Darian Hunter: Duke of Desire by Carole Mortimer
Published by Harlequin
Publication Date: October 21st 2014
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Darian Hunter, Duke of Wolfingham: legendary rake and notorious bachelor.
Mariah Beecham, Countess of Carlisle: society's scandalous widow and secret agent of the crown.
A notoriously debauched house party.
Forced to pose as lovers, Darian and Mariah must work together to stop an assassination plot.
As the shocking and oh-so-sensual games play out around them, the romantic ruse becomes all too real. And the tantalizing temptation to indulge their every desire becomes overwhelming…
Darian Hunter, spy for the Crown, is none to happy with his younger brother who he believes is lusting after a notorious and scandalous widow. He tells his brother to back off but his brother dismisses Darian’s concerns. Darian decides that he’ll talk to the source herself and get her to back off. He dances with Mariah Beecham but she proves to be almost as frustrating as his brother. She also proves to be much more desirable than he originally believed and he finds himself attracted to her which he doesn’t care for at all.
It turns out that Mariah is a spy for the Crown as well and they both work for the same man. That man assigns the two to act as a couple to check out a possible assassination plot to kill the Prince. The two are not happy about it but try quite hard to act like they like each other. They find themselves very attracted to each other but Mariah decided a long time ago that after her first marriage she would never let herself be controlled by a man – no matter how handsome he is. While she sees good qualities in Darian she’s not willing to sleep with him just for fun.
As much as I liked the whole idea of the scandalous house party and Darian and Mariah posing as a couple it ended up not working for me all that well.
Darian and Mariah were so at odds with each other and argued constantly. It was quite frustrating because even after they slept together they almost couldn’t get past the animosity. The fact that they then declared their love for each other surprised the heck out of me because I didn’t see them falling for each other. It was arguing then sex then…love? I couldn’t quite fathom it.
Despite my doubts about the love it was a very sensual book and had some pretty racy stuff in it for the time it was set in. If you like a historical that’s not all prim and proper this one is for you.
Rating: 3 out of 5