Liked this one much better than book no. 1 of the series. A very emotional, passionate, and steamy read. The characters were complex and likable. Even though Melisande was a little harsh towards Jasper at the outset, I thought her reasons and mental state were fleshed out enough to provide a full justification for her severity. Her seduction of her husband took courage and passion, and it was quite a revelation to see it coming from the buttoned-up and prim woman who married Jasper. We meet the couple from the next book in this story, and I'm looking forward to reading about Alistair next.