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Genre; Historical Erotic Romance

Official Blurb 

Lady Chrissie Wellsby and her two country friends research dozens of rogues before selecting the notorious Viscount Hawkesbury, owner of London’s most exclusive and expensive brothel, to educate them in erotic seduction. The ladies abandon respectability and coerce Justin Tremayne into letting them visit The Pleasure House and to teaching them the sensual tricks mistresses and prostitutes use to entertain men.

Though Justin believes three naive ladies will see the debauched romps in his themed rooms, cover their eyes and ears, and run back to their sheltered lives, he underestimates the desperation of abandoned women who imagine a wider knowledge of sex will keep the men in their lives at home, in their own beds. But despite watching several of their friends, men and women, perform raunchy acts at his brothel, the ladies insist on participating in the last of Justin’s infamous Sultan’s galas, held in numerous silk tents and outdoor bathing areas on his estate.

Justin concedes to Chrissie’s demands only to gain information about his long-lost mother and sisters, but the world-weary viscount falls head over heels in love with his emotionally bruised pupil. He yearns for a wife, children, and an uncomplicated wife, but can he convinced Chrissie to take a chance and marry again? Because Justin never wants to leave her bed.

★✩★✩★✩★✩★

What a delightful surprise this book turned out to be!

OK, there were plenty of scenes depicting all kinds of lascivious behaviour but there was so much more to this book I hadn’t anticipated – a wickedly entertaining plot, likeable characters, delicious sexual tension, ribald humour and a rich historical atmosphere.

Justin just seemed to weave his way into my heart. His hedonistic lifestyle belies the fact that, at heart, he is an honourable man. Everything he’s done has been with one purpose – to provide him with enough money to restore the family estate and find his mother and his sisters and bring them home. The past three years have obviously taken their toll and he’s desperate to leave all this behind and become a part of conventional society again.

He really cares about his friends, Bart and Thomas, and even surrounded by all nature of sexual excess…

…he wasn’t willing to compromise his entire moral belief structure. Nor would he dirty the morals of his friends to that extent, knowing they’d both need to take wives one day in the future.

If that wasn’t enough, I simply adore a man with a sense of humour.

Chrissie has some pluck bearding Justin in his den but it shows how much she cares for her friends Anna and Gillian and wants to help them with their personal issues.

I love the fact that she is not some ravishing beauty, quite ordinary in fact, but Justin is able to see her inner beauty…

“Yours is a far deeper beauty. It shines through from the inside out. An inner radiance lights up your features and entrances a man so he cannot look away.”

It was a joy to see her regain her self confidence and realise that she’s a warm, passionate woman. I loved the scene where she turns the tables on Justin and assumes the role of seductress. It was amusing to see Justin so completely lost for words and I loved this gem from Chrissie!

“I do hope, my darling,” she said, touching his face to bring his gaze back to hers, “you’re not going to waste precious time doing that groaning thing again.” She softened her words with a smile, stretched up to her toes to touch his lips, butterflies wings flitting softly. “You know, those pleas and moans you insist on directing at angels frolicking across your ceiling.”

Ms Love builds some sizzling sexual tension between these two. The mutual attraction was palpable in their initial battle of wills, escalating to the scene in the Pleasure House where they have to assume the roles of master and slave. This is one HOT scene and, for any oldies like me, keep those smelling salts handy!!

The secondary characters enhance the story but never overwhelm the main romance. I enjoyed seeing husband and wife, Gillian and Edward resolve their marriage issues and the rivalry between Bart and Thomas for Anna’s attentions was amusing.

If you’re looking for a romance that is refreshingly different, wickedly funny, full of richly drawn characters and plenty of scandalous sexcapades, then I can definitely recommend this book! I am looking forward to reading more from Suzi Love!

RATING: 4.5/5 Stars

SENSUALITY RATING : SIZZLING!

Read June 2013

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(Jaded Gentlemen #1)

Genre: Historical Erotic Romance

Official Blurb 

First in a sexy new series of erotic passion set in Victorian London

Vengeance doesn’t always turn out the way you planned.

Galen Hawke desires nothing but revenge against the woman who betrayed his dearly departed friend. Instead of mourning the loss of her fiancé, Miss Haley Moreland is merrily celebrating her upcoming nuptials to another man. Now, Galen has one mission: to seduce Miss Moreland and enslave her heart. And when she is completely his, he will destroy her.

