It can be so much fun to see a villain redeemed, especially when it’s done right. And though Sebastian St. Vincent wasn’t exactly the villain of It Happened One Autumn, he definitely had some atoning to do. It was bad enough that he was a rake of epic proportions… he kidnapped his friend’s woman, tried to force her to marry him and threatened to rape her. So no one was more surprised than him when Lillian’s friend Evie showed up at his door, offering a marriage of convenience.
Evie is the redheaded wallflower of the series, with a cruel family and a stutter. Now her father is dying and not only will her mother’s family not allow her to see him, they are trying to strong arm her into marrying her cousin so they can get their hands on her inheritance. She figures that if Sebastian marries her, he can get the money he wants, while she can get the freedom and protection she needs. Neither expects any emotions to come into play. How wrong they are.
I enjoyed these two together from the very start. From outward appearance, you would think Evie is the weak one here, and Sebastian strong, but it is the other way around. She is gentle and soft and good, but Evie is made of iron. She has endured so much and still retained an inner beauty. She is practical. She is smart and loyal… and she refuses to set herself up for hurt again. But while Sebastian is all worldly and stoic, he has absolutely no defense against his wife. He has no idea how to deal with emotions, and he is truly at her feet before he even realizes it.
There’s good sexual tension. There are good feels. And there are strong secondary characters –like Cam. I have to admit, though, that it really got on my nerves how Lisa Kleypas kept referring to him as a boy. (She did it a lot.) The guy is 25. That’s weird. I also felt like we talked a lot about how Evie’s carpet matched the drapes. And the references to Daisy’s small breasts, while we were calling her a girl and Cam a boy squicked me just a little. I felt a little robbed, though, when I found out that these two are not the couple in the last book. Talk about a fake out!
Anyway, I loved watching our main characters evolve. Evie really comes into her own. And Sebastian captured my heart as he showed his love for her time and time again –long before he ever realized it was there. I felt like he fell kind of fast considering his history, but I enjoyed it.
I would definitely recommend this series to historical romance fans. Every installment is a winner.
Click to purchase: Amazon
Devil in Winter
by Lisa Kleypas
Original Release Date: February 28, 2006