His Wicked Kiss

His Wicked Kiss - Gaelen Foley 3.5-4 starsHmmm... This isn't the Jack Knight I envisioned at all. Not sure how I thought his story would go, but this wasn't it - and I don't mean that in a bad way. But the rough, tough Black-Jack Knight really is more of the big, grumpy lion than the black sheep or the privateer.If I was disappointed, it was in the explanation of why Jack stayed away from his family in London. Much of it understandable, but after all the build-up, I expected MORE. Most of what was holding Jack back was his own fevered imagination. I thought, surely, some awful thing or horrid argument between Jack and at least one of his brothers. But no.And when Jack does return to London, he's accepted into the fold as if nothing happened. No real conversations between brothers about the past - no apologies, no clearing things up, no pushing jealousies aside.... No, just everyone acting as if Jack hadn't been gone for the better part of 20 years. THAT doesn't make sense, nor does it seem true to Ms. Foley's wonderful, imaginative writing.Like most of the Knights, Jack's problems are emotional - psychological hurts and imagined slights based on being illegitimate and his parents' behavior towards him. Of all the siblings, it does seem as if Jack took the brunt of Georgiana Knight's indiscretions; she deliberately chose Jack's father, an Irish prizefighter very much below the Knights, as a way to rub the Duke's own mistress in his face. But Georgie got pregnant, and then was ashamed of "slumming". Since he was also the first of the 'errant' children, the Duke didn't treat him all that well. And so I very much expected some sort of apology from Robert to Jack - to show us again how Robert has changed his attitude and has made amends for buying into his father's philosophies.The book's main focus, as all books in this series, is on the RELATIONSHIP between the Hero (Jack) and the Heroine (Eden). And while I thought Becky was my favorite, I've decided that Eden takes that place of honor after reading this book. Eden has the right combination of smarts, jungle experience, naivete, instinct (especially reading Jack's emotions and what he needs), oddball, dreams, and pluck. She's a worthy opponent. If I'm bothered by anything, it might be a teensy-weensy bit that she's 20 to his 37? I realize that in that day, it was common for men not to marry until after 30, especially Lords. And Jack's emotional maturity makes them rather equal. But the large age gap was a tiny bit uncomfortable to me, at times.Jack definitely fell head-over-heels at first sight for Eden, and vice versa. But his strong pull to her overrode everything else for him. It was endearing.The 'extra' stuff with the Venezuelan rebellion, the Spanish assassin, and Connor and Eden's father was very much extra until the end. It was almost too superfluous to the main story. I wanted to care, but I couldn't; I only did insomuch as it affected Eden and Jack. And the ending was rather exciting... but again, I knew it was a foregone conclusion, so I didn't care that much. Which sounds like a contradiction in terms, I'm sure.ANYWAY, I was happy to see his Lt. and her cousin together. And I was very happy to see that there is a sort of continuation in The Spice Trilogy. Sounds like Ian might finally have met his match!