Every instinct is telling Lily Lambert to run from Penworth Hall as fast as she can, but there is something about handsome, daunting John Middleton, Earl of Penworth, that keeps her in his employ. It certainly isn’t his twin wards, evil little vixens who will do anything in their power to have Lily fired as their chaperone.
And the love potion isn’t helping.
Lily bought it in desperation, hoping to marry so she could escape her lot in life as governess and companion to the spoiled offspring of the nobility. On a voyage to John’s Scottish estate, Lily sips the potion while gazing at the ship’s captain, only to come face-to-face with John, who seems to be instantly smitten. Now, in the locked rooms and dark alcoves of his Scottish castle, John traps Lily in moment of impropriety, bringing a flush to her fair cheeks and igniting an indecent longing in her body. Only time will tell if the potion’s impossible promise will ruin Lily — or set her free…
|Title:||Dreams of Desire|
|Series:||Spinster’s Cure (Book 3) aka Novels of Sensual Destiny|
|Category / Genre(s):||Historical|
|Point of View:|
|Location:||England and Scotland|
|Release Date:||1st December, 2010|
Standard and uninspiring romance
This is the final book in the Spinster’s Cure trilogy (which I’ve only just realised is also nauseatingly also called the Novels of Sensual Destiny series – *rolls eyes*) after Promise of Pleasure and Taste of Temptation but each stands completely alone so there’s no need to read them in order.
Lily, like most of Holt‘s heroines, is described as an independent, spirited female and I was delighted to find she actually was written as such. She had spirit and wasn’t afraid to stand up to John – and not just as a token gesture. Sure, he was authoritative and demanding and she sometimes was led by him, but on the whole she was feistier than most. John was Holt‘s usual alpha male and arrogant to boot but I liked his interactions with Lily and liked their story.
Unfortunately, Lily and John’s story took up so little of the actual page count that it was hard to really get behind them or into their story. Other stories included step-mother Esther and half brother Edward and their desire to lay claim to the Earldom. There was John’s fiancé, Violet and her secret love for Edward. Then there was John’s mother, Barbara’s, return from the continent and her subsequent affair with Philip. [Edit: Wait – who is Philip?] And finally there were the pointless evil twins and first, their desire to get rid of Lily and second, their dominatrix tendancies and twisted sexual desires. I cared little for any of the supporting characters and felt they wasted time away from the main story.
There were, as always, the usual Americanisms, modern slang and talk and general research errors which not only galled but pull you away from the story.
I think I’m going to have to give Cheryl Holt a miss for a wee while from now on. This book was an improvement on the last of hers I read however I feel that they’re all getting a bit similar and I’m now looking for something a little bit more special when I spend my money on a romance novel. This book wasn’t terrible but if I’m honest, I feel that I can’t recommend it. 3 stars.
CHERYL HOLT is a New York Times, USA Today, and Amazon “Top100” bestselling author who has published over fifty novels.
Her books have been released to wide acclaim, and she has won or been nominated for many national awards. She is considered to be one of the masters of the romance genre. For many years, she was hailed as “The Queen of Erotic Romance”, and she’s also revered as “The International Queen of Villains.” She is particularly proud to have been named “Best Storyteller of the Year” by the trade magazine Romantic Times BOOK Reviews.
She lives and writes in Hollywood, California, and she loves to hear from fans.