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When He Was Wicked (Bridgertons, #6) My Review This, the 6th installment of the Bridgerton series, is so different from the rest of the stories that it took me by surprise a pleasant surprise Having read and found the previous books lighter, funnier reads, I hadn t expected to find this one much different If there was ever any question as to Ms Quinn s ability to write aintense, deeper story, When He Was Wicked has answered it with a resounding yesWhen He Was Wicked is the story of Michael Stirling, Rake Extraordinaire My Review This, the 6th installment of the Bridgerton series, is so different from the rest of the stories that it took me by surprise a pleasant surprise Having read and found the previous books lighter, funnier reads, I hadn t expected to find this one much different If there was ever any question as to Ms Quinn s ability to write aintense, deeper story, When He Was Wicked has answered it with a resounding yesWhen He Was Wicked is the story of Michael Stirling, Rake Extraordinaire, who has finally met the one woman who makes him want to give up his wicked ways for a life filled with love and family It s the story of Francesca Bridgerton, beautiful, sophisticated everything Michael could want except, there s a small problem she s in love with and married to Michael s cousin John, and while that keeps Michael from acting on his feelings, it doesn t stop him from wanting her Francesca loves Michael as a cousin, dear friend and confidant, but nothing.And then one tragic night, without any warning at all, Francesca finds herself widowed and devastated and needing Michael s friendshipthan ever, but because his feelings run so much deeper and he feels horribly guilty because of it, he won t allow himself to become anyvulnerable to her than he already is But one night, when loneliness and desire can no longer be denied, they find themselves being swept away by a kiss that holdspassion,pleasure andfulfillment than anything either of them had ever felt before This one kiss, they both knew, had changed their lives forever Feeling that she was somehow betraying John s memory by caring for Michael this way, Francesca runs away to Scotland to gather her thoughts Michael is having none of that now that his feelings are finally out in the open, and decides to pursue her and win her however it takes He tries reasoning with her, wooing her, all to no avail So, what s a reformed rake to do Seduce her, of course And seduce her, he does Pulling out all the stops he does whatever he has to do to make her give into her feelings and see that what they have is not something to feel guilty or ashamed of, rather something to be cherished.While I love all of the books in the Bridgerton series, When He Was Wicked had somethingThe sexual tension in this book is amazing, as are the intimate scenes themselves If you re looking for a romance novel with depth, conflict, passion, and a happily ever after ending, this is the book for you Though it is part of the series, this story is separate enough from the rest of the Bridgerton s lives to easily be read as a stand alone novel I hope to findstories of this caliber amongst Ms Quinn s writings Everything Was So Much Simpler When He Was WickedIn Every Life There Is A Turning Point A Moment So Tremendous, So Sharp And Breathtaking, That One Knows One S Life Will Never Be The Same For Michael Stirling, London S Most Infamous Rake, That Moment Came The First Time He Laid Eyes On Francesca Bridgerton After A Lifetime Of Chasing Women, Of Smiling Slyly As They Chased Him, Of Allowing Himself To Be Caught But Never Permitting His Heart To Become Engaged, He Took One Look At Francesca Bridgerton And Fell So Fast And Hard Into Love It Was A Wonder He Managed To Remain Standing Unfortunately For Michael, However, Francesca S Surname Was To Remain Bridgerton For Only A Mere Thirty Six Hours Longer The Occasion Of Their Meeting Was, Lamentably, A Supper Celebrating Her Imminent Wedding To His Cousin But That Was Then Now Michael Is The Earl And Francesca Is Free, But Still She Thinks Of Him As Nothing Other Than Her Dear Friend And Confidant Michael Dares Not Speak To Her Of His Love Until One Dangerous Night, When She Steps Innocently Into His Arms, And Passion Proves Stronger Than Even The Most Wicked Of Secrets This book recounts the age old tale of falling in love with your best friend s girlbut what happens when you get your chance at her hand, albeit at the loss of your best friend through his untimely death This is a beautiful Regency romance on grief, loss, and moving on I ve read and mostly loved all the books featuring the Bridgerton family, and this is the book I return to time after time because I think it is the best in the series It is written in your typical inestimable Julia Quinn sty This book recounts the age old tale of falling in love with your best friend s girlbut what happens when you get your chance at her hand, albeit at the loss of your best friend through his untimely death This is a beautiful Regency romance on grief, loss, and moving on I ve read and mostly loved all the books featuring the Bridgerton family, and this is the book I return to time after time because I think it is the best in the series It is written in your typical inestimable Julia Quinn style, so expect to burst out in giggles every so often, but it is one of herserious and well written novels The topic is not touched on lightly, the pain, the guilt, the resignation and denial are all there you want stages of grief, you got it It s a 5 hanky book Possibly , depending on the quality of your handkerchiefs lace won t