The only really positive thing I can think of to say about this book is that it offers a somewhat gritty and fairly realistic view of alcoholism, and the impact it has on the friends and loved ones of an alcoholic. That said, it's not enough to make this a good book. It starts off with a badly contrived premise (hero sleeps with heroine's sister - he's dead drunk & thinks it's the heroine), and makes pretty cheap use of such grave subject matter, IMO. As conflicts go, I can think of others I'd prefer, but ok, I could deal with it as long as Smith wrote it well and didn't stoop to bad melodrama. Unfortunately, she didn't. It was as tawdry and melodramatic as you could possibly imagine, and the H&H both suffer from alternating bouts of TSTL - PLUS, the heroine's sister is cast as a cardboard cutout villainess whose motivations for being a hideous pot-stirring witch are never actually revealed. Readers can presume that of the heroine's 4 sisters, this was the deranged one, she secretly hated and was jealous of the heroine, she was in love with the hero & wanted him for herself, or she was just a miserable human being in general, and enjoyed making others (especially the H&H) unhappy.
Whatever the reasoning was, KS, in her infinite wisdom, didn't see fit to let the rest of us in on it. From all appearances, I'd guess that she thought her time better spent on writing eye-rollingly stupid & contrived situations and inane dialogue between the H&H... and lots of sex. Which beyond the gritty (yet childishly clumsy) dabbling with the serious subject of alcoholism, was about all this story had going for it. This is my second and LAST Smith book and I won't be reading her again.
Sensuality Rating: R
A good read. Heroine made a decision or two that I found annoying but she redeemed herself.
Kathryn Smith is one of my favorite authors. This book was a good and I couldn't stop reading it. I would read much more from kathryn smith.
Still in My Heart didn't really work for me. While the other Ryland Brothers' stories were well-told romances, this book fell flat.
Kathryn Smith delivers us a tale of a couple whose greatest obstacle is themselves. The obstacle to the book however is the lack of real plot. Yeah there's alcoholism and a history between the characters that must be resolved. But it isn't enough to drive a 350 page book. All three of the other books has a villain or outside problem that helps carry the action. In this book, the only thing that propels this story is more and more information about alcoholism and the hero's drunken escapades. It just isn't fun to read. And by establishing early in the book that he's two years sober, that nobody quite believes he's really not a drunk anymore, and the general lack of trust in him, it is obvious that he'll fall off the wagon before the tale is finished.
Smith does include a good amount of sensuality and she can write some sexy scenes, but these aren't memorable. Brahm Ryland manages to maintain his appeal throughout the book which is a wonder when we read of his withdrawal symptoms. He's romantic and sweet and was robbed of a good book.
It just wasn't an enjoyable tale. We've learned so much about Brahm and his quest to be a better man in the previous books. I thought this book short changed the character and the final chapter in the Ryland Brother's saga.
Brahm Ryland is a man used
to getting everything he desires ...
Another London season has just wound down and Brahm Ryland, Viscount Creed, is thankful for it. Since a horrible mistake ruined his betrothal to the beautiful Lady Eleanor Durbane, his life as a scandalous bachelor has grown tedious; every day without Eleanor seems longer than the last. But then a break in the monotony appears: an invitation to a shooting party at the home of Lord Burrough, Eleanor's father, and he knows his chance to make amends has come at last.
Yet Brahm soon finds that Eleanor will need more than a simple apology to atone for his betrayal -- and after so many years of hurt it will take time and care to make her learn to trust again. When all her sisters warn her against him, she knows she would be a fool to give their passion another chance. But what Eleanor doesn't know is that London's boldest viscount will do anything -- anything -- it takes for a second chance at his one true love ...