Title: Taken By the Duke
Written by Jess Michaels
Series: The Pleasure Wars #1
Published by Samhain Publishing
Publication Date: July 2nd 2013
Genres: Erotic Romance, Historical Romance
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An eye for an eye, a sin for a sin…
Amid all the lies and scandals that fuel Society’s gossip mill, one truth has stood out: House Rothcastle and House Windbury have always hated each other.
Lady Ava Windbury prays the feud will someday end, to no avail. One dreadful night, her brother accidentally causes the death of Christian Rothcastle’s sister, a tragedy that leaves both men maimed.
Consumed by grief, Christian makes a grim decision. He will kidnap Lady Ava so that her family will feel the pain of loss as keenly as he feels the loss of his own sister. But once he has Ava in his clutches, desire takes unexpected hold. Even more surprising, she willingly surrenders to his every sexual whim—after haggling over the terms of giving up her virginity.
Too late, he realizes she is using her body for peace, not war. But just as their affair of revenges turns into an affair of the heart, the past rears its ugly head to take matters into its own hands…
Book one of Jess Michaels’ new Pleasure Wars series is a steamy erotic Romeo and Juliet type of romance perfect for your summer reading! I got the ARC from the author herself and loved it! I have read it twice already and I am still getting blown away!
The books starts with Christian Rothcastle is in hot pursuit of Liam Windbury and his sister Matilda. The chase ends when there is a serious accident with both men injured and Matilda, dead. Christian holds Liam responsible for his sister’s death, vows vengeance and the feud is back, as hot as ever.
Months later, Ava, Liam’s sister, gets abducted by Christian from a party and is taken to one of his estates. Ava is then informed of his quest for vengeance and she strikes a bargain. The bargain was that Christian would have her as his mistress for three weeks after which, he will let her go and promise not to pursue Liam for killing Matilda.
Despite Christian’s attitude, harshness, and the walls that he has put up against Ava, he starts falling for her. Against Ava’s best judgment, she falls desperately in love with Christian and tries to reason with him, finally convincing him to end their bargain but Ava decides to stay on the full three weeks. Finally, her brother catches them in bed together and demands that Ava leave with him. Christian agrees and lets Ava leave.
The Hero & Heroine
I absolutely love the sparks and the tension between Ava and Christian. Their passion was hot and burning up the pages, too! I love Ava’s independence and calm composure despite being kidnapped by her family’s sworn enemy. The way she negotiated with Christian despite being afraid for her life and her brothers’ was another point against her.
I also love that Christian, despite being hurt and blinded by his rage, started to fall for Ava. I liked the transition between anger and compassion that he went through when he started falling for Ava.
I was surprised when the villain was revealed in the end. Apparently, Matilda’s lady’s maid Laura, was in love with her and when Christian did not extract revenge as she had hoped, she decided to take matters into her own hands. I was a little bit surprised at this turn because there was never really any indication that Laura was a little mad. Although, I do like this part of the story which is a refreshing twist in stories like this.
I am hoping the nest story of the series would be about Liam and Ava’s best friend! I can’t wait to read the next one!