hold up here The characters are intricate and well described, complex in their thoughts and believable in how they mature It s not a perfect book I had some problems with the characters and plot, but overall, it is very well written and remains one of my favorites in the Regency genre The writing THE WRITING Did I mention the writing It flows so naturally, so eloquently without being flowery and prosaic Julia Quinn s earlier works have the ability to make me laugh, cry, swoon, and this ranks among her best.Michael has been in love with Francesca since he saw her, which ordinarily wouldn t be a bad thing since he s a very eligible bachelorbut they met at Francesca s engagement party To Michael s cousin and best friend What makes it worse for him is that they are so compatible unlike his other conquests, he truly enjoys her company Francesca and Michael end up liking each other immensely They wind up becoming good friends after her marriage to his cousin he hides his pain and feelings for her through his usual light hearted debauchery They laugh together, tease each other, have fun together, all the while with Francesca blissfully happy in her marriage with her Lord John and blithely oblivious at the pain Michael is suffering despite his outwardly vivacious facade.His love for her is confounding, love at first sight, as clich d as it may soundbut unlike the usual story when the hero heroine falls inexplicably in love, Julia Quinn has a lovely way of putting his abstract and inexplicable attraction to Francesca in words It wasn t her hair, that rich, lush wave of chestnut that he was rarely so privileged as to see down And it wasn t even her eyes, so radiantly blue that men had been moved to write poetry much, Michael recalled, to John s everlasting amusement It wasn t even in the shape of her face or the structure of her bones if that were the case, he d have been obsessed with the loveliness of all the Bridgerton girls such peas in a pod they were, at least on the outside.It was something in the way she moved.Something in the way she breathed.Something in the way she merely was Tell me you don t get a lump in your throat after reading that.And Michael would never dream of betraying his cousin, his best friend He loves John as much as he loves Francesca, and betraying either of them would be an unimaginably atrocious act Michael is willing to and is determined to spend his life devoted to maintaining the happiness of the two people he loves most in life So imagine how torn he feels when his chance inevitably come in a way he never would have dreamed of or wished for John dies NOT A SPOILER He now has the chance to make Francesca his Dare he take it No He flees all the way to India because he couldn t find a way to deal with his grief, much less with Francesca s, on top of his conflicting emotions for her, and doesn t return until he felt he could be with Francesca in friendship, without feeling as if he were a thief, plotting to steal what he d coveted for so long, which only took him several years Michael is not a perfect character, lest I make him sound like too much of a martyr He s a coward at times, running away from his feelings and his responsibilities when he inherits the earldom upon his cousin s death, and to be honest, I wanted to smack him repeatedly, particularly towards the end of the book, when he starts acting like a patronizing asshole towards Francesca However, his love for Franesca remains constant, and I can t find it in my heart to dislike him much.Francesca is a wonderful character Spirited and bright, having grown up in the loud and lively Bridgerton bosom She likes Michael, she loves John Lest the reader believes her relationship with John was terrible, in a book setting her up to inevitably be with Michael in the end, it s not She loves her marriage and her husband He was her kindred spirit, so like her in so many ways But it had, in a strange sort of fashion, been a relief to exit her mother s home, to escape to aserene existence with John, whose sense of humor was precisely like hers.He understood her, he anticipated her.He completed her Obviously, she suffers upon her husband s death, but it comes as a double loss when she miscarries his child Within a short time, she lost her husband, her unborn child, then her friend Michael through his flight to India, but she survives and comes to terms with the loss What is harder for her to come to terms with is her growing feelings for Michael, whom she has always seen as akin to a brother Until one day when she, in turn looks at him But suddenly But now She d looked at him, and she d seen something entirely new.She d seen a man.And it scared the very devil out of her then she, too, runs away.Here are two people trying to move on with their life, trying to get past their grief, trying to ignore their growing attraction for each other Trying not to fall in love, trying not to forget the man they both loved so much, the one who will always be a part of them Both of them have so much to deal with in reconciling that their love is not a betrayal of memory or trust or friendship, and the book does a tremendous job of portraying that.I also loved the presence of Violet Bridgerton in this novel She is the matriarch of the Bridgerton clan, mother to eight young children, and it is she in whom Francesca turns to for advice and comfort at her own loss Violet knows only too well what Francesca went through, having been widowed herself at a young age Even if she does not get much screen time, I so enjoyed seeing her reveal a little bit of herself and her own grief We have only ever seen Violet as the steel cored matriarch who