Monday, 27 February 2012
365 books in 365 days Challenge ... Book #340
Baby & the Beast - Laura Wright
Silhouette Books, 2002
Reissue - Mills & Boon Desire, 2011
From the back cover:
"Caught in a raging snowstorm, imminent mother-to-be Isabella Spencer had never imagined that Michael Wulf, the sensual hero of her teenage fantasies, would come to her rescue. Now Isabella was ensconced in his high-tech mansion, secretly craving the touch of this reclusive millionaire who'd long ago closed off his heart.
Opening his home to his childhood friend - now an alluring woman - was dangerous enough. And when Bella gave birth to an adorable baby girl, Michael found himself yearning to play the part of father...and Bella's passionate husband!
Was it possible for this lone wolf to shed his solitary ways and open himself up to love?"
I bought this recently from the Mills & Boon website - there is a bunch of backlist books from most lines reissued in ebook form on there! (Also available, as far as I could determine, on Amazon and other UK ebook stores).
The heroine Isabella is travelling back to her home town hoping to make a new life for herself and her baby when her car breaks down in a snowstorm. She is rescued by the hero Michael, whom takes her to his home to recover. Michael has never forgotten the love and shelter Isabella and her father gave him as a teenager when they took him in after he had run away from the children's home he had been living in. Looking after Bella is a way for him to finally repay the debt he believes he owes them, but he wasn't expecting to be snowed in with her, or that he would have to deliver her baby when Bella goes into labour. And he definitely wasn't expecting to find the grown up Bella so alluring. Bella has always been a little bit in love with Michael, and she is really proud that he has made such a success out of himself, but she fears that he hides himself away too much, afraid to open his heart after the trauma of his childhood. She wants him to open up to her, but Michael can't and fears that he is growing too attached to Bella and her little girl, wishing that they belonged to him, so his only way of dealing is to push her away.
This is a very quick and easy read, but enjoyable all the same. There is a lot of emoiton written into the story, from both the hero and heroine's individual backgrounds, and their developing relationship. The book has a nice flow and the love between the characters built slowing, and that made it feel very real. The hero is a wonderful character, so well developed he is open and warm yet also complex, he definitely deserves his happy ending. My only complaint is that the 'black moment' came from Michael overhearing a couple of bitchy women gossiping about him - for me, it felt a little too trivial to make an impact.
This book is a much gentler style of Desire than some of the more recent ones, and I actually prefer this type (the older ones).
A very pleasing book, well written with a genuine-feeling love story.