My review cross-posted from Joyfully Reviewed: http://www.joyfullyreviewed.com/reviews/Oct09/simplysexual.KP.html
Valentin Sokorvsky is not your typical English lord. As a child he was captured and sold to a Turkish brothel where he was kept as a sex slave. To all outward acquaintances, the intervening years since his rescue have healed him, though he possesses a rather insatiable appetite for sex. When Valentin discovers that the man who rescued him is in need of financial help, he offers to solve John Harrison’s financial problems and marry one of his daughters. Though Charlotte, the youngest, would be the perfect, biddable wife, it’s Sara, the eldest, who Valentin can’t get off his mind.
Sara is beautiful, intelligent, and, to Valentin’s delight, incredibly passionate. Their marriage brings both to unexplored levels of passion, but Valentin soon discovers someone is out to destroy his newfound happiness. An unknown enemy is determined to ruin Valentin’s marriage, business, and social standing, while spreading rumors of what transpired during his enslavement. As Valentin works to uncover his foe’s identity, he must decide if he can trust Sara, trust his own feelings enough to reveal the secrets of his past, or if he should close the door on love and keep his marriage simply sexual.
Sensuality reaches exquisite new heights in this phenomenal story by Kate Pearce. Simply Sexual raises the bar for eroticism mixed with romance in the first book of the sure-to-be-fantastic House of Pleasure series.
Valentin is an intriguing hero. He’s stunningly gorgeous, seemingly carefree, and, though titled, is also successful businessman. His easy manner covers the scars of his past. Though Valentin can trick even himself into believing his time as a pleasure slave doesn’t have an impact on who he is now, it is clear he self-medicates with avoidance and sex. I loved watching Sara break through his barriers to prove to him that he can trust her and her love for him. As for Sara herself, she immediately won me over. She’s smart, giving, honest, and a perfect fit for her husband, both in bed and out. I enjoyed watching her find the freedom to be who she truly is over the course of the story. Both Sara and Valentin grow and change over the course of the story. I delighted in this aspect of the story every bit as much as I did their heated encounters, which are hot enough to make you sweat.
I cannot write about Simply Sexual without mentioning Peter Howard, Valentin’s best friend. Having been captured and kept as a sex slave alongside Valentin, the two have an unbreakable bond which manifests itself in a variety of ways and is key to the tale. Ms. Pearce continues to amaze me with her talent for creating fascinating, complex characters and situations. I finished Simply Sexual eager for a whole host of characters to get their own stories, and Peter definitely topped the list. Luckily for me, I was able to read his story, Simply Sinful, as soon as I finished Valentin and Sara’s romance.
Captivating, tender, and divinely sensual, Simply Sexual entertains from the very first page to the very last. Simply marvelous!