has raised eight young children on her own, and given not much thought to what she must have been suffering all these years I loved seeing her through the veneer of perfection, giving her own advice to Francesca here.Some latter parts of the book were weak Michael and Francesca spent as much time fighting with each other as with themselves, and I grew frustrated with both However, this book remains one of the best Regency romances on my shelf, and I highly recommend it 4.5 STARSI loved this I haven t read this series in order, I think I ve read Sophie s story, but that s it I ve been told that the Bridgertons are entwined throughout the series so it s best read in order But I gotta tell you, I loved this anyways and never felt I was lost or not privy to previous developments I do plan on reading the rest of the series and only wish they re as good as this one.So, Michael Stirling The man had my attention from the first page His forbidden love and acutely 4.5 STARSI loved this I haven t read this series in order, I think I ve read Sophie s story, but that s it I ve been told that the Bridgertons are entwined throughout the series so it s best read in order But I gotta tell you, I loved this anyways and never felt I was lost or not privy to previous developments I do plan on reading the rest of the series and only wish they re as good as this one.So, Michael Stirling The man had my attention from the first page His forbidden love and acutely desperate longing for Francesca was so tangible, I felt every bit of his anguish I also loved him to pieces He played the rogue, the ever unattainable rake, but his heart was locked for someone else There were times I found it difficult to support Francesca in her time of indecisiveness She could be so obtuse, so out of her mind sometimes that I wanted to scream I especially felt that way towards the end when things finally got to a head By then I was yelling internally I never didn t like her though, because I won t even attempt to understand how guilty she felt But I do believe she felt that way because the depth of her feelings for Michael was so deep, subconsciously so But Michael, oh, the poor man His pain was the perfectly orchestrated emotional angst I love HR is among my fave sub genres because I love reading and experiencing that time It was so different, so pure yet constrictive The fashion, food, emotional restraintit s all so interesting to read But comedic HR, or low angst HR isn t really my thing But this, the angst, depth of emotion, this is the HR I love And Michael Stirling was the epitome of restrained desire He reminded me of Sebastian St Vincent from LK s, A Devil in Winter They were very similar with their rakish behaviour and the subsequent helpless falling for a woman they wanted above all else However, St Vincent takes the cake for a man completely at a loss for how he feels Anyways, this was beautiful, touching, very sensual and moving I loved how time couldn t change Michael s heart, and how Francesca finally admitted to herself, yet Michael and we the readers already knew, that she loved himthan she ever thought possible,than I dare say, John Highly recommend this fantastic book, loved it After four long years of mourning her beloved husband Francesca Bridgerton Stirling is finally going back into society Still young, she feels the longing to be a mother, and has decided to find herself a husband But when her husband s cousin and once her close friend returns, her simple plan seems to fly out the window Michael Stirling has been in love with Francesca for many years, and after the sudden death of his cousin, his life was turned upside down Feeling he was betraying his cousAfter four long years of mourning her beloved husband Francesca Bridgerton Stirling is finally going back into society Still young, she feels the longing to be a mother, and has decided to find herself a husband But when her husband s cousin and once her close friend returns, her simple plan seems to fly out the window Michael Stirling has been in love with Francesca for many years, and after the sudden death of his cousin, his life was turned upside down Feeling he was betraying his cousin s memory by loving Francesca, ran away to India for four years Now that he has return, his mind has finally settle into his new role of Earl and his grief has passed, he s not surprised he s still deeply in love with Francesca, but when he finds out she wants to remarry he s shocked, but when a plan starts to form in his head, he decides to finally risk it all on love and marry Francesca himselfWhen he was Wicked has a tragic tone throughout the book, starting with the sudden death of John Stirling, Francesca s husband and Michael s cousin The tone and pace never faulted but did run into a few bumps in the road Francesca is the lead whom changed the most, stuck in limbo after John s death, she s having to deal with life after a love one s death Turning to Michael the only other person whom loved John as much as she, was hurt when he just up and left Not understanding that her words cut him deeply as he was to take over the role of his cousin whom he loved and seeing the woman he loved and now being to help her Through the book Francesca comes out from the shadows and starts to see life, but sees Michael as a man not as a friend butFrancesca was said to beof the loner from the Bridgerton s with a cool head and calm persona Sadly, she came across aswishy washy, always assuming she knew Michael and what he was thinking, then being hurt when she figured out she truly didn t know the Michael now I can fully understand her grief toward her husband, but I didn t understand