And Then He Kissed Her by Laura Lee Guhrke
Series: Girl Bachelors #1
Also in this series: The Wicked Ways of a Duke, With Seduction in Mind
Published by Harper Collins
Publication Date: October 13th 2009
Genres: Fiction, Romance, Historical, Victorian, General
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Supremely sensible Emmaline Dove wishes to share her etiquette expertise with London’s readers, and as secretary to Viscount Marlowe, Emma knows she’s in the perfect position to make her dreams come true. Marlowe might be a rake with a preference for cancan dancers and an aversion to matrimony, but he is also the city’s leading publisher, and Emma is convinced he’s her best chance to see her work in print…until she discovers the lying scoundrel has been rejecting her manuscripts without ever reading a single page!
As a publisher, Harry finds reading etiquette books akin to slow, painful torture. Besides, he can’t believe his proper secretary has the passion to write anything worth reading. Then she has the nerve to call him a liar, and even resigns without notice, leaving his business in uproar and his honor in question. Harry decides it’s time to teach Miss Dove a few things that aren’t proper. But when he kisses her, he discovers that his former secretary has more passion and fire than he ever imagined, for one luscious taste of her lips only leaves him hungry for more…
I haven’t really been in the mood for a historical in ages, but Kris had a review of this book up and it sounded nice, so I decided to pick it up.
Emma is a girl-bachelor and secretary to Harry, Viscount Marlowe. She’s been writing etiquette novels with the hope of being published by him, but he keeps rejecting her manuscripts. When Harry let’s it slip that he hasn’t actually read any of Emma’s works, she gets extremely angry and resigns her position with him – without notice – and starts writing a column for one of Harry’s competitors. Harry, left in a lurch at the sudden departure of his invaluable secretary, hunts her down to offer her job back to her. Something he feels is quite gracious. Emma refuses.
Through a series of events, however, Emma ends up writing for Harry once again and they both battle their mutual attraction for one another.
Emma was a wonderful heroine. She was a bit stodgy, but she was also a woman who knew her own mind. I really liked that she didn’t fancy herself in love with Harry like so many other women and that she was very practical. She was aware of her strengths and weaknesses, and was willing to admit when she was wrong or had made a bad judgment call. She was a breath of fresh air for a romance heroine.
Harry was also very enjoyable. Though he was somewhat predictable, I truly enjoyed watching him come around and realize what a gem Emma was. He was forced to face some hard truths about himself, and he did it with aplomb. Although it wasn’t as easy for him as it was for Emma, he, too, admitted when he was wrong. It was totally refreshing.
I seem to be following a pattern here, but one of the things that worked best for me with this story was that the focus stayed on Emma and Harry. We met several secondary characters – Emma’s roommates and Harry’s sisters – but they didn’t detract from the main protagonists HEA.
Although the story was rather simple, a bit predictable and somewhat fluffy, it was truly enjoyable.
3.75 out of 5
This book is available from Avon. You can purchase it here.