by Julia Ross

November 2005
ISBN: 0-425-20565-7
Reviewer Graphic Button Berkley
Trade Paperback

Pitching amongst the waves and swells of the ocean, one woman’s life is in mortal danger. Her Sir Lancelot will rescue her from the storm. This will change their souls – their very heartbeats. Become the story; live in the passion that is…Games Of Pleasure!

Lady Belinda Carhart has just set Lord Ryderbourne on his ear; by telling him she has been promised to another man. The rebuke she gives Ryder wounds his pride. As he is riding home, he spies a dingy floundering in the ocean’s stormy swells. There looks to be a person within, no wait, it is a woman! Ryder will ride hell-bent into the ocean to rescue this unconscious woman. When he finally makes it to shore, he finds she has been badly beaten and half dressed.

Ryder takes her to a nearby inn for food and shelter. She tells him a name, but he knows that it is not her real name. They will have this one special night together, sharing food, intellectual conversations, and sexual passions beyond both, their wildest dreams.

The next morning she is gone, but she does disclose in a note to Ryder, her true name, and the reason she must flee. Miracle Heather, the most famous of courtesan, is now also, a murderess.

Ryder will be unable to forget their one night of passions; his very soul seems to crave hers. He will set out to find Miracle, and when he finally finds her; they will embark on a journey filled with danger, drama, fiery carnal passions, and life altering adventures.

Games of Pleasure is the newest release by author Julia Ross, and the second in the Wyldshay family saga: Night of Sin was the first. This is a whirlwind historical romance that entices the reader to keep turning the pages – needing to read about this epic couple, and what will happen next to them. This book was faultless: finely written, with suburb accuracy. Every detail pronounced and displayed in such a way as to procure the reader’s attention.

You can never truly grasp the contrast between the poor and hard worked commoners or how ultra rich upper society is, until the two are postured in this book. This is a sign of a great writer – pulling from the emotional well of the reader’s soul. Games of Pleasure borders on the fine line of erotic, which this reader found highly arousing - portrayed in lush, beautiful words.

This reader loved the Duchess of Blackdown (Ryder’s mother); she is quite the character. She is like a double-edged sword; she will nick with one edge and knight you with the other.

Ryder is a man of high moral fiber with the responsibility of many upon his wide shoulders. He is the first-born; destined to take over the duties that befit his social status. He has always done the right thing, that is, until Miracle sweeps into his life. Ryder cannot stop thinking about Miracle and will go in search of her, in hopes of helping her, and possible saving her life.

Miracle had a rough start in life, and has had to struggle hard for everything. She has learned how to play men, like a finely tuned instrument; with carnal knowledge as her master weapon. But, with Ryder’s innocent touch, something seeps into her hardened soul, opening a crack around her heart. Can Ryder save Miracle from the hangman’s noose, without losing his very soul and honor? Can these two survivor what lies ahead for them?

It is through Ryder and Miracle’s travels, and the people they will meet, that both learn different, life altering experiences.

Games of Pleasure is a winning historical novel. It will take your breath away with the richness of its settings, the adventures of the characters, and the sexual passions that are shared within its pages. This book comes with the highest regards from this reviewer.

Reviewed in November 2005 by Janalee.

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