I want to like this author's books...but sometimes it’s hard. I have a hard time with her writing style - I understand not everyone will think it a big deal, obviously or she wouldn’t be so successful. For this book, I think the story itself is good but the way we get there is a challenge.
Her style is very contemporary for a historical romance so if you are a stickler for the proper use of a word for the time period, you will be frustrated. I don’t consider myself a complete purist, but I do notice, the more historicals I read, when “ass” is used instead of “arse” but it doesn’t deter me from reading. In this book there is more than that. Maclean’s use of the term “full stop” had me rolling my eyes each time I read it as it’s pervasively used throughout all her books, and really, overused. I believe I counted it used six times in this book. Granted, it wouldn’t be a bad thing if it were used once to emphasize with great feeling how strongly someone felt, but to be used so much, just got annoying.
Also, while this might be fine to another reader, I found the sisters to be distracting and obstructive to the story. I did not find them likeable. I loved the Rogue Not Taken, Sophie and King’s story, so she was fine, but the other sisters are just crass and rude. I love sarcasm, but they were rude, full stop. (see what I did there)
I loved how Haven redeemed himself and finally came to realize the error of his ways. Sera was all over the map and when she doubted Haven again and again, even though he provided her with more than enough opportunities for her to believe in him, I was again frustrated.
The last frustration I had with the book was the back and forth through time periods. It was confusing as I couldn’t read the book all in one sitting. It took me several days to read where I needed to stop and start and I’d have to recall where it was we were in the story because there was no clear pattern.
There was something I liked - I loved the debutantes who were a part of Haven’s plot to win Sera back. They were awesome and I loved when they went against their momma’s censure. It’d be great to see stories developed from these characters.
Bottom line, this one was a miss for me. I feel like that’s the thing with Maclean’s books these days - they are either hit or miss. I say this in all my reviews of Maclean’s books that I’ve read and reviewed, I loved Nine Rules to Break When Seducing a Rake. This was her debut and her best. I wish all of her books mimicked the style she used in that book and didn’t slide into contemporary-isms like her other books. I would probably enjoy them if that were the case.