Delicious

Delicious

by Sherry Thomas

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780553905441
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 07/29/2008
Series: The Marsdens , #1
Sold by: Random House
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 432
Sales rank: 248,761
File size: 493 KB

About the Author

Sherry Thomas burst onto the romance scene with Private Arrangements, one of the most anticipated debut historical romances in recent history and a Publishers Weekly Best of the Year book. Lisa Kleypas calls her “the most powerfully original historical romance author working today.” Her books have received stellar reviews from Publishers Weekly, Library Journal, Chicago Tribune, and Romantic Times, along with enthusiastic praises from many of the most highly trafficked romance review websites and blogs.

Her story is all the more interesting given that English is Sherry's second language—she has come a long way from the days when she made her laborious way through Rosemary Roger's Sweet Savage Love with an English-Chinese dictionary. She enjoys creating stories. And when she is not writing, she thinks about the zen and zaniness of her profession, plays computer games with her sons, and reads as many fabulous books as she can find.


From the Paperback edition.

Read an Excerpt

Chapter One


In retrospect people said it was a Cinderella story.

Notably missing was the personage of the Fairy Godmother. But other than that, the narrative seemed to contain all the elements of the fairy tale.

There was something of a modern prince. He had no royal blood, but he was a powerful man—London's foremost barrister, Mr. Gladstone's right hand—a man who would very likely one day occupy 10 Downing Street.

There was a woman who spent much of her life in the kitchen. In the eyes of many, she was a nobody. To others, she was one of the greatest cooks of her generation, her food said to be so divine that old men dined with the gusto of adolescent boys, and so seductive that lovers forsook each other as long as a single crumb remained on the table.

There was a ball; not the usual sort of ball that made it into fairy tales or even ordinary tales, but a ball nevertheless. There was the requisite Evilish Female Relative. And mostly importantly for connoisseurs of fairy tales, there was footgear left behind in a hurry—nothing so frivolous or fancy as glass slippers, yet carefully kept and cherished, with a flickering flame of hope, for years upon years.

A Cinderella story indeed.

Or was it?

It all began—or resumed, depending on how one looked at it—the day Bertie Somerset died.


Yorkshire
November 1892

The kitchen at Fairleigh Park was palatial in dimension, as grand as anything to be found at Chatsworth or Blenheim, and certainly several times larger than what one would expect for a manor the size of Fairleigh Park.

Bertie Somerset had the entire kitchen complex renovated in 1877—shortly after he inherited, two years before Verity Durant came to work for him. After the improvements, the complex boasted a dairy, a scullery, and a pantry, each the size of a small cottage; separate larders for meat, game, and fish; two smokehouses; and a mushroom house where a heap of composted manure provided edible mushrooms year-round.

The main kitchen, floored in cool rectangles of gray flagstone, with oak duckboards where the kitchen staff most often stood, had an old-fashioned open hearth and two modern, closed ranges. The ceiling rose twenty feet above the floor. Windows were set high and faced only north and east, so that not a single beam of sunlight would ever stray inside. But still it was sweaty work in winter; in summer the temperatures rose hot enough to immolate.

Three maids toiled in the adjacent scullery, washing up all the plates, cups, and flatware from the servants' afternoon tea. One of Verity's apprentices stuffed tiny eggplants at the central work table, the other three stood at their respective stations about the room, attending to the rigors of dinner for the staff as well as for the master of the house.

The soup course had just been carried out, trailing behind it a murmur of the sweetness of caramelized onion. From the stove billowed the steam of a white wine broth, in the last stages of reduction before being made into a sauce for a filet of brill that had been earlier poached in it. Over the great hearth a quartet of teals roasted on a spit turned by a kitchen maid. She also looked after the civet of hare slowly stewing in the coals, which emitted a powerful, gamy smell every time it was stirred.

The odors of her kitchen were as beautiful to Verity as the sounds of an orchestra. This kitchen was her fiefdom, her sanctuary. She cooked with an absolute, almost nerveless concentration, her awareness extending to the subtlest stimulation of the senses and the least movement on the part of her underlings.

The sound of her favorite apprentice not stirring the hazelnut butter made her turn her head slightly. "Mademoiselle Porter, the butter," she said, her voice stern. Her voice was always stern in the kitchen.

