Friday, March 28, 2008
Four in Hand, by Stephanie Laurens
What a cute book!
Cute usually isn't the adjective used to describe a Stephanie Lauren's book, but in this case, it fits. This is Lauren's second published book, and is rather tame compared to the others I've read.
You have to love a book that starts out with a Duke lying naked in bed (dark haired and blue-eyed to boot!). Max, the new Duke of Twyford, is one of London's most notorious rakes, and enjoys his life of carefree ease immensely. Imagine his surprise when a young lady visits him, and informs him he is the ward of herself and her three sisters! Max is immediately attracted to Caroline, the eldest Twinning sister, and wishes more than once that he was not her guardian. Or is he? Seeing the benefits of keeping the truth from Caro, Max leads her to believe he is her guardian, allowing him the opportunity to get to know her and sweep her off her feet, under the veil of propreity. In fact, his guardianship ended with Caro's 25th birthday, but she doesn't know won't hurt her.
Burdened by four beautiful wards, Max does his duty and introduces them to the ton, and they are an instant success. A blend of innocence, beauty, wit, charm and breeding, the Twinning sisters are swarmed by suitors, and Max has a hard time keeping them all in line with the help if his aunt, and furthering his relationship with Caro. All attract attention from the rakes of town, but they are well versed in the arts of handling them perfectly. The three youngest are well schooled in the arts of flirting, and become involved in a wild scheme of disguise and matchmaking to help aid their new-found friends. Their suitors, intending to curb their hair-brained schemes, vow to take care things once and for all!
This was unlike any Stephanie Lauren's book I have read. It is definitely more tame, but as the story unfolds you get to know each of the characters in their own way. Each sister is unique, and yet they share similar characteristics that bond them together seamlessly. This is a light hearted romp through the balls of Regency London, and a love story where everyone ends up happy, with only a bit of angst along the way. A nice way to spend an evening.