Review: Devil’s Daughter by Lisa Kleypas

Reviewed by Sara

Lisa Kleypas is one of my favorite Historical Romance authors. I’m a huge fan of her Wallflower series and have also enjoyed her Ravenels series. Now she’s combining them and I am thrilled beyond belief.

Phoebe, Lady Clare is the daughter of notorious (former) rake Sebastian, Lord St. Vincent and Evangeline (Evie) Jenner (the heroes of Lisa Kleypas’ Devil in Winter). She was raised in a house full of love and affection and found her husband at a young age in her best-friend, Henry. When Henry dies of a lifelong illness, she is left alone with her two young sons and a lifetime of memories. One of these memories is of the extreme bullying that Henry endured as a child away at boarding school at the hands of West Ravenel.

West Ravenel had a miserable childhood. As a child at boarding school he lashed out and as a young man he fashioned himself into a reprobate, taking every opportunity to wallow in excess and debauchery. He’s a new man now and has committed himself to caring for his brother and the relations he’s gained through his brother’s marriage, as well as to the upkeep of his brother’s formerly ramshackle estate, but no matter how far he’s come his past behavior and reputation haunts him.

When Phoebe meets West at a family wedding she does everything she can to stay away from him. He hurt Henry and she should want nothing to do with him, but there’s something about West, something she’s been missing, that keeps drawing her in. West is likewise attracted to Phoebe, but wants to shield her from his past. Phoebe, however, has learned how short life can be and, once her mind is made up, won’t let a little thing like past indiscretions get in the way of what could be her happily ever after.

There is so much to love about Devil’s Daughter. First, if you are a fan of Lisa Kleypas, especially the Wallflowers series, you’re in for a treat. The inclusion of Sebastian and Evie, along with several of the other wallflowers, isn’t just a gimmick . Sebastian and Evie are actually integral to the plot of Devil’s Daughter and play a significant role in helping Phoebe and West get together. This legitimate reason for being part of the story makes it so the snippets we get of their history and present circumstances are organic and not forced at all. It is really a well-done tie in.

The characters of Phoebe and West really pushed all of my buttons too. West is so attracted to Phoebe, but he’s also so aware of what a rotten guy he used to be that he wants to protect Phoebe and keep her away from him. At the same time, he recognizes that Phoebe is being taken advantage of and works to teach her how to care for herself and her sons. He is all at once conflicted lover, protected, empowerer and encourager and it is such a fantastic balance. Phoebe, on the other hand is strong and kind, and once West gives her the tools, grows and becomes a powerhouse that refuses to simply let life happen to her. Her growth is uplifting and a joy to read.

I also, really enjoyed where Lisa Kleypas took the story. The initial conflict, West’s childhood bullying of Henry and Phoebe’s dislike of him for it, is handled quickly. Instead of being the main conflict between the characters, which would have been too flimsy, the deeper conflict of West’s feelings about himself, how his past might affect Phoebe and Phoebe’s growth into a strong and confident woman are the central themes. This allows for so much more depth and creates a much more satisfying story.

Lisa Kleypas is one of my favorite authors and it’s because of books like this. With great characters, stories with depth, and a nod to fans that isn’t just superfluous, Devil’s Daughter is an excellent book.

Rating: A+

Click to purchase: Amazon

Devil’s Daughter
by Lisa Kleypas
Release Date: February 19, 2019
Publisher: Avon

Comments

  1. Sara, I also loved this book. I think it is the best book I have read this year. I loved how both the characters changed, and in fact that West changed *before* he met Phoebe. It was nice to read about nice people, struggling to do what is right, and getting their HEA.

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