I really enjoyed A Kiss At Midnight so this was a series I couldn't wait to continue reading. The first book was a retelling of Cinderella and I don't think I even need to tell you what When Beauty Tamed the Beast is a retelling of. Linnet was the one of the Ton's most beautiful young ladies and was expected to make a good marriage. That was before she got caught kissing the prince and rumours circulated that she was pregnant. With her reputation in tatters Linnet's father is pushing her into marrying as quickly as possible, even if it is to a man she's never met and one who's reputation is that of a beast. Piers is a skilled doctor but has a foul temper and a crippled leg, rumour has it that he was left infertile by the incident that damaged his leg so it is believed that he will be happy to accept Linnet as a bride even if he does think she is pregnant. Piers isn't quite so keen on the idea of a wife though, especially one that his estranged father has sent for him and Linnet isn't sure if she could live with a man who has a temper as bad as Piers anyway.
I have to say I loved this couple from the beginning, Linnet is caught in a difficult situation thanks to the unwanted advances of the prince coupled with her mother's reputation. Everyone in society looks down on her and believes her to be a fallen woman but in truth is is very innocent and at times quite naive. She isn't a push over though and despite Piers' reputation and the way he shouts and complains when she arrives at his house she refuses to let him order her around. I really liked the way she stood up for herself and the banter between the two of them was great. I was left laughing out loud several times throughout the story, particularly after some comments Linnet makes when Piers first takes her swimming. Piers is one of those heroes you can't help but fall for, he may have a temper and can be a complete ass but he's actually quite charming when you look beneath the surface.
I loved how Linnet and Piers gradually get to know each other and become friends before lovers. The actual romance is sweet, sexy and was one I know I'll happily read again. I enjoyed the side story with Piers' parents and my heart broke for him when we discovered how he had injured his leg, it made some aspects of his character much easier to understand. There was a bit towards the end when I was really annoyed with Piers for the way he treated Linnet but he did manage to redeem himself afterwards. I did feel Linnet forgave him a little too quickly though, I think she should have made him suffer a little more than she did but they are so obviously made for each other that I'll let her off.
Although part of a series this book can easily be read as a stand alone. Each of the main novels so far have been about completely different characters. The only cross over seems to be with the ebook only novellas so I wouldn't recommend reading Storming the Castle before you've read A Kiss at Midnight and I believe that Winning the Wallflower will have some cross over with characters from The Duke is Mine. That doesn't mean I wouldn't recommend reading the whole series though, I've loved all three stories so far and I can't wait to read The Duke is Mine. Eloisa James is definitely becoming a firm favourite of mine for fun, sexy, historical romances.