Kev Merripen has longed for the beautiful, well-bred Winnifred Hathaway ever since her family rescued him from the brink of death when he was just a boy. But this handsome Gypsy is a man of mysterious origins—and he fears that the darkness of his past could crush delicate, luminous Win. So Kev refuses to submit to temptation…and before long Win is torn from him by a devastating twist of fate.
Then, Win returns to England…only to find that Kev has hardened into a man who will deny love at all costs. Meantime, an attractive, seductive suitor has set his sights on Win. It’s now or never for Kev to make his move. But first, he must confront a dangerous secret about his destiny—or risk losing the only woman he has lived for.
I adored this story. So very much. Which is why I think as short a review as possible is the best way for me to go so I don't give away too much.
Kev, I think, was a very tortured hero, which is why I fell for him immediately. He was first introduced in this series in book one, I really liked him in that story because he was so mysterious. And when it was revealed that he was secretly in love with sweet, fragile Win - but thought he could never have her; my heart completely went out to him.
However, as this story developed, I began to feel really irritated towards Kev, and I felt so bad for poor Win. It almost seemed like he was leading her on in a way. But, of course, as Kev's past is revealed piece by piece, I began to understand why he wouldn't give in to his desires and just sweep Win away. He just wanted to protect her as best he could, and if that meant letting someone else claim her heart, then he would do so. That really worried me. I really began to doubt that he and Win would be together by the end of this book.
Win quickly became one of my favorite heroines. She was sweet, kind hearted, and so innocent. I couldn't help but be happy for her when she sort of met someone else. & I'll be honest, I think it did Kev a great deal of good to sweat a little. But, maddeningly, he backed off because he was trying to protect her from the monster he once felt like. But Win being the sweet one that she was (and not in a sickening way, I swear), was able to cut through that and show him that he was no longer the person he was forced to become so long ago. She was able to show him that he deserved to be loved as truly and madly as anyone else, and she was the perfect lady to do so.
I could go on further gushing about this story, but I will stop here by saying I am so glad I didn't have to wait to get to know these two better, and I am glad I took a chance on Ms. Kleypas's books. I can already tell that these are a lovable, strong set of characters. I can hardly wait to get to the next book in the series.