Book Review-Beyond Scandal and Desire by Lorraine Heath

Lorraine Heath introduces us to a sensual love affair that takes us back in time to the spicy Victorian Era in London, England. A time of growth in the sciences, politics, and human rights. These two people come together and learn to fight with having all of society against them being together…

HOLY SMOKES!!! This book just blew me away here, and I just didn’t want to put it away. I have had such admiration for Lorraine Heath, and over the years she has become one of my favorites here. She has such a solid talent in writing historical romances, and I got a kick out of her delving into the Victorian Era. This story introduces the reader to an aspect of Victorian culture that very few know about…baby farmers. This is actually a very heartwrenching aspect of society and one of the “skeletons” on England and I was really happy that Lorraine Heath did such great research here and implemented this aspect into the story.

Our wonderful key players in the story are:

  • Mick Trewlove, is a commoner, he was deposited and abandoned by his real parents to be thrown away to a baby farm, but his adopted mother took him in and raised him along with his siblings. Mick has created his own wealth and power but is out for revenge so his father will finally admit that Mick is his son.
  • Aslyn Hastings, is part of the Ton, her parents died and she was brought in and became the war of the Duke and Duchess of Hedley. Even though she has always has done what was expected of her, she dreams of adventure and passion.

Beyond Scandal and Desire is such a sensational romance and I totally got a kick out of this book and I honestly didn’t want it to end. This story made me realize why I fell in love with Lorraine Heath in the first place and this book was pretty epic in its own way.

This story begins when our hero Mick, is out on his journey for revenge and to be claimed by his real father. So his plan is to make his “brother” lose everything including his almost betrothed. Aslyn has always known that her future is to marry the Duke’s son, even though she doesn’t love him the way that a woman should love the man she is supposed to marry. When she meets Mick in the gardens, she is intrigued because he stirs desire, passion that she has never felt before.

She could practically see it coming from him in waves that had the power to encompass everything around him–including herself. She wanted to experience that power, be drawn into it, captured by it, seduced within it.

Through a set of events, Mick and Aslyn run into each other and the chemistry between them in obvious even though Aslyn knows she is supposed to marry another man, she honestly doesn’t feel like she can. Especially when her betrothed starts to change when his desperation for gambling takes a twist. The man that she really wants is Mick, a man that the Duke and his wife DONT approve of. But Mick is the man that she is beginning to love and wants to fight for them. But she will find out that Mick has a mission, one that could bring downfall to the family that she loves dearly.

Mick couldn’t help but wonder if sometimes heartache was needed in order to move forward.

I was really intrigued by the turn of events that bring this couple together. There were such sensuality and endearing romantic qualities that pulled me into this story so completely. I just loved every moment that Mick and Aslyn have together. From the sexy flirting to Mick showing Aslyn another side to him, to a journey of forgiveness and redemption. I really was cheering for these two from the beginning. There was such class to their relationship. I really adored the way that they court and fall in love. There were so many tender moments that made me “sigh” in that sweet romantic way that gives you all the warm fuzzies. This is the epitome of ROMANCE and as I was reading this delightful story, I was reminded of this author, the reason I love romance in fiction and why it does so much for me. This book just made me happy, grinning all the way, and I immersed myself completely in this beautiful story.

I don’t care. When I am with you, I feel as though, for the first time in my life, I am real, I am seen. It’s difficult to explain, but I want to experience everything with you that a woman can experience.

I really fell in love with the siblings though, and seeing their eccentricities and their bond as a family even if it’s not by blood. I love how protective Mick is of them and even though they frustrate him at times, he is all about giving them what they dream and desire. Especially to his sisters, he would do anything for even if it means buying a parasol or helping a sister set up a bar. And I felt that Lorraine Heath did a tremendous job in showing the tragic elements of Baby Farming. It definitely broke my heart seeing it in this story and how society viewed children born “on the other side of the blanket” as it were.

Overall Beyond Scandal and Desire is a stunning beginning to a new series, a story of true heart, hidden secrets and a true love affair that sings to your heart!!! INCREDIBLY HEARTFELT!

If I touch you, Aslyn, I’m not going to stop touching you until I’ve touched every aspect of you

About Lorraine Heath

Also writes Young Adult under Rachel Hawthorne, Jade Parker, and with her son as J.A. London)

Lorraine Heath has always had a soft spot for emotional love stories. No doubt because growing up, watching movies with her mom, she was taught that the best movies "won't half make you cry."

She is the daughter of a British beauty (her mom won second place in a beauty contest sponsored by Max Factor® during which she received a kiss from Caesar Romero--Joker on the original Batman TV series) and a Texan who was stationed at Bovingdon while serving in the air force. Lorraine was born in Watford, Hertfordshire, England, but soon after moved to Texas. Her "dual" nationality has given her a love for all things British and Texan, and she enjoys weaving both heritages through her stories.

When she received her BA degree in psychology from the University of Texas, she had no idea she had gained a foundation that would help her to create believable characters—characters that are often described as “real people.” Her novels have appeared on bestseller lists, including USA Today, Waldenbooks, and most recently, the New York Times.

Book Review-Wildfire by Ilona Andrews

Wildfire is the thrilling, on the edge of your seat thrills and chills as Connor “Mad Rogan” and Nevada try to come out on top for the danger that threatens them from an enemy they won’t see coming. 

What an explosive installment in this series and boy I was just overcome in so many ways in this story. Nevada and Connor just grow so much in this story and we see their relationship deal with some unique dynamics that they have never dealt with previously.

Nevada knows that with her grandmother searching for her and her siblings, that they are in grave danger and each day she never knows if it will be the day that her grandmother will find them. But there is one way, is to claim themselves as a “House” which will protect them for three years and allow them to gain strength and build their protection. But when Nevada is called in to solve a case of Connor’s ex girlfriend, whose husband has been kidnapped, it will prove to challenge Nevada  with another woman threatening what she has with Connor. But Nevada is a woman who is a fighter especially when it comes to the man she loves.

We see some interesting complexities that rise in the story. Now the obvious strength of the story is the plot line dealing with the kidnapping and getting approved to be a house for Nevada’s family. The only downside to this story, and yes there was one small downside. The romance between Nevada and Connor took a back seat, and it felt less than normal with Ilona Andrews and I would have liked to see Connor and Nevada together more in this book especially with their relationship becoming more cemented than in previous books. What I was impressed by was the truly development of the story line.

This story was so ‘on the edge of your seat’ exciting. I never knew what would happen and there were some shocks that I didn’t see coming but I was so impressed with Nevada. Connor doesn’t want to make the situation worse for Nevada and is willing to put their relationship on hold or not announce it but Nevada is NOT subtle and not ashamed of what she has with Connor and I love how she is always showing what he means to her.

Overall Wildfire is a story of danger, intrigue, of unsuspecting villains and the true strength that Connor and Nevada have together….POWERFULLY PROVOKING!

About Ilona Andrews

Ilona Andrews is the pseudonym for a husband-and-wife writing team. Ilona is a native-born Russian and Gordon is a former communications sergeant in the U.S. Army. Contrary to popular belief, Gordon was never an intelligence officer with a license to kill, and Ilona was never the mysterious Russian spy who seduced him. They met in college, in English Composition 101, where Ilona got a better grade. (Gordon is still sore about that.)

Gordon and Ilona currently reside in Oregon with their two children, three dogs and a cat. They have co-authored two series, the bestselling urban fantasy of Kate Daniels and romantic urban fantasy of The Edge.