Book Review: Lisa Kleypas' The Hathaways series

One of my all-time favourite author, Lisa Kleypas has the amazing talent of creating unforgettable, engaging characters, rather family of characters, who stick to your memory and ender themselves to you even long after you’ve closed the back cover on the book.  One such family is the Hathaways, not least because of their unconventional upbringing, but more of the unusual and refreshing way they view the 19th century world that they reside in.

The romance series has afforded me many hours of enjoyment and will no doubt become familiar favourites that I’ll return to in the future.


Tempt Me at Twilight by Lisa KleypasTitle: Tempt Me at Twilight

Genre: Historical Romance

Publisher: St. Martin’s Paperbacks

Year Published: September 22, 2009

Stand alone or series: book 3 in the Hathaway series


On the Back cover:

He was everything she’d sworn to avoid.

Poppy Hathaway loves her unconventional family, though she longs for normalcy. Then fate leads to a meeting with Harry Rutledge, an enigmatic hotel owner and inventor with wealth, power, and a dangerous hidden life. When their flirtation compromises her own reputation, Poppy shocks everyone by accepting his proposal—only to find that her new husband offers his passion, but not his trust.

And she was everything he needed …

Harry was willing to do anything to win Poppy—except to open his heart. All his life, he has held the world at arm’s length…but the sharp, beguiling Poppy demands to be his wife in every way that matters. Still, as desire grows between them, an enemy lurks in the shadows. Now if Harry wants to keep Poppy by his side, he must forge a true union of body and soul, once and for all…

In my books …

Classic Lisa Kleypas and a keeper for any historical romance lover. Another unconventional Kleypas hero with a secret past and a spirited heroine who shines in her own way, making this story an engaging romance and a very entertaining read. Particularly with funny dialogues (like the one below), and comical situations that are part and parcel of the Hathaways’ family life.

Between the sizzle of romance, heated conflicts and the well-intentioned meddling of all who loves Poppy, I passed a very pleasant afternoon laughing and enjoying this novel.


Favourite Quotes/Parts:
My favourite is this part where Harry’s hotel employees gathered to gossip …

about the state of his relations with Poppy.  The witty French chef (Broussard) and his analogies just cracked me up … read for yourself!

Mrs Pennywhistle lowered her voice …”There is some doubt as to whether they’ve had conjugal relations yet.”

Broussard: “What gives you the impression that he has not yet, er … sampled the watercress?”

“Watercress?” Jake repeated incredulously.

Cresson.” Broussard gave him a superior look. “A metaphor. And much nicer than the metaphors you English use for the same thing.”

“I never use metaphors,” Jake muttered.

Bien sur, you have no imagination.” The chef turned back to the housekeeper.

……. (further down the passage) ….

Broussard: “You think there’s a problem with his carrot?”

“Watercress, carrot – is everything food to you?”

The chef shrugged. “Öui.”

“Well,” Jake said testily, “there is a string of Rutledge’s past mistress who would undoubtedly testify there is nothing wrong with his carrot.”

Alors, he is a virile man … she is a beautiful woman … why are they not making salad together?”



IMB Rating: 3.5, more than liked it



Married by Morning, Lisa KleypasTitle:Married by Morning

Genre: Historical Romance

Publisher: St. Martin’s Paperbacks

Year Published: May 25, 2010

Stand alone or series: book 4 in the Hathaway series



On the Back cover:

He is everything she wants to avoid …

For two years, Catherine Marks has been a paid companion to the Hathaway sisters – a pleasant position, with one caveat.  Her charges’ older brother, Leo Hathaway, is thoroughly exasperating. Cat can hardly believe that their constant arguing could mask a mutual attraction. But when one quarrel ends in a sudden kiss, Cat is shocked at her powerful response – and even more so when Leo proposes a dangerous liaison.

She is not at all what she seems …

Leo must marry and produce an heir within a year to save his family home. Catherine’s respectable demeanor hides a secret that would utterly destroy her. But to Leo, cat is intriguing and infernally tempting, even to a man resolved never to love again.  The danger cat tried to outrun is about to separate them forever – unless two wary lovers can find a way to banish the shadows and give in to their desires …


In my books …

I actually read this book first, then Love in the Afternoon, before finishing with Tempt Me At Twilight.  It was actually the reference in this book to Harry that made me seek out the other two books. Beatrix has always been one of my favourite of the Hathaway sisters so her story was already on my radar.

