Tag Archives: hero free spirit

rainy day kisses

Category Romance Review: Rainy Day Kisses by Debbie Macomber

Rainy Day Kisses, Debbie Macomber, Harlequin, 1990, Will Davies cover art

Harlequin Romance #3076

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Four Stars

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Reviewed by Introvert Reader

I adore a love story where one partner is restrained and uptight and the other is open and free-spirited. Rainy Day Kisses, a Harlequin Romance by Debbie Macomber, depicts those elements perfectly. It’s about a woman who has no time for frills and silly moments enjoying life. She’s a no-nonsense businesswoman. Then she butts head with her neighbor, a laid-back kind of guy who loves flying kites.

The Plot

Susannah Simmons is the stereotypical career-woman with no time for romance. She has a five-year plan to rise to the top of her field. While she focuses on climbing up the corporate ladder to VP status, her family members are getting married and having babies.

She has zero patience time for neighbor Nate Townsend. The man bakes cookies, for goodness sake! Nate loves Seattle Mariners ball games. He’s all about fun and relaxing. His happy-go-lucky demeanor irritates Susannah to no end. Does the man even have a job?

Then Susannah finds herself wrangled into babysitting her niece. Have you ever seen that old Diane Keaton film “Baby Boom”? Well, that’s what this reminded me of. Susannah finds herself at wit’s end trying to deal with a crying infant. Who comes to the rescue, but her neighbor? Nate has a calming, soothing way with babies. He also has a way with adult women, as Susannah finds. For despite their difference, Susannah can’t help but be attracted to Nate.

He shows her a different side of life. If you work hard, you have to play hard, too. Susannah’s forgotten all about having some fun in her life. But is Nate’s playful nature a sign of immaturity? Or is he right and Susannah’s rigid plans mean nothing without some love and laughter added in?

Even though this is a traditional romance, I could see Nate and Susannah living a more “modern” life, where Nate stays home and takes care of the kiddos while Susannah goes off to work. I know several couples who live like this. So why can’t Nate and Susannah have love and family and career, as long as they work together to do it?

Final Analysis of Rainy Day Kisses

This was a breezy angst-free romance. Nate’s an adorkable hero. Susannah is icy, but not so much so that she’s an unlikeable heroine. You want to see these two get together and make it. Debbie Macomber writes sweet love stories, and if you’re looking for one, Rainy Day Kisses will hit the right spot.

Wicked Stranger rawlings

Historical Romance Review: Wicked Stranger by Louisa Rawlings

stranger in my arms louisa rawlings
Wicked Stranger by Louisa Rawlings
Rating: four-stars
Published: 1992
Illustrator: George H. Jones
Imprint or Line: Harlequin Historical #157
Book Series: Moncalvo Brothers #2
Published by: Harlequin
Genres: Historical Romance
Pages: 298
Format: Paperback
Buy on: Amazon, AbeBooks
Reviewed by: Introvert Reader


Historical Romance Review: Wicked Stranger by Louisa Rawlings

The Book

Wicked Stranger by Louisa Rawlings is the sequel to one of my all-time favorite books, Stranger in My Arms.

As I’ve often said before, Rawlings (aka Sylvia Halliday) wrote exquisite romances. She also penned the sensational Stolen Spring, which took place during the era of Louis XIV.

The Hero and the Heroine

Noel, the hero of Wicked Stranger, is the devil-may-care twin brother of Adam from Stranger in My Arms is as different from Adam in temperament as they are as similar in looks.

Noel is a flirt, a charmer who always sees the positive in life and prefers to live without responsibilities. Adam is broody, quiet, gruff, duty-bound, awkward with women, and suffers from the horrors of the Napoleonic wars as he was a general, while Noel was a mere corporal.

Noel Bouchard is in New York after living in France. He’s looking to make his way in life and meets the elite Babcock family.

The Babcocks have several daughters, one being the lovely yet prickly Elizabeth, to whom Noel is strangely drawn.

The heroine of Wicked Stranger, Elizabeth, is often shrill, mean, insecure, and ill-tempered. At first, I thought she didn’t deserve such a great man. She’s part of a well-to-do New York family and was hurt by love in the past, by fortune seekers who wanted her money and not her.

So now she hates all men, especially men looking to advance their income through marriage.

The Plot

Perhaps it’s because Noel sees the hurting soul beneath her tough exterior and just wants to make her happy. For some reason, Noel falls for Elizabeth, and hard! He pursues her relentlessly.

Lucky, lucky woman. *Sigh!*

There are some twists and turns in this book. For example, Noel briefly pretends to be his brother, Adam (just like Adam had pretended to be Noel in the prior book).

