Wednesday, July 25, 2012

All For You by Lynn Kurland

All For You
(de Piaget Family Series, Book #17)
by Lynn Kurland

Genre: Contemporary Romance | Time-Travel

FALLING THROUGH TIME IS DANGEROUS… Peaches Alexander is thrilled to receive an unexpected invitation to a weekend party given by the handsome, eligible Duke of Kenneworth. The only problem: Stephen de Piaget, a stuffy medieval studies scholar who seems determined to get in the way. Peaches has absolutely no desire to get involved with Stephen, until a quirk of Fate sends her hurtling through time…

UNLESS THERE’S SOMEONE TO CATCH YOU. Stephen de Piaget has been leading a double life: respectable professor by day, knight-in-training during holidays and summer terms. When Peaches goes missing, Stephen knows he’s the only one that can rescue her from medieval peril. Little do they know that the greatest danger they’ll face won’t be the business end of a sword, but their own unruly hearts….

Audentes Fortuna Juvat
Fortune Favors the Bold
-Aunt Edna

Peaches Alexander is slowly coming to terms with the uncomfortable truth that she is utterly distraught with her current lifestyle. Not only is she pretty-much broke and unsatisfied with her current job, but she also cannot stop foolishly dreaming about some magical fairy-tale escape, similar to what happened to her sisters. So, when a private invitation from the Duke of Kenneworth arrives for a weekend house party, Peaches eagerly jumps at the opportunity to live out (at least temporally) her princess-inspired fantasy and, with a bit of luck, find her handsome prince at the fancy-dress ball.

Unbeknownst to Peaches, the academically brilliant and annoyingly titled Stephen de Piaget happens to also be invited to the same weekend house party.  And as bothersome as he can be, he does have some very tempting offers (ex. a Medieval castle, talented sword/Claymore skills, and a secretive pining crush for only Miss Alexander) that could easily appeal to a women craving something magical in her life. Now Peaches must battle with her nagging feelings that Stephen is out to either: 1) ruin her life (but can it really get any worse?) or 2) be her knight in shining armor (ok, really knight in tweed!).  And, as Stephen begins to prove himself by saving her from various embarrassing, exhausting, and somewhat disastrous situations, Peaches realizations that "even Cinderella had gotten off to a rocky start"  helps her decide to finally let her heart lead where it will ... which could really be toward the future and even the past. 

All in all, an enjoyable book from a time-travel author I always look forward to reading. Peaches story really took on a more contemporary romance feel this time compared to previous character narratives within the same series.  Moreover, her and Stephens courtship was in its own way peculiar, but believable as well as somewhat silly and sweet. Unfortunately, the story's pace was rather slow at times and the heated sexual scenes were limited for the reader, but that was easily made up for by Peaches foolishly funny mannerism and her stubborn determination to experience her fairy-tale fantasy - no matter the odds against her.  A fun bonus, if you are a fan of the series, is that you will treated to some great past character updates as well as receive some fascinating foreshadowing and future character introductions.  So, if you are a young at heart reader who takes pleasure in fairy-tale adventures, check out All For You -- good fun!! 

Review: Goodreads | Barnes & Noble | Shelfari | LibraryThing | Amazon

Likes: Two Words -- Stubborn Determination and boy, does Stephen display that.  He was always coming to Peaches rescue despite her rude, straightforward, and sometimes rather distant treatment toward him.  So, who wouldn't enjoy a male lead like that?

Dislikes: More time-travel please!!!  For some reason, I felt this book was severely lacking in that department and I really kept wishing for more historical adventures with all the crazy fun drama that occurs during the characters rocky adjustment to the past.  But, sadly, the time-travel trips within All For You were almost too easy, too planned, and overall too blah in comparison to some of Kurland's other works.

Chapter One/Paragraph One: "If life were a set of scales, Peaches Alexander could safely say that Fate had just dumped a load of bricks on the opposite balance."

Favorite { Scene, Character or Setting }: Scene
     She could only hope that the blasted thing {suitcase} was waterproof. If it wasn't, her clothes were going to need some series attention once she was in what she could only assume based on the invitation would be an embarrassingly opulent room.

     She took another look around, just to see if the sleet that had begun a renewed assault on her was going to be moving past anytime soon, then jumped a little at the sight of lights coming up the road behind her.
     Great. It was one thing to sneak in the kitchen door and make a dash for her room where she could lock the door, shower, then pull herself together before she made her grand entrance down the main staircase. It was another thing entirely to be seen in her bedraggled state by a party guest with a potentially very big mouth.  She looked around herself quickly to see if there might be somewhere to hid, but unfortunately all that surrounded her were foggy acres and manicured grounds.
     Dotted by topiaries, as it happened. Well, there was obviously only one thing to do, and she did it without hesitation. She leaped off the road and well into the verge, plopped her suitcase down flat on the soggy ground, then hopped up on it and struck a pose. It was foggy enough, surely, that she would just look like a toga-draped goddess atop a pedestal, shrouded by mystery and a few bird dropping.
     She remained motionless as the car came closer. It wouldn't have been an exaggeration to say she prayed with great fervor that the owner of that automobile would be so overwhelmed by the sight of Kenneworth House riding up majestically in the distance that she would simple drive on and not be looking over onto the right of the road.
     Alas, things were just not going her way.
     Her mother would have told her it was karma dealing out just deserts for having traded her hummus and sprouts sandwiches to unsuspecting fifth graders for Twinkies and Ding Dongs. Peaches probably would have told any number of her clients the same thing.
     But having karma gunning for her was another thing entirely.
     The car slowed to stop. Peaches left her hands outstretched in a goddess pose in hopes the driver would simply think he or she was seeing things and move right along.
     The driver's side window began a slow, agonizing descent into its allotted space in the door. Peaches fully expected to see David, the Duke of Kenneworth, frowning thoughtfully at a statue none of his ancestors had put there.
     Instead, the driver was revealed to be none other the Stephen de Piaget, vexter of innocent life organizers and chief tormentor of poor, helpless Yanks who were currently freezing their statuary off just north of the Yorkshire moors.
     He frowned thoughtfully for a moment or two, then rolled his window back up.
     Peaches could hardly wait to see his tailgates, but it occurred to her that if she did, that would mean that he was driving up the way to the manor, which meant he was going to be in the same space with her for the weekend.
     Well, at least she wouldn't have to see him in the immediate future--
     Or, maybe she would.
     He had put on his flashers and gotten out of the car. She wanted to warn him that he was going to ruin his lovely dress shoes by tromping around in the slush, but she could only stand there, her arms outstretched and her mouth gaping open, as he walked across the greensward toward her.
     And then he looked her straight in the eye.

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