25 March 2013
And Then She Fell (Cynster Sisters Duo #1, Cynster #19)
The only thing more troublesome than a Cynster man...is a Cynster lady who believes love is not her destiny. Famously known in London society as "The Matchbreaker," Henrietta Cynster's uncanny skill lies in preventing ill-fated nuptials - not in falling victim to Cupid's spell.
But then she disrupts one match too many and feels honor-bound to assist dashing James Glossup in finding a suitable bride for a marriage of convenience.
A task infernally complicated by the undeniable, unquenchable attraction that flares between James and Henrietta, who continues to believe she will never fall...
The romance in this new Stephanie Laurens novel has a sweetness that isn’t always part of a Cynster novel. Instead of a conflagration it’s more of a slow burn and a mutual acknowledgement of feelings. After the customary miscues, of course (and the pendant that worked it's way through Heather, Eliza, and Angelica). Even the bedroom scenes have a restrained, subtle quality – the use of “purple prose” is lighter and less meticulously detailed and it makes for a very nice change of pace. The sweet contrasted nicely with the zest of the assassination plot. So many things happen to Henrietta and James – runaway horses, falling objects, accidents in crowds – that this slim novel barely stops for breath once it gets going.
Nearly every previous Laurens couple puts in an appearance in some way - Bastion Club, Cynster, Barnaby Adair. The only real laggards are Chillingworth and Francesca (Cynster #7) and Roscoe and Miranda (The Lady Risks All). A family reunion as it were. Also a nice lead-in for Mary's book - The Taming of Ryder Cavanaugh - in the epilogue.