3½★Meet Piers AKA "The Beast". Yes, Eloisa James gave Dr. Gregory House a happily ever after. Her intention all along according to the 'Historical Note' at the end.They share the same scowl, a limp and use of a cane resulting from the same infarction in his quadriceps muscle of the leg producing constant pain, his abhorrence of lying patients, and misanthropic, blunt, bad-tempered, narcissistic and playfully insulting nature. They both have "ducklings" -a group of doctors who follow him in order to learn how to better diagnose patients because Piers is the leading man in his field. The name "Cuddy" is also mentioned and Sebastien appears to be Piers's Dr. Wilson. Sebastien: I know that you have an affinity for unhappiness. In fact, paradoxically, you don't feel truly happy unless you are unhappy. The way to do that is to push away the people who give a damn about your nasty hide. Me, for one - except that I'm impossible to dislodge, so you seem to have give up on me. My leg hurts like a son of a bitch.Sebastien: You and your leg can keep each other company at night, then. No room for a woman, given the terrible injury you've suffered.Addiction to pain relief is the only thing they don't share, only because Piers's father was the addict and Piers wishes to never become like him. Instead Piers swims every morning in an ocean tide-filled pool to help relieve stiffness and pain, giving him a swimmer's body and great upper body strength.After silliness in the first 50 or so pages with names like "Mrs Flaccide" (I feel sorry for her husband), and doctors Kibbles and Bitts (I kid you not), and the back-and-forth about Linnet's terrible downfall and what to do about it, the book took off. The sexual chemistry between Linnet and Piers is palpable as they challenge each other with witty insults. Piers immediately sees past her beauty to her brains and her power to manipulate his sex, and she looks past his beastly demeanor to the man underneath. They get to know each other via their barbed conversations which lead to their daily tension-filled, fan-worthy, swimming lessons.For most of the book I was merely entertained. The innkeepers' ghastly treatment of Linnet, her suffering and Piers struggling to care for her by himself, led me to become emotionally effected. Homicidal anger at the innkeepers for their inhuman actions, empathy for Linnet's pain and sympathy and admiration for Piers. We get two romances for the price of one since Piers's father sobered up from his addiction, which caused him to permanently injure his son years earlier, and seeking forgiveness on his visit with his son's prospective bride. Whilst there Piers's mother shows up and upon finding the Duke she does everything she can to make him feel guilty and jealous, while Piers also refuses to forgive and forget. It's pure torture for him, but it all works out in the end. Speaking of which, the closing pages were lovely, and smile-enducing as the cycle begins again with a new generation inheriting the traits of their parents.At the beginning of the story I wasn't happy Linnet's father and aunt pressured Linnet to lose her virginity to the Prince, and if not him then they were going to take her to a brothel catering to women. This is after they'd accused her of being a "loose" woman just like her philandering mother. I know women had little control over their lives, but I can't turn off the revulsion I feel every time it's replicated in historical fiction. The level of historical and medical details included I was surprised at, as James stated [b:A Kiss at Midnight wasn't set in a particular year/era, therefore not historically accurate and yet great care has been taken to ensure When Beauty Tamed the Beast is the opposite. I'm pleased she's made this change. I certainly think this sequel is an improvement on the debut.