Whenever I pick up a title by author, Bronwen Evans, I know I am in for an emotional roller coaster and a cutting edge story. This fourth book in the Disgraced Lords series is a nail biter I just couldn't put down.
So certain that she is going to marry the gentleman who has been courting her for weeks, Lady Marissa Hawkstone has blinders on when it comes to the man's true character. When her brother's best friend, the Maitland Spencer, the Duke of Lyttleton, who is also known by the ton as the Cold Duke, tells Marissa of her gentleman's duplicity she is angered and dismayed by what she finds out. She is also confused by Maitland's attempt at flirtation which he appears quite serious in pursuing. Marissa believed Maitland never even noticed her behind his cool and calm exterior.
Maitland decided months ago that he needed a wife, he even went to far as to suggest to to his best friend, Sebastian that his sister, Marissa would be a good choice for his wife. When that idea is shot down by Sebastian, Maitland still has that little voice in his head that feels Marissa should be his wife. Maitland's upbringing was not ideal and he constantly lives in the shadow of his father's reputation for his proclivities and debauchery. Trying to be a better man, Maitland curbs his passions by keeping to a strict schedule with rule to keep him in check, but Marissa seems to bring out his passions and if he allows himself to feel, the flood gates may open and that is what Maitland doesn't want.
In addition to Maitland's personal worries, there is still the matter of a madwoman on the loose attempting to destroy all that Maitland and his friends, the Libertine Scholars, hold dear. Finding this evil woman is paramount, but leads are few and far between, with this danger knowing their every move. When Marissa awakens from a drug induced stupor, naked and in bed with Maitland, they quickly deduce that they have been manipulated into this ruinous occasion and the only way out in binding themselves in matrimony.
The expectations from this marriage between Maitland and Marissa cause issues that could lead to despair for while their passion and desire for one another quickly ignites, Maitland's holding back from his new wife will cause heartbreak unless they both come to terms with the past and look forward into the future.
The wait for A WHISPER OF DESIRE by Bronwen Evans was so worthwhile as this story is teeming with intrigue and passion, danger and need. Ms. Evans is expert in taking the readers through the spectrum of emotions with her carefully spun web. It is always a delight to see the charcters' journeys and through this author's insightful eyes with each and every tale. A WHISPER OF DESIRE is a book that should not be missed!