I received this book for free from the Author in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Series: The Ladies Book of Pleasures #2
Published by Samhain Publishing on October 14, 2014
Genres: Historical Erotica
Source: the Author
When Lady Jacinda unwraps a scandalous birthday gift, she’s sure the anonymous giver is playing a cruel joke. The Ladies Book of Pleasures may be responsible for one gossiped-about marriage, but for a lady ruined by a rogue and shunned by society, Jacinda is doomed to a lonely, loveless future.
Worse, as she pages through the volume of passionate promises, she is observed by the wicked and dangerous Duke of Carnthorn—and now he is stalking her as a possible willing victim of his shocking preferences.
Jason, Earl of Northfield, is having none of it. Jacinda, keeper of his most painful secret, is a friend he will not abandon to a wolf like Carnthorn. As they embark on a pretend courtship—for her own protection, of course—their proper decorum in public melts into wicked passion in the bedroom.
But even as real feelings begin to develop between them, Carnthorn is watching. He is not convinced. And he is determined to possess Jacinda, no matter whom he has to destroy…
Lady Jacinda Downing was once the victim of a wily rogue’s game of seduction. Scorned and shunned by society, her family cuts her off and sends her to live with her vituperate aunt. Hopelessly ruined by the gossip-mongers, Jacinda believes herself doomed to live a lonely, penniless existence on the fringes of London society. Jacinda’s only saving grace is the enduring friendship of Isabel, Marchioness Lyndham, Grace, Duchess of Jameswood, and sometime even Jason, Earl of Northfield, for whom she has kept a terrible, drunken secret and has loved since she was a young woman. Together, Isabel and Grace throw Jacinda a surprise birthday party. In private, she is presented with gifts from her friends, but one mysterious gift shows up in the pile too — a copy of the illicit Ladies Book of Pleasures. At first, Jacinda believes someone is playing a cruel joke, but her friends encourage her to read the book anyways. Just as she begins perusing the inside, the Duke of Carnthorn interrupts and spots the scandalous book. Later, he uses this information and invites Jacinda to become his mistress. Jason, Earl of Northfield, cannot sit by and watch one of his only true friends fall victim to an abusive, perverted lowlife like Carnthorn. His angry words to the Duke land Jason and Jacinda in a false courtship that allows Jason may watch over her, a duty that quickly turns to passionate nights spent in Jacinda’s bed.
I felt so bad for Jacinda. She endures crippling humiliation on a near-daily basis and yet handles herself surprisingly well in the face of such adversity. Yet we see her private vulnerability too and while I didn’t think Jacinda always made the wisest decisions, Ms. Michaels does a good job of fleshing out Jacinda’s inner demons enough that a reader may begin to understand why she may choose that path. Over time, Jacinda begins to realize her own self-worth, taking a stand against her family and the society that rejected her through no fault of her own.
Jason has sworn off love, but it is clear through his actions towards Jacinda that he has always harbored at least some form of love for her. He is protective of her right from the start and possesses a dry, witty sense of humor. He always has Jacinda’s best interests at heart and never wavers in his loyalty.
Jason and Jacinda are a perfect match for one another, both experiencing deep betrayals from their family members and learning to grow past that hurt. Despite all she has been through, Jacinda grows into her new-found confidence with Jason. Jason, in turn, learns that a life in love with Jacinda is better than any vengeful hate he felt towards his father. Together, they form an unbreakable bond and forge ahead to build a family of their own, away from the ghosts of the past and those that didn’t want them. “A Moment of Passion” is a story of moving past family betrayal, recapturing your own self respect, and creating a life together with someone that brings you safety, passion, and love.