With her family on the brink of financial ruin, Haley knows she should be grateful for her providential betrothal. But then she meets the dangerously handsome Galen, whose wicked touch makes her long to abandon all logic. If Galen’s promises are sincere, the match to a family of noble blood and strong financial accounts could be the remedy her family desperately needs. And if he isn’t sincere, one last chance to taste the passion he ignites before settling into a life of convention is equally alluring.

★✩★✩★✩★✩★

*In the interests of full disclosure, I received a copy of this book from the author as a gift with no strings attached. It is my personal choice to write this review and these are my honest thoughts about the book.* 

REVENGE WEARS RUBIES is my first book by Renee Bernard and it certainly won’t be my last. Romantic, witty and lusciously sensual, it is definitely an engaging and entertaining read!

I’m always a bit wary of the revenge trope in romances. Often the reason for seeking the revenge is flawed and the hero acts like an all-round ass and ends up being a totally unsympathetic character. I think Ms Bernard hits just the right balance in this book. In flashbacks, she establishes the close bond existing between Galen and John Everly and I could accept why Galen would want to seek revenge on a woman who appears so cruel and heartless. Galen has been in a deep depression and plagued by nightmares since his return to England but his plan to seduce and ruin Haley gives him a renewed purpose in life.

Months of lethargy vanished, and Galen felt a new power and force of will take shape inside of him. All his instincts to be cautious vanished in the space of a single breath.

I enjoyed watching Galen’s vengeful plan start to unravel as he gradually develops genuine feelings for Haley. The seducer becomes the seduced.

Galen wrestled with an increasing attachment to her, a desire to keep her close and linger in her presence. The more he experienced her, the more beautiful and enticing she was growing, and the puzzle of it was as intoxicating as the woman.

Charming, charismatic and seductive, I couldn’t help but like Galen. His honesty and sincerity when Haley discovers the truth really touched me. He does not give up easily which is just as well under the circumstances. I won’t say anymore for fear of spoilers, other than his timing is spot on!

Wishing for the moon doesn’t bring it any closer, but God help me, why do I keep looking at it?

I like Haley very much. Her life has not been a bed of roses. The family estate is in financial difficulties and her father drinks excessively. She knows her marriage options are limited without a dowry and she’s prepared to marry the wealthy Mr Trumble to save herself and her father from penury. I admire how she economizes by making her own dresses and how ironic it is that ladies of the ton are eager to know who her dressmaker is!

I can understand her attraction to Galen. He’s everything Mr Trumble isn’t; handsome, flirtatious and exciting – the fulfilment of her dreams. She’s no shrinking violet and I like how she’s not afraid to explore her newfound sensuality.

If variety is the spice of life then Ms Bernard certainly spiced up my life with a variety of steamy love scenes filled with eroticism and sensuality.

…every inch of her passionate nature unfurled like a flower in the sun, and she surrendered to each impulse that brought her closer to the heat and fire she craved.

He wanted her in a thousand ways, and the erotic tangle of it unfolded in a sweet cascade of images that taunted him…

I really enjoyed Galen’s seduction with his provocative words and suggestive banter.

Galen lifted himself off the bed and burrowed under the light covers to position himself at her feet.
“G-Galen? What are you doing? “she asked warily.
“Conducting a survey of the landscape,” he answered, his voice muffled by the sheets.

The interesting cast of secondary characters includes Haley’s Aunt Alice (a favourite of mine with her ribald tales), Haley’s fiancé, Mr Trumble (I prefer to call him Mr Bumble) and Rand Bascombe (a nasty piece of work indeed).

We also meet the fellow members of ‘The Jaded’ all bound together by their experiences as captives in India with their own stories to tell.

There was just enough intrigue to capture my interest and no doubt all the questions I have regarding The Jaded…

– why was each of them taken captive?
– who now wants them dead?
– where is the stolen treasure?

will all be answered in the course of the series

Emotional and sinfully passionate with just the right amount of background intrigue, this is a great start to The Jaded series. 

