I was conflicted for the beginning half of this novel; however, by the end, it had won me over. Charles and Emma have been betrothed since Charles was seventeen and Emma was five. This brings animosity and resentment between the couple. Charles lashes out, living the life of a rake while Emma grew up suffering in silence. Everything changes when Emma breaks the engagement, making Charles realize, belatedly, that Emma was what he had needed and wanted all along. Now it is too late. He has to devise a way to get Emma back.
There was one element to the story I found creepy. In the prologue, there is a betrothal ceremony between Charles and Emma while they were children. Although nothing untoward happens, the age at which this occurred disturbed me. However, this ceremony helps set the foundation of a very romantic, well-thought-out story.
After an initial dislike, I learned to love Charles quickly. He was so much more than the rake he led society to believe him to be. I loved his loyalty and big heart. Unfortunately, I had difficulty warming up to Emma’s character. She took the part of the wronged party to the extreme. At times, she was too sharp-tongued and self-righteous. However, towards the end, she softened and became an endearing character. One thing that never faltered was the couple’s chemistry. I felt the connection ignite right at the moment Emma calls the engagement off. Building slowly, the fiery attraction culminates into an unstoppable passion. By the end, Charles and Emma complimented each other perfectly.
The road to the couple’s happily ever after was long and bumpy. I felt the first half of the book was draggy. However, right at the halfway point, it kicked into high gear. The plot and character development grew considerably at this point. By the last quarter of the book, I was mesmerized! All the many different puzzle pieces clicked perfectly, creating a complex, well-rounded, passionate love story. This is a tale of two people who do not realize what they have until it is lost. The plot was original and edgy. At times I got lost with all the secondary characters, but in the end, it rounded out into a fantastic romance. I enjoyed the creativity and freshness of the plot. All in all, this was an entertaining romance with a fantastic ending.
I voluntarily read and reviewed an advance copy of this book through Netgalley and the publisher. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
The Importance Of Being Wanton is the second book in the Wantons Of Waverton series by Christi Caldwell. This was my first book by Christi Caldwell, and I felt there was a slight learning curve to enjoying her writing. It took me a little bit to appreciate the complexity of this clever plot. This story was a slow build, but caught steam halfway through. I enjoyed this book and look forward to reading her again, now that I appreciate how she writes.