Tuesday, May 29, 2012

A Night Like This by Julia Quinn

Anne Wynter might not be who she says she is...
But she's managing quite well as a governess to three highborn young ladies. Her job can be a challenge— in a single week she finds herself hiding in a closet full of tubas, playing an evil queen in a play that might be a tragedy (or might be a comedy— no one is sure), and tending to the wounds of the oh-so-dashing Earl of Winstead. After years of dodging unwanted advances, he's the first man who has truly tempted her, and it's getting harder and harder to remind herself that a governess has no business flirting with a nobleman.
Daniel Smythe-Smith might be in mortal danger...
But that's not going to stop the young earl from falling in love. And when he spies a mysterious woman at his family's annual musicale, he vows to pursue her, even if that means spending his days with a ten-year-old who thinks she's a unicorn. But Daniel has an enemy, one who has vowed to see him dead. And when Anne is thrown into peril, he will stop at nothing to ensure their happy ending... ( synopsis from http://www.juliaquinn.com/)

Avon , Paperback, 384 Pages 

I have never read a Julia Quinn book that I didn't love and this is no exception. Daniel Smythe-Smith has come home after three years abroad. His exile in Italy was the result of a duel in which he accidentally shot and wounded his friend and the man's father swore to kill him. Now assured that the threat has been removed, Daniel returns home on the night of the dreaded Smythe-Smith musicale.
Anne Wynter is the governess of Daniel’s nieces and has been coerced into playing the piano for the recital after one of the girls fakes an illness.  Anne is mortified at having to perform in public, not only because she knows how horrible the group sounds but also because she does not like to be on public display. Anne has secrets in her past and she means to keep them there. Daniel spots her right away and is drawn to her but she has been burned before by the master of a house she works in and doesn’t want to lose her job.
Ms. Quinn has written a delightful tale of a man charming his way into a woman’s heart.  There is plenty of romance to be had and a good helping of suspense as well.  What always make me happiest in Ms. Quinn’s books are the little vignettes she adds that show the caring and good humor of the characters.  There is a scene where Daniel participates in a 12 act play that one of the girls wrote that is absolutely hilarious.
Daniel and Anne are both good people who have made tragic mistakes in their lives which they have paid a heavy price. Daniel has made peace with his past and is ready to move on but Anne is not there yet and has a lot of fear about her future and what could happen if she lets her guard down. As always love conquers all but it is a convoluted path to the end.  I am on pins and needles for the next Smythe-Smith installment.

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