Leo and Cat had some interesting issues to work out and those were the anchor of their story, and it certainly provided a lot of the drama, although Cat’s disbelief and pessimistic outlook of her future with Leo was at first depressing.  Glad it all ended well, and Leo unthawed his heart to love again.


IMB Rating: 3.0, liked it



Book Review: Lisa Kleypas' The Hathaways seriesTitle: Love in the Afternoon

Genre: Historical Romance

Publisher: Piatkus

Year Published: 2010

Stand alone or series: book 5 in the Hathaway series


On the Back cover:

What could be more tempting …
Free-spirited Beatrix Hathaway has always been more comfortable outdoors than in the ballroom. Even though she participated in the London season in the past, she has never been seriously courted and has resigned herself to the fate of never finding love.

Than a man you admire from afar …?

Captain Christopher Phelan had planned to marry Beatrix’s friend, Prudence on his return from war. But his plans have changed, and when Beatrix learns of Pru’s disappointment, she helps by concocting Pru’s letters to Christopher for her. Soon the correspondence 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.

In my books …

This book is by far my favourite of the series. Hidden identities and unrequited love, and misplaced admiration as well as overcoming the traumas of war made this a very fulfilling read.  There are some hidden depths to Beatrix’s character which made reading this book such a delightful discovery.

Captain Phelan didn’t endear himself to me at first, but one learns to accept him for the wounded, haunted soldier he was, like Beatrix, and he does grow on you. As he learns to yearn and love Beatrix, I forgave him.  He has to unravel the enigma that is Bea in order to love her unconditionally, and accept her for who she is … her quirks, strengths and faults.  Oh, and the insightful wisdom that this young lady imparts through her observations of animals is nothing short of amazing, for she is frequently spot on in her judgment.


Favourite Quotes/Parts:

The letters that were exchanged between Beatrix and Christopher were some of the most touching parts of the story.  Some of the other parts involve her interactions with her nephew Rye, for example, this part:

Rye glanced at Beatrix. “Will you play with me, Aunt?”

 “Certainly. Marbles? Jackstraws?”

 “War,” the boy said with relish. “I’ll be the calvary and you be the Rusians, and I’ll chase you around the hedgerows.”

 “Couldn’t we re-enact the Treaty of Paris instead?”

 “You can’t do a treaty before you have the war,” Rye protested. “There would be nothing to talk about.”

And this … 

“Don’t go into the woods, Rye,” Cam called after them. “One of the tenants said a stray dog came out of the hazel copse this morning and nearly attacked him. He thought the creature might be mad.”

“Don’t worry, Papa,” Rye said confidently. “I’ll be safe with Beatrix. All animals love her, even the mad ones.”

  And the animal analogies were funny, for example: 

Amelia sent a mock frown to Christopher. “That goat has been nothing but trouble. And the  dratted creature isn’t even picturesque. Goats resemble nothing as much as badly dressed sheep.”

“That’s quite unfair,” Beatrix said. “Goats have far more character and intelligence than sheep, who are nothing but followers. I’ve met far too many in London.”

“Sheep?” Christopher asked blankly.

“My sister is speaking figuratively, Captain Phelan,” Amelia said.

“Well, I have met some actual sheep in London,” Beatrix said. “But yes, I was mainly referring to people. They all tell you the same gossip, which is tedious. They adhere to the current fashions and the popular opinions, no matter how silly. And one never improves in their company. One starts falling in line and baaing.”

 Oh, and the love letters …  these are lovely: 

I didn’t mean to send love letters, but that is what they became.  On their way to you, my words turned into heartbeats on the page.

I’ve just lit a candle and set it in a window. A very tiny lodestar, for you to follow home.

 Love forgives all things. You don’t even need to ask.

 I carry thoughts of you like my own personal constellation. How far away you are, dearest friend, but no farther than those fixed stars in my soul.


IMB Rating: 4.0, Really liked it


One thought on “Book Review: Lisa Kleypas' The Hathaways series

  1. ag says:

    hi all,

    Apologies if you’ve been trying to leave comments without success recently. I’ve updated the settings so you should have no issues now. Cheers!

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