"Yes, Madame. Sorry, Madame," said Becky Porter. The girl would be purple with embarrassment now—she knew very well that it took only a few seconds of inattention before hazelnut butter became black butter.

Verity gave Tim Cartwright, the apprentice standing before the white wine reduction, a hard stare. The young man blanched. He cooked like a dream, his sauces as velvety and breathtaking as a starry night, his souffles taller than chefs' toques. But Verity would not hesitate to let him go without a letter of character if he made an improper advance toward Becky—Becky who'd been with Verity since joining her staff as a thirteen-year-old child.

Most of the hazelnut butter would be consumed at dinner. But a portion of it was to be saved for the midnight repast her employer had requested: one steak au poivre, a dozen oysters in sauce Mornay, potato croquettes Æ la Dauphine, a small lemon tart, still warm, and half a dozen dessert crepes spread with, mais bien sur, hazelnut butter.

Crepes with hazelnut butter—Mrs. Danner tonight. Three days ago it had been Mrs. Childs. Bertie was becoming promiscuous in his middle age. Verity removed the cassoulet from the oven and grinned a little to herself, imagining the scenes that would ensue should Mrs. Danner and Mrs. Childs find out that they shared Bertie's less-than-undying devotion.

The service hatch burst open. The door slammed into a dresser, rattling the rows of copper lids hanging on pin rails, startling one of them off its anchor. The lid hit the floor hard, bounced and wobbled, its metallic bangs and scrapes echoing in the steam and smolder of the kitchen. Verity looked up sharply. The footmen in this house knew better than to throw open doors like that.
"Madame!" Dickie, the first footman, gasped from the doorway, sweat dampening his hair despite the November chill. "Mr. Somerset—Mr. Somerset, he be not right!"

Something about Dickie's wild expression suggested that Bertie was far worse than "not right." Verity motioned Letty Briggs, her lead apprentice, to take over her spot before the stove. She wiped her hands on a clean towel and went to the door.

"Carry on," she instructed her crew before closing the door behind Dickie and herself. Dickie was already scrambling in the direction of the house.

"What's the matter?" she said, lengthening her strides to keep up with the footman.

"He be out cold, Madame."

"Has someone sent for Dr. Sergeant?"

"Mick from the stables just rode out."

She'd forgotten her shawl. The air in the unheated passage between kitchen and manor chilled the sheen of perspiration on her face and neck. Dickie pushed open doors: doors to the warming kitchen, doors to another passage, doors to the butler's pantry. Her heart thumped as they entered the dining room. But it was empty, save for an ominously overturned chair. On the floor by the chair were a puddle of water and, a little away, a miraculously unbroken crystal goblet, glinting in the light of the candelabra. A forlorn, half-finished bowl of onion soup still sat at the head of the table, waiting for dinner to resume.

Dickie led her to a drawing room deeper inside the house. A gaggle of housemaids stood by the door, clutching one another's sleeves and peering in cautiously. They fell back at Verity's approach and bobbed unnecessary curtsies.

Her erstwhile lover reclined, supine, on a settee of dark blue. He wore a disconcertingly peaceful expression. Someone had loosened his necktie and opened his shirt at the collar. This state of undress contrasted sharply against his stiff positioning: his hands folded together above his breastbone like those of an effigy atop a stone sarcophagus.

Mr. Prior, the butler, stood guard over Bertie's inert body. At her entrance, he hurried to her side and whispered, "He's not breathing."

Her own breath quite left her at that. "Since when?"

"Since before Dickie went to the kitchen, Madame," said the butler. His hands trembled very slightly.

Was that five minutes? Seven? Verity stood immobile a long moment, unable to think. It didn't make any sense. Bertie was a healthy man who experienced few physical maladies.

She crossed the room and dipped to one knee before the settee. "Bertie," she called softly, addressing him more intimately than she had at any point in the past decade. "Can you hear me, Bertie?"

He did not respond. No dramatic fluttering of the eyelids. No looking at her as if he were Snow White freshly awakened from a poisoned sleep and she the prince who brought him back to life.

She touched him, something else she hadn't done in ten years. His palm was wet, as was his starched cuff. He was still warm, but her finger pressed over his wrist could detect no pulse, only an obstinate stillness.

