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Blue-Eyed Devil (2008)

Blue-Eyed Devil (2008)

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4.22 of 5 Votes: 4
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031235164X (ISBN13: 9780312351649)
st. martin's press

About book Blue-Eyed Devil (2008)

Originally reviewed here @ AngievilleSometimes you come full circle with a certain author. My very first Lisa Kleypas novel was actually Sugar Daddy, the first book in the Travis Family trilogy. And I enjoyed it for the most part. But I started to grow fatigued near the end with all of the Texas good ole boy charm, enough that I figured I'd part ways with Kleypas at that point and call it good. Then, awhile later, I won a copy of the introductory novella to her magical realism Friday Harbor series and decided why not give something more recent a try? I devoured it in a single evening and continued on with that series, with varying results. The saga continued when I caved to massive praise and gave one of her historicals a shot (the woman can apparently write pretty much any genre she likes). And, you know, I rather enjoyed my romp with Evie and Sebastian. So I guess you could say when Racquel over at The Book Barbies got her hooks into me, I was fairly well primed for my second stint with the Travis clan. As far as I can tell, Racquel is this book's Number One Fan. I do know that without her, I never would have picked BLUE-EYED DEVIL up. And what a shame that would have been. So props to Racquel for preparing me for the swoon. What I wasn't prepared for was the kind of single-minded absorption Haven Travis' story would incite in me.Haven Travis has had to live with enough overbearing men for two lifetimes, thank you very much. The men in her family do not mince words, they do not suffer fools gladly, and they do not allocate much leeway to the one girl in the Travis clan. Which is why when she finds good-natured, easy to get along with Nick Tanner, she decides she's going to keep him. And so begins a kind of hell Haven could never have imagined. Alone and uncertain, Haven lives in this hell far too long. Long enough that when she finally extricates herself (with the help of her big brother Gage), she's in no way ready to resume normal life. Being a Travis, though, she gives it the old college try. And along the way she runs into Hardy Cates. An old enemy of the Travises, Hardy has worked hard to get where he is today. He's not interested in mucking things up because he can't take his eyes off Haven Travis. But they did have that one encounter years ago. Before she married Nick. Before Hardy washed his hands of her family completely. And now they're living in the same town again and Hardy can see it's going to be difficult to ignore the youngest Travis the way he'd like to. And so a tentative friendship is struck, despite their respective lack of knowledge of the extreme baggage the other carries as well as the gargantuan disapproval of her family.This book had no interest in letting me slip out of its clutches. I was surprised how quickly I fell into Haven's story. From her first uncomfortable encounter with Hardy at her brother's wedding to years down the road meeting him again when she had nothing left to give, I was drawn to Kleypas' painfully honest portrayal of one girl's life. It was so much more than I was expecting. In every way. Haven was more. Her life with Nick was way, way more. Hardy was more. And, together, Hardy and Haven were more in that way that squeezes your vocal cords, brings a certain tightness to your temples, and heralds those moments when a fictional character becomes devastatingly real. There are honestly so many thoughtful and charged passages I would have liked to quote, but in the end I'm going with a favorite lighter-but-packs-a-punch-at-the-end snippet to illustrate the what I'm talking about here:Taking one look at my wretched face, Todd reached for the green chenille throw on my sofa and wrapped it around me. I snuggled in the corner of the sofa, drawing my feet back to make room for him."Must have been some dance," Todd said, untying his bow tie. He left it hanging loose on either side of his neck, and relaxed on the sofa beside me, as graceful as a cat. "What happened?""We didn't dance," I said numbly."Oh?""He took me to a dark corner somewhere. A stairwell.""Purely for my vicarious enjoyment, tell me . . . is he good?"I could feel my face go crimson."That good?" Todd asked.A shaky laugh escaped me. I wasn't sure I could put it into words. "You know how when someone kisses you, you can tell they're only doing it as a step to something else? Like they're just trying to get it over with? Well, Hardy kisses like it's the only thing in the world he wants to do."Mm-hm. That good. I'm beginning to think I may grow somewhat fatigued near the end of the best Kleypas novels because she makes you want so much. Because you are never, ever detached. And because her characters do not conform the way we readers might occasionally prefer. They're messy and hurt and hopeful and recalcitrant. While that combination does not always work for me in her books, it very much did here. BLUE-EYED DEVIL is definitely my favorite of her books yet. I didn't want to take it back to the library when I was done. In fact, I still haven't. Fines be damned. I'm waiting till I'm good and ready.

