BOUND BY DESIRE
Lukas Hawkins, the second son of the troubled House of Trent, is on a mission: find his missing mother and her alleged kidnapper, a brute named Roger Morton. If bringing the villain to justice means breaking a few laws, then so be it. But when he encounters a mysterious stranger with the face of an angel and a body made for sin, Luke suddenly finds his task-and his heart-in peril.
Emma Curtis knows of Lord Lukas’s rakish reputation-and hopes to use it to her advantage. While most men of honor would never travel alone with an unmarried woman, Luke is quite willing to take Emma on the road . . . and into his bed. As their journey carries them to unexpected places, Luke and Emma indulge their every passion and share their most private fantasies. But just when their deepest desires are finally within reach, a secret is revealed that threatens to end their love forever . . .
Review: In this second book in the House of Trent series, the search for the missing Dowager Countess Trent continues with Luke’s story. Luke has taken up the challenge to find his missing mother, and he now has a clue that a mysterious man named Roger Morton is the kidnapper. While in Bedford, drinking in a pub, Luke is approached by Emma Curtis, a woman with the face of an angel and a body made for sin. She says they can help each other – she too is looking for Roger Morton. Not only is he the man who stole her father’s entire fortune, leaving her family destitute, but he’s also the man who murdered her Henry, her husband of three months. Luke realizes that they can help each other, but the temptation of her is almost more than he can bear. He promises her that he will not touch her…until she begs him too.
Thus begins their travels together. To all outward appearances, Luke is a rogue and a rake, out only for his own pleasures. But Emma soon sees the real man, who although tortured by hidden secrets and horrendous nightmares, is a good man, and one she is growing to care for. Luke soon realizes that while he wants her for his—and her own—pleasure, Emma is a true angel, and she makes him want to be a better man.
Their search continues, taking them from Bristol to Edinburgh, and back to London. Along the way, their proximity to each other brings them closer together as they converse all day and sleep in the same room at night. Back in London, the trail heats up as they cross paths with Roger Morton, but a horrifying twist brings Emma’s world crumbling down, and forces her to betray Luke’s deepest secrets.
I had enjoyed this author’s first book in the series, but this second one completely blew me away. I couldn’t put it down once I began reading. The characters spring to life, and the plot and story are so good it felt as if I were watching a movie. I’m a sucker for a wounded hero, and Luke definitely qualifies, with horrors that go back to his childhood. But Emma is a soothing balm, and begins to help Luke realize he is so much more than what he’s always believed himself to be.
From the opening scene, I was pulled into the story. I could easily imagine the settings, and felt as if I were a part of the world. This book alternates between Emma’s and Luke’s point of view. The author has a knack for knowing which POV to write from to reveal the most about the other character in the scene.
There is a scorching heat and chemistry between Emma and Luke, and once she lets him know she does want him, he begins to teach her the darker pleasures of what can happen in the bedroom…the floor, the chaise lounge, against the wall. While the sex is definitely rated X, Ms. Haymore writes it so it’s more than just sex. She has brought the emotions into play, and what happens between Emma and Luke in the bedroom reveal more about the complexity of their characters. Luke may push Emma farther in erotic pleasure than she ever dreamed, but his first concern is for her well-being, and that she is safe and well-satisfied.
I’ve already added the third book in the series to my TBR list. This is definitely a series and an author to watch, and I’ve become a huge fan of Jennifer Haymore.
Warnings: The sex is definitely more erotic, but handled VERY tastefully. There are some instances of bondage, again, written very tastefully. For anyone who likes very hot sex in their books, this is a keeper.