The Illicit Love of a Courtesan. Jane Lark.


The Illicit Love of a Courtesan: HarperImpulse Historical Romance

The Illicit Love of a Courtesan. Jane Lark.

ARC received via Netgalley.
Sometimes I enjoy a foray into the gentle romances, with a historical setting, and this one appealed so…
Ellen, what a lovely heroine. She’s been through so much, and is stuck in a lifestyle she hates but has no way out. Then, out with her keeper one evening, she meets Lord Edward Marlow. Edward has a fascination for her, with one glance she sees in him everything she’d love to have. He’s equally smitten, and when the chance arises they have a brief but torrid affair. Edward wants more and just can’t understand why she stays with Lord Gainsborough – it’s clear the man abuses her, she has a reputation little better than a whore, she’s his mistress and everyone thinks she’s with him for what material gains she can get. It’s clear to him though that what’s on the surface isn’t the true story and he’s perplexed. Ellen has secrets though and slowly they come out…
After a vicious argument with Lord Gainsborough Ellen escapes and runs to Edward. She can’t tell him everything, but pleads with him to help her nevertheless…and loving her he does.
Secrets slowly come out, family relationships are at risk, Edwards’s family think she’s simply after his money, and believe the story put about over her relationship with Lord Gainsborough. There are huge problems to be overcome if they are to have a chance at happiness and a relationship that lasts.
I liked the way the secrets came out carefully, a bit at a time, in drips and each setting up the next part of the story. Edward was a superb man, strong and loving and willing to abandon everything for love, even though he kept finding out more and more secrets Ellen had kept from him. She hadn’t a choice at first though, and then was too scared she’d lose the one chance of happiness she had found if she revealed all. Its bitter-sweet – she’s so happy with him and yet she’s convinced its only fleeting, and that like everyone else in her past he’d abandon her if he knew everything. Edward loved her though – and that love was truly tested as more and more secrets came out, and more hurdles were faced. He had his own family problems too – and Ellen didn’t want to exacerbate those by coming between him and his family.
Its a sweet story, and enjoyable romance. Its not heart pounding, flesh melting, edge of seat passion, but a true love story with some sensual sex scenes and a plot that unveils slowly, building the whole story gently and showing the best and worst sides of human nature.
Its priced at £3.99 for 2104kb – I haven’t page info but I’d guess at 250-300 as its a decent long read. If you love historical romance this is a great book for you, its more than just a sweet love story, with plots that keep on being revealed, til they add up to one huge conclusion. It’s not one for my keeper files but that’s because I only take occasional plunges into historical romance.
Stars: – its a good read and I enjoyed it but its not a book that had me riveted in the way a five star one does. I’m torn between four or four and a half…I think because of the sensuality and complexity of the plots I’m going four and a half 🙂

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About jeanniezelos

I'm an avid reader, love my kindle and I have my head in a novel for hours daily : ) Mum used to say I'd read toilet paper if it was printed- it wasn't, so i had to contend myself with the back and sides of the cereal packets. I've always Needed to read and we had few books when i was a child hence my penchant for reading anything including adverts then... I review mainly contemporary, erotic and paranormal romance books though dystopian and urban fantasy also appeal. I'm currently rated around the 300 mark on for my reviews. I try to keep them structured and to say what I do and don't like about a book so other readers can use my review as a guide to whether they may enjoy the book.

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