Release Day Review of The Taming of Ryder Cavanaugh (The Cynster Sisters Duo #2) by Stephanie Laurens
Classification: Adult Fiction
Genre: Historical Romance
Format: Paperback; 448 pages
Publisher: Avon (June 25, 2013)
Notes: I received and eARC (eBook Advance Reader Copy) from the publisher.
Mary Cynster knew exactly the type of man she wanted to marry–one she could control to a degree and not be controlled by. She highly regards her independence and wishes to find a husband who won’t control her, and will allow her to act as she chooses and not need to ask permission of in order to do so. She has her eye set on Rand Cavanaugh and all she needs is the Cynster family necklace to confirm what she feels she already knows–that Rand Cavanaugh is her perfect match.
Ryder Cavanaugh, Marquess of Raventhorne, has other ideas in that regard. Considered to be quite a catch and highly regarded by the ton, he has just set his sights on Mary Cynster. His main flaw, in Mary’s eyes, is he is one of the most unmanageable men of the ton. Smart, handsome, and debonair he exudes power without ever giving it a thought. Mary is the last female of marriageable age in the powerful Cynster family. It would be years, perhaps a decade or more, before one of her cousin’s daughters would enter the marriage mart. Coming from an powerful, old, and tight knit family with strong connections makes Mary’s a highly sought after hand indeed. Aligning oneself with a family such as the Cynsters would be considered advantageous by any and all. Cynster woman, however, are known to only marry for love. Ryder’s decided he’ll just have to find some means to get around that.
One thing is for sure, Mary’s days as an eligible bachelorette are numbered.
This book was such a fun read that it left me with a grin reminiscent of the one Mary is wearing on the cover. Mary is a smart, bossy, independent woman who will no doubt set the ton on its ear and one day be a force to be reckoned with. You rarely see such a quality in the young women written of in historical romances and I found it rather refreshing. She’s the type of woman who sees and obstacle and immediately sets about finding a way to remove it from her path. If confronted with a less than desirable situation she sets about how to make the best of it. Even at such a young age she can ruffle the feathers of her peers with her bold and brash ways. Intimidating men like Rand Cavanaugh who haven’t the faintest how to handle such a she–a woman ahead of her time.
Ryder Cavanaugh, however, knows exactly what to do with such a woman and is determined not to stop until she’s his. In his eyes she might as well surrender because all has already been determined. His brother is not for her, he is. He’s her equal on every level and just as determined as she, perhaps more so. When she confronts him as to why he’s following her–why he’s being found in places he just shouldn’t be, he redirects her musings never directly answering her question thereby letting her draw her own conclusions. He’s got a plan and part of that is to let her warm up to the idea of the two of them as a couple and show her how no other will do. Mary’s appeal to him isn’t just about the family connections she could bring, but rather her understanding of the workings of a close knit family, something he and his siblings have never had. It’s something he’s always longed for and with Mary’s help, he hopes to emulate within his own family. As they say, the best laid plans can often go awry and when Ryder and Mary are caught in a rather compromising situation, the two are forced to become engaged. Some would say Cavanaugh is one lucky individual, but the events which lead to their betrothal had nothing to do with luck. Someone had tried to kill him and if Mary hadn’t noticed him and been as fast acting and cool under pressure as she was, he would be dead. Now the question remains who tried to kill Ryder and will they try again?
Overall, I gave this one 4 1/2 out of 5 roses. I deduced early on who was attempting to murder Ryder, so I wasn’t surprised by the outcome. I adored the chemistry displayed between Ryder and Mary. The dance these two did circling each other was highly entertaining and a delight to watch. I adored Mary and her determination to have her way. I loved the way Ryder, despite his equally domineering personality, wouldn’t change her for anything, and allowed her to have the freedom to be herself. I loved how he didn’t see her intelligence and straightforwardness as shortcomings but rather as her strengths. I loved that for once we got to see a strong woman of the ton begin to come into her own. A very enjoyable read that I HIGHLY recommend. On the Lisarenee Romance rating scale this one gets a STEAM rating—too hot for a fan, but you still have a handle on things. You should use extreme caution when reading a book with this rating in public. People may inquire as to why you looked flustered and flushed.