, Harper Collins
Rowena’s review of The Sum of All Kisses (Smythe-Smith Quartet #3) by Julia Quinn.
Hugh Prentice has never had patience for dramatic females, and if Lady Sarah Pleinsworth has ever been acquainted with the words shy or retiring, she’s long since tossed them out the window. Besides, a reckless duel has left this brilliant mathematician with a ruined leg, and now he could never court a woman like Sarah, much less dream of marrying her.
Sarah has never forgiven Hugh for the duel he fought that nearly destroyed her family. But even if she could find a way to forgive him, it wouldn’t matter. She doesn’t care that his leg is less than perfect, it’s his personality she can’t abide. But forced to spend a week in close company they discover that first impressions are not always reliable. And when one kiss leads to two, three, and four, the mathematician may lose count, and the lady may, for the first time, find herself speechless …
New York Times bestselling author Julia Quinn’s enchanting third novel in the Smythe-Smith quartet is guaranteed to make you laugh out loud and tug at your heartstrings in equal measures.
I love Julia Quinn. She’s one of my favorite historical romance authors. She writes the kind of historicals that I absolutely love. The kind that make me laugh, make me mad and makes me want to have its babies. I wanted to have this books babies. I thought it was adorable and perfect and just fantabulous. Hugh and Sarah were wonderful characters that leaped right off the pages and their witty banter kept the book going, hitting all of my happy buttons.
At first, I couldn’t remember who the hell Hugh was. I read the first part of the prologue, wondering…who the hell are all of these people and then BAM, it hit me. And I thought, “Duh. I remember who Hugh is now.” I thought it was pretty clever of Julia Quinn to write Hugh’s book. He’s not your normal hero. He’s not perfect. He’s wounded and he’s unhappy but man did he have potential and Quinn wrote him up and I fell right in love with him.
I liked Sarah from the previous books but she wasn’t my favorite. I think Iris is and man, I’m really looking forward to her book…we do get her book, right? Sarah was kind of a wallflower character for me. She existed in the background of the other books and I never really paid her much attention. But man was she quite the heroine in this book. She was dramatic and she was loud but I really, really liked her.
Hugh is one of those nerd heroes who makes being a nerd, sexy. He can do complicated math in his head and his memory is something for the books. He’s really good at cards because he counts them. He was injured in the duel between him and Daniel Smythe-Smith (Sarah’s cousin). Daniel was shot in the shoulder but is fine. Hugh was shot in the leg and he can’t walk without a limp anymore. In A Night Like This, we see Daniel coming to grips with the duel and what he’s done to Hugh and you see them try to repair their friendship. In this book, we see a bit more of that and we see what really happened the night of the duel and we see Hugh come to terms with it and truly move on from that night.
Hugh and Sarah do not get along. Sarah holds him responsible for Daniel having fled the country to save his life from Hugh’s father. That whole scandal pushed her coming out a year and in the year that she was supposed to come out, 14 gentlemen proposed and got married. Sarah is now one and twenty years of age and she’s still not married. She blames this on Hugh.
Sarah has made it crystal clear what she thinks of Hugh and Hugh doesn’t care because he doesn’t care about Sarah. But when Honoria asks Sarah to help Hugh feel welcome at her wedding to Marcus, Sarah has no choice but to agree. This was the beginning of the end of her hatred for Hugh Prentice. Over the course of the two weddings that Sarah and Hugh attend (first Honoria and Marcus’ and then Daniel and Anna’s), a bond is formed between the two and a love that takes them both by surprise pops up and wraps them both up.
This was a good book. It was fun and entertaining and I didn’t want to put this book down. Even when Hugh’s stupid father makes an appearance and makes me want to punch him in the throat, it was good. Seeing Hugh’s background and seeing what he went through and what he survived made him my very favorite hero of the series so far. I adored him and I really liked Sarah as well. This was a good book and it was a fabulous addition to this series and I cannot wait for more. I’m pretty anxious for the next book. Read this one!
Grade: 4.75 out of 5
This book is available from Avon. You can purchase it here or here in e-format. This book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.