Part of the reason that Laura and I decided to try and read one book from every bookcase in the store this year was to give us the opportunity to move outside of our reading comfort zones and try new books, authors and genres. So with this in mind I picked up my first book from the Romance Cases, "To Distraction" by Stephanie Laurens.
I had been tempted to grab something that I suspected I would like more, one of the paranormal romance titles for example. Something that would be closer to my normal science fiction/fantasy genre preference. But in the end I decided to try something that looked as much like the sterotype of romance novel that I carried in my head as possible, so the pink cover with its bodice ripper insert picture was just the thing.
I liked it. That's right, I liked it. The characters were, if not quite 3 dimensional, at least not the cardboard cutouts that I expected. The plot moved me through Regency England at a steady pace, with the parties and entertainments of the upper class main characters interspersed with the work of Phoebe (the heroine) rescuing chambermaids and household servants from the clutches of their lecherous employers.
The book had no unexpected twists. Deverell (the hero) is a handsome ex-spy come home from France to inherit his estate and to find a wife. Phoebe is demure but not unwilling to be manuvered into the arms and bed of Deverell. And their is a happy marriage waiting at the end of the book.
This book is part of a larger series from Laurens. I may not rush out to get the rest of the series, but I can see returning to Laurens in the future if I get the fancy for a love story