July 12, 2014

Dreaming of You - Lisa Kleypas

Dreaming of You Lisa Kleypas book cover
Dreaming of You by Lisa Kleypas
Series: Gamblers #2
Publisher: Harper Collins
Publication Date: October 13, 2009
Source/Format: Bought || Kindle e-book (This is a rec from Racquel & Sharon of The Book Barbies!)

In the shelter of her country cottage, Sara Feilding puts pen to paper to create dreams. But curiosity has enticed the prim, well-bred gentlewoman out of her safe haven—and into Derek Craven's dangerous world.

A handsome, tough and tenacious Cockney, he rose from poverty to become lord of London's most exclusive gambling house—a struggle that has left Derek Craven fabulously wealthy, but hardened and suspicious. And now duty demands he allow Sara Fielding into his world—with her impeccable manners and her infuriating innocence. But here, in a perilous shadow-realm of ever-shifting fortunes, even a proper "mouse" can be transformed into a breathtaking enchantress—and a world-weary gambler can be shaken to his cynical core by the power of passion...and the promise of love. (from Goodreads)

It’s no secret that I love, love, L-O-V-E LOVE Lisa Kleypas. I’ve mentioned her books multiple times all over the interwebs, with special places in my heart for Devil in Winter and Blue-Eyed Devil. My friends Racquel & Sharon were appalled to learn I had yet to meet Derek Craven, the hero in Dreaming of You, and insisted that I read this one when I asked them for recommendations.

I never doubt a recommendation from these two. Nor do I ever doubt Lisa Kleypas. So, I dove in headfirst with the highest of expectations! While Dreaming of You has not edged Devil in Winter out of its spot as my top LK historical romance, it was as wonderful as I’d hoped it would be. 

Kleypas’ reliable charm, wit and swoon makes itself known in this story – and this alone makes it worth reading. Add in the bonus of swoony Derek Craven and sassy Sara Fielding, and you’ve got yourself a winner!

Characters: I have yet to meet a Lisa Kleypas hero or heroine that I do not like! In this case, I loved Derek Craven and Sara Fielding equally. Derek is not your typical romance hero, in that he has no title and has come to his social status by means that are rather notorious/scandalous. He’s intelligent though, and passionate, and caring, and kind. It really is all about his character – though his good (and very manly) looks are nothing to scoff at. And then we have Sara, who is intelligent and imaginative and, best of all, she’s a freaking writer. I loved this so, so much! She’s also really stubborn, and her persistence is definitely key in their romance.

Romance: Lisa Kleypas is a master at creating romantic tension in her novels, and it’s no different with Dreaming of You. From the start, Derek and Sara have this crackling electricity between them. It begins very innocently, with a street tussle, but progresses into grudging respect, to friendship, to flirtation, to something much more serious. Watching these two learn to like each other, and then recognize their mutual attraction, and then fall head over heels in love is a treat! They’re a great match emotionally, intellectually and physically, and Kleypas demonstrates the balance with a deft hand.

Plot: There is a ton of drama here! But it never felt too over the top, and that’s probably because Kleypas breaks it up so well. Many elements are woven in – Sara’s writing and research, Derek’s sordid past, a few occasions where fate (or really nosy friends) throw these two together, parties filled with debauchery and gambling – and still, it reads smoothly and easily. I really got swept up in it all! Even though I had to put the book down multiple times when real life got in the way, it was so easy to get back into the flow of things.

Lisa Kleypas truly is a queen, as Dreaming of You is yet another historical romance I’ve enjoyed from her. The unconventional hero and heroine, the sweet romance, the dramatic circumstances – all of it adds up to become a solidly great romance novel. So glad I listened to Racquel & Sharon and finally got my butt in gear to read this and meet Derek Craven for myself!


  1. I'm not quite into reading Adult fiction now (weird because I used to like reading them before) but if ever I try to get back into it in the future, I'll have to check this one out! I'll probably recommend it to my mom first- she loves historical romances! Great review, Alexa! :)


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