Forbidden passion is the ultimate temptation…
Captain William Langley knows the ocean well, but nothing could prepare him for what he discovers adrift on the cold Irish Sea. The tiny boat carries two passengers: a child—and Meg Donovan, Will’s long-lost love. Meg’s disappearance at sea eight years ago was a devastating blow. Now she’s back, as beautiful as ever, and with secrets as deep as Will’s own . . .
After years held captive by a cold-blooded pirate, Meg has finally escaped with little Jake, the boy she’s come to love as if he were her own. But the pirate wants his revenge—and Meg must do whatever it takes to shield Jake from the madman. Determined not to lose Meg again, Will vows to protect them both, yet Meg can’t risk putting the only man she’s ever loved in danger. With the threat to her safety growing, and her passion for Will burning brighter every day, surrendering herself to Will might be a pleasure too tempting to resist . . .
In and around England, Late Georgian Era
Adventure, Historical Romance
Heat Level: 2
REVIEW RATING: 3.5 Stars
Review by LadyOfMisrule
Pleasures of a Tempted Lady is a somewhat misleading title for this exuberant and enjoyable tale of adventure on the high seas. William Langley, Captain of the Freedom, rescues a woman and a small boy from a wrecked ship whilst chasing smugglers. The woman, incredibly, turns out to be Will’s old flame Meg Donovan, who was lost at sea eight years ago and presumed dead. Meg has been held prisoner by the brutal and ambitious pirate Cavendish, in order to teach his base born wife Sarah the manners of a lady, and be a companion to her and her child Jack. After Sarah’s death through illness, Cavendish has become more and more violent, prompting Meg to attempt an escape with his young son Jack. Cavendish, of course, does not take kindly to the ‘kidnap’ of his soon and is soon on the heels of the runaways. What follows is a lively journey that takes us across and around England by land and sea with Will and Meg running, Cavendish in hot pursuit and Meg’s family, a gaggle of Donovan sisters, helping in any way they can. There are very few lulls in the story, which gallops along at a good clip, and those that do exist are used by Haymore to good effect to nurture the budding relationship between Meg and Will.
At the beginning of the novel Meg is a mess, a long-cowed woman still terrified of Cavendish and what he might do to her or anyone who helps her if he catches up to them. This deep-seated fear motivates many of her somewhat erratic actions throughout the story, but the companionship of her family and Will help Meg to slowly begin to open herself up again. She is portrayed well as a sympathetic and relatable character, and she develops gradually which is to be expected when her backstory is taken into consideration.
Captain William Langley projects a strong, silent outer image but to those few who know him well, he is a romantic at heart who has pined for Meg since the day she was swept out to sea eight years previously. When she reappears unexpectedly, he immediately takes on the role of her guardian, and dedicates himself to protecting her from further harm. As the novel progresses, he proves himself to be an honourable, patient and brave man with honest intentions.
The relationship between Meg and Will grows very slowly, and is very confused, at least to begin with. They have old familiarity tempered by the changes the time apart has wrought upon their personalities, and feelings for one another. On Will’s part, he still loves her just as ardently as he ever has, but Meg has learned to shut out her emotions and refused to let herself care for anyone other than the young boy Jack for so many years that she has to relearn how to let herself be loved. There is another sub-plot that explores the affinity two secondary characters feel for one another, running parallel to the main storyline, and this is a fiery and playful dance that helps to offset the much more tender and delicate situation surrounding Will and Meg.
This fast paced frolic through the late Georgian era was an immoderately fun read. There is a strong sense of family, duty and honour that runs through the novel. All of the Donovan sisters are fiercely protective of one another, and their husbands also support the family freely, making them a very likeable and absorbing group. Upon further investigation I have discovered that this is the third novel based around this tight-knit family unit, and I certainly plan on looking into reading the others!
LADY OF MISRULE
Hi, I’m Bek , a twentysomething bookworm, but I prefer to call myself a member of the Literati. I have been a big fan of Historical fiction for almost a decade. I am a proud Yorkshire rose, and my interest for history was initially sparked by the War of the Roses, but has from this seed bloomed into a full on passion! I am a person who is never satisfied unless they are learning, or working towards something. Books set in a historical setting help me to scratch that itch, and my lengthy commute to work and back every day means that I often get through them at a good pace! I’m also a sucker for a good, tasteful love story