Welcome to red wine and books! Where an avid lover of all genres shares with you her opinion on some of the best (and not so great) stories she reads.

Friday, April 24, 2015

Review: Unlaced (Undone by Love #1) by Kristina Cook


Print Length: 352 pages
Publisher: Kristina Cook (May 13, 2014)

From Goodreads.com: 
From Nationally bestselling author Kristina Cook comes an award-winning historical romance set in Regency England. First time in digital!

All Lucy Abbington wants is to get through her first London season without losing sight of her true ambition—gaining some informal training in veterinary arts so that she can retire peacefully to the countryside with her beloved horses. Instead, she’s caught up in a whirlwind of balls, marriage proposals, and ton intrigues. Worse, she finds herself irresistibly drawn to her sponsors’ maddening neighbor, Henry Ashton, the Marquess of Mandeville. The handsome, arrogant, sometimes infuriating Mandeville stokes a passionate fire within her that won’t be denied, no matter the consequence. 

Deep, emotional scars secretly plague Henry, Lord Mandeville. As a result, he’s avoided romantic entanglements at all costs. Only, now he needs a wife—someone from a wealthy, powerful family to further his political aspirations. Instead, he finds himself all but obsessed with the beautiful but unconventional Lucy Abbington—a woman whose passions and wit stir desires he’d rather ignore. And yet…she might just be the one woman who can heal his wounded heart. 

Lucy and Henry’s heads say no, but their hearts say yes. Will they find themselves undone by love?


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My Rating: 3 stars out of 5
To begin with, I thoroughly enjoyed Lucy's character. As a leading lady of a story (and especially one set in this time period), the fact that she had goals and desires of her own outside of the drawing room and what was considered proper was refreshing and made her instantly likable. I loved the way she first took Henry by surprise, being able to accurately diagnose and treat his prize stallion before she "transformed" into the proper young lady she was supposed to be in time for dinner. 

Henry's character however, left much to be desired. One moment, he is kissing her senseless, nearly undressing her and having his way with her - and the next minute? He's telling her how he can't, make that won't, marry someone like her. He tells her time and again that her station is too beneath him and therefore a relationship between them would not be acceptable nor proper, and then he's all over her again. His character added to the fact that she continually accepted his apologies and his inappropriate behavior towards her made parts of the story hard to get into. In fact, for the majority of the novel I downright hated him and wished that she would walk away and settle down with someone who wouldn't treat her like a common woman of loose morals. 

Going along with what I said above, I wish that there had been more to the romance between these two. While I typically enjoy relationships that take awhile to build (rather than those that seemingly jump into things), this one seemed to have a little too much hostility and hurt feelings to really make it seem believable. I also feel as though there were some obvious points that were overlooked that would have added to the overall plot (Lord Sinclair seeking revenge against Henry for the embarrassment suffered at the opera for example). 

Aside from those things, the book moved fairly quickly, with just enough minor twists to keep readers interested. I am sure there will be a lot of people to whom this book will appeal. 

  Unlaced (Undone by Love #1) is available (for free at the time of posting) from Amazon.com 

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