Posted at Under the CoversHer name is Haven. But it’s her last name that gets her noticed. Being the only girl in a family of men can be tough sometimes. With three overprotective brothers plus a meddling father, Haven has a difficult time finding a guy who can stand up to her family name, let alone her family. Haven falls in love quickly with a man who she thinks she knows. But, in the end, being married to Nick isn’t what she thought it would be.Blue-Eyed Devil made me bawl like a baby. I’m not ashamed to admit it because it was such a rollercoaster ride. The events of this book shocked me and I couldn’t help but sympathize and go through various emotions. It was this part that seriously broke my heart:His arms closed around me tentatively, unlike his usual firm grip, and I realized he was trying to keep from hurting me. I felt the trembling beneath his stillness.Overwhelmed with relief I laid my good cheek on his shoulder.“Gage,” I whispered. “Love you more than anybody.”He had to clear his throat before he could speak. “Love you too, baby girl.”Haven was an amazing character. I loved her strength and courage throughout this entire book. Writing her character must have been difficult. Kleypas had to make her vulnerable and show her fear without making her become a spineless woman. In the end, I thought Haven still possessed that fire she had before she was with Nick and perhaps even more so when she was with Hardy.Hardy Cates is pure, undiluted lust. He’s just so masculine and sexually potent, it was no wonder Haven pounced on him when she got the chance! I don’t blame her. I liked that Kleypas kept his hell-rising personality. She’s good in that she doesn’t suddenly change a character’s personality now that he’s the hero of the book. Hardy is ambitious and he would do anything in his power to achieve what he wants, even it means selling people out. Kleypas didn’t erase his determination in this book and I’m glad for it. In fact, I think it made Hardy even more appealing, more sexy if that was even possible. The fact that he was so keen on having Haven, no questions asked, was a turn-on. Is it just me or does anyone else think that Kleypas writes the best heroes?I’m not sure if it’s the change in genre or if it’s the hero’s personality, but I find the sex scenes in her contemporary series a lot hotter than in her historical romance novels. My palms got sweaty a couple of times while reading this!A few friends have mentioned their everlasting love for this book, being one of their all-time favourites and I think that Blue-Eyed Devil will be one of those books on my keeper shelf that will be bent and ripped from so many rereads. It was that good! I always fall in love with Kleypas’ books and this one was no exception.

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♦ ALL I WANT IS YOU ♦ JUST ONE LITTLE TRAVIS ♦Blue Eyed Devil starts off with Liberty and Gage’s (Sugar Daddy) wedding. Hardy party crashes the wedding where he and Haven notice each other and their attraction is undeniable. This is Haven and Hardy's love story. It wasn't an easy relationship because Haven makes a mistake by marrying Nick. Nick's true colors show once he is married. He inflicts spousal abuse upon Haven. After one horrible event Haven escapes back to her family. In the beginning of Sugar Daddy Hardy was a sweetheart but by the end of the book I didn't care for him. I wasn't sure I would like this story because of Hardy. I was pleasantly surprised that I loved it. Hardy really steps up and redeems himself. He is just what Haven needs to get on with her life. SERIES: Continuing story where secondary characters from the first book become the main focus in subsequent books. Book 1 - Gage Travis | Book 2 - Haven Travis | Book 3 - Jack Travis | Book 4 - Joe Travis
—Amy (Foxy)

