Destitute and without friends, Violet Carlton is forced to seek employment at the House of Pleasure in London. She steels herself for her first customer and is shocked when the man rescues her instead of ravishing her. A grateful Violet cannot help but admire the handsome Viscount Trevor. But she must curb her desire for the dashing nobleman she can never have because he is already betrothed to another . . .
Tristan had gone to the House of Pleasure for a last bit of fun before he became a faithful married man. But when he recognizes the woman in his bed, he becomes determined to save her instead. Now, his heart wars with his head as he falls for the vulnerable courtesan. Unable to break his betrothal without a scandal, Tris resolves to find Violet proper employment or a husband of her own. Still, his arms ache for Violet, urging him to abandon propriety and sacrifice everything to be with the woman he loves. .
Click on title below for direct Amazon buy link:
Only a Mistress Will Do (The House of Pleasure)
It’s 1761, and for a woman who has lost everything, sold every possession, and hasn’t eaten for three days – there’s only one option available. Violet only has her body left, and she’s desperate enough to seek employment at the House of Pleasure. It’s a familiar story to Madame Vestry, who knows she’ll fetch a fine price for Violet’s virginity. Tristan, Viscount Trevor, is about to become engaged, and only wants one more night of illicit pleasure before he becomes a faithful husband. When Tristan comes to Violet, who is understandably shaken, he learns that his actions in the past played a part in bringing her to this point. He decides instead to take her away and find her honorable employment or a husband.
While the attraction that sizzles between this couple is instantaneous, the love that happens almost as quickly seems somewhat unbelievable. Tristan admits that Violet has captured his heart, yet continues on with his betrothal, which is strictly for convenience. First Violet wishes Tristan wanted to marry her, then when he’s actually willing, she refuses. Their indecisiveness and waffling was frustrating to me, as was their concern about scandal, when Violet’s past was already dogged with it. While I eventually came to believe in their love for each other, I also found myself not truly caring for this couple.
There are two previous books in this House of Pleasure series, which I haven’t read, so I admit that some of the characters, relationships, and situations were confusing to me. These weren’t a major part of the book, but enough to somewhat diminish my enjoyment. ONLY A MISTRESS WILL DO provides many enjoyable steamy scenes, and has a well written solution to arrive at the hard won happily-ever-after.
As reviewed at The Romance Reviews: