Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Beguiling The Beauty - Sherry Thomas

When the Duke of Lexington meets the mysterious Baroness von Seidlitz-Hardenberg on a transatlantic liner, he is fascinated. She’s exactly what he’s been searching for—a beautiful woman who interests and entices him. He falls hard and fast—and soon proposes marriage.

 And then she disappears without a trace…

For in reality, the “baroness” is Venetia Easterbrook—a proper young widow who had her own vengeful reasons for instigating an affair with the duke. But the plan has backfired. Venetia has fallen in love with the man she despised—and there’s no telling what might happen when she is finally unmasked…

I had only read one Sherry Thomas story before getting to this one but it was one I enjoyed and I was curious to try more by her. Besides she has the type of plot that attracts me, the kind with plenty of angst or at least with angst potential.

In this Beguiling the Beauty, Venetia Easterbrook - apparently the most beautiful woman of her time - is spending some time with her sister in America. They attend a lecture and hear how the Duke of Lexington describes her in less than flattering terms. Despite not naming her, he gives enough information that anyone who knows her socially recognises her. She is, at first, in shock due to his words. Then, after meeting him again and receiving some flowers by mistake, she decides to get her revenge by making him fall for her.

To make this work you really have to suspend your disbelief. Venetia always wears a hat with a veil and Lexington never tries to see who she is even when he is given the perfect opportunity. He falls for a woman that he has never seen... and hardly knows anything about. Then when they eventually meet again they never talk about what they really feel and fall into a misunderstanding...

To be honest, suspending my disbelief, wasn't a problem for me. My problem is that I didn't feel the angst that I think they characters should be feeling. The same type of angst that made me enjoy Private Arrangements. I ended up feeling that this was a lighter read in terms of the intensity of feelings. For instance Lexington spends most of his adult life in love with Venetia and trying to deny those feelings. Then he falls for her veiled persona without knowing much about her but every time he sees Venetia he totally forgets about her veiled self...

And then near the end there's a scene about with some gossipy ladies which I thought was a bit too much for me to believe in. These ladies are proud of their reputation as gossipers and feel that by denying the rumors they are spreading, Venetia and Lexington are ruining it. That felt a bit ridiculous!

But while I'm focusing on the negatives I have to say that Thomas writes beautifully and I read it in one sitting. It was a very easy and engaging read and having noted those faults did not keep me from wanting to know what happened next. And I enjoyed the secondary couples so much that I already put the next book in the tbr pile.

Grade: 4/5


  1. This seems good, i've had this book in my to buy list for a while now because by the plot itself I was hooked. I feel conflicted because of the other two books by her I've read, I liked both but Private Arrangements had such an awful heroine for me...I fear if something like that happens in the other books, but her writing style still makes me want to read...I'll get it as soon as I can (as with all the other 35 or 36 books I MUST have NOW)

  2. Which was the book you've read besides Private Arrangements? I sure hope you like this one ;-)

  3. It was Delicious, its premise was a bit like this one because the heroine there also kept hidden from the hero until some point. But I loved reading it! ;)

  4. Thanks! I'll have to find that one. I have another by her, His at Night, that I hope to get to soon.


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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