Judith Lovington escaped a vile man years ago and found sanctuary in a traveling troupe of actors. Fending off the unwanted attentions of rakish gentlemen has become second nature to her. But when Lord Kelthorne begins his assault, never has temptation been stronger. How will she withstand his heated kisses when he represents all that she lost so many years ago and all that she desires now?
But his wicked intentions drive her into his arms…
Kelthorne meant only to have a little fun when he first caught and kissed Judith in his apple orchard. Though intent on mending his ways and marrying a proper young miss, he can’t forget the lovely songstress and sets about to break down her every reserve. As he takes his stolen kisses, however, his clever seductions set to work on his own heart. But will he surrender to love at long last?
His smile nearly made her swoon. So this was what it was to be seduced by a rogue. How dreadful. How dreadful and how wonderful all at the same time. No wonder innocent maids, if they were not very careful, could be persuaded to relinquish what should only be given in matrimony.
I have to start by saying that I've never, ever been a fan of regency romance. If I come across one in my Goodreads feed or on Amazon I skim straight over it. It just does not appeal to me on any level. So when I was sent Wicked and Wonderful for review I admit to putting it off for a little while. But it got to the point where I just had to bite the bullet and give it a go. And now, I must eat my words because I'm putting my hand up and saying that I really ended up enjoying this.
At the age of fourteen Judith Lovington ran away to escape the advances of an evil man and was taken in by a group of travelling performers. Now, some years later the troupe are setting up stumps for a series of performances on the grounds of Lord Kelthorne's home. Discovered one night by Kelthorne picking apples in his orchard, Kelthorne manages to wrangle a kiss from Judith. Despite the fact that Kelthorne's sisters are set to arrive with a suitable marriage partner, he is unable to get Judith out of his mind.
Valerie King did a really good job in setting the scenes in just a way so that I could clearly visualise what was being portrayed. I could see the troupe up there on the stage performing. I could picture the the characters and scenery clearly in my mind.
Kelthorne was a character that took me a while to warm to. He was quite set in his ways. But as I said, I haven't read this type of book before, so maybe that's just the way of the males back then. I really liked Judith and as the story went on I found myself liking her more and more. But for me, my favourite characters were some of the secondary ones. Kelthorne's friend Laurence Daulting was a standout for me. He was charming and funny, concerned and caring. I really wish that he had been featured more throughout the story because he stole each scene that he was in.
The romance was clean and sweet, with a few kisses shared between Kelthorne and Judith. Nothing overly wicked really but definitely some wonderful.
For my first delve into regency romance, I found Wicked and Wonderful to be an enjoyable read. It was engaging and managed to keep me interested throughout.
Wicked and Wonderful was provided for review as part of ARC