Last month I had the pleasure of reading the first book in this series called Then Came You. I knew that this month's TBR challenge was to read "a book that was recommended by someone you "know" (another blogger, author, friend, family member) or got a lot of buzz and that's why you bought it but it's still on your TBR pile" (wow, what a mouthful!). I also knew I wanted to read Derek Craven's story but since it's the second in a series, and I'm a stickler for the order of my books in a series, I picked up the first book last month.
Title: Dreaming of You
Author: Lisa Kleypas
Year published: 1994
Why did you get this book? I love the books that I have read by Kleypas and everyone has something to say about the hero in this book. So, after hearing everyone tell me I HAD to read this one... I did!
Do you like the cover? No really. There is a newer cover that is nicer and although this one was not as bad as the first book in the series, it still was not my favorite.
Did you enjoy the book? Yes, I did.
Was the author new to you and would you read something by this author again? Not new to me. One of my favorite authors, and with many more titles in her backlist I can delve into.
Are you keeping it or passing it on? Already gone!
Anything else? Derek was not the most tortured hero I have read or the most flawed. Although I did enjoy the tale, I honestly think I would have forgotten Derek if it was not for the scar that was left on his face during the first chapter and the way he refused to allow himself anything of value.
Derek is the owner of a very notorious Gaming hell in London. He was raised by prostitutes and he struggled to survive on the streets. He was an ambitious scamp and has become one of the wealthiest men in London. He has tried to improve himself by hiring tutors that have helped him drop his cockney accent.
When the book starts we find him being attacked by two men who slice his face open. Lucky for him Sara Fielding was at hand to shoot one of his attackers and scare the other one away before further harm is done to him.
Sara is researching the gambling world in hopes to gain some accuracy for her next novel. She is most known for her gritty realistic tales, like "Mathilda", which portrays the life of a woman turned into the streets. When she stumbles onto the attack on Craven she doesn't think but reacts, saving Derek's life in the process.
After some wheedling, Derek agrees to allow Sara to come to the club and interview his workers. What he never suspected was that she would gain their trust and admiration while she stole his heart.
I loved that Kleypas was able to portray a truly innocent nature, without her being naive. Sara lives her life through her books and believes it's time to walk out of her pages, but she still holds an air of being pure and untouchable, which is why Derek believes he can never have her.
I greatly enjoyed this book, not just because I thought Derek deserved a break but because the secondary characters were so wonderful. From Derek's butler (his man of affairs really) to the woman that sold their 'wares' at the club.
After Sara returned to the country, Derek's suffering was tangible and when the prostitute comes to tell Sara about Derek going to her bed because she looked a bit like Sara... it was heart wrenching and when at the end he cries in front of what is left of his club, after finding out Sara is not dead. These are the scenes that will stick to me...