sometimes why she come across as spiteful, although she did eat crow a few times, I thought it was out of character She did grow a see she her second chance at love with Michael and grabbed it with both hands Michael was scared, thrown into a role, he always saw his cousin in, then having to deal with lost and feeling he was hurting his cousin s memory by loving Francesca It took a long time for Michael to come to terms with all the changes in his life But when he returned, he wasstable,mature and ready for the role he now held Michael could be a butthead, but he was still trying to hide his love for Francesca, but when a idea is given to him, he can t let it go and goes out to win Francesca hand in marriage Michael was at timesopen minded to things around him then Francesca, maybe because he loved her but I felt he moved on, where Francesca still needed that push in the right direction I liked Michael and how he kept that love close to his heart for so many years and was happy he finally was able to give that love and be loved in returned If read as a stand alone, this book made great sense, but reading it in a series and order was kinda strange In the time line this book takes place at the same time as Romancing Mister Bridgerton and To Sir Phillip, With Love Luckily, they don t dwell to much on those books, but it did feel odd to see a single Colin in the start and half way through the book then a sudden marriage from Eloise The love scenes were pretty steamy for JQ, with a almost frenzy feel to them as Michael ignites the passion and love in Francesca, whom never felt that way before It did take a little while for Francesca to see her love for Michael, but when she does it brings a tear to your eye as they exchange I Love You Overall a beautifully written story of second chances at love that don t come everyday and to everybody, but when they do, one should grab them with both hands and hold them close to your heart Ahh Julia Quinn, the best comfort read out there Not only is this an excellent comfort read but it s comfort with a surprising twist I had to checkthan once that I was reading a Juia Quinn and not Lisa Kleypas whose steam scenes can be a whole lot steamier than Quinn s This book was fantastic Filled with emotion that starts out simmering and ends up ready to firecracker high in the sky, here s the story of Francesca Bridgerton and Michael Stirling friends cousins through Francesca s hus Ahh Julia Quinn, the best comfort read out there Not only is this an excellent comfort read but it s comfort with a surprising twist I had to checkthan once that I was reading a Juia Quinn and not Lisa Kleypas whose steam scenes can be a whole lot steamier than Quinn s This book was fantastic Filled with emotion that starts out simmering and ends up ready to firecracker high in the sky, here s the story of Francesca Bridgerton and Michael Stirling friends cousins through Francesca s husband It s an unrequieted love story for Michael but he wouldn t do anything to jeopardize the friendship he has with the two Well things happen and Francesca finds herself a free woman Michael tries to help her overcome her profound sadness and slowly their relationship becomes somethingthan just friends all the while having the reader s heart wrench with emotion Quinn packs a wallop when it comes to the intimacy these two share as well as what some of the secondary characters say Cry o rama kleenex fest Both the h h were exceptionally well drawn characters Their uncertainty as to whether they should fight the attraction is heart breaking and never feels like here we go again filler Some of the steam scenes are waaayy steamier than typical Julia Quinn fare which made the characters come to life evenIt s a muchrisqu novel than any of the others in the series This story takes place at the same time as To Sir Phillip, With Love so you hear about some of the previous characters but they aren t actually present which was a nice change.The story itself just keeps you turning those pages well into the night saying ohhh just onechapters it s only 2am , the ending is totally be still my heart killer and if this isn t keeper shelf material I don t know what is D This is definitely the most intense of the Bridgerton series that I ve read so far Francesca Bridgerton is Michael s ultimate Jessie s Girl He has been completely in love with her since the first time he met her She is his cousin s who is like a brother to him wife He never tries to win her, or even wish for her, but has resigned himself to bitter acceptance and self hatred for secretly wanting his cousin s wife He tamps all his feelings down and is ashamed of himself.Well, the cousin d This is definitely the most intense of the Bridgerton series that I ve read so far Francesca Bridgerton is Michael s ultimate Jessie s Girl He has been completely in love with her since the first time he met her She is his cousin s who is like a brother to him wife He never tries to win her, or even wish for her, but has resigned himself to bitter acceptance and self hatred for secretly wanting his cousin s wife He tamps all his feelings down and is ashamed of himself.Well, the cousin dies in the first chapter, and Michael inherits the title He freaks out a bit about gaining incredible wealth and property only through his cousin s death who he truly loved So he runs away to India for four years.When he comes back he realizes that he still loves Francescathan ever, only now she is available He s taken his cousin s house and all his money, is he supposed to take his wife too So there is lots and lots of angst and guilt and unrequited love.Michael is a great hero and is really