"Devil's Bride is the first novel in Ms Laurens' Cynster Dynasty series. The story is set in Regency England and it takes us into the exciting lives of the ton especially the Cynster ducal family.This is my first book by the author and I have decided to read the series in order.Devil's story is a very entertaining read and I hope the others will live up to their reputation too. Devil Cynster originally called the Duke of St. Ives is the head of his extensive family. Everyone thinks his nickname is very accurate because he is like the "devil" in appearence and behavior too.He meets Honoria Anstruther-Wetherby under very strange circumstances but he immediately knows that he has just met his fate.They find the body of a young man who was shot in the woods. The boy is Tolly, Devil's cousin and his mysterious death starts their story together. They spend a night under the same roof of a cottage together with the corpse and Devil knows Honoria is copromised in the eyes of society. He decides that the best solution for them is to marry and this is his wish as well. He wants Honoria for his Duchess because he is attracted to her and she fulfills all his requirements in a wife. And when a Cynster wants something in life they go and get it without leaving any obstacles in the way.Honoria is a well bred young lady who loves adventure. That is the reason she works as a finishing governess for aristocratic families. She plans to travel to Africa and enjoy her independent life among the pyramids of Egypt. The last thing on her mind is to marry, especially a tyrant controlling Cynster like Devil.Both leading characters are wonderfully alive, strong, intelligent and a matching pair in every possible way. Honoria is attracted to Devil's charm, his confidence in himself and his honour to his family. She fights the attraction because she doesn't want to give up her plans for independence. Devil is intrigued by Honoria. He knows he wants her in his bed and in his life as a mother of his children. He takes up the challenge of winning her hand in marriage. Their battle of the sexes is powerful, sometimes funny, exciting and very sensual. At the same time the Cynsters want to solve the mystery around Tolly's death. All the Cynster males are arrogant, handsome and very controlling. They protect what is theirs, their women and children but they have clear definitions what a woman can and cannot do. They certainly don't agree with Honoria's intention to be involved in the murder mystery. Devil has his hands full of Honoria, her stubborness drives him crazy and at the same time he is lusting after her.The author has a wonderful writing style and gives us a detailed description of her heroes' behavior, their feelings and passion for each other. Devil and Honoria fight love at every possible turn until they must surrender to it. The way it comes to them is very realistic and warms the reader's heart. DEVIL'S BRIDE is a well-written Regency romance from the pen of a talented author. The historical era is well researched and the characters are well developed. The novel is full of action and the story needs to be savoured step by step. Stephanie Laurens introduces a bunch of promising secondary characters.The Cynsters are a charming lot and I look forward to continue reading about them.
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