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Midsummer Moon

Avon Books,1987
Sourcebooks 2008, 2010
ISBN-10: 1402213980
ISBN-13: 978-1402213984

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Midsummer Moon

Merlin Lambourne is a beautiful, isolated eccentric bent on inventing a flying machine. Ransom is the powerful aristocrat determined to put her inventive talents to his own patriotic use. But a little aphrodisiac powder disguised as salt complicates matters for the man who’s always had his own sweet way in the world…

Discuss this book

Setting:

Regency England

Mascot Animal:

The Hedgehog

Laura's Comment:

She carries a hedgehog in her pocket, writes monographs about flying machines and tends to forget the name of the guy she’s in love with. The heroine most closely resembling the author, in fact.

Recognition:

Romance Writers of America—Finalist,  Best Regency of 1987

Laura's Fave Review:

“He is the most hapless alpha male I ever saw. ” CarrieS Guest Review-Smartbitches

“Charming - that’s about exactly the word. Reading it feels exactly like you’re being charmed, from start to finish. Which is an absolutely lovely way to spend about four hundred pages.” Beth, well-known blogger and mistress of Smart Bitches Mondays
(full disclosure—also a friend ;))

“Midsummer Moon is one of the greatest unacknowledged romantic comedy novels and a true Desert Isle Keeper. Of course, it′s written by Laura Kinsale, queen of the Dark, Tormented Romance, so a laff-out-loud book isn′t quite the first thing you′d expect from her.”—All About Romance

(Hey, we can’t all be funny all the time! LK)

Old Covers:

All the little details are right on this one—the castle on a seacliff, the red dress, the sword…we’re just missing the hedgehog and the airplane

Another pretty metallic cover from the first Avon re-issue. 

Discuss this book

[1] Posted by laura kinsale on 01.08.2010

(Comments closed due to spam.  Feel free to email me or make contact on Twitter or Facebook.)  All opinions are welcome, positive or negative, but civility and polite language are required for comments to remain.  Political or religious references are not allowed, unless directly related to the book under discussion. I do answer questions but I seldom give interpretations about my books or characters, because I enjoy hearing what readers see in them.  These comments and discussions replace my old forum at The Terrace. WARNING: Book discussions may contain spoilers.

[2] Posted by Maria Pember on 01.15.2010

This might be my favorite heroine or Folly, it’s a tough choice.  Merlin’s optisim is really expressed.  I envy her love to create!  Did you ever consider telling the story of the brother?

[3] Posted by Susan on 01.16.2010

Another of your books that was way ahead of it’s time.  I too have issues with high places (the third step on a ladder it too high for me), so the description of him on the pathway was just how I would feel.  Again, it’s the many small details that give us so much insight into your characters.

[4] Posted by Vikki Johnson on 01.22.2010

Merlin is by far my favorite heroine of ALL time, topping even Elizabeth Bennett—and that’s close to sacrilege in my circles. I love how delightfully innocent she is for so intelligent a person. That she is quirky and even a bit scatterbrained, for all of her wisdom. Kind of like the absent-minded professor, as a woman. And the hedgehog? Well, he was my second favorite character—not to impugn the hero, of course!
Read it four times.
So far. ;)

[5] Posted by Claire K. on 03.22.2010

Midsummer Moon was my first LK and I loved how she made the most absurd situations seems perfectly rational and, so, hysterically funny. I promptly collected all LK’s books, and haunted bookstores to get new releases for years. I had a complete collection of all of those first edition covers until about 10 years ago, when I lent some of my favorite romances to a friend who “lost” them and blithely told me I could just buy new copies. I’ve been trying to replace them for years, though I hate substituting later printings / covers, and I still have holes in my LK collection. Glad as I am to see Sourcebooks reissuing the older titles, I miss those originals… I had given up hope of a new LK, but was thrilled to see Lessons in French in the store.  Not to be greedy, but are there more on the way??

[6] Posted by laura kinsale on 03.24.2010

Claire, I’m writing but I am so slow!

[7] Posted by Annabel Joseph on 01.14.2011

Oh my goodness. I just started re-reading this and I’m reminded of how the beginning of this book just floors me. It is so perfectly crafted. Writer to writer, I just DESPISE you sometimes because you are so talented. HAHA. I am only kidding. But seriously, the beginning of this book is just a masterpiece. The otherworldly awkwardness of Merlin is so perfectly expressed, and in such wonderful contrast with the rock solid duke. I fell for Ransom on page one. How do you manage that?? From their awkward opening coversations to the “incident” with the salt and his reaction afterward… How original and almost comical, and yet how heartwrenching for both of them.

With this being my second read I am taking more time to enjoy all the nuances and I’m just in such awe of your touch! I’m still reading or I’d go on about the rest of the book, but I just put it down on page 100 and came to write this because I just HAD to. You can write as slow as you wish if these kind of books are the product. :-) I’ll be sure to return and write more when I’ve finished. Hope you are enjoying a happy new year, Laura.

[8] Posted by Annabel Joseph on 01.17.2011

Oh sigh. Finished it. Loved it. I love the scene when she first wakes up from her illness…and he finally convinces her through the use of those over-the-top theatrics to do his bidding (trying to avoid using spoilers). Thaddeus’s comments in that scene are completely priceless. I just love this story for so many reasons. I love the climax too, at Pemminey’s castle. There are just so many twists and turns, and it’s like the whole book has this recurring theme of reverse psychology and that life is sometimes exactly the opposite of what it seems. That things (or people) are the exact opposite of what they appear to be. (avoiding another spoiler). Anyway, I think I am on to my zillionth re-reading of FFTS—and another brooding duke I just can’t get enough of.

