Blue-Eyed Devil Paperback
|New from||Used from|
No Kindle device required. Download one of the Free Kindle apps to start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, and computer.
Getting the download link through email is temporarily not available. Please check back later.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Top Customer Reviews
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Haven Travis has grown up within the lap of luxury in her wealthy Texas home. She has tried hard to make a life for herself outside of that ritzy existence, trying to prove herself as a woman and an individual. She has fallen in love with Nick, a man her father, Churchill, does not approve in the least. But love is often blind, and in this case, love is hiding a very dangerous heart.
Against her family's wishes, Haven marries Nick. That is when the horror truly begins. Nick lacks no compunction in bending Haven to his will. Early chapters in Blue-Eyed Devil focus on that abuse: verbal, emotional, and yes, some very hard to read scenes of physical abuse. Kleypas brings you into this situation, showing you the terror Haven faces as she tries not to set Nick off. Haven has courage and she makes it out. She is now determined to forge a new future for herself, and that is where, unknowingly, love knocks again. This time, in the form of the wealthy Hardy Cates.
Hardy may be the devil to the Travis family, but to Haven, he is everything wonderful, and dangerous, in a man. She fights her attraction to him and in the process learns many new things about herself, and about love's difficult path. The danger is not over yet for Haven; she has many painful demons to battle before her happily-ever-after can start.
Despite its title, Blue-Eyed Devil is truly the triumphant story of Haven. She is a wonderful character. She is forced to face several hard realities but she does it with determination, with strength, and with resolve. Her journey is not an easy one by any means. I think Kleypas truly created a character to admire in this book. Haven may have grown up in wealth, but wealth could not protect her from everything. It is only love, family, and her own resiliency that help her keep moving forward.
Hardy is sexy, he is a charmer, and a bit of a rogue. Just the man Haven needed but not to feel complete, not to feel like a woman again. She needed Hardy for his friendship, for the desire he rekindled in her, and for the sense of peace she finds with him. Their relationship is on the one hand pure struggle as there are a lot of obstacles to overcome. It just makes their ending that much sweeter, but also realistic. Don't be fooled, Kleypas does not gloss over Haven's emotional wellbeing. This is a character who is a fighter and she comes out on top.
Blue-Eyed Devil impressed me from page one to the very end. Yes, I am a Lisa Kleypas admirer, I readily admit that. Her writing always touches a chord with me. But don't take my word on it. Give Haven and Hardy a chance. Female empowerment and the importance of love are themes Kleypas explores with depth, humility, and passion.
Hardy Cates is a Texas roughneck who has clawed his way to the top of the oil industry. A self-made millionaire, Hardy is no friend of the Travis family after swindling Haven's brother Gage Travis in a business deal. But when his old friend Liberty decides to marry Gage, Hardy can't pass up the opportunity to crash her wedding. When he sees Haven, he finds himself enthralled by her beauty, inflamed by her passionate nature, and desperate to find out more. When Haven elopes, two long years pass before Hardy runs into her again. But when he does, he realizes all the old emotion is still there, and the flames have been fanned over the years. Hardy is determined that he'll have Haven Travis, whether she likes it or not.
Blue-Eyed Devil is the sequel to Kleypas's first contemporary novel, Sugar Daddy. I loved that book. Loved it. Stayed up all night and was nearly late to work the next day I loved it so much. So I was skeptical about a sequel, because at the end of Sugar Daddy Hardy Cates had left a bad taste in my mouth. I needn't have worried. There are few authors who can pull emotion out of me like Lisa Kleypas.
First of all, the character of Haven Travis a well-drawn, well thought out, carefully executed heroine. It would be easy to dislike someone who was born with a silver spoon in her mouth and determined to reject it. And having an abusive husband when you know she has the resources to get herself out of it could have made Haven come off as someone who enjoyed being a victim. But that's not how it was. My heart bled for the abuse that Haven endured and I cried when she finally worked up the nerve to leave Nick. I was broken for her and could completely understand how she wouldn't be ready for another relationship anytime soon--nor should she be.
Then enter Hardy Cates, a man who I knew had it in him to be a white knight, but who hadn't displayed those characteristics at the end of Sugar Daddy. And from the way he took care of her, from the very beginning, the way he tried so hard to put the broken pieces of Haven Travis back together again, I fell in love. I don't even know why I doubted it. Lisa Kleypas has rarely done me wrong, and after finishing this books I can't even remember which ones I didn't like.