She dug the pad of her thumb into his veins. Could he possibly be dead? He was only thirty-eight years old. He hadn't even been ill. And he had an assignation with Mrs. Danner tonight. The oysters for his postcoital fortification were resting on a bed of ice in the cold larder and the hazelnut butter was ready for the dessert crepes beloved by Mrs. Danner.

His pulse refused to beat.

She released his hand and rose, her mind numb. The kitchen crew had stayed put at her command. But the rest of the indoor staff had assembled in the drawing room, the men behind Mr. Prior, the women behind Mrs. Boyce, the housekeeper . . . everyone pressed close to the walls, a sea of black uniforms with foam caps of white collars and aprons.

In response to Mrs. Boyce's inquiring gaze, Verity shook her head. The man who was once to be her prince was dead. He had taken her up to his castle, but had not kept her there. In the end she had returned to the kitchen, dumped the shards of her delusion in the rubbish bin, and carried on as if she'd never believed that she stood to become the mistress of this esteemed house.

"We'd better cable his solicitors, then," said Mrs. Boyce. "They'll need to inform his brother that Fairleigh Park is now his."

His brother. In all the drama of Bertie's abrupt passing, Verity had not even thought of the succession of Fairleigh Park. Now she shook somewhere deep inside, like a dish of aspic set down too hard.

She nodded vaguely. "I'll be in the kitchen should you need me."

***

In her copy of Taillevent's Le Viandier, where the book opened to a recipe for gilded chicken with quenelles, Verity kept a brown envelope marked List of Cheese Merchants in the 16th Arondissement.

The envelope contained, among other things, a news clipping from the county fish wrapper, about the Liberals' recent victory in the general election after six years in opposition. Verity had written the date in a corner: 16.08.1892. In the middle of the article, a grainy photograph of Stuart Somerset gazed back at her.

She never touched his image, for fear that her strokes would blur it. Sometimes she looked at it very closely, the clipping almost at her nose. Sometimes she put it as far as her lap, but never farther, never beyond reach.

The man in the photograph was dramatically handsome—the face of a Shakespearean actor in his prime, all sharp peaks and deep angles. From afar she'd watched his meteoric rise—one of London's most sought-after barristers, and now, with the Liberals back in power, Mr. Gladstone's Chief Whip in the House of Commons—quite something for a man who'd spent his first nine years in a Manchester slum.

He'd accomplished it all on his own merits, of course, but she'd played her small part. She'd walked away from him, from hopes and dreams enough to spawn a generation of poets, so that he could be the man he was meant to be, the man whose face on her clipping she dared not touch.

Chapter Two


London


We've known each other a long time, Miss Bessler," said Stuart Somerset.

At the Besslers' Hanover Square house, the drawing room had once been a rather ghastly green. But Miss Bessler, taking the reins of the household after her mother's passing, had papered the walls in a shade of carmine that was almost sensual, yet still solemn enough for the home of a former Chancellor of the Exchequer.

Miss Bessler raised a severe eyebrow at Stuart. She looked very fine tonight: Her eyes were bright, her cheeks held a tinge of becoming blush, her Prussian blue gown was pure drama against the crimson chaise longue on which they sat nearly knee to knee.

"We've been friends a long time, Mr. Somerset," she corrected him.

They'd met years before she'd made her official debut, when both Stuart and the Besslers had been guests at a weeklong house party at Lyndhurst Hall. He'd been alone in the garden, smoking a cigarette, thinking of someone else. And she'd escaped from the nursery to watch the dancing in the ballroom, indignant that a mature, clever girl such as herself wasn't allowed to join the fun.

"Yes, we have indeed been friends a long time," he said.

And it had been with pride and affection that he'd watched the lovely child—though she'd always insisted that at only a few weeks short of fifteen, she'd been no child—grow into an even lovelier young woman.

"That's much better," said Miss Bessler. "Now, won't you please hurry and ask the question so I may tell you how delighted and honored I will be to be your wife?"

Stuart chuckled. It was as he'd thought. Mr. Bessler hadn't been able to keep the news to himself. He took her hands in his. "In that case, would you make me very happy by consenting to become my wife?"

"Yes, I would," she said firmly. She looked happy—and relieved, as if she hadn't quite believed until this moment that he really would offer for her. Her hands squeezed his. "Thank you. We both know that I'm not getting any younger."

