Saturday, January 26, 2008

Dreaming of You - Lisa Kleypas

Derek Craven is one of the most beloved heroes of Lisa Kleypas, I read his story a long time ago and this month I decided it was time for a reread.

In the shelter of her country cottage, Sara Fielding puts pen to paper to create dreams. But curiosity has enticed the prim, well-bred gentlewoman out of her safe haven—and into Derek Craven's dangerous world.

A handsome, tough and tenacious Cockney, he rose from, poverty to become lord of London's most exclusive gambling house—a struggle that has left Derek Craven fabulously wealthy, but hardened and suspicious. And now duty demands he allow Sara Fielding into his world—with her impeccable manners and her infuriating innocence. But here, in a perilous shadow-realm of ever-shifting fortunes, even a proper "mouse" can be transformed into a breathtaking enchantress—and a world-weary gambler can be shaken to his cynical core by the power of passion. . .and the promise of love.

The thing with Derek Craven is that he totally steals every scene he is in. He is almost larger than life. Having a very shadowy past behind him and having amassed a fortune that never seems enough he doesn't apologize for what he is.

Sara Fielding would at first seem very unsuited to be his life partner. She is a genteel young lady born and bred in the country and naive in the ways of the world even if she writes about it's worst aspects.

We they meet we can see the differences but also believe the attraction. They complement each other and each of them has something the other wants and needs. They both fight it at first, Derek because he is unused to have feelings for a woman and finds his attraction to the "mouse", as he calls Sara, something he has to fight against. And Sara because she is engaged to someone else. It's interesting that when that mutual attraction is acknowledged by them it's Sara, the shy mouse, that wants to live up to them, and not Derek, who despite being much more forward doesn't believe he deserves or will be able to make her happy. I think one of Kleypas strong points is the chemistry between her heroes and heroines. She always makes us believe the love story no matter how unlikely it may seem at first.

I remember that when I first read the book one of the things that kept it from being totally perfect was the presence of the evil villain. I had read my share of evil villains by then and it's something I don't enjoy. I must say I wasn't bothered this time especially because she allowed shy mouse Sara to reveal helself a tigress in the end. In a way Sara becomes more real than Derek as she seems to have, to me, more familiar emotions and she grows through the book to become totally confident in her own skin!

Grade: A


  1. So Ana, you've now re-read Devil in Winter and Dreaming of You. Who are you voting for - Sebastian or Derek?!!

  2. Couldn't agree more, Ana T.!
    Derek does have that little tendency to steal other people's scenes (like in the short story about his daughter!) but he is so charismatic I cannot blame him.;-)
    His scenes with Sarah are so amusing and heartbreaking. We feel he is attracted but he doesn't know what to do with her. This man is irresistible!
    Some parts of this book are unforgettable, like the talk between Sarah and the prostitutes who think Mathilda is a real person, when Derek meets her parents (always such a scary experience!LOL) or when Sarah is almost raped... I truly love this book! Ana T., this is a wonderful review.:)

  3. Dee's right! Now that you have reread both you have to declare which is your man!

  4. Now now girls I can not declare any favorites before I reread Logan Scott's story which for a long time my favorite Kleypas book. Besides I told Alex privately about my preference and I was almost murdered so I'm not risking it again ;-)

    Btw which is you favorite?

  5. *gasps* How can you accuse me of such thing?!! I only tried to explain you why you made the wrong choice.:P
    Btw, I agree with you (again!), Logan Scott is also my favorite.;-) I reread Because You're Mine this month and the magic still works!*sigh*

  6. Oh you reread it already?? You read a lot faster than me LOL I must get to it soon

  7. I'm happy to declare myself - Derek still gets my vote! I don't recall Logan, so he obviously didn't make a bit impact on me when I read the book. Perhaps I should do a re-read.

  8. Well, if the competition is only between Derek and Sebastian, I go for Team Sebastian!

    Other Kleypas heroes I love are Jack from Suddenly You, Logan, and Zachary Bronson from Where Dreams Begin.

  9. Logan is from the book Because You're Mine Dee and it used to be my favorite Kleypas. I say used to because I gave both Derek and Sebastian's stories an A and now I have to reread that one and see how it compares. Although I did like the stories equally I do have a soft spot for Sebastian as Alex has hinted at ;-)

  10. Ah well Marg (Dee smiling gently but sadly), I too have had times of confusion.If there's anything I can do to help... LOL!!!!

  11. No confusion here hun! Do you need a little rest?

  12. Roflol! Perhaps I should put my feet up for a while and enjoy a good book. Hmmm, me thinks Dreaming of You will do nicely!!

  13. It might DO! But for guaranteed enjoyment how about I pass you this heavily used copy of Devil in Winter?


    I actually do like Derek...really!

  14. Yeah, I'm a bit partial to Sebastian too!

  15. LOL I think we have to conclude Kleypas does have a way of writing wonderful heroes doesn't she?


I love to chat about books and stuff and I would love to hear from like minded readers. Please do leave me a comment :-)


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