Cheeseball rating: one cheeseball
Authenticity of Spirit (or are these characters and situations believable): yes
How hot is it: pretty steamy ocean lovin’
Hero: David- hidden sadness
Heroine: Caroline- responsible
Caroline meets her hero at the age of twelve when she rescues a drunk Scotsman from drowning in the ocean. She instantly falls in love with him, as strongly as any 12 year old could. The infatuation lasts years, so when fate brings David to Brighton after she is well and fully grown, and still has strong feelings for him. This is the summer that Caroline’s mother decides her girls should be involved in the social whirl. It is a nightmare for Caroline. Her figure is more masculine than feminine from all of the ocean swimming she does daily. She’s no great beauty. And her sister has an impossible stutter. Caroline assumes they will be there to be mocked and will never be accepted by the upper class. But with David on the scene, men start seeing her differently. In fact, soon she has several suitors vying for her hand.
Here’s the beef:
Caroline is a pretty serious lady. She doesn’t seem to have fun EVER. I understand she has some huge money worries. But can’t she just smile and have a little fun once and a while?
I just wanted her to loosen up. She is very passionate about swimming. But when she does it, she doesn’t get fun out of it. She gets relief. Swimming is an outlet for her. It’s the only time she is completely herself.
This book provided a delightful picture of a summer at Brighton. The part I found most interesting was the wonderful description of an experience in a bathing machine. The author describes every part of the experience in wonderful detail. The waves jarring the machine as it is pulled into the water. The water beginning to seep up through the floor as the machine is pulled deeper into the water. The musty, moldy smell of the constantly damp machine. The moldy grey robe, still damp from it’s previous user. Really wonderful stuff. I swear, this kind of stuff is half the reason why I read historical romance novels.
All in all, I enjoyed this book. It was well written with sympathetic characters. I would definitely read another book from that author.