I started reading Lisa Kleypas about three years ago, just after I started writing my first book. I was and am a huge Kathleen Woodiwiss fan and one of her novellas was in the same anthology as Lisa Kleypas’ “Promises.” I wanted to be adventuresome, so I read it. Devoured it, rather. Adored it and the writing/storytelling style. That sent me on a buying frenzy of Lisa Kleypas.
Looking in a bookstore, I bought “Again the Magic” based on the blurb. It rocked my world! Not anything like Woodiwiss’s sensual romances, Kleypas went into the bedroom and ripped the covers off the bed. I was hooked. I bought and read almost every Kleypas except for a few. My love scenes owe a lot to Ms. Kleypas–she showed me the way.
And now I have one more notch on my Kindle. I just last night finished Love, Come to Me, a very early Kleypas that she herself says “was written with an enthusiasm that will hopefully atone for any weaknesses that I must cheerfully ascribe to youth and inexperience.” Having read her later works (this one was published in 1988) I can still see in Love the trademark characters and conflict, drawn with a skillful if somewhat less finessed hand.
In fact the major fault I found with the book was a tendency to head-hop that became
extremely distracting. There are authors today who do this and it still annoys me. But I tend to believe it was an accepted convention of the 70s and 80s because Woodiwiss’s books from that period have it to some extent as well. And I picked it up from reading these writers when writing my first novel, which will make that revision a real bear this summer.
But other than the head-hopping, I must say I thoroughly enjoyed this tale. Set in the North, in the years after the Civil War, it’s the story of a Northern girl and the Southern rebel who falls for her and determines to make her his. There’s a sort of forced marriage and a lot of misunderstandings due to insecurity and the very real differences between people of such polar upbringings, though Lucinda is very tolerant of Heath’s Southern sympathies.
There are a couple of plot twists that are Kleypas’ stock in trade and she did them well even in her early books. Her love scenes in this novel are not quite as rich as some of her later novels (my favorite is still Devil in Winter, though Mine until Midnight is a close second. HOT!), but little is left to the imagination. Yum!
So in the end I am sad another Lisa Kleypas offering is finished, though I am very glad to have enjoyed it. It makes me yearn to go back and re-read the Wallflower series and the Hathaway series, her Bow St. series–frankly, I could go on a week-long bender of nothing but Kleypas books and emerge cranky and irritable from lack of sleep but thoroughly sated on hunky alpha heroes and sassy and smart heroines.
I need to consult my list of books by this wonderful author–and see what is still available to put on my TBR. Can’t wait for the next one.
Thanks for visiting my blog today. I hope you come back next week to see What I’m Reading Now.
I’m a Kleypas fan who started with Woodiwiss, too, so I know exactly where you’re coming from. Isn’t it funny how we managed with the head-hopping when it was in vogue but now it sticks in our craws? Literature is wonderfully liquid that way. I suppose someday, as we begin the advent of the multi-media eBook, we’ll be able to tell what character we’re focusing on simply by the color of the text, or some background sound (like in opera or Star Wars — who doesn’t know Darth Vader’s theme song?). There might be an icon as we change viewpoints. It’s an exciting time to be a writer.
I have not read the book but will have to check it out.
I LOVE Lisa K. Just finished re-reading “Suddenly You” last night, another of her standalones that’s an old favorite of mine.I swear I’ve re-read all her novels at least 3-4 times because I love them and wish she’d write like 12 per year instead of 1 or 2.