Wallflowers by Lisa Kleypas series

Historical romance series released by Avon from Nov 04 thru Jul 06
In February I read the entire Wallflower series by Lisa Kleypas. I am so glad I did. I had gotten bogged down after reading a couple of blah books. When I found myself folding laundry to put off picking up the book I was reading, I knew I needed to read a Kleypas or two. Or four. Here are four short reviews of the four books in the Wallflower series…

Summary of the series:
Four young ladies enter London society with one necessary goal: they must use their feminine wit and wiles to find a husband. So they band together, and a daring husband-hunting scheme is born.

Secrets of a Summer Night by Lisa KleypasSecrets of a Summer Night (The Wallflowers, Book 1)
Released 26 Nov 04
SUMMARY: Annabelle Peyton, determined to save her family from disaster, decides to use her beauty and wit to tempt a suitable nobleman into making an offer of marriage. But Annabelle’s most intriguing—and persistent—admirer, wealthy, powerful Simon Hunt, has made it clear that while he will introduce her to irresistible pleasure he will not offer marriage. Annabelle is determined to resist his unthinkable proposition . . . but it is impossible in the face of such skillful seduction.
Her friends, looking to help, conspire to entice a more suitable gentleman to offer for Annabelle, for only then will she be safe from Simon—and her own longings. But on one summer night, Annabelle succumbs to Simon’s passionate embrace and tempting kisses . . . and she discovers that love is the most dangerous game of all.
Read an excerpt.
Annabelle shows a lot of growth as she has to face the truth of, first, her own marriage schemes, then of her very real snobbery. Simon is, by turns, sympathetic and cold. It is all in character, though. He has the dilemma of wanting a woman he knows is coldly manipulating other men to reach her goal.
There is a battle between the hero and heroine which is quite enjoyable to follow. This book introduces the other three “Wallflowers”, as well. The bond between these friends is, for me, one of the highlights of this book. The ending is powerful.


It Happened One Autumn by Lisa KleypasIt Happened One Autumn (The Wallflowers, Book 2)
Released 27 Sep 05
SUMMARY: It Happened at the Ball… Where beautiful but bold Lillian Bowman quickly learned that her independent American ways weren’t entirely “the thing.” And the most disapproving of all was insufferable, snobbish, and impossible Marcus, Lord Westcliff, London’s most eligible aristocrat.
It Happened in the Garden… When Marcus shockingly — and dangerously–swept her into his arms. Lillian was overcome with a consuming passion for a man she didn’t even like. Time stood still; it was as if no one else existed…thank goodness they weren’t caught very nearly in the act!
It Happened One Autumn… Marcus was a man in charge of his own emotions, a bedrock of stability. But with Lillian, every touch was exquisite torture, every kiss an enticement for more. Yet how could he consider taking a woman so blatantly unsuitable…as his bride?
Read an excerpt.
Lillian Bowman is a firecracker! She’s so outrageous I couldn’t help but love her. Marcus can’t either. He is literally unable to keep himself away from her and it’s wonderful! Her cold father and domineering mother don’t stand a chance against him.
Lillian has been the protector all her life and she holds her tough shell dear. She can cuss with the best sailor and instigated the game of “rounders in knickers” in the first book. Marcus is the one who caught the ladies in the game and was not amused. He is known for being a straight arrow. He is also well known for being forgiving, though. Lillian is wonderfully, um, “forgiven” before long.
This one is powerful all the way through.

The Devil in Winter by Lisa KleypasThe Devil in Winter (The Wallflowers, Book 3)
Released 28 Feb 06
SUMMARY: A devil’s bargain… 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.

Ok, I know most of you have never heard of Sebastian St. Vincent, before. Sybil has certainly never mentioned him. *VBG* Well, I was the scandalous duckie who had never read Devil in Winter, until now. I hope I have a reputation for giving objective opinions because I have no choice, here, but to sigh and squee right along with her!
The romance made It happened One Autumn an “A”. St. Vincent did it for Devil in Winter. Not that I didn’t like Evie. I did. St. Vincent is just such a perfect reformed villain.
Evie is young but she comes into her own and finds strength she didn’t know she had. The other Wallflowers are here as well as a great gypsy character who I’d love to see, again. The evil relations are well done. But, really, everyone should read this book because of Sebastian St. Vincent.

Scandal in Spring by Lisa KleypasScandal in Spring (The Wallflowers, Book 4)
Released 25 Jul 06
SUMMARY: After spending three London seasons searching for a husband, Daisy Bowman’s father has told her in no uncertain terms that she must find a husband. Now. And if Daisy can’t snare an appropriate suitor, she will marry the man he chooses- the ruthless and aloof Matthew Swift.
Daisy is horrified. A Bowman never admits defeat, and she decides to do whatever it takes to marry someone . . . anyone . . . other than Matthew. But she doesn’t count on Matthew’s unexpected charm . . . or the blazing sensuality that soon flares beyond both their control. And Daisy discovers that the man she has always hated just might turn out to be the man of her dreams.
But right at the moment of sweet surrender, a scandalous secret is uncovered… one that could destroy both Matthew and a love more passionate and irresistible than Daisy’s wildest fantasies.

Daisy always was the most romantic of the wallflowers. She doesn’t have to be dragged, kicking and screaming, into love. She wants to marry for love, wishes for it. When her father gives her an extremely short deadline to find it, though, she decides to quickly settle for someone she can live with.
This story is one where the hero is not what the heroine thinks he is. Matthew has worked hard to help her father build his business, but he’s nothing like her father beyond that. He’s also loved her from afar for a long, long time.
I just love books where the hero is besotted from before the start. The ones where there is something outside of himself that keeps him from making his claim. This book had every chance of being my favorite book in this series. The end was built up for a wonderful climax… but then was a little flat.
It is still an excellent book in itself and a wonderful resolution to the series.
Cover of book Secrets of a Summer Night
book 1
8.83 / 10
Cover of book It Happened One Autumn
book 2
9.22 / 10
Cover of book Devil in Winter
book 3
8.97 / 10
Cover of book Scandal in Spring
book 4
8.58 / 10
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