VERDICT: COMPELLING. A GOOD PAGE TURNER

RATING: 4.5/5  Stars

SENSUALITY RATING:  SIZZLING

Read May 2013

The Jaded series to date (click on cover for more details)

Revenge Wears Rubies (Jaded Gentleman, #1) Seduction Wears Sapphires (Jaded Gentleman, #2) Ecstasy Wears Emeralds (Jaded Gentleman, #3) Passion Wears Pearls (Jaded Gentleman, #4) Obsession Wears Opals (Jaded Gentleman, #5)

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The Devil Devere #4.5

Setting: Medford Abbey, Kent- 1784

In her last month of pregnancy, Diana, Viscountess DeVere, has barely settled into her new life and role as “the devil” DeVere’s wife, when her increasingly restlesss husband receives an urgent summons to London. When Diana inadvertently discovers a message he received from a known courtesan with whom he was formerly linked, she fears her marriage is over before it has begun.

(A Devil’s Touch is an erotic romance vignette that can stand alone as a complete story, but also serves to bridge Book #4 The Devils Match, and my forthcoming Book#5 Jewel of the East (Salime and Simon’s story)

★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩

God help me. Will I ever get enough of this man?’
– Diana

Well, if the man in question just happens to be the sublime Ludovic DeVere, the answer is most definitely NO!

A Devil’s Touch, the latest addition to the fantastic Devil DeVere series, is a tantalisingly wicked treat that shouldn’t be missed. Even within the constraints of this short vignette, there is so much richness and depth to the story. I loved this glimpse into Ludovic and Diana’s marriage and sharing every moment with them:

Diana’s insecurities and fears…

now she worried he had already wearied of domesticity, or worse, if he was simply bored…with her. Maybe he had come to regret married life? The more she thought about it, the more distressed she became.

Ludovic’s frustrations…

It had been precisely eight days and six hours since he’d touched her, and he was already as edgy as a convict awaiting the noose. He still had seventy-six more days of celibacy to bear and felt so full of his own unspent essence that he thought he would burst.

The need for trust…

“It seems,” he stated, dark and ominous, “that what we really have are unresolved issues of trust between us. I have sworn my devotion, my fidelity. We will end this right now. There is no room in this relationship for jealousy and suspicion.”

Their overwhelming love for each other…

…Diana feared her heart would burst from her love for him.

“I need you, Diana. You are my light, my sustenance. You are everything to me.”

And the joys of parenthood…

He came closer to examine the tiny creature’s features,, only to have them contort and let out a blood–curdling screech.
“My God! What’s wrong with it?” he demanded.

Certain aspects of Diana and Ludovic’s sizzling hot love scene would normally be a big turn off for me but I put my faith in Ms Vane and she didn’t fail me. This scene is so beautifully written and I fully appreciate why it was essential for both the story and the characters.

I’m pleased to see that, although he may have given up his hedonistic ways, Ludovic is still the master at manipulating people…

“I have every confidence in you, my dear. Simon means a great deal to me. Should you accept this proposition, I would be exceedingly pleased. Moreover, I would provide you most generous compensation.”

Now I can’t wait to see the results of his meddling in Simon and Salime’s story, Jewel of the East!

Lushly erotic and deeply romantic, this is storytelling at its best by a mistress of her craft.

How I imagine Ludovic ~

How I imagine Diana ~

RATING: A STELLAR ★★★★★

SENSUALITY RATING : SCORCHING HOT!

Read February 2013

Warning: This vignette contains elements of an erotic nature and may not be to everyone’s taste.

My sincere thanks to Victoria Vane for providing me with a copy of this vignette in return for an honest review.

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Setting: England, 1727

A reluctant heiress resigned to her fate… Mary Elizabeth Edwardes has one of the largest fortune’s in England, but has no desire to leave her quiet country existence… and even less to acquire a husband she cannot choose for herself.

A dissolute nobleman bent on retribution… Trapped in a duplicitous existence since scandal destroyed his fortune and family name, Lord Hadley Blanchard has spent the better part of a decade posing as a disaffected exile while spying and seducing in the service of the English Crown.

A dangerous game of seduction, and intrigue… When summoned from abroad by a former lover, Lord Hadley perceives an opportunity for vengeance at last. By employing the full measure of his seductive charm, he woos the ward of the man who destroyed his life, little knowing that winning Mary’s fortune will mean risking his own treacherous heart.