the draw of this book Francesca is not a bad heroine but she really does put Michael through the wringer with her indecisiveness It gets a bit irritating.So far this is my favorite in the series If you liked the other ones, you ll like this too Muy bonito, aunque el final quiz s algo precipitado, y me hubiera gustado un ep logo de ellos dos y que ella reaccionara antes. This one is one of the very best in the series, surpassed only by Colin and Penelope s story in my opinion.Francesca has always been strangely absent in this series It s been four years since I read the first books but if I m not mistaken she s only been mentioned but is never actually there until her own book I see now that there is a reason for that Francesca doesn t really fit in with the rest of the Bridgertons Her personality is different, I would say she sserious or at leastThis one is one of the very best in the series, surpassed only by Colin and Penelope s story in my opinion.Francesca has always been strangely absent in this series It s been four years since I read the first books but if I m not mistaken she s only been mentioned but is never actually there until her own book I see now that there is a reason for that Francesca doesn t really fit in with the rest of the Bridgertons Her personality is different, I would say she sserious or at leastreserved than her siblings Because I didn t know Francesca at all before her own book, I didn t know what to expect from this one.Francesca may not be my favourite Bridgerton or heroine in this series in general but she can hold her own and she stands out for different reasons.Apart from the shallow reasons to like this book the I ve loved you for years and the friends to lovers tropes, two of my favourite tropes combined in this book, Michael s unfailing and all consuming love for Francesca renders this a devastating read.This is not the typical JQ, but, may I say, possibly even better This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers To view it, click here 3.5 stars I really loved the first part of the book and I absolutely adored the hero, Michael I did like Francensca in the beginning as well it was the last pages that changed my opinion of hers Phrases like I don t know what I want , I don t want to think about it , I don t want to decide on that now were her train of thought for much longer than I was willing to accept and forgive Like an ostrich, she hid her head in the ground and willfully refused to see or think about the truth I c 3.5 stars I really loved the first part of the book and I absolutely adored the hero, Michael I did like Francensca in the beginning as well it was the last pages that changed my opinion of hers Phrases like I don t know what I want , I don t want to think about it , I don t want to decide on that now were her train of thought for much longer than I was willing to accept and forgive Like an ostrich, she hid her head in the ground and willfully refused to see or think about the truth I can accept such immature behavior for a small time but not for too long Francesca clearly passed my limit And poor Michael, besotted that he was, didn t press her foror leave her on her own until she did at last make her own mind, which seemed the logical thing to do in my mind.So is it 3 or 4 stars for me The first 280 pages, were certainly deserving a 4 it was a passionate and deeply emotional love story, between two people who d been through a lot The ending however let me down, first with Francesca s silly behavior and secondly, because I realised that in the end I didn t know her very well Besides her loyalty and good looks, what else do we know of her Does she have any humor at all Does she like reading Poetry Music Walking in the park Riding Is she impetuous Clever Cunning Witty Lazy Hard working There is absolutely no interaction with the rest of her siblings to seeaspects of her character besides the loyal wife in her There is also the fact that there s no mention of what happens with Michael s illness or if they got any children at all in the end, which was another loose thread for me So in the end, I ll settle for a 3, but I do recommend it to those readers who ve already read the previous Bridgerton books It s a nice addition to the series, even if it could use some fine tuning


About the Author: Julia Quinn

1 New York Times bestselling author Julia Quinn loves to dispel the myth that smart women don t read or write romance, and in 2001 she did so in grand style, competing on the the game show The Weakest Link and walking away with the 79,000 jackpot She displayed a decided lack of knowledge about baseball, country music, and plush toys, but she is proud to say that she aced all things British an 1 New York Times bestselling author Julia Quinn loves to dispel the myth that smart women don t read or write romance, and in 2001 she did so in grand style, competing on the the game show The Weakest Link and walking away with the 79,000 jackpot She displayed a decided lack of knowledge about baseball, country music, and plush toys, but she is proud to say that she aced all things British and literary, answered all of her history and geography questions correctly, and knew that there was a Da Vinci long before there was a code.In 2010, Ms Quinn won her third RITA Award in four years and was the thirteenth author to be inducted into the Romance Writers of America Hall of Fame Her books have been translated into twenty nine languages, and she has been profiled in USA Today and TIME Magazine Her twenty sixth novel, The Girl With the Make Believe Husband, will be released in 2017


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