Blue-Eyed Devil is romantic, engaging, and dazzlingly well written. I've said it before and I'll say again that if all of Kleypas's contemporaries are going to be this stunningly emotional and well told then I can't fault her for going this route. Before enjoying Blue-Eyed Devil, I'd recommend reading Sugar Daddy, but just know that each is also fantastic on its own. And while you're waiting for her next contemporary, a couple of my favorite Kleypas historicals are Someone to Watch Over Me (Bow Street, Book 1) and Suddenly You.
Haven Travis is a different kind of romance heroine. As a modern feminist, and a graduate of the prestigious Wellesley College (author Lisa kleypas' real alma mater) she's at first reluctant to admit how attracted she is to rugged and blue-eyed Hardy Cates. But after a bad marriage and some intensive therapy cause her to rethink her priorities, she takes the incredibly brave decision to give love a try with a man who is definitely not of her background.
Of course, it helps that Hardy Cates is a man on the rise -- worth millions, shrewd and aggressive, he takes on Houston's old guard with the same self-confidence that he uses to make Haven shed her prim, cool facade and to gradually loosen up all of her inhibitions in bed!
This exciting contemporary romance is sexy, touching, and even funny in places. There were only a couple of minor thematic issues I would have liked to see clarified or handled differently.
Haven's "feminism" is never really developed in a way to engage the reader. She says she was the type of little girl who always wanted tool kits and not dolls, but as an adult she never shows the slightest sign of savvy or guts or know-how in any technical field. When she gets stuck in an elevator, all she can seem to do is grab her cell phone and scream for Hardy to come and rescue her! As Shakespeare once said so eloquently, feminism should be made of sterner stuff. Haven always reacts to danger by looking for a big strong man to turn to. This would be fine in a Victorian historical, and Kleypas has written some very good ones. But it is not a feminist attitude. Lisa Kleypas seems to want her heroine to be called a feminist without having to do any of the nasty, dirty stuff feminists have to do, like stand up for themselves or do gunky boy stuff with tools.
Hardy Cates is also not fleshed out as much as he could have been. Lisa Kleypas is so in love with the idea of powerful, "ruthless" men, but she tends to be very squeamish about describing the business world honestly. There are no Willy Lomans, no decent men who believe in the system only to be shattered by the rise of the rich and ruthless. Only Horatio Alger stories of hard-driving heroes who beat the system without having to hurt anyone in the process.
If Hardy is really "ruthless," what rules does he break? Is there blood on his hands, or only oil? How exactly does a welder with no education at all rise to become a multi-millionaire while still having time for a sexy social life and lots of four hour workouts at the gym?
Lisa Kleypas is a brilliant writer at the crossroads of her career. Part of her wants to be taken seriously as a writer, which is why she's getting her feet wet in weighty topics like feminism and domestic abuse. But part of her still wants the easy fantasy of hitting the jackpot, marrying the rich guy with the big muscles, and living happily ever after. There are conflicts here that could make for great literature, but they need to be explored more honestly than they are in BLUE EYED DEVIL.
The story is told from the first person POV of Haven Travis. While that's not typically my favorite POV, it really worked for this story. Haven's first relationship in the story is incredibly difficult and far too common. I like how well Ms. Kleypas told her story. It made me root for Haven the whole time. Her strength is inspiring, and she's a terrific heroine.
Such is the case when Haven marries who her family warns her is the wrong man. Two years later, tail between her legs, Haven comes back to the family after that marriage ends. Coming home with more emotional and physical scars than one woman should carry, she struggles, once again, to find her niche in the Travis family. All that looks to be shaky again when she finds herself falling for Hardy Cates, the Travis family enemy number one.
Haven is a heroine you can really admire and cheer for. She makes some mistakes, owns up to her share and does what she can to better herself. She doesn't make excuses and goes for what she wants. She is a smart and determined young woman that even after getting her spirit stomped on, lifts her chin and keeps on keeping on. I adored her.
Falling for Hardy Cates in Sugar Daddy, I was thrilled to see him matched up with Haven. We finally get some insight into what makes Hardy tick and Lisa Kleypas makes him even more delicious and desirable than he was in the previous book. Considering his appeal broke the loveability scales for this reader, I didn't think it would be possible to like him more, I was wrong.
The exciting sequel to Sugar Daddy did not disappoint at all. I flew through both books this past weekend and was treated two very well rounded and different tales about fabulous characters. There are some frightening and very emotionally challenging moments in this book; a few parts had me holding my breath in shock and shedding some tears. But there was also a lot of humor and the chemistry that smoldered between Hardy and Haven and the witty repartee they treated us to made it all worth while.
This book has easily shot up the ranks to one of my all time favorite reads and it is one I will revisit again and again. Enjoy!
Cherise Everhard, April 2008