Marriage comes quicker than you’d expect for these two, but there are many tribulations they face. There are deaths and a duel, reconciliations, and the love story ends on a passionate, loving note.

Final Analysis of Wicked Stranger

While Louisa Rawlings’ Wicked Stranger is nowhere near as perfect as its predecessor, this is still a delightful read. The wonderful, charismatic hero, Noel, makes this romance shine.

I adore Rawlings’ heroes; they’re so diverse and compelling. Noel was the star of this book, as he was such a magnetic character. Elizabeth was a very lucky woman to find him.

4 Stars

Rating Report Card
Plot
4
Characters
4
Writing
4.5
Chemistry
4
Fun Factor
4
Cover
4
Overall: 4.1

Synopsis

HEART’S GAMBLE

Elizabeth Babcock had always been “just plain Bessie,” overshadowed by her socialite sisters. Few suitors looked beyond her razor-sharp repartee — and temper to match — before leaving for less challenging opportunities. Until, that is, that night in Paris when she crossed rapier wits with Noel Bouchard …

A gambler, a soldier, a man of the world, Noel Bouchard prayed never to be saddled with a dull domestic life. Marriage, if entered into at all, should be an adventure — tempestuous and lusty. He needed a woman with verve and spirit. With passion and wit. A woman like Elizabeth Babcock …

WICKED STRANGER by LOUISA RAWLINGS
the perfect couple

Category Romance: The Perfect Couple by Maura Seger

maura seger category romance
The Perfect Couple by Maura Seger
Rating: two-stars
Published: 1997
Illustrator: Unknown
Imprint or Line: Silhouette Intimate Moments #775
Published by: Silhouette
Genres: Category Romance, Contemporary Romance
Pages: 250
Format: Paperback
Buy on: Amazon, AbeBooks
Reviewed by: Introvert Reader


Category Romance: The Perfect Couple by Maura Seger

SPOILER FREE REVIEW ūüėä

The Book

The Perfect Couple by Maura Seger, a Silhouette Intimate Moments series romance, was perfectly… boring. The setup was in this category romance was actually great. Where it faltered was in the execution.

The Plot

Shane and Brenna have been together as a supposedly perfect couple for some time now. But they are two disparate people with distinct wants and needs.

The story flips back through different times in Shane and Brenna’s relationship, the memorable points, the highs, and the lows.

However, the love story was treacly-sweet. If I liked that sort of white-bread perfection, I’d read Nicholas Sparks, the gag-master extraordinaire.

Despite their shared passion, Shane and Brenna’s intrinsic differences threaten their love. Brenna is a down-to-earth type who likes her life carefully planned out. She wants a long-term relationship but no children. Meanwhile, Shane lives on the edge and wants a family.

Then tragedy strikes when Shane’s plane crashes in the snowy mountains. He is presumed dead.

Brenna hopes for the best and looks back on their time together, wondering if they were too dissimilar to be together or if love is enough to overcome all their obstacles, even death.

Shane does his valiant best to get back to Brenna before dying. Even if he’s on death’s doorstep, he vows to see her one more time.

Wil Shane make it back to Brenna? And if he does, can they make it as a less-than-perfect couple?

Final Analysis of The Perfect Couple

Maura Seger attempted to create something unique with The Perfect Couple. This was a tale of a couple in two different and parallel stages of their relationship.

But the problems keeping them apart were mundane. There was never any doubt that Shane would make it back to Brenna.

In the end, you know that they would make compromises to make their union last. The Perfect Couple was an okay Silhouette romance, but nothing exceptional.

2 Stars

Rating Report Card
Plot
3
Characters
2.5
Writing
2.5
Chemistry
2.5
Fun Factor
1.5
Cover
3.5
Overall: 2.6

Synopsis

Will they ever have a chance to say “I love you”?

THEIR FUTURE HANGS IN THE BALANCE‚Ķ.First the argument ripped Shane Dutton and Brenna O’Hare apart. Now a plane crash has stranded Shane in the Alaskan wilderness. Miles apart, all they can do is wait. And hope. And remember‚Ķ

THEIR PAST IS ALL THEY HAVE…Shane wanted children‚ÄĒBrenna didn’t. Brenna wanted a man who never took risks‚ÄĒShane did. But they also wanted each other‚ÄĒso badly that their differences hadn’t mattered. Not at first…Reflecting on what went wrong‚ÄĒand right‚ÄĒShane and Brenna reach the same conclusion. But will they ever get the chance to say “I love you”?

THE PERFECT COUPLE by MAURA SEGER