Wednesday, December 19, 2012

A Kiss for Midwinter by Courtney Milan

Dr. Jonas Grantham decided that he is ready to marry and makes a mental list of all the beautiful ladies in town and Miss Lydia Charingford wavers between number ten and eleven.  He remembers Lydia from his training days as a young man and knows her secret that she guards closely and has no real interest in pursuing her...until she speaks to him and then everything changes for him.  Jonas finds himself trying to talk to her and falling in love with her for over a year but each time they speak together, it comes out blunt and seems sarcastic.  Naturally, Lydia is on guard to men, especially to a man that knows her past, and thinks his advances are more carnal in nature.  Jonas sets a bet with Lydia, who is always cheerful and finds the good in everything, to accompany him on some rounds and see some of the less than pleasant aspects of his life.  Her goal, to never have Jonas speak to her again.  His goal, to get a proper kiss from Lydia.  What happens in the process is magical.

I'm always amazed how Courtney Milan can pack so much punch in a novella.  This is a story of two flawed, hurting individuals finding the love that seems just out of their reach.  And while we are watching the relationship develop, we get to see family relationships and how they shaped them to who they are today.  Jonas is dealing with his proud, hoarder father and how to communicate to him to leave his house and live in a more clean environment.  Lydia has a unique relationship with her father following her youthful indiscretion and I really enjoyed seeing a father love his daughter, no matter what.  Jonas is deliciously sarcastic, straight-forward, has an ill-timed sense of humor, blunt opinions and follows the new fad of washing your hands to prevent diseases spreading.  His devotion to Lydia and helping her see the hurt she has had buried, and needing to let it go, is lovely.  Lydia is a bit harder to warm up too as she just can't see past the wall she has built but once she finally truly listens to what Jonas is saying, she comes up with the most unique way to show Jonas her love.  I just adored this.  It is a heart warming story of love about two normal, non-titled flawed people, that will make you smile, hope and sigh with happiness.  4 1/2 stars

Love this line:
"Once you speak," he said, "you have no equal."
Review copy provided by author

The Brothers Sinister
(This could be read out of order, but the couple are mentioned in The Duchess War)
The Governess Affair (Brothers Sinister, #0.5)The Duchess War (Brothers Sinister, #1)The Heiress Effect (Brothers Sinister, #2)The Countess Conspiracy (Brothers Sinister, #3)
                                                                          Coming 2013


  1. What a great review, Lisa! It's very interesting how "today" some of the subjects are that are touched on the book. The hoarding and trying to get an elderly relative to move to a more wholesome environment is something that many readers can relate to. The part about hand washing got a big cheer from me as I know that getting people onboard with that concept was probably a turning point in the practice of medicine.

    I'm looking forward to reading this novel and I agree with Ms. Milan is a very talented author.

    1. I agree, it is always interesting to see how even over a hundred years ago, the same issues arose with families. Jonas trained under an older, set in his ways doctor, who couldn't believe that he might be spreading germs and diseases by not washing his hands and Jonas became quite a stickler for it, to the point of not even wearing gloves as they could hold germs (something I never thought of but so true!). It just amazes me how something so simple could have saved so many lives!

    2. Obviously, Courtney Milan did a lot of research and added her own thoughts to this novel. I really like that and admire her for that extra effort.

    3. Yes, her attention to detail is one of the reasons I love her stories!