He still thought her a young woman, because of the twelve-year difference in their ages. But there was some unfortunate truth to her words. At twenty-five, with eight seasons under her belt, she was far older than the usual adolescents on display in London's ballrooms and drawing rooms.

"Not that it would change my answer, because I'm too practical and selfish to give you up," she said, "but I do hope you haven't proposed entirely out of pity, my dear Stuart—may I at last call you Stuart?"

"Pity is the last of my motives, Lizzy," he said. "There is no one else in all of Society with whom I'd rather spend my life."

He'd delayed looking for a wife until he was old enough to have sired the current crop of debutantes. He didn't want a seventeen-year-old, either on his arm or in his bed. He needed a more seasoned spouse who would not be flustered by the demands of an MP's household. Lizzy was a descendant of an old and highly regarded family, a statesman's daughter, and a gracious and competent hostess. And she was beautiful. She was everything Stuart could sensibly hope for in a wife at this stage in his life.

There were, of course, his more insensible hopes—but he'd had to accept that some dreams were stillborn and some memories mirages.


From the Paperback edition.

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Delicious 3.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 49 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love the way this author chooses characters who are not perfect and do not always find happily ever after the first time around. Her heroines are not simpering virgins and her heroes are not lust crazed he-men. There are two lovely romances here and the food makes your mouth water as well. A great read! I was very sorry to see things end. Perhaps Michael will have his own story soon.
srbSH More than 1 year ago
Headstrong Verity Durant, once Lady Vera Drake, was banished from her society family at 16 when she became pregnant. Ambitious Stuart Somerset, the by-blow of a wealthy family and finally legitimized, has risen to power in the government. There's some history between Verity and Stuart: Long ago she had run away to London from her lover Bertie, a lord who refused to marry her, but who had been paying for her son's education. In London, she was rescued by Stuart from thugs, and they spent one stunning night together. But, leaving only a boot behind, Verity returned to Bertie, not as his mistress any longer but only as his sensational, renowned cook so that she can continue to watch over her son. (Stuart has spent years searching for her in vain). Stuart's estranged step-brother, the very same Bertie, brings things to a boil when he suddenly dies, and Stuart takes over the estate. Although viscerally drawn to the famous cook - now HIS famous cook - Stuart doesn't know that she's Verity. He becomes engaged to too young Elizabeth Bessler and starts entertaining. His secretary William Marsden actually does Stuart's wooing (with flowers, thoughtful gifts) and captures the heart of Stuart's fiancee. The cook does wooing of her own - through food and other delicious ways - slowly reminding Stuart of his lost love. This time he won't let her get away, even with the demands of the reigning arbiter of ton behavior - and Verity's aunt - to let her go. Thus Stuart wins Verity whose title is now restored, and Lady Vera can watch over her godson.
Lover_of_Romance More than 1 year ago
I loved this book. In the beginning of the book I was confused and almost put it down, but continued on and I am glad I did. She jumps back and forth in time without warning so I had a hard time following the story until I understood what she was doing. It was a great love story and kept me on the edge to find out how it was going to end. The love scenes could have been more detailed for my liking, but that is only because I wanted more. You won't be disappointed.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The story is interesting. It jumps between different time periods. It refers to being a cinderella story in which the characters must suffer for years in poverty. Not my kind of reading.
epicrat More than 1 year ago
Sherry again delights (maybe shocks) us by breaking from the mold of run-of-the-mill historical romance novels with Delicious. Verity and Stuart brought forward some toe-curling tension as they played cat-and-mouse with each other, although Stuart has been otherwise spoken-for. I enjoyed watching Verity bring some color into Stuart's monotonous life. While the main story is not quite the fairy tale that opens the Delicious, it falls into play when the secret of Verity's past was finally revealed toward the end.
DagneyTaggartAZ More than 1 year ago
I've read everything from the top Regency Romance writers - Lisa Kleypas, Gaeleen Foley, Eloisa James, Julia Quinn, etc. and Thomas has arrived. Her prose are beautiful and evocative and her story is captivating with involved and progressive character development. She's now a top favorite, but unfortunately, she only has 3 books. Read her works and anxiously await the next, she's fabulous. The only draw back to 'Delicious' is that you might gain a pound reading it because this book makes you hungry...
Guest More than 1 year ago
