>> Friday, January 23, 2004
One Touch Changed her Life ForeverSeduced was a wonderful suprise, and came very close to keeper status. A B+.
Ruined by the dashing Duke of Ravenwood, Elizabeth Montclair would sooner put a pistol between the man's legs than be forced into marriage with him. But wed him she must, Elizabeth vowing that if she must do the thing, theirs will be a marriage of her convenience.
He Ruined her with a Kiss
They would each be free to take a lover? Lucien St. Aubyn cannot believe his prim and proper wife would suggest such a thing. He'd expected her to be a shrew, instead he finds himself wed to a Jezebel, one who wants to lose her innocence to a man, any man...as long as it's not him.
They Both Ended up SEDUCED
But Lucien wasn't the rake of Ravenwood for nothing, and his new wife knows it. She proposes a plan. Lucien will teach her the fine art of seduction, after which they will each go their separate ways.
But neither Lucien nor Elizabeth expects the way their first 'lesson' turns out. Soon both are fighting an attraction to each other, one that they both refuse to acknowledge. But as the stakes rise, so does the desire. In the end, it may well be the both of them SEDUCED.
The whole first 3/4 of the book were a complete delight. I loved the author's voice, which was fresh and funny, and very lively, and I found myself fascinated by Lucien and Elizabeth and their courtship.
I especially liked how Lucien was written, how he came off as silly at the beginning when he was trying to be dangerous, and then how he slowly started to feel more and more for Elizabeth. I like characters who hide their hurts behind a façade of good humour and become the "class clowns", and Lucien was definitely that. Elizabeth was wonderful, too. All her reactions rang true for me. I just loved how she truly relished being unladylike, saying the rude things that come to mind, and all that.
Some of the things that happened in this section were almost groan-worthy clichés, but Britton managed to make them work. A good example would be that "lessons in seduction" thing. I usually hate that, but here, it worked. I think that must have been because in the sexual arena, these two are equals, even though she's a virgin and he's been around. Elizabeth is no shy, innnocent flower, and she succeeds in shocking even Lucien. I cheered for her ;-)
This wasn't really a "hot" book, because there's only one love scene and it's particularly short and unsatisfying, but the author is excellent at creating sexual tension.
The only reason why this wasn't a keeper was because I wasn't too crazy about the last part of the book. The whole trial and subsequent fever were too much of a departure in tone from the previous sections, and they were melodramatic, to make it worse (though if I must be completely truthful, I found myself with a lump in my throat at more than one point). I can't say this was a complete surprise, because even throughout the first sections, we know there's this issue hanging over their heads like a black cloud, but I don't know, I thought it could have been handled better.
And then, no payoff scene! I wanted to see Lucien and Elizabeth's scene when she woke up, hear them confess their love to each other for the first time, and I wanted a real love scene. But no, the author cut from the sickbed to 5 months later. I loved them then, though, Lucien loving having people see that Elizabeth had him twined around her little finger and Elizabeth saying all sorts of crude stuff to society matrons.
Another negative, that pirate ship thingie, and all those references to Lucy, that I'm guessing must be from a previous book. I never really completely understood what that was all about.
Still, even with all those negatives, which would have made most books get a C-range grade, at most, I loved the other parts so much that the book ultimately succeeded for me. I'm very happy to have discovered this author, and I'm heading over to buy her new book, Tempted.