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Overall rating – 5 silken sheets

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Sexual Satisfaction… Ten years as a sex slave in a Turkish brothel left Lord Valentin Sokorvsky with an insatiable appetite for sex. Now the time has come for him to 2763210marry, but finding a woman who can satisfy his lustful desires proves a challenge…until he meets Sara and all he can think about is having her lie under his rock-hard body, begging him to taste and touch her…

Sensual Seduction… Sara Harrison knows she should be shocked and scandalized by Lord Sokorvsky’s bold advances, but instead she is secretly aroused by this sensual, seductive man. For beneath her calm and composed manner is a wanton woman who longs for a man’s intimate caress. She is most willing to be educated in the art of sensuality, to receive and give pleasure and to succumb to the wild desire that knows no limits…

*

 “I want you to enjoy our marriage bed. I want to know that the thought of it makes you wet and aroused. I want you to want me.”

This book has been out a few years now, but it was strongly recommended to me by a fellow Regency-Smut fan. It’s more expensive than I usually pay, but I trusted the person who recc’ed it to me and since I prefer to read series in order… I took the plunge.

Simply Sexual is the first in the House of Pleasure series, and suffice to say, I am already loading the next one, ready to read. There are nine in the series now, with the most recent coming out a month ago, so there are plenty to look forward to. By the way, it was worth every cent 🙂

If you love a bit of Regency action, adore a tortured hero and take delight in a feisty heroine who knows her own mind, then you will thoroughly enjoy Simply Sexual.

5454839_sValentin wants to repay the man who rescued him (and his best friend) from the Turkish brothel and since he’s on the verge of bankruptcy, the wealthy Valentin offers to marry one of his three daughters. He is offered the youngest. However, Sara, the oldest of the three, is the one who catches his eye. This does not please her father.

 It was obvious that the man he’d admired for over a decade didn’t consider him fit to mate with his favourite daughter. He knew just how desperate John’s financial state must be if he’d even considered him suitable for the other girls. The man hadn’t quite masked his disgust at the thought of Valentin touching one of his precious children, although, to his credit, he had tried.

Sara had previously caught him in bed with one of the maids and been fascinated – and appalled – by the sight of them having sex. He awakens previously unknown desires in her and after a lusty kiss from him, she makes her case for marriage to Valentin.

14062656_sHe is amazing in bed (as any Regency hero should be!), but outside of the bedroom he is aloof and withdrawn from her. Sara tries hard to understand her complex new husband.

She struggled to conceal her hurt, “I touched the scars on your back. That is probably what awakened you.” She took a breath for courage. “You’ve been beaten, haven’t you? Just before our marriage, my father told me you were a Turkish slave for seven years of your life.”

He moved away and sat on the edge of the bed, presenting her with his scarred back. He smoothed the linen sheets with his long fingers. “And what else did he tell you?”

As part of fitting into her new life, Sara meets many people: Valentin’s family (whom he despises and resents), his best friend Peter (with whom he has a strange and deviant relationship), and his business associates (confusing to her).

He caught her wrist and pulled her close. “Lady Pettifer was a prostitute before she managed to ensnare Sir Richard. I do not wish you to associate with her.”

Sara shook off his hand. “And how would you know that?”

Valentin held her gaze. “Do you really want me to answer that?”

Poor Sara. She knew Valentin had a rake’s reputation – By God, he had slept with every woman in London – but she is not a heroine to take things lying down (no pun intended). She befriends his mother and step-brother, flirts with his best friend and defiantly seeks out Lady Pettifer and others of whom her husband disapproves.

However, they argue. Bitterly at times and she is assailed by doubts – especially when she hears of a ‘list’ that Valentin had drawn up. A list of the desired properties in a complacent wife. When she’s led to believe that Valentin is still sleeping with his pre-marriage mistress, she is broken hearted.

“Do you think me too weak to withstand your true passions?”

Valentin sat up, dislodging the book from his chest. “I like sex, Sara. I like it a lot. I don’t expect you to put up with my excessive demands.”

She has to face facts. Her husband is unlikely to remain faithful to her.

 It was her own fault. She had begged him to marry her. He must have assumed she was desperate enough to agree to anything to get a title. A tear slid down her cheek onto her pillow. Her mother always told her to be careful what she wished for.

I enjoyed the way Sara stood up to the at-times-overbearing Valentin (I cheered when she threw a book at his head *grin *) and she makes him meet her head on. She demands to understand his sexual needs and he takes her to the House of Pleasure, a discreet club that he frequents.

 9694512_s“At Madame’s there are many ways to pleasure yourself or be pleasured. There are also many levels of watching.” He glanced around the well-lit room. “At the moment, we have complete privacy. If we chose, we could open some of the drapes and allow others to watch us through the mirrors and peepholes.”

This book had So Much Sex in it. Valentin introduces Sara to one kink after another, along with the idea of sexual games. Five sounds delicious – you’ll have to read it to find out how to play that! Kate Pearce does it beautifully though. Her writing is fluid and sexy, she doesn’t resort to tired clichés and somehow she makes every coupling seem fresh and exciting.

I have to mention the Red Book. Valentin leaves a silk-covered book for her to find. For her to write in.

10890206_sThis book is for us. Share your dreams and sexual fantasies until you grow bold enough to ask for them out loud. I will endeavour to fulfil any desires you have.
Don’t be afraid to imagine.

Not only that, he’s already written the first entry:

 “I sit at my desk in the study. It is late and I am thinking of you lying in bed alone. Does my beautiful bride believe I have abandoned her? Perhaps she needs to understand that I am no pampered aristocrat but a man who chooses to work for his living, despite the contempt of his peers.”

He goes on to tell her in detail, about his fantasy and at that point, I couldn’t have put my Kindle down unless it was a major emergency.

It’s not just an orgy-elevated-to-a-love-story though. There are captivating underlying secondary stories… The mysterious business enemy that is making trouble for Valentin. His difficult relationship with his family. Peter’s story. The hated and feared Turkish Brothel owner who resurfaces with his own hidden agenda. And Valentin’s own heartbreaking backstory.

 He touched the raised scar hidden under his long hair at the nape of his neck. A set of initials, forever burned into his flesh.

Simply Sexual is a thrill from start to finish: at times fan-myself-Hot, at others, edge-of-the-seat-tense, and with gut-cramping heartbreak laced through the pages.

While annoying at times, Valentin eventually won me over. Kate Pearce persuaded me that he was difficult to love because of who he was, and how he saw himself. Even when I scowled at him and raged at his behaviour, I still loved the broken man underneath.

I love it when I get emotionally invested in a story. To me, that’s the mark of good writing 🙂

Overall rating – 5 silken sheets

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Sexy rating – 5 lips

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Plot – great

Characters – great

Warnings – you may combust while reading; keep ice cubes and a cold shower on standby… BDSM / Menage / MMF

DETAILS: Genre: Historical erotic romance Published: February 2008

Price: $8.09 (Kindle)

Publisher: Kensington Aphrodisia

Author’s website: Kate Pearce

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