Review: Pursuit of Pleasure by Elizabeth Essex:
The Particulars: Historical Romance, Kensington, available in print and e-book
The Source: Freebie from Sony
The Grade: C
Lizzie Paxton’s dream in life is to be a widow–if only she could skip the wedding and the husband. When her childhood friend Captain James Marlowe proposes a marriage in name only, she accepts, knowing she’ll have the independence she craves once he sets sail. Though James is the only man Lizzie trusts, she doesn’t trust the scintillating desire he evokes in her.
James knows he shouldn’t get involved with anyone, especially with his uncertain future. But he just can’t help himself when he overhears Lizzie’s declaration. Though he’s promised her a marriage of convenience, he wastes no time in seducing her and taking her over the precipice of desire. Yet not even his beautiful wife can deter him from his cause.
But when Lizzie discovers her husband has deceived her, James must choose between devotion to duty and loyalty to the woman he cannot live without. . .
I downloaded this when Kensington offered it as a freebie, last year I think. But for a number of reasons, I didn’t read it until now.
This, unlike most historical romances I read, is set in Dartmouth. And I loved how the setting was used, and how it influenced the plot. I could almost hear the waves crashing against the steep cliffs, and the winds blowing over the moor.I could taste the dust in the air as Lizzie visited The Glass House. But most of all, I loved the Glass House. I loved how isolated it was, and how many secrets it house. But, most of all I liked how Lizzie gradually turned it into a home.
It took awhile before the plot hooked me, but once it did I couldn’t stop reading. I had to find out wheter or not Lizzie would forgive Marlowe, or not. ( I wouldn’t have, honestly.) It was fastpaced, and filled with plot twists that kept on surprising me. I had a hunch who the villain was, but… well, let’s just say I was wrong.
My favorite character is this book was Lizzie. She suffered a lot in the book, but she never gave up. Yes, she grieved for Jamie, but she didn’t let it run her life. She was determined to keep on living her life.
But, if Lizzie was my favorite character I had a lot of trouble with Jamie and the deceptions that surrounded his “death.” But what redeems him to me is the fact that he hated lying to Lizzie.
I felt for the Tuppers, being caught between Jamie’s orders, and Lizzie’s determinations. But, they were good people.
That said, I had one other problem with this book: the romance. Maybe it was because they had been friends for so long, but I never felt that they were in love. They felt more like friends that got married and had sex.