by Julia Quinn
Series: Smythe-Smith Quartet #3
Published by: HarperCollins
Genres: Historical Romance
He thinks she's an annoying know-it-all...Hugh Prentice has never had patience for dramatic females, and if Lady Sarah Pleinsworth has ever been acquainted with the words shy or retiring, she's long since tossed them out the window. Besides, a reckless duel has left this brilliant mathematician with a ruined leg, and now he could never court a woman like Sarah, much less dream of marrying her. She thinks he's just plain mad...Sarah has never forgiven Hugh for the duel he fought that nearly destroyed her family. But even if she could find a way to forgive him, it wouldn't matter. She doesn't care that his leg is less than perfect, it's his personality she can't abide. But forced to spend a week in close company they discover that first impressions are not always reliable. And when one kiss leads to two, three, and four, the mathematician may lose count, and the lady may, for the first time, find herself speechless ...
New York Times bestselling author Julia Quinn's enchanting third novel in the Smythe-Smith quartet is guaranteed to make you laugh out loud and tug at your heartstrings in equal measures
I giggled, sighed and thoroughly enjoyed The Sum of All Kisses, the latest installment of the Smythe-Smith Quartet series by Julia Quinn. Unique, quirky characters, wicked banter and meddling souls abound in this warm historical romance. Each of the books can be read as a standalone, but each is worth a read. Mini review: Humorous, romantic and sweet. Quinn swept me up, and I thoroughly enjoyed the ride.
We meet our unlikely hero, Huge Prentice and our outspoken heroine Sarah Pleinsworth in the previous novel. There are two weddings taking place over the course of a few weeks and typical of the period the events are turned into house parties that last for days. Lady Sarah loathes Huge, after all he shot her cousin and it ruined her life. Her cousin has forgiven him, and invited him to the wedding events as a house guest, hoping to assure the ton that all is forgiven. Lady Sarah is asked to entertain and escort Huge during the house parties, and the resulting events are positively delightful.
Quinn has created such lovable characters in this series, from the precocious children who will melt your heart to the snarky, dramatic heroine Sarah. Lady Sarah can be opinionated, and outspoken. When angered or wronged she is force to be reckoned with. I enjoyed seeing her layers peeled back and discovering all of her complexities. We witness her growth and transformation over the course of the novel, and I ended up adoring her. Huge our hero at first glance is an odd duck. He is not handsome in the classical sense, but his green eyes and subtle humor draw you in. He walks with the aid of a cane, as a prior incident has left the muscles damaged in his leg. Huge carries a heavy guilt and this burden suppressed both his charming looks and personality. We see a transformation in him as well. I absolutely loved seeing these two develop a relationship and grow from that interaction. House guests, family, and friends all added to this tale creating tender moments, suspense and humor.
The Sum of All Kisses was a wonderfully paced tale with the most unlikely romance. I love when characters loathe each other, and bicker constantly. The heated conversations are almost as good as the sexual tension. What joy I received when they suddenly are upended when they realize they are attracted to the other. It is positively scrumptious. Huge and Sarah had the most engaging arguments and conversations. At one point, I had tears streaming down my cheeks from giggling. Meddling family particularly Sarah’s siblings and cousins added enjoyment to the tale. Conversations surrounding unicorns of all things will bring laughter and amusement to the reader. The romance developed slowly and felt genuine leaving me with a warm fuzzy feeling. Quinn offers clean romances, with just enough sweet heat to make your toes curl.
Fans of anger to romance tropes, banter and unique characters will enjoy The Sum of All Kisses and the entire Smythe-Smith Quartet series. The fourth and final book is not yet titled, but Quinn is an author I will revisit again and again.
Four and half cups of coffee out of five
Smythe-Smith Quartet series
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