Someone to Watch Over Me (Bow Street Runners #1)

Someone to Watch Over Me (Bow Street Runners, #1)Someone to Watch Over Me Summary:
Grant Morgan is one of London's most eligible and unattainable bachelors. He's also a powerful member of the Bow Street Runners, and when he's called to the waterfront late one night to investigate a drowning victim, Grant is stunned to recognize the face of Vivien Rose Duvall, a well-known woman of the night. He's even more startled when he realizes that she's alive. With no one to care for her, Grant carries Vivien to his home and revives her, only to learn that she is suffering from amnesia.

Vivien hesitantly accepts her handsome rescuer's claim that she is his mistress, despite her misgivings about her true identity. Nevertheless, she can't deny the marks on her throat that prove her near-drowning in the Thames was not an accident, and now she must trust the man who claims her as his paramour, for her life is in danger. As Grant searches for Vivien's attacker, the two find themselves falling in love, all the while struggling to stay one step ahead of the evil forces that will stop at nothing to see Vivien dead.

Someone to Watch Over Me Review:

This book wasn’t terrible but it is the first Lisa Kleypas story that didn’t draw me for almost 80% of the story. The story started off with an interesting idea and with a revenge plot that seemed to be interesting. It was a typical plot but Kleypas has managed to provoke emotion no matter what it was about. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work because the heroine is too docile while the hero is too domineering and revengeful. The saving grace came from the end when everything was tied up with a neat bow.

“What are you doing here?”
“You took too long,” he muttered with a scowl.
That statement brought a surprised laugh from her. “We agreed I would stay here a week.”
“It’s been a week.”
“It’s been precisely two and a half days,” she informed him.
“It seemed like a bloody year.”

There may be some spoilers below, so you have been warned.

As I said above, Grant is really vengeful. The only reason he wants to get revenge is because of some hurt pride. Vivien (the courtesan) was rejected by Grant, in turn she let out a rumor that she rejected him. Fast forward a couple months, everything is basically forgotten but Grant it still angry that someone got the better of him. So he decides that while she is healing from a near death injury (I consider it near death, because she did almost die) is going to seduce her…and that’s it. He seems nonredeemable but look at Harry from Tempt Me in Twilight or Sebastian from Devil in Winter, both nonredeemable until they were redeemed (a little redundant I know).

Where was the tender stranger who had taken care of her last night and this morning? She found it hard to believe that this was the man who had held and comforted her, rubbed salve on her bruises, and tucked her in bed as a parent would a beloved child. Now he seemed forbidding and utterly unapproachable. He was angry with her but she didn't know why. The realization made her feel more lost and confused than before, if that was possible. He was all she had--she couldn't bear for him to be cold to her. This is after she is fished out of the water with amnesia. Really acted like a total dick.

It took Sebastian and Harry about halfway through the book before you started to believe that they were different. As I was reading this book we moved swiftly past the halfway part, then past 60%, 70% and at 80% he does a complete reversal. We do seem him fall in love before this, but he accepts this mostly from her nearly dying (that’s a cliché) and the fact that she is not Vivian, she’s Victoria. Now he can pursue her in peace, without the constant reminder that she has had sex with other men. We do see him turn into a gentle man, which was great, but we needed to see more of that to believe in their love.

Vivien (she’s actually Victoria but for review purposes I’m leaving her called Vivien) on the other hand had almost no fire in her. The beginning made sense. She has just woken from a near death experience with amnesia. Discovering who she is surrounded by a man who keeps calling you a slut tends to leave you very weak. This brings me to a side point. Both Vivien and Grant look at prostitutes as if they are disgusting. Not just prostitutes, but any women who does not stay honorable to one man. It is not a bad to thing to sleep with more than one man nor is it a bad thing to be a prostitute. It does not allow for the treatment that Grant gave to Vivien.

And that view does not change very significantly by the end of the story.

Vivien's calmness evaporated as she was filled with a sense of utter betrayal. "You were the one solid thing in the world, the one person I could trust...and you've lied from the very beginning."
"Only about our supposed affair."
"Only?" she repeated, angry that he was trying to minimize his actions. "What if I had indeed been the real Vivien, and I were every bit as promiscuous and self-absorbed and unlikable as you expected? That doesn't excuse your behavior at all."

You would think after this, she would become all hot-headed and make him earn his love. Of course, she backs down after he kisses her. Anyways, the romance was there for the last 20% of the novel. It was sweet and showed the emotion that was lacking from the rest of the novel. The one thing I can say is that Kleypas always evokes some sort of emotion. It was not always the right type when it came to Someone to Watch Over Me, but it still made you feel strongly about the novel.

Overall, this is sub par book of three stars. The reason I bumped it up a star is because of two things. First, Sir Ross. He is the first man I have met in this story that didn’t turn out to be a womanizer. Instead he helps people with no ulterior motivation. He has created this “Empire” for the full benefit of others and he is still in love with his wife. His book is next and I can’t wait to read that! The second reason is the Bow Street Runners themselves. I got a history lesson that was incredibly interesting. It is not in the book, but the book led me to continue reading about them online.

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