The Ravenels Series was my first Lisa Kleypas series. Over the past couple of years I’ve listened to Mary Jane Wells perform most of the books on audio when working on spreadsheets at my old job. It was my first historical romance family that I really gushed over. My historical romance friends and I swooned and twittered over Winterborne and West. I will always remember Pandora and Gabriel’s waltz. Truly iconic.
I preordered the paperback of Chasing Cassandra right when it was released. It was delivered to my doorstep on release day and I read the first page… and then I put it down.
I couldn’t do it. I couldn’t say goodbye to my book friends. I wasn’t ready for the series to end.
And so, it sat.
Chasing Cassandra was released in February of 2020. In July I discovered The Reading Rush – a reading challenge which encouraged readers to clear out their TBR list. Chasing Cassandra was the first book that made my Reading Rush challenge list.
I was ready to read it. My hope was I’d be so in the flurry of a week-long reading challenge I wouldn’t worry about book series hangover.
Well, it was worth the wait.
Wealthy and powerful Tom Severin has been the villain as well as the monetary deus ex machina within the world of the Ravenels. Severin can have anything he wants and revels in the challenge of acquiring it. Lately, life hasn’t had the same zing. Making money is easy and boring and he’s grown a little listless. For a man who could have anything, what could he possibly desire?
Lady Cassandra Ravenel was the good twin and her sister, Pandora, was the wild one. All Cassandra has ever wanted was to marry and have a lovely family. Pandora had her eye on business and adventure. It’s an understatement to say, none of the Ravenels expected to be at Pandora’s wedding with Cassandra being dangerously close to being put on the shelf. In a moment of desperation she cries out for a gentleman to marry…
And Severin practically throws himself at her. In a hilarious impulse move he just about throws himself at Cassandra’s feet begging her to be his and it’s wonderfully ridiculous.
But it is decidedly not a proper match. Severin’s heart belongs to money and could never thaw for love. Cassandra would be well cared for by Tom but she wants love in her marriage. And love is the one thing Severin can’t offer her because it’s not on his approved list of emotions.
Their stories intertwine over time and as Cassandra encounters a danger to her reputation, Severin is there ready to claim her as his bride and save the day. As I said, he always has a way of getting what he wants. But he is in for more than he expected with Lady Cassandra.
Chasing Cassandra by Lisa Kleypas is a taffeta hug. It’s cloud of soft sighs. It’s the perfect sort of historical romance in which you just float away from the real world and return smiling.
The standout scene was the kitchen sequence. The two characters are out of the ballroom and working together on a kitchen project where it becomes clear they are such a fun, natural fit.
Cassandra was playful and charming and it was wonderful seeing Tom with his hands dirty. A stark change from the sleek and steely Severin readers know and love. It was so clear they were perfect for each other in that moment, but they just needed a bit more time. And it was worth the wait.
Lady Cassandra is a mild-mannered heroine but so lovable and charming. Her desires may be simple: marriage and love, but her passion and drive for her perfect life are as grand as any sweeping adventure. She’s clever and cheeky and a joy to read.
Severin is the cold businessman who doesn’t understand feelings but then with a bit of effort gives it a go and discovers it suits him just fine because it makes the pretty girl happy. It’s lovely fluff.
A Touch of Plot
Cassandra and Severin spend much of the book apart, but their influence on each other leads them into interesting choices. Severin gets himself entangled with a plot moppet – a young orphan in his employ who has one or two nasty encounters with lice. Through this odd couple relationship, Severin finds that he’s capable of thinking about someone other than himself.
As Cassandra continues her quest to find a husband, she encounters a truly terrible family. She gets wound up in a scheme to ensnare her in a marriage but Tom is there to save the day – through marriage!
Then the story just drifts gently into happily into ever after.
I was expecting the classic tragic carriage crash or sudden illness, but the characters ease into happiness with one small hiccup along the way. There’s a Christmas wedding and poodle puppies and it’s quite pleasant.
Perhaps one point to note is that it all feels a little too easy, perhaps. I enjoyed the fluff, but readers looking for a bit more substance may be disappointed.
A one click pick for fans of historical romance. Lisa Klepas is one of the queens of the genre for a reason. You’re going to have a pleasant time. It’s a happy comfort read.
They get a poodle!!??
These are my favorite things!