I was the last reviewer to pick books on our site so there wasn't much left. When I read the blurb for Season for Temptation, I wasn't too enthusiastic about it. By the end of the first chapter I was so glad I got “stuck” with this debut book! What a refreshing, utterly sweet story debut author Theresa Romain has written. The plot may have been done before but, the way it was written certainly hasn't.
The characters in this book are just plain nice. Julia and her stepsister Louisa are truly sisters in their hearts, and they genuinely care about each other. Since meeting as lonely nine-year old girls they have never kept secrets from one another…until now.
Even though the girls are the same age, Louisa gets her London season first and hates every minute of it, until she meets James, Viscount Matheson. After a whirlwind courtship he proposes and Louisa accepts unfortunately, she accepted for all the wrong reasons.
James was in London that season seeking a proper bride at the behest of his mother to help repair the damage to the family name caused by the scandal of his sister's late husband. James and Louisa both enter into the engagement with good intentions but, neither one is passionate about it.
James comes to Louisa's family home to discuss settlements where he meets Julia, who comes in talking to herself and “dratting” her younger sister. James is captivated. The next time he sees her she is frustrated about something else, which he again overhears, and he is enchanted….but, he is engaged to her sister.
What follows is an utterly entrancing love triangle between an engaged couple who no longer want to be engaged and the woman who means everything to them both. It doesn't take James and Julia long to fall in love, even knowing it is hopeless. When Julia falls off a ladder and hurts herself, James longs to sweep her up in his arms and comfort her…but, he can't. When Julia finally sees James again after recovering from her accident, she longs to fling herself into his arms…but, she can't.
Julia knows she must put aside her feelings for James and concentrate on finding someone else, even though it breaks her heart. When Louisa enlists James to help Julia find a kind, intelligent man he agrees, even though he longs to toss any man who looks at Julia through the nearest window.
Unlike Louisa, Julia becomes the hit of her season and while Louisa may be a bit envious of her success, she is never jealous or bitchy about it. When the earl's daughter whom James's mother prefers for a daughter-in-law arrives on the scene and makes friends with Julia, I thought she would be just another catty, back-stabbing bitch who arrives halfway through the story to add unnecessary conflict. I was wrong. She is also a nice character who doesn't try to steal James away for herself because of her rank. Like I said, all of the characters were delightfully fresh and so nice I wished I could have been friends with them. The only sour character in the book is James's mother, and while she only had a couple of scenes, she did make her mark.
Season for Temptation was an absolute delight to read, and is one of my favorite books of the year. It has it all - witty dialogue, amusing circumstances, charming characters and a perfect romance. I can't wait for Ms. Romain's next book.
If you are looking for a sweet, witty Regency romance that will keep you smiling for days, look no farther than Season for Temptation.
Reviewed by: Valarie Pelissero