Lucinda, I liked her character. She is very strong and independent. She did not let anyone dictates her action - not even her father... When Roberts is under suspicions of being a traitor, she does not avoid him. She goes against her father's wishes and still acts as a friend, even if the situation is difficult. I like her devotion to her father and I liked that she's smart. She's not a dupe and realized quickly that Lord Geoffrey is not only courting her only for her charms. She's also very practical and not very frilly, which is a nice change for a historical heroine :)
I liked Robert as well. I think someone should have snapped him out way before this and also, he should have talked about his imprisonment to his superiors earlier. Wouldn't that make sense? Anyway, it would have saved us from the "mystery." It was great to see him making efforts to get back to his old self or at least, to be functional again. It's a pity that in those times, people didn't understand PTSD. And I liked seeing his progression throughout the book. PTSD did not simply disappear... he still had panic attacks, but at least, he learned to deal with it.
Individually, I liked the H/H. Together... I would have liked a bit more romantic scenes. I did like their honesty between each other. That was quite refreshing. I saw the attraction between them grow, but at the end, love? I'm not too sure, it seems to go a bit too fast.
However, I have bigger issues than the romance. First, the mystery plot. It was a bit too obvious. I mean, there weren't that many characters introduced, so by process of elimination, it was quite obvious who the culprit was, right? I do think that romance authors try to hard to incorporate mysteries. Seriously, you don't always need to. Sometimes, it takes away from the whole book.
Finally, I thought that the ending was quite rushed. I think that Ms Enoch could have spared a few pages to wrap not only the book, but also the trilogy up. I don't need to see an epilogue with all three women nauseously happy, surrounded with children... but perhaps a wedding scene or something that had to do with the lessons. By the way, the lessons stopped being a plot device about half-way through the plot and it was completely forgotten. Kind of sad, since it's the theme of the trilogy. So yes, I thought the ending was a bit too rushed and a let-down.
My grade: B. Overall, the book was quite enjoyable. I like Ms Enoch's writing and she did a great job at characterization. There were a few funny scenes that made me laugh. Loved the relationships between the characters as well as the interactions between the H/H. But the book wasn't without weaknesses.