The half of the book was pretty borring.The other half was better with a good ending.
theepicrat on LibraryThing 28 days ago
Sherry again delights (maybe shocks) us by breaking from the mold of run-of-the-mill historical romance novels with Delicious. Verity and Stuart brought forward some toe-curling tension as they played cat-and-mouse with each other, although Stuart has been otherwise spoken-for. I enjoyed watching Verity bring some color into Stuart's monotonous life. While the main story is not quite the fairy tale that opens the Delicious, it falls into play when the secret of Verity's past was finally revealed toward the end.
mschweer432 on LibraryThing 28 days ago
This was my second book by Sherry Thomas. She is one of my new favorite authors!! I really enjoyed this book!! It was a fun read with plenty of tension and suspense. I loved Verity's spunk! The story did feel a little forced and unbelievable at times. But, I'm reading a historical romance, so who cares, right?!?!? I can't say I enjoyed this book as much as I enjoyed Private Arrangements, but it was still good book! I can't wait to read another by Sherry Thomas!!
ankhet on LibraryThing 28 days ago
Verity Durant is a good cook - the best, second only (possibly) to Escoffier - with a secret. Her employer (and former lover) Bertie Somerset recently passed away, leaving her in the employ of his half-brother Stuart. What Stuart doesn't know is that his new cook is the same Cinderella he had a one-night love affair with ten years ago and has yearned for ever since.Delicious is put forward as a Cinderella story of sorts. It starts out framed as a Cinderella story, and the author as well as the characters themselves reference the famous fairy tale throughout the novel. This not only works, but adds tremendously to the romance building between Stuart and Verity.I loved the entire thing. Not only was I intrigued by the Victorian setting, I wanted to know if Cinderella got her prince, and what happened to the prince's fiancee. And what of Cinderella's stepmother? The prince's family? Delicious answers all of these questions, all the while drawing you into not only the romance between the characters, but into a new love affair with food - for that is how much of Verity's passion is shown: through her food.Anyone looking to read a romance novel: I highly recommend this! It's delightful, satisfying, and all-around lovely. I know I gush, but I think, in this case, the work deserves the praise.
amf0001 on LibraryThing 28 days ago
Difficult book to follow, I suspect I might like it better on second reading, but on first reading it really didnt' work - and yet, I finished it, didn't I...Set in 1892, so victorian rather than Regency, it tells the tale of Verity, a woman who 3 times loved when she shouldn't. At 16 she loved a stable boy (who frankly wasn't given enough story or personality for her to have done what she did) and fell pregnant. At 22 she fell in love iwth an earl who rejects her and forces/permits (? wasn't clear which) to remain as his cook once the affair was over. Adn she also fell in love with her lover's hated cousin. We meet at the second lovers death when the hated cousin inherits everything, including the cook. They have this game where he doesn't see her for nearly 2/3 of the book, she's in shadow or with a mask on, but when he does see her, he still doesn't recognize her.Not very explcit though with one great bath scene, I liked the lovers but I never could suspend my disbelief and sink into the book, too many jarring things kept happening. The book was very disjointed to start, but got better, but the end was just ridiculous - the duchess completely changed character for no reason at all.
crashingwaves38 on LibraryThing 28 days ago
This book has a somewhat convoluted novel--there are twists in relationships everywhere, and unexpected things happen and people have unexpected motives frequently. Toss that in with the hero not knowing that the woman he's falling in love with is the woman he fell in love with years ago, and it's drama-rific.Despite all that, it's a well-written novel. Thomas has a good writing style, and her writing is such that it brings you in to the immediate presence. She handles the plot twists and turns adroitly, never getting so mired in them that the reader can longer find her way out. Dialogue stays true to character, for the most part, and the details and descriptions are enough to pull you in without making your eyes glaze over from too much information.I greatly enjoyed reading this novel. The only thing that keeps it from getting a full 5 stars is that the food aspect of things is just ridiculous. If this were a fantasy novel with magic, it would fit in just fine. But it's not; this is a romance novel without magic, and a cook is not able to really imbue her food with such feelings as longing and despair and new love. Everytime I came to another passage about Verity's food, I mentally rolled my eyes and moved on. It just didn't pass the suspension of disbelief test.Despite that, however, I love this novel and would definitely recommend it to romance lovers, particularly those who also love their food or have a penchant for Cinderella-type stories.
theshadowknows on LibraryThing 28 days ago
