Guest Review: When Beauty Tamed the Beast by Eloisa James

Posted August 14, 2013 by Ames in Reviews | 1 Comment

Publisher: Avon, Harper Collins

wbtbAmes’ review of When Beauty Tamed the Beast by Eloisa James.

Miss Linnet Berry Thrynne is a Beauty . . . Naturally, she’s betrothed to a Beast.

Piers Yelverton, Earl of Marchant, lives in a castle in Wales where, it is rumored, his bad temper flays everyone he crosses. And rumor also has it that a wound has left the earl immune to the charms of any woman.

Linnet is not just any woman.

She is more than merely lovely: her wit and charm brought a prince to his knees. She estimates the earl will fall madly in love—in just two weeks.

Yet Linnet has no idea of the danger posed to her own heart by a man who may never love her in return.

If she decides to be very wicked indeed . . . what price will she pay for taming his wild heart?

I really enjoyed When Beauty Tamed the Beast.

Linnet Thrynne is in a bit of a muddle…and all because of a dress. After enjoying a flirtation with a prince, wearing a dress that makes her look pregnant is sure to lead to a scandal. Linnet’s father is desperate – no man will come near her now thinking she has a royal bun in the oven. And there is no bun, it was just the look of the dress. However, Linnet’s aunt has a plan – she knows of a duke who’s heir is reported to be unable to perform so she knows Linnet and her fake baby would be welcomed by the duke.

Except the duke’s son, the Earl of Marchant, is not interested in marrying – ever. Something he lets Linnet know soon after they meet. And he’s surprised to learn that she has no urge to marry him either. She isn’t pregnant and she figures she can go to the continent to find a husband. But in their efforts to repel each other, something else happens…

I love the dynamic that Eloisa James can create between her main characters. Linnet is extremely beautiful but she’s also intelligent. So when Piers, the earl, first meets her, he thinks she’s beautiful…and an empty-headed ninny. But they’re quickly bantering back and forth and he’s intrigued by her intelligence. He still doesn’t want to marry her, but he’s mightily attracted. And Linnet, she can see right through Piers’ difficult demeanor. He is a doctor, and he approaches things with logic and common sense. I liked the way Piers and Linnet interacted with each other. He teaches her how to swim, she teaches him compassion. And because Linnet believes Piers is impotent, she can really be herself with him, knowing that he couldn’t possibly want her. Which is incredibly freeing for her…but also one of the reasons Piers does become attracted to her. Because he isn’t really impotent. He’s got a good reason for letting that rumor remain alive. It has to do with his father and also the reason why he refuses to marry. Even though he really wants Linnet.

Again, James’ has created a wonderful secondary cast of characters. Piers’ butler, who is also a spy for his father, is one of my favorites. There’s also the little boy that is in Piers’ hospital that Linnet becomes friends with. I liked him. James has a way of writing dialog that I truly enjoy and all these characters come alive through their interactions with each other.

“I’ll keep walking next to you in case you keel over,” Prufrock said.
“I suppose you have visions of breaking my fall,” Piers said, giving his scrawny butler a sidelong glance.
“Actually, no. But I would call for a footman, who could drag you along the corridor. It’s marble, so you might get a concussion, and that might make you a bit kinder to your patients, not to mention your staff. You had Betsy in tears again this morning. You seem to think scullery maids grow on trees.”

Also, how can you not love it when the hero tells the heroine her smile makes him ill?

“Stop it,” he said to Linnet.
She gave him the smile.
“And don’t ever smile at me like that again,” he ordered. “It makes me want to vomit, and given that your slippers appear to be sewn with pearls – an inordinate waste of money – gastric acid would not be good for them.”

Seriously, I love Linnet and Piers. 4.25 out of 5

This book is available from Avon. You can buy it here or here in e-format.

Fairy Tales series order:
A Kiss at Midnight
When Beauty Tamed the Beast
The Duke is Mine
The Ugly Duchess
Once Upon a Tower

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