Victoria Dahl may be one of my favorite authors, due to her ability to bring me along with her characters as they grow into themselves and their relationships. It doesn't hurt that the chemistry and dialogue are absolutely wonderful.
"A Little Bit Wild" is a standout historical romance, and certainly one of my favorites. Jude is a spectacular hero, and conducts one of the most believable "anachronistic" courtships of any historical romance. I love how Marissa has a period-appropriate view of masculine beauty (pretty boys with lovely legs), and I love even more seeing how she falls in love with Jude anyway.
8/2/11 - Couldn't read IT'S ALWAYS BEEN YOU without revisiting A LITTLE BIT WILD, first. Love this book, love how much development and emotional growth both the hero and heroine go through without unnecessary melodrama. The most deft, gentle story I've read in a long time, and oh so deliciously wild.
11/13/12 - A blog post about Jodi McCalister's PhD thesis (Virgins in Romance) prompted me to come back to A LITTLE BIT WILD. One of my favorite aspects of this novel is Marissa's absolute lack of "purity" in the romantic sense. She can be hard to stomach at first, with her unfashionable views on men and her dismissal of Jude (who is so obviously fantastic from page one), but Marissa's mix of period social attitudes mixed with very un-period sexual attitudes balances out to one of my favorite heroines ever. Of course, Marissa is nothing without Jude's prodding, though both hero and heroine learn something new about themselves by book's end. Dahl deserves double thumbs up kudos for such a tender balance of power.