Would it be too easy/awful of a pun to say that I devoured this book? It is, but I did - or at least most of it. With a title like Delicious and a prefatory quote from M. F. K. Fisher about hunger and love, I should have realized what the book would be like. But even if I had anticipated food to be the theme of this romance, nothing could have quite prepared me for how Sherry Thomas writes about food, love, desire, and hunger - all mixed up in a sensual, sensuous concoction in which I was delighted to indulge. I love how Thomas writes, and when such technical skill is paired with a story that surpasses her debut effort, I'm a very happy customer. Now for the "but's". Even though I liked this story better than Private Arrangements, I still found the construction and execution of the plot here awkward, particularly near the end, when false notes start clanging everywhere. The hero, Stuart Somerset, is engaged to another woman, a Lizzy Bessler, for much of the story. I thought this obstacle between Stuart and the heroine Verity Duran, what with all the other things that stand between them, was superfluous. Stuart's anguished resistance to Verity on the grounds of his promise to Lizzy seemed exaggerated and unconvincing. When he suddenly gives up on his excuse of "honor," and returns to Verity after angrily and dramatically tossing her to the curb a mere few pages earlier, he sounds trite and wooden in his easy declarations of love and devotion, and I wasn't as excited to see them finally together as I should have been. Nor was I all that interested in the secondary romance between Lizzy and Stuart¿s secretary Will Marsden. But the plot really stumbled in the final pages of the book, when we're treated to a lengthy and awkward exposition on the mystery (that wasn't really that mysterious) concerning Verity's past and identity. At this point the pace was brought to a staggering halt. I thought this aspect of the book could have been handled a lot more smoothly and gone that extra length to really get at the heart of Stuart and Verity¿s love for each other. As it stood, though, I felt something lacking in their romance.Besides these complaints, it was still a very well written book. I've got to love an author who can come up with a line like: "what was the taste of falling off a cliff?" (93) If you just go with how important food is in this book, its artistry and eroticism, then you¿ll mostly likely enjoy Delicious. And I really liked the characters. This book returns to the format of Private Arrangements, jumping back and forth in time, building up a sense of history and character development infused with lyric, fairy tale cadences that are enthralling - the opening sentence sets you up for a Cinderella story that plays with the familiar tropes without being derivative in the least. Thomas recreates late Victorian society so vividly here. Verity and Stuart are products of their time and circumstances as much as they are individuals who have suffered and/or been punished for their nonconformity, be it inherited stigmas or more active transgressions. Not the stuff of fairy tales, surely. I just wish Delicious could have maintained its momentum in the end and fulfilled its promise. The author provides a couple of very interesting characters, but the way in which she brings them together could have used some fleshing out. Nevertheless, I enjoyed the book and wouldn¿t hesitate to recommend it.
doxiemomx2 on LibraryThing 28 days ago
Not a great a "Not Quite a Husband," but another good book from Sherry Thomas. The theme of separated lovers that have difficulty reuniting is well done, but some incredible culinary descriptions. Didn't make me cry like some of her others, but I liked it a lot.
FrostKitty on LibraryThing 28 days ago
This one was a disappointment. If it had been written by someone else I would have given it a higher rating but Sherry Thomas is an amazing writer and this book wasn't on par with her other work.
Emcee1 More than 1 year ago
Delicious A twisting, winding romance that should never be between England's most skilled - and most notorious - private chef, and the man who should never be hers, an up and coming politician. Past and present mix as the two meet, part, reconnect unwillingly and play dastardly games with food and with words. There are many interesting characters here, not the least of whom is the politician's secretary, a handsome and devastatingly intelligent man. The subplot involving him is terrific, too. So much going on in those Victorian backstairs....
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved the characters and story, and the references to amazing food.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Two very interesting love stories because all four characters are so well written. The interactions between each couple are not just sexy or romantic in the usual romantic fiction way, but rather fascinating as each character has a unique personality, not stereotypical as you might expect and often run into in this genre. Not to say that there aren't certain aspects of the story that are definitely steretypical but Sherry Thomas is one of the better romance writers and this book was fun to read because of her desriptive powers...highly recommend!
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