A Fiery Romance • Devil in Winter

May 17, 2011

Devil in Winter book cover
Devil in Winter by Lisa Kleypas
Series: Wallflowers #3
Previous Books: Secrets of a Summer Night + It Happened One Autumn
Publisher: Avon Romance
Publication Date: October 13, 2009
Source/Format: Bought || Kindle e-book

Easily the shyest Wallflower, Evangeline Jenner stands to become the wealthiest, once her inheritance comes due. Because she must first escape the clutches of her unscrupulous relatives, Evie has approached the rake Viscount St. Vincent with a most outrageous proposition: marriage!

Sebastian's reputation is so dangerous that thirty seconds alone with him will ruin any maiden's good name. Still, this bewitching chit appeared, unchaperoned, on his doorstep to offer her hand. Certainly an aristocrat with a fine eye for beauty could do far worse. But Evie's proposal comes with a condition: no lovemaking after their wedding night. She will never become just another of the dashing libertine's callously discarded broken hearts -- which means Sebastian will simply have to work harder at his seductions...or perhaps surrender his own heart for the very first time in the name of true love.



I honestly have nothing but praise for Lisa Kleypas, which would explain all of my gushing reviews about this series. I can't help it - the books are just that good and they keep getting better! She's a master at telling love stories. 

That having been said, I was especially looking forward to reading Devil in Winter because Sarah MacLean had included it in her list of recommended romance novels (which is how I got started reading the Wallflowers series in the first place). Judging by what other people had to say, Sebastian, Lord. St. Vincent, was as hot as any romance hero could be. 

Of course, if you've read the book prior to this one, you would understand why I, as a reader, didn't have a very good opinion of him. Aside from being a philanderer and a wastrel in general, Sebastian was part of that nasty plan that nearly kept Lillian and Westcliff apart. When it went awry (and the couple lived happily ever after), I wasn't expecting to see St. Vincent ever again. 

And then Lisa Kleypas decided that she wanted to pull one out of left field - she wrote this book, which is about the story of St. Vincent and the third Wallflower searching for a match, Evangeline Jenner. 

It was brilliant. Those three words, I think, sum up entirely how I felt about the Devil in Winter. It's officially my favorite book from the Wallflower series. 

One of the things I liked about it was how it was unconventional - who would've thought that a villain in one book could be a hero in the next one? St. Vincent, whom I came to think of as the attractive but bland suitor in book two, suddenly morphed into the hero that every damsel in distress would want to rescue her. He isn't perfect, by any means, but it's easy to love him despite the flaws. He's a gentleman, he's intelligent, he's charismatic and funny and he's kind. And when he loves - well, that man can love. 

Another reason I liked it was that the heroine basically took charge of her path in life. Evangeline was the one who went to St. Vincent with the suggestion that they get married in the beginning of the book (and epilogue of the second one). She didn't wait around, she decided for herself. And it was this strength, her utter patience, her warmth and goodness and kindness and her courage when required that made me love her even more. I didn't like her in the first two books, mostly because I didn't care enough about her to like her. But this book was definitely a revelation into her character. 

The story was also dramatic and filled with lots of action, including (but not limited to) a hasty marriage in Gretna Green, a shooting, an attempt at kidnapping and much more. I like how fast the story moved and how it was never boring; it was also cool how simultaneously (and subtly) we see Evie and Sebastian falling for each other. 

I know I went on a lot, but seriously, I love Devil in Winter so much. It's a book that you definitely should run out and get, romance fans.

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