‘Marrying Winterborne’ by Lisa Kleypas: Fabulously different historical romance


Rating: 4 stars

It’s hard to write a romance with a new twist because so many of the plots have been done over and over again. That’s not to say that they are not beautifully done — over and over — but it’s wonderful to read ahistorical romance with a plot line that is unique, and “Marrying Winterborne” is just that.

In her last romance, “Cold-Hearted Rake,” Kleypas introduced the two main characters and actually began their love story. But no fear if you haven’t read it. You can either run and buy it and read it first, or read “Marrying Winterborne” first and then read about what came before. Kleypas doesn’t rely on background for this story — it stands beautifully on its own.

What happens when two very different people fall in love? Misunderstandings abound, to be sure. But Winterborne, a man who started life a poor Welsh boy and rose to prominence through his business brilliance, has fallen in love with Helen, the daughter of an earl. Not only is she the daughter of an earl, she is delicate and refined. In short — everything that Rhys Winterborne is not. He is large, brash, and decisive. He knows what he wants, but he also has a huge amount of pride. When Helen jilts him at the beginning of the story, his pride threatens to get in the way of his happiness.

Helen knows what she wants — Rhys Winterborne. But will he still love her when he finds out the secret she just recently learned about her parents? Helen is not sure, but she knows that she must tell him. Kleypas could have taken the usual route that this kind of misunderstanding would lead to in many romance novels. But she doesn’t, and that comes as a bit of a surprise — a welcome one. And, of course, Kleypas’ writing is always a treat.

Marrying Winterborne and its predecessor, “Cold-Hearted Rake,” usher in a new family whose secrets and love stories readers will be dying to learn more about. This reviewer is, for certain.

Please note: This review is based on the advance review copy provided by the publisher, Avon Books, for review purposes.