Review: Marrying Winterborne by Lisa Kelypas

marrying-winterborneReviewed by Shelly

My first Kleypas. What I was waiting for, I have no idea. This is the 2nd book in the The Ravenels series and I’m not sure how much these two had a presence in the previous story. What I do know is that this works well as a stand alone. The characters follow the storyline as it’s a family oriented saga, but their personalities are suitably represented in this installment.

Rhys Winterborne is a hero I can behind. He grew up rough, in North Wales, as the son of a working man. There’s no nobility or a gentleman’s background for him. Instead he’s a working man who made his own fortune. He owns a department store in a time when people had people to who did things for them – clothes were individually made. Mass production was not the in thing of this time. Rhys employed different people to satisfy either the needs of his customers or the needs of his employees. He’s a demanding employer, but he knew what he wanted both in business and in people. He wanted Helen. He’s always wanted Helen.

Lady Helen Ravenel grew up in a household stuffed with rituals and all the proper things that society does. I didn’t know that I would like her as much as I did. Because of her sheltered background, I expected a mousy, timid and might I say – frigid heroine. She was anything but that. She grew up in an exceptionally secluded atmosphere. After all, this is a time when women weren’t looked upon to have either a mind of their own much less a mind that can rival or even outdo a man’s. Helen’s sensibilities are severely tested with Rhys. She’s not used to either he or his seemingly aggressive attitude.

Things start out with a bit of a misunderstanding between them, but Helen withstanding her shyness wasn’t about to let Rhys go and presents herself at his home, uninvited. Pretty brave when you think about the time. The thing about this story is that we know these two are going to get married. That is set very early on. What the majority of Helen and Rhys’s story is about is Helen coming into her own; accepting her birthright/place and coming to the understanding that there are different people in this world and some are here to help or hurt. And more importantly, there are people who will love her unconditionally. Keeping in mind her sheltered past, these were some lessons that were hard learned.

I thought Rhys was absolutely perfect for her. He understood her shortcomings, but he didn’t shelter her from either his desires or his wishes. He’s big and brawny as his childhood and youth would suggest but he’s in no way uncouth. And Helen does get to benefit from not only his bravado but she also gets the pleasure of his worship and protection of her.

Rhys and Helen worked for me in every way. I couldn’t find anything about their dynamic that I didn’t like – nothing left unsaid between the hero and heroine that I found lacking or out of character. The pace was consistent and the storyline with Helen’s heritage was really fun.

I don’t know why, but I adored Mrs. Fernsby, Rhys private secretary; she gave as good as she got. Pandora and Cassandra, Helen’s twin sisters were typical younger sisters. A bit spoiled, well a lot spoiled, but it’s hard to be too upset with them because they weren’t malicious. Kathleen and Devon from book 1 have a significant presence so those who enjoyed their story can continue to enjoy their story. There’re a few other characters including a female physician who stole her scenes.

Historical romances are not big on my list of favorites, but this – I thoroughly enjoyed.

Happy reading folks!

Rating: A

Click to purchase: Amazon

Marrying Winterborne
by Lisa Kleypas
Release Date: May 31, 2016
Publisher: Avon

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