[9] Posted by booo on 02.11.2011

One of the best romances ever!  I can’t seem to stop myself from rereading this over and over and over and over again.  In fact, I am rereading this now and only took a quick break to post my adoration here.

[10] Posted by judith on 04.07.2011

Love the new e-book cover featuring the HEDGEHOG!  Brings a smile to the face of those of us who know and love that story already.  Honestly, I like it better than the new “romantic” one.  Why can’t I find a wealthy good looking guy running about in a Tux with a Hedgehog tucked where his pocket square should be?  Perhaps I should change my brand of table salt ...

[11] Posted by laura kinsale on 05.18.2011

Thank you, Annabel and booo!  I’m so sorry, somehow this page fell off my notice list.  I really really appreciate your comments.

And judith, isn’t that new ebook cover FUN?!  It makes me grin everytime I happen to see it.  Really, every hunk should wear a tux and a hedgie.

[12] Posted by judith on 05.18.2011

Actually, I think the hedgehog cover should win for best romance book cover art EVER (Sorry Fabio and all you gorgeous women in peril).  And I’m back to re-reading this book AGAIN.  I just LOVE the dialogue and the descriptions of the Duke.  And also love the dry/wry humor—including at the end when he calls her “Mrs. Duke”.

[13] Posted by laura kinsale on 08.08.2011

I can modestly say that I agree about the hedgehog cover. Even if I say so myself. ;)

[14] Posted by Chris John on 10.20.2011

I’ve just finished reading the kindle version of ‘Midsummer Moon’. What a delightful book! It was such a joy to read and I was so sorry to get to the end of it, even though I had neglected all non-essential aspects of daily life in order to do just that! I loved Merlin and Ransom - so well portrayed and so engaging.I want to know about the whole of the rest of their life together. Did they have twins too? I bet they did. Did he gradually get used to her inventing ways and come to accept that she was quite good at carrying out risk assessments on her new machines and didn’t wilfully intend to put anyone’s life in danger? He probably did. And were Shelby and Jacqueline happy and more sensible? And Woodrow more confident and relaxed because of his interest and involvement in Merlin’s experiments? I think so.
Thank you, Laura, for such a lovely gift. I’m very grateful to you.
Chris, Northamptonshire, England.

[15] Posted by Judy Carr on 10.22.2011

We just had devastating wildfires in central Texas (Bastrop) that destroyed over 1600 homes. One of those homes was mine. I lost ALL of my book collection -I’m in my 60s so that is a lot. And although many can be replaced it is so sad to lose the original issue books, covers and comments inside (such as when I read it each time, etc). This book will be on my Christmas list for my family to help me replace my most FAVORITES! I read it many times…

[16] Posted by Jai Joshi on 08.24.2012

Judy, my goodness, I’m so sorry to hear about that! I hope that you regained all those books you lost and that things are getting better for you. I wish you all the best.

Laura, I love this book! It’s one of the last books of yours that I read, in my journey through your backlist, and the first chapter had me hooked right away. I laughed out loud again and again with the way Merlin couldn’t get his name straight and at the salt fiasco.

“There was something in the salt!” - Best punchline ever!

I’d been well used to black humour from your books but this kind of lighthearted and still heartwrenching humour was so wonderful too. And Ransom is just my type of guy. I’d put something in his salt everyday!

Jai

[17] Posted by Rachel on 12.07.2012

Thanks so much for sending out the announcement of the ebook sale! I bought this and all the others on sale as I just had to pack up my my paper titles for a big move* and now I won’t be without my favorite romances if I should need a fix while things are still packed. Thanks again and happy holidays!


*a big move that will once again have me in a locale where I can’t get my very own hedgehog. this book has made me obsessed with having a hedgehog pet… i’ve done all my research and learned so much about keeping hedgehogs… i just need to go where it’s legal. *sigh* (I think the dogs are so very ok with this never coming to fruition.:)

[18] Posted by laura kinsale on 12.08.2012

Thank YOU for buying the ebooks, Rachel!  I’m all for a hedgehog as a pet.  I thought a lot about one a few years ago, but ended up with a puppy instead. Probably the right dogs and hedgehogs mix, but it’s bound to be a tricky proposition on both sides. ;)

[19] Posted by Brisa on 04.17.2013

First of all i want to say that I absolutely love this book!!! It really immersed me into their story and their surroundings… every time that it was from Merlin’s POV i felt the surroundings receding and everything became blurry, but when it was from Ransom’s POV every thing was so sharp! Anyway, i just remembered that throughout most of the book i felt so helpless.  I kept thinking that although i understood why Merlin loved Ransom (or at least that there’s no accounting for where we love) that he was wrong! wrong for her, wrong all the way around because he kept manipulating her and controlling her.  Oh, and couldn’t he see how brilliant she was?! So frustrating! At the same time it was so real.  In real life there are so many kinds of people and they fall for each other even though they might not be “compatible” in the sense of their lives or careers.  In the end though, Ransom redeemed himself very thoroughly and made me fall in love with him too… sigh.

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