I've been in a massive book hangover this week and I couldn't read anything new. Fortunately, this book got me out of my slump. Hardy Cates... He's everything that a bad boy hero should be. He's gorgeous, rich, charming with enough vulnerability to make you fall in love with his character. He's strong and heroic and there's no doubt to his love and devotion for Haven. Haven Travis... Despite growing up rich and privileged, Haven's life is far from perfect. She made a really bad decision of marrying Nick who ended up abusing her physically and emotionally. My heart went out to her. I was kind of mad at her father for being so overbearing towards her. I honestly didn't feel that he loves her at all. Her dad had more time and love for Liberty and Carrington than Haven and that really upset me because she tried so hard to become the daughter he wants. I loved how her character evolved from being a frightened young woman to become a force in her own right. I loved all the side characters; Gage, Liberty, Jack, Joe...and Todd. Ms. Kleypas' writing is stellar as always. I mean, apart from not having Hardy's POV, this book is perfect. Loved it.
—♥~♥Geri ~ the Racy Lit Reader ♥~♥

This review was posted at My Secret RomanceTo sum it up: His name is Hardy Cates. He's a self-made millionaire who comes from the wrong side of the tracks. He's made enemies in the rough-and-tumble ride to the top of Houston's oil industry. He's got hot blood in his veins, and vengeance on his mind.She's Haven Travis. Despite her family's money, she refuses to set out on the path they've chosen for her. But when Haven marries a man her family disapproves of, her life is set on a new and dangerous course. Two years later, Haven comes home, determined to guard her heart. And Hardy Cates, a family enemy, is the last person she needs darkening her door or setting her soul on fire...There are just simply no words for this book- It was that amazing. For all of you who have read my review for the first book in the series, Sugar Daddy, you’re all aware that I felt the story was lacking big time in the romance department. It wasn’t enough to completely make me want to stop reading, but it was enough to make me a little skeptical about reading the second book in the series, Blue Eyed Devil. But I’m very happy to say, there was definitely enough romance in this book to satisfy me. I’ll be the first to admit, as a rule, I tend to avoid any book revolving around the whole “insta-love” thing between a hero and heroine- But… Blue Eyed Devil is most definitely an exception. Let’s just say, that Haven’s first encounter with Hardy was enough to have me fanning the sweat off my brow... And I’ll never look at wine cellars the same… I really and truly loved and cared for Haven’s character- She stayed in an abusive relationship for longer than she should have, and even once she got out of it she was still buried in feelings of worthlessness. Her ex-husband Nick, had always blamed her for the abuse and his conviction had spread through her. ...Never once did I get annoyed with her character or any of the decisions that she made- She truly was a smart woman, who's worst weakness was to be desperately needed; To be a woman who actually mattered to someone in a relationship.As for Hardy Cates, where do I even begin? Hardy may be the devil to the Travis family, but to Haven he was everything wonderful and dangerous in a man. Let me just say, it’s very hard for me to find a hero who sticks with me long after reading a story- They’re few and far between... But I'm certainly happy to announce that Hardy Cates is EVERYTHING you could ever want in a man, and is now considered a new favorite hero of mine... *sigh* ...Everything that man said or did had me swooning.This story was just simply so well developed and never felt rushed or lacked depth. ...And unlike the first book of this series, the detail was never unnecessary or too much. I really appreciated the fact that the romantic relationship that developed between Hardy and Haven was kept at a reasonably slow pace, and I wouldn't have had it any other way- It not only made the relationship between the two of them that much more believable, but it was also something that I felt was necessary in order to help Haven with her much needed healing. Blue-Eyed Devil was a story of healing, reclaiming your life, strength, and courage. It impressed me from the first page to the last, and is definitely a novel that I'll never stop raving about.Some of my favorite swoon-worthy quotes…- "Hardy spoke against my hair. 'I want you to understand, you’re safe. I’m not going to hurt you in any way. And if I do something you don’t want, or you start to feel scared, I’ll stop. I’m not going to lose control.' ...I flinched as I felt a tug at the front of my jeans and heard the snap being unfastened. 'I’m just going to find out what you like.' ...My fingers curled into his T-shirt as his hands ventured inside the loosened waist of my jeans. 'I want to find out what you like too.' '...I like it all, darlin’,' he whispered, peeling my clothes off as if he were unwrapping a bandage. 'I told you, I’m easy to please.'”- "...He felt better than any human being I'd ever met. 'Okay,' I said unsteadily. '...Forget about what I said about not exchanging names. Who are you?' '...For you honey, I'm trouble...'"
— ✿Alyssa✿

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