Monday, June 20, 2011
Mistress of Pleasure is a historical romance debut novel by Delilah Marvelle. It tells the story of Maybelle- the granddaughter of a French courtesan whose grandmother runs the famous 'School of Gallantry' where men are schooled in the art of pleasure.
Granddaughter of a renowned courtesan, Maybelle de Maitenon has no interest in her grandmother's school in London where gentlemen receive instruction - in the art of seduction. Her only desire in life is to remain independent, free from men and that shackles of marriage. But when Maybelle lays eyes on Edmund Worthington, the Duke of Rutherford, at a soiree, and hears of his scandalous reputation, she decides he's the perfect person for her to have a tryst with no strings attached...
Unbridled passion has again muddied Edmund Worthington's family name. After his very public dalliance with the strikingly beautiful and sensual Maybelle, his mother insists he marry her. But much to the Duke's surprise, Maybelle scoffs at his proposal. Never has he encountered such a brazen - and maddeningly irresistible - woman. But when Maybelle's grandmother falls ill, forcing Maybelle to take over the operation of her school, Edmund devises a plan to make her his. He enrols in the school, where no lone other than Maybelle must give him expert lessons in carnal pleasure. (from Amazon.com)
The best thing about this book was that the female lead was not a lady of good breeding but a rather unusual character. She likes to read Volatire. Maybelle is also not like the usual timid/meek female protagonists in many other historical romances. Her character was one of the strongest in the book.
It is quite obvious right from the start that she and the Duke are made for each other. Both of them are very passionate and will give everything for love, but like all other romance protagonists, deny it to their last breath.
Unlike Maybelle, though the Duke's character is very stereotypical. The scandalous past of his father seems like a half-hearted attempt to make him stand out among the tons of other troubled, good-looking and haunted dukes who populate so many historical romances. Even then, there is nothing wrong with him, only that he is too predictable at times. But sometimes, he might surprise you.
The real good thing about this book was the extra characters- especially Maybelle's grandmother, the Duke's mother and most definitely all the gentlemen in the School of Gallantry. I would have liked to read a story featuring each of them. They were in fact, more interesting that the protagonists!
Overall, a good book if you love the Historical romance genre or are looking for a read that will put you in the mood for love.
Pros- Nice cover
Strong female lead
It's a quick read
Cons- Hero is a little predictable
Could have been longer