Captain Christopher Phelan is a handsome, daring soldier who plans to marry Beatrix's friend, the vivacious flirt Prudence Mercer, when he returns from fighting abroad. But, as he explains in his letters to Pru, life on the battlefield has darkened his soul--and it's becoming clear that Christopher won't come back as the same man.
When Beatrix learns of Pru's disappointment, she decides to help by concocting Pru's letters to Christopher for her. Soon the correspondence between Beatrix and Christopher develops into something fulfilling and deep...and when Christopher comes home, he's determined to claim the woman he loves. What began as Beatrix's innocent deception has resulted in the agony of unfulfilled love--and a passion that can't be denied..."
As the last installment in the Hathaway series, Love in the Afternoon by Lisa Kleypas was a must read for me. And again, Kleypas did not disappoint. Beatrix has been one of my favorite characters throughout all of the Hathaway novels and after completion of this book, she immediately jumped to the top of the list.
I formed an immediate connection to Beatrix. She's an honest girl with a love for animals beyond any normal bond and as the proud owner of a dog, a cat, and a rabbit -- I must say we share that love for four-legged friends.
Beatrix's longing for true love is a main factor in forming a connection. She wants a husband that accepts her with all of her peculiarities, a man that doesn't want her to be like every other girl in London society. A man who won't make her hold back her thoughts, or hide her love and desire for the world she lives in. Kleypas writes Beatrix's character in a way that allows readers to understand her, their dreams and desires coinciding with those of Beatrix.
This novel was a wonderful ending to the series bringing tears of sadness and of joy, and of course out loud laughter. However, it disturbs me to say that I found one huge typo in the novel in which (upon reading) I yelled "Noooooo" to my ceiling (not claiming that I don't make frequent typos in my own writing). I was greatly disturbed when I realized it was impossible to reply to a letter written in December ten months before it had been written.
Ignoring that small fact, Love in the Afternoon captured my heart. I may even read it again tomorrow, or on some rainy day when I have nothing to do but revel in Beatrix's soul-warming story.
Love in the Afternoon
rating : 4/5 cups