Merripen, the quiet and mysterious Romany, has lived with the Hathaways since his youth. Found badly injured and near death he was taken into the open loving arms of this quirky and unconventional family. Ignoring his background and the backlash of the village, Merripen was treated like a brother to the four other children. But he did not stay because he had found a family for no matter what they thought a Rom would never really be one of them ( a gadjo) nor did he want to be. What he wanted, and stayed for, was Win. For since the first moment he saw her his life had changed and a deep connection was formed. Though he could never allow himself to have Winifred, and taint her with his ugliness, he would protect her with his life while keeping her at a distance. Winifred Hathaway, on the other hand, has one goal in mind -to catch the man she has loved forever. Finally, after years away in a clinic in France, she has returned to England completely recovered. No longer the invalid, Win is tired of being treated like a butterfly under the glass. Merripen protects and cherishes her but doesn't touch -afraid he'll hurt or spoil her perfection with his sordid past. But Win wants to be his woman, his wife. Could Merripen have finally pushed her too far away? Kept her at such a distance that she''ll turn to another man?
Great book, signature Kleypas -engaging couple, superb plotting, solid writing and sinfully steamy. Win and Kev (Merripen) are well matched even though they are physically polar opposites. He's the great big, dark dangerously smoldering Rom of few words and she's the delicate/fragile angelic blond with a cool exterior. Underneath lie two complex characters who love each other deeply and must get past many hurdles to get to a HEA ending. Their roller coaster romance teased me tortiously and gripped me from beginning to end. Really an excellent example of star-crossed lovers.
I do though have some minor complaints. Some portions of this book could have been called Mine Till Midnight Part II for all the attention that Cam and Amelia get (and the rest of the family too). And the mysterious tattoos and Kev's and Cam's connection were less than shocking and downright predictable. And I'm not a fan of the prettily wrapped up plot twist in the end either (especially if its not believable). It was not necessary and, I think, diluted the overall effect of the story. I would have been happier if Klyepas had left things as they were, it would have made for a far more interesting ending. These parts did not however distract in ANY way from the fantastic heart warming romance. Frankly I couldn't get enough of Win and Kev.
So this sequel to Mine Till Midnight (The Hathaways, Book 1) is a keeper IMHO. And I, for one, can't wait till Leo and the "Grim Reaper" (LOL!) governess get their own book.