**AUTHOR’S NOTE
TREACHEROUS TEMPTATIONS
was very much inspired by the dark and romantic novels of the 18th century in which virtue vs. vice and plots to despoil virgins were very popular themes, books like Clarissa Harlowe by Samuel Richardson or Les Liaisons Dangereuses by LaClos. Similar to these classic tales, my story features an innocent country girl who, unlike the former heroines, is neither insipid nor naive, but still inadvertently becomes a pawn in a deadly game of revenge and intrigue.

★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩★

Treacherous Temptations is Victoria Vane’s first full-length historical erotic romance. Having read and rhapsodised over her The Devil DeVere series, I couldn’t wait to read this ‘Dangerous Liaisons’ inspired book. Ms Vane never disappoints and this book was no exception. She weaves a sensual tale of scandal, treachery, intrigue, love and redemption.

Once again, I was swept back into the Georgian era with all its elegance, opulence and decadence which Ms Vane captures so perfectly. Her writing is always evocative, emotive, sensual and delightfully wicked. I chose this excerpt because, for me, it perfectly illustrates her descriptive flair.

With the arrival of dusk, however, the true Venice awakened. Donning her gilded and be-jeweled bauta, she revealed her soul beneath a thousand torches lighting the canals with sputtering brilliance over shimmering waters. With countless covered gondolas affording floating places of refuge for sinful delights, she reveled in all of her concupiscent glory.

Ms Vane did an excellent job of showing Hadley’s gradual journey from a man whose life had degenerated into an endless pursuit of every excess and dissipation to someone who regains his honour, his ideals and his self-respect.  I think I saw redemptive qualities in Hadley from the moment he interrupted Mary’s dancing lesson with the obnoxious French dancing teacher, Monsieur Gaspar, and sent him off with the proverbial flea in his ear. He was unaware of Mary’s true identity and simply championed a young lady being bullied.

When he discovers who Mary is, he initially sees her not only as the means to a large fortune but also a instrument of revenge against her guardian, Sir Richard, the man he holds responsible for stealing his inheritance. I loved watching his confusion when he finds himself developing feelings for her. Lust he can understand, but love is something that is completely beyond his comprehension.

She brought his hand to her mouth, kissing his palm, an artless act that had a startling affect.
Feeling unbalanced and terrorized, Hadley closed his eyes in an effort to shut her out, but the insidious and unwanted flare of feeling would not be ignored.

Hadley is the perfect hero (maybe not quite up there with DeVere, but then who is!). He’s charming, thoughtful, charismatic, seductive and protective.

How I imagine Hadley

Mary is warm, engaging, headstrong and witty; a country girl at heart who prefers reading a book or long walks to the superficiality of London. I love her astute observation of society.

“I will never comprehend the fashionable people. They resemble nothing more than a muster of peacocks—preening, strutting, and gawking at one another. They smile and croon but few of them ever have a kind or sincere word.”

A complex mix of wisdom and innocence, she understands estate matters but is completely inexperienced when it comes to men. So it’s no wonder she can’t resist Hadley’s seductive ways.

The warmth of his hands seemed to permeate the many layers of silk and linen that separated them as if the barriers didn’t exist. His voice, his touch, his subtle masculine scent combined to fill her senses, making her almost giddy. It was lovely. It was also terrifying.

How I imagine Mary

I loved the villainous secondary characters; the conniving, vindictive and depraved Barbara, Countess of Blanchard; Sir Richard, the fat, flatulent fool; Lord Barnesley, the libertine with his ‘little idiosyncrasies’. Their machinations certainly provided some interesting twists and turns.

Treacherous Temptations is definitely a worthy addition to my keeper shelf from one of my favourite authors.

RATING: ★★★★★

SENSUALITY RATING: SIZZLING

Read January 2013

This ebook was kindly provided by the publisher Entangled in return for an honest review.

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Setting: Victorian England, 1892

As a young man, Simon, Viscount Wycombe learned the painful truth that a tradesman’s daughter is suitable only for liaisons and nothing more. But Ivy Beecham is a far cry from his preconceived notions, and he’s determined to have her. But when she rejects him, it only increases his determination to seduce her into a world of sin and pleasure.

Ivy Beecham knows first-hand that handsome aristocrats like Simon can’t be trusted. But the intellectual scoundrel is hellbent on making her his mistress, using every means at his seductive disposal. When she refuses to give away her heart on Christmas Eve, a ghostly specter shows her in one night why her surrender can be the greatest gift of all.

★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩★

What a delightful treat this novella was!  It had all the elements that make it the perfect holiday read.

An innovative, wonderfully evocative, intensely emotive, heart-warming romance

A strong, intelligent, dependable, caring, and delightfully arrogant hero who has a very seductive way with words

An beautiful, spirited, intelligent, spinster, librarian heroine who hides a passionate nature

An enigmatic ghost who must persuade the heroine to let go of the past and open her heart to love, trust and forgiveness to find true happiness

Powerful emotional conflict, fiery passion and lush sensuality

Lots and lots of HOT love scenes
Leaves you with a lovely, warm, tingly feeling

RATING: ★★★★★

SENSUALITY RATING: POSITIVELY SIZZLING

Read December 2012

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Her Christmas Pleasure (The Merry Widows #2)

THE MERRY WIDOWS #2

Official Blurb

Damien Morton is madly in love. Unfortunately, it’s with his best friend’s widow, Lady Danver. Damien is not worthy of Celia. Or so he thinks. Desperate to escape his feelings for her, he plans to leave the country at the first of the year. Celia treats him as a family friend and nothing more–until they share a heated kiss beneath the mistletoe…

Celia is shocked by the passions that surge within her at her dear friend’s kiss. One touch and one taste aren’t enough to satisfy her cravings, and she is startled into action. Damien has stirred something inside her that she never expected to experience again, and she must have more. Full of shameless desire and emotions newly discovered, she decides to pursue Damien and won’t be deterred. Will she be able to convince him to stay–both in her heart and life–forever?

★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩★✩

…it had been the simplest and most devastating kiss of her life.

Charming, heart-warming, deliciously sensual, this friends-to-lovers novella is just perfect for bringing a little early Christmas cheer!

What I enjoyed…

Celia and Damien are such endearing characters and, even within the constraints of such a short story, Ms Erickson succeeded in giving them real emotional depth and made me care about them.

I really liked Damien from the start. He won me over with his intelligence, his charm, his sense of honour and his loyalty. Not to mention his sexiness! His overwhelming love for Celia which seemed so hopeless only made him more endearing.

I enjoyed watching Celia coming to terms with her changing feelings for Damien and cheered her for throwing caution to the winds in her bold pursuit of him. She’s also a kind, caring and protective mother.

How refreshing not to have danger or some long hidden secrets threatening the happiness of the hero and heroine; simply an engaging story of two people in love. Not that there isn’t conflict with Damien’s belief that he’s not good enough for Celia and Celia’s obvious concerns about what her in-laws might think about her re-marrying. I thought Ms Erickson resolved both issues in a believable way.

There were some blistering hot love scenes but Ms Erickson always excels in creating a wonderful blending of eroticism, emotional intensity and intimacy.

The secondary characters added appeal to the story.  Celia’s five year old son, Theo, was a perfect little matchmaker and how nice to have understanding in-laws! Celia’s father-in-law, the Earl of Urswick  is supportive of Celia and Damien’s relationship and even his wife comes round in the end.

HER CHRISTMAS PLEASURE is a delightful and deliciously sensual short story and so grab a sherry and a mince pie, put your feet for a few hours and enjoy!

RATING: ★★★★½

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For those readers who, like me, absolutely loved Victoria’s Devil DeVere series, she is releasing four vignettes over the next few months.

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DEVIL IN THE MAKING (Devilish Vignette #1)
– released this month

AND IT’S AVAILABLE FREE FROM AMAZON KINDLE IN THE US AND THE UK DURING THIS WEEKEND!!

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NED’S FOLLY (Devilish Vignette #2)
– December 2012

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THE TROUBLE WITH SIN (Devilish Vignette #3)
– January 2013

A Devil's Touch

A DEVIL’S TOUCH (Devilish Vignette #3)
– February 2013

For more details visit Victoria Vane’s website:

http://authorvictoriavane.com/the-devil-devere-series/

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