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Book Cover C2’s review of Lord of Temptation (Lost Lords of Pembrook, Book 2) by Lorraine Heath
Historical Romance published by Avon 25 Sep 12

When is a pirate not a pirate?  And when is a fiancé not a fiancé?  And how can the two ever fall in love???  In the second book of Lorraine Heath’s Lost Lords of Pembrook trilogy, we find out.

Lord Tristan Easton, twin brother of the recently-back-from-the-grave Duke of Keswick, went to sea when he and his brothers escaped from their murderous uncle.  He was “sold” to a ship’s captain to be a cabin boy.  He and his brother agreed that it would be the best place for him to hide and his brother needed money to join the army.  Still, it was a big change from the life he was accustomed to and the transition wasn’t always smooth.  However, years later, Tristan still loves the sea and is captain of his own ship – he has made a name for himself, even.  He is known as Crimson Jack, an adventurer.

An adventurer is just what Lady Anne Hayworth needs.  Anne quarreled with her fiancé the night before he left to fight in the Crimean War.  Now she wants to hire Crimson Jack to take her to Scutari, the city where the British troops were taken when injured, to find Walter.  What Anne doesn’t say is that Walter died in Scutari and she hopes to find his grave so she can say goodbye. She needs to find a way to put her past love behind her so she can move forward in her life. Her father is pushing her to get married – so she won’t become a burden on her brothers.  She is all of 23, after all.  Jeez.

When Anne offers him a large sum of money, Tristan is suddenly intrigued by this determined young lady – but tells her he isn’t interested in her money and invites her to barter something else.  Anne is offended and leaves, and Tristan is left wondering why her opinion of him matters when no one else’s does.  And sends a crew member to follow her.

Tristan has no desire to go to the Crimea – the area that almost cost his twin brother, Sebastian, his life – but he would like to have Lady Anne on his ship…not to deliver her to another man, though.  Tristan is in the mood for a challenge – and he thinks he might have found one in Lady Anne.  So what’s a pirate-ish adventurer to do? Bribe all the other captains to keep them from taking Anne where she wants to go, of course. Heh. Sneaky.

Anne is furious and vows never to give Tristan what he wants from her. But her father keeps pushing her to rejoin society and she just can’t until she says goodbye to Walter. When Tristan comes to her and offers to sail her to Scutari for a kiss – at a time and place (on his ship) of his choosing and the duration is his to decide, as well (and if she pulls away, he gets another), Anne finally agrees. She decides even if Crimson Jack is ever so tempting, she knows better than to give into that sort of temptation.

But the days at sea are long and Anne and Tristan are slowly drawn to each other. Tristan can’t imagine any man not wanting her (she still hasn’t told him the truth about Walter) and Anne begins to see there is much more to Crimson Jack than his adventuring pirating reputation would imply.

But Anne is expected to marry a lord and take her place in London’s society. And Tristan and his brothers were not exactly welcomed with open arms when they revealed their true identities. Can a pirate give up the sea for love? Can a well-bred lady find happiness with a notorious pirate lord?

Oh, faithful reader, I very much enjoy Anne and Tristan’s story. Their relationship happens so naturally, I thought. No forcing the lead couple together too fast or anything like that – everything just falls into place and feels real. I enjoyed the first book in this series, but this one is better (and actually stands alone quite nicely if you’re a reading rebel who likes to read stuff out of order). I hope the trend continues – that would mean the third book will be awesome. 🙂

If you enjoy unusual heroes (or need a break from the run-of-the-mill lord) and smart, thoughtful heroines, I encourage you to pick up Lord of Temptation. You won’t be sorry.

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Grade: B+


Three young heirs, imprisoned by an unscrupulous uncle, escaped—to the sea, to the streets, to faraway battle—awaiting the day when they would return to reclaim their birthright.
Once upon a time, he was Lord Tristan Easton—now he is Crimson Jack, a notorious privateer beholden to none, whose only mistress is the sea. But all that will change when exquisite Lady Anne Hayworth hires his protection on a trip into danger and seduction. . .
Desperation brought Anne to the bronzed, blue-eyed buccaneer. But after the Captain demands a kiss as his payment, desire will keep her at his side. She has never known temptation like this—but to protect her heart, she knows she must leave him behind. Yet Tristan cannot easily forget the beauty—and when they meet again in a London ballroom, he vows he won’t lose her a second time, as fiery passion reignited takes them into uncharted waters that could lead the second lost lord home. . .

No excerpt available.

Other books in the series:

Book Cover