This was pretty fabulous. I'm still distilling my thoughts. Meredith Duran writes such intelligent characters, with both speed and depth to their perception (they're both witty and complex), that it really makes her h/h dialogue soar. I could have happily read another fifty pages of James and Lydia challenging one another, dissecting one another, figuring out just who one another is.
James's final gesture - yes, making the first move to reconcile with his father, but even more than that, remembering, from a long-ago argument with Lydia, her interest in the Indians of Canada, and proposing a honeymoon there - is one of the most romantic things I've ever read in a romance novel.
The one thing that clunked a little for me was the intro to the next novel's heroine. The hero, Phin, was integrated seamlessly enough, but the scene between Lydia and Mina had so damn much detail about Mina that the gears ground a bit. Enough about this eccentric girl-woman! Can we get back to the James & Lydia story, please?
However I'm looking forward to Written on Your Skin. Finally it has appeared in my library catalog (though there's always a lag between that and when the book is physically present in the building) and I'm one of the first people to have it on hold.