Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Taste of Temptation-Cheryl Holt

Taste of Temptation
Cheryl Holt
Berkley, Jun 2010, $7.99
ISBN: 9780425235140

In 1814 Philippe Dubois sells desperate Helen Hamilton the Spinster’s Cure that he insists will have her wed in four weeks. Since she has no money he accepts her payment after she is married.

Thirty years old Tristan Odell warns his eighteen year old half brother the Earl Michael Seymour not to mess with the servants. Illegitimate Odell struggles with what is best for Michael and his twelve year old half sister Rose as he wonders why his father whom he never recognized him named him their guardian. He seeks a governess though Michael’s cousin Maud Seymour insists they do not need one. She plans for Michael to wed her daughter.

Helen applies for the job, but Odell rejects her because she is beautiful. She begs him for the sake of her sisters eighteen year old Jane and twelve year old Amelia as they were kicked off their estate. When Michael grabs her, Odell accuses her of being a hooker. Thirsty she drinks the elixir and tells him she cursed him with the Spinster’s Cure

Helen visits Madam Lauretta to arrange a mistress position for her. Odell escorts Michael there hoping to reduce the earl’s sexual prowling of the staff. He is stunned when Lauretta introduces Odell to Helen. He hires her as Rose’s governess and welcomes her two sisters into the mansion. Odell begs her to lift the curse. Michael and Jane are attracted to each other while Maud is outraged by the hussies honing in on her and her daughter’s turf.

The Regency Cinderella plot lines are fun with their adult spins while the cast is extremely strong yet diverse in personality though three extended families make up the storyline. Although the story line is too similar in many key ways to the first tale though refreshed somewhat by a second romance, sub-genre readers will look forward to more Promise of Pleasure tales starring the Spinster’s Cure.

Harriet Klausner

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