Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Betrayed by Your Kiss by Laura Landon

It should have been the happiest night of her life…
Lady Olivia Sheridan knows one thing: she has loved Lord Damien forever. But when her beloved is accused of fathering another woman’s child, Olivia’s world is shattered in ways she never thought possible. Especially when Damien’s accuser sets a huge price on his head, and Olivia discovers Damien’s death will be the only outcome…unless she does the one thing he will never forgive her for doing.

When Olivia’s plan to save him goes disastrously, dangerously awry, Damien doesn’t think he’ll ever see the light of day again and, with bitterness, he realizes that the woman he loves is capable of the ultimate betrayal.
Now, four years later, Damien has returned. His eye is on one thing: seeking revenge for what Olivia did to him. Only his heart may get in the way…
Because hell hath no fury…like a man betrayed.

Published & Release Date: Montlake Publishing, March 24, 2015

Time and setting: Victorian England 

Genre: Historical Romance

Heat Level: 1 Scorching Flame

Rating: 4 Gold Crowns

Vikki’s Musings

I was so pleased when I received an invitation from the publisher to review Laura Landon’s upcoming release, Betrayed by Your Kiss. I discovered Ms. Landon several years ago and found her writing so compelling that I quickly read her entire back list and have been a fan ever since. Betrayed by Your Kiss is another emotionally-charged story that kept me flipping the pages on my Kindle well into the night.

The story begins with Lady Olivia at her engagement ball, and what should be the happiest day of her life, turns into a nightmare with consequences beyond anything she could ever imagine. Her betrothed, Lord Iversley is accosted by the Earl of Strathern. The earl accuses him of being responsible for his daughter’s death and challenges Damien to a duel.

Lady Olivia overhears men talking of a ten thousand pound reward on Damien’s head if he survives the duel. While he is gravely injured, the doctor says he will live, but Olivia dares not have Damien remain in England and while he is unconscious, she sends him away on one of her father’s ships bound for the Indies.

Four years later, Damien returns as her father’s will is read. Her father leaves her everything—not entailed—on the condition that she marry the Earl of Iversley. Damien is obviously not the same man from four years ago. He has horrific scars, an unsteady gait and hate glows in his eyes. It is apparent to Olivia that he will never forgive her for the decision she made when she sent him away.

Can she marry this vengeful man and keep her lands and ships, or should she give them up for the safety of another who offers her a calm sedate marriage and future children?

What a rollercoaster of an emotional ride this book is! The plot pulled me in from the beginning and kept me until the end. Ms. Landon has such a way of building sexual tension between the hero and the heroine that it takes my breath away.

Lord Iversley is filled with angst and the need for revenge for the wrong he feels Olivia did when she took away his choice. His pride is deeply wounded as much as his body has been. He is so determined to make Olivia suffer for this that he refuses to forgive her to the bitter end. At one point I greatly feared this couple could not resolve their problems. Talk about taking it down to the wire!

Lady Olivia also despairs of ever having Damien’s forgiveness and is just as determined to thwart his plans. She refuses to enter into a marriage, one where she could never have his love again. Olivia is a strong-willed heroine, yet still has a vulnerable side and my heart ached for her throughout the story.

While I remained riveted and totally enmeshed in this tug of war, I felt there was almost too much conflict between Olivia and Damien, neither one of them would give an inch to the other. At times it was a bit draining. I would have preferred if Olivia had set out to win Damien’s love and forgiveness when she realizes how angry and vengeful he is, but that is just my personal preference and for the most part, it did not take me out of the deeply emotional tale. That is why I have given this book 4 gold crowns, along with a few minor discrepancies, such as one character being a marquess most of the time, but then referred to as an earl twice. That should have been caught during edits. There were a few other inconsistencies as well. This was an ARC, so hopefully these small errors can be corrected before release.

Nonetheless, a riveting read, and I’m glad I had the chance to read this story of love conquering insurmountable difficulties. Betrayed by Your Kiss has a great ‘happily ever after’, thank goