Monday, August 19, 2019

Early Review of The Duchess in His Bed (Sins for All Seasons #4) by Lorraine Heath

Title: The Duchess in His Bed: A Sins for All Seasons Novel
Classification: Adult Fiction
Genre: Historical Romance
Series: Sins for All Seasons (Book 4)
Format: Paperback; 400 pages
Publisher: Avon (August 20, 2019)
ISBN-10: 0062676067
ISBN-13: 978-0062676061
Author's Website:
Notes: I received an eARC loan from the publisher for review purposes. This in no way affected my review. Any quotes used will need to be checked against the final version as ARCs are subject to change.

Selena Sheffield, Duchess of Lushing, is in a bind. Her husband of seven years has passed away before the two had started a family. With no heirs to be found, the dukedom, which her husband's family had held for ages, is about to become extinct unless Selena can produce an heir. The problem is there is no chance that she is with child. While Selena could live a rather nice life from the provisions her husband made for her in his will, her siblings could not for she would not have the means to provide for them. 

Enter Aiden Trewlove and the Elysium Club--a club which caters exclusively to the desires of women. A place where, if she has the nerve, Selena may be able to find just the man who can make all her troubles go away, and she know exactly who she wants that man to be...

Aiden Trewlove is a self made man who owns both the Elysium and Cerberus Clubs. The former is a new acquisition which he took over from his brother. Aiden has a strict policy of never mixing business with pleasure, but when he catches sight of an alluring woman wearing a mask, he starts to wonder if perhaps he should make an exception?
This is the fourth book in the Sins for All Seasons series. While this story could probably be read as a standalone, I strongly encourage you read the previous books in the series. If you don't, you'll end up missing out on some of the Trewlove family dynamics, and that would be a shame. The series revolves around the Trewlove siblings which consists of four brothers and two sisters. The siblings were all born out of wedlock to various members of the ton. Finn, Aiden, Beast, Gillie, and Mick were taken in by Ettie Trewlove. Fancy is the only one of the lot born to Ettie, and her conception is another story altogether. The Trewloves are a fierce lot. They are extremely smart, very resourceful, and fiercely loyal to one another. They have all worked hard to achieve success, and that work is beginning to pay off as the family is coming in to their own. In this book it's Aiden's turn to find true love.

Aiden is loyal to a fault and, despite owning clubs for sin and vice, he actually is not one to participate in either. This, of course, is much to the dismay of the women who frequent the Elysium club. You see Aiden is very handsome and has a way of making every woman who crosses his club's threshold feel special. Between the two clubs, he's been working hard to make sure he and his family will never want for anything, and hasn't taken any time to enjoy his success.

Selena is an admired and respected member of the ton. During her first season she was deemed the most beautiful debutante, and seven years later she's just as beautiful. Selena loved her husband, but she had not been in love with him. She'd married him out of duty, and whilst he been a good man, there'd been no passion between them. If she plays her cards right, going to the Elysium club will not only satisfy her curiosity, but also be a means to an end. Though she may still be young, she has no plans of ever marrying again, but even if she did her prospects would be limited because she never bore her husband an heir. The fear would be too great that she is barren. Without the support of her husband her ability to help her sisters find a good matches is unlikely. Yet if she produces an heir, she'd retain the power, status, and respect that the position of duchess commands. Additionally, the thought of having a child appeals to her, however, there's always the possibility that the blame for the couples inability to produce an heir lies with her. If that's the case, everything would be for naught.

I loved so many things about this book. I loved that Aiden immediately realizes there is something different and special about Selena. He is aware that he wants to explore the feelings he has for her right from the moment they first met. He instantly discerns that if he handles things incorrectly she'll bolt out of his life just as quickly as she entered it, and that is something he doesn't want. I also loved the fact that Aiden really didn't have a clue as to what Selena looked like during their initial meeting because she wore a mask. I liked that he could care less if she were old or ugly. He just felt a strong connection and wanted to explore it despite the fact he'd vowed to run the other way if he ever felt the desire to enter into a serious relationship with anyone. To me, that the mask spoke volumes. At one point Selena even stated, "I'm discovering that you can't look at someone and know the trials they face. We all wear masks. They just aren't as visible as the ones worn at your club." Ironically, I felt it was symbolic of how Selena and others in the book had and were living their lives. In order for anyone to truly be happy, they need to shed the mask they wear and not try to be someone they aren't. They need to be true to themselves and not live for others even though that is a scary prospect. The risks associated with such a decision could ultimately lead to a person's ruin or their salvation. In Selena's case, she just doesn't know which and she'll have to take a leap of faith or not.

Some of my favorite quotes from the book:
- "It's an odd thing, how one's life can seem all out of kilter, and yet the world carries on as though nothing is amiss."
- "A life lived in shadows was no life at all."
- "Love is all that matters. Find someone deserving of you."
- "The heart did as it wanted, loved who it would love. And seemed to have a penchant for choosing those who provided the most difficult of challenges. But then if love were easy, the poets would hardly be heralded for putting into words what most found indescribable."

Overall, I gave this one 5 out of 5 roses. The chemistry between these two was potent, and I loved the angst and tension that existed between them. I loved how Aiden empowered Selena to see her situation for what it really was and allowed her to choose what she ultimately wanted. He slowly seduced his way into her heart by showing her all the things she could have with him and then letting her decide if she was willing to take a chance on him. On the Lisarenee Romance Rating Scale, this one earned a SHOWER rating--a cold shower is necessary (need I say more?). Some books should come with a warning - make sure your significant other is handy or your shower is in working order. lol I HIGHLY recommend this one! It was the perfect blend of naughty and nice.

The Order of the Sins For All Seasons series:

Tuesday, August 6, 2019

Giveaway/Sneak Peek/Review of The Wallflower Wager (Girl Meets Duke #3) by Tessa Dare

The Wallflower Wager by Tessa Dare 

They call him the Duke of Ruin.

To an undaunted wallflower, he's just the beast next door.
Wealthy and ruthless, Gabriel Duke clawed his way from the lowliest slums to the pinnacle of high society—and now he wants to get even.

Loyal and passionate, Lady Penelope Campion never met a lost or wounded creature she wouldn’t take into her home and her heart.

When her imposing—and attractive—new neighbor demands she clear out the rescued animals, Penny sets him a challenge. She will part with her precious charges, if he can find them loving homes.

Done, Gabriel says. How hard can it be to find homes for a few kittens?

And a two-legged dog.

And a foul-mouthed parrot.

And a goat, an otter, a hedgehog . . .

Easier said than done, for a cold-blooded bastard who wouldn’t know a loving home from a workhouse. Soon he’s covered in cat hair, knee-deep in adorable, and bewitched by a shyly pretty spinster who defies his every attempt to resist. Now she’s set her mind and heart on saving him.

Not if he ruins her first.

She circled back, standing before him. “There now. Better?”

He gave a reluctant nod.

“Can you move your arm in all directions?”

He rolled his shoulder to prove it. “Yes.”

“What about your grip?

“My grip is strong.”

“Perhaps I should wrap the arm in a sling.”

“I do not need a sling.”

“Wait here. I’ll dash upstairs to fetch some linen and—”

“For the love of God, woman. My shoulder is fine.” He took her by the waist and lifted her straight off the floor, until they were eye to eye. “There. Believe me now?”

She nodded, wide-eyed.


In his hands, she was delicate, breakable. Her hair was a golden treasure he should never, ever touch. And oh, how he hungered for those soft, pink lips.

The familiar voice echoed in his ears.

Don’t touch, boy. She’s not for the likes of you.

Put. Her. Down.

But before Gabe could lower those beribboned pink slippers to the floor, she captured his sooty, sweaty face in her hands—

And kissed him on the lips.

Tessa Dare

Tessa Dare is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of more than twenty historical romances. Her books have won numerous accolades, including Romance Writers of America’s prestigious RITA® award (twice) and the RT Book Reviews Seal of Excellence. Booklist magazine named her one of the “new stars of historical romance,” and her books have been contracted for translation in more than a dozen languages.

A librarian by training and a booklover at heart, Tessa makes her home in Southern California, where she lives with her husband, their two children, and a trio of cosmic kitties.

  • Title: The Wallflower Wager: Girl Meets Duke
    Classification: Adult Fiction
    Genre: Historical Romance
    Series: Girl Meets Duke
    Format: Paperback; 368 pages
    Publisher: Avon (August 13, 2019)
    ISBN-10: 0062672169
    ISBN-13: 978-0062672162
    Author's Website:
    Notes: I received an eARC loan from the publisher. This in no way affected my review.

Lady Penelope Campion is young, beautiful, and a recluse, but the latter is about to change. Her brother has decided it is time for her to return to the family ancestral estate. When her aunt comes to inform her of his decision, Penelope pleads with her to help her change his mind. A wager is set, if Penelope can 1) acquire a wardrobe 2) reenter London society by attending the opera, dinner parties, balls, etc. 3) get rid of her animal menagerie, then her aunt will do her best to convince her brother to let her stay in London.

Gabriel Duke, is known as the Duke of Ruin, a moniker he acquired by financially ruining those in the ton and leaving them practically penniless. He is a self made man who has spent a lot of time and money restoring the house next to Lady Penelope's and has plans to sell it for a king's ransom to a commoner wishing to rub elbows with London's elite. If Lady Penelope moves, however, his plan will be thwarted, and he can't have that. So together they form an alliance so each can get what they want.

What neither realizes is they'll get more than they ever bargained for, but in a good way.
This is the third book in the Girl Meets Duke series. While it can be read as a standalone, I recommend reading the other books in the series first. There are friendships that come into play in this story that would be underappreciated and not fully understood if you don't. 

I simply adored this book. It tickled my funny bone and, at times, had be rolling my eyes, laughing like a fool, and grinning from ear to ear. I kept thinking "Oh no she wouldn't." but yes, the author did. She created situations that were just too funny, and I couldn't have kept a straight face if I tried. Some may call the humor cheesy, but it totally worked for me.    

Now there was a darker side to this story, and I felt the author used the humor to her advantage. She padded the darker parts with that humor which helped to softened the blow a bit. Be forewarned that a case of childhood molestation is discussed, although not in extreme detail. While nothing can ever right such a wrong, justice is served in a rather surprising and unique way in this book.  

While the romance between Penelope and Gabriel seemed very unlikely, I enjoyed seeing Penelope basically seduce her way into Gabriel's heart. A heart he was convinced he didn't have or, at the very least, was frozen to the core. Penelope tends to believe there's good in every person, and she believes there's more to Gabriel than what the rumors running rampant about him would suggest. She's determined to find the good in him.

I couldn't help but give this one 5 out of 5 roses. I loved that the heroine who starts out as a recluse blossoms into a strong woman right before our very eyes. Penelope brings out the best in Gabriel while he helps her to find her inner strength and courage. While these two get to know one another the chemistry between them builds until there's no denying it. On the Lisarenee Romance Rating Scale, this one earned a STEAM rating--too hot for a fan, but you still have a handle on things. You should use extreme caution when reading a book with this rating in public. People may inquire as to why you looked flustered and flushed. 

Order of the Girl Meets Duke series:

Enter for a chance to win 'one' print copy of  'The Wallflower Wager'  by Tessa Dare 
(Open to those living in the United States or Canada)
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