Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Review: A Certain Wolfish Charm by Lydia Dare, or How I Love Reese's Peanut Butter Cups

I hate peanut butter. Hate it with a passion. Even the smell grosses me out. BUT, I love Reese's Cups. I can't explain it - something about the peanut butter mixed with that chocolatey goodness is sooooo yummy; it's a perfect match, the flavors complement each other well. This book was like a Reese's Cup....only instead of chocolate and peanut butter it's a great mix of historical and paranormal romance. I'd been a bit burnt out on historical romances lately, and craving good paranormal romances. Blodeuedd's review put this book on my radar, so when I took my daughters book shopping and saw it on the shelf I grabbed it. This historical paranormal romance was just what I was looking for.

Lily Rutledge is "on the shelf" at the age of 23. She lives with her 12-year-old nephew, Oliver. Oliver's parents died in a carriage accident and Lily stepped in to take care of him. His actual guardian, however, is Simon Westfield, the Duke of Blackmore; Lily and Oliver never see the Duke, although he does support them financially. When Lily writes to ask for assistance when Oliver's behavior starts getting out of hand, the Duke's reply is to send more cash. Lily is furious at this response, and decides to pay Lord Blackmore a visit to explain what's going on and ask him to step in as a "male influence" for Oliver.

What Lily doesn't know is that Oliver is actually a werewolf, and it's not just puberty he's dealing with, but the start of "the change". In this story, werewolves are all male, and they get very moody around the full moon. When Lily travels to see the Duke, he is annoyed at the intrusion as he normally goes away during this moon phase - the last thing he needs is a beautiful woman running around his household. Once Lily explains the problem, however, he agrees to help Oliver.

The escapades they go through trying to avoid each other when they are undeniably pulled towards each other are endearing. Simon has a history as quite the ladies man, but when he falls for Lily he turns tongue tied and bumbles around saying the wrong thing, to quite a funny effect. When Simon and Lily finally succumb to their desires I wanted to stand up and cheer! The only thing is, Simon keeps his secret from Lily. Lily knows something is up, and she's persistent without being annoying. The scenes between Simon and Oliver as they established who was the "top dog" were entertaining as well.

Simon's neighbor Prisca is a saucy but sweet young thing, I have the feeling we'll be seeing her again. His brother Will is also endearing and gets his hackles up whenever Prisca is around, but their brother Benjamin also seems to have some sort of friendship with Prisca. Simon's mother seems like a kind,older woman with a backbone of steel. Her first meeting with Lily was quite a scene!

I loved this book! There was nothing about it I didn't like. If there were any historical innacuracies, I was too enamored of the story to notice or care. Lydia Dare writes a great story. The scenes flowed so naturally, there was never a spot where I thought, "oh, here's a good place to stop"; I always wanted to know what was next!

This one's going on my keeper shelf - I give A Certain Wolfish Charm 5/5 stars!

Addendum: The second book in this series: Tall, Dark, and Wolfish, releases today!


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