In a society that thrived on artifice, Rothbury was a man of a very different stamp and his honesty challenged her to be equally sincere, challenged too the barriers she had erected about her guarded heart. 

Redonk Nutshell: A notorious widow strikes a bargain with a recently titled American adventurer that involves matrimony

Ah, isn’t this cover beautiful? I enjoy Nicola Cornick’s work so I was excited to get my hands on this.  I leveled my expectations, considering I was a bit let down by her last release, Notorious.  In fact, I went into this book without knowing anything about it at all, having not even read the premise.

I’m glad I did.

I really enjoyed Desired.  A woman scarred by past grievances manages to finally find a man that can heal her wounds at a time she least expected.  He forces her to challenge her expectations and manages to soften her hardened heart.  He knows exactly what he’s getting into with her, and he ends up falling in love with her because of her fierce pride.

Tess Darent is far from perfect, and when she beings toeing into dangerous territory she finds protection, ironically, in the hands of the man that is hunting her.  Owen Purchase is rough around the edges, but he’s a man that’s completely comfortable in his own skin.  When his latest task to track down a political cartoonist leads him to Tess, he is intrigued.  What makes these two’s story so wonderful is that these two are on the same page, mostly, from the first.  There’s very little in terms of miscommunication, and the bluntness between them is what really sets off the sparks.

A small yet significant subplots deters from Tess & Owen’s story, but otherwise I felt that Desired plodded along at an enjoyable pace.  In fact, I’m pretty sure I read this in a day.

Lovely, sensual and biting, Desired is a romantic addition to her Scandalous Women of the Ton series.

Desired by Nicola Cornick, 384 pgs, 11/15/11

Rating: C+

Romance: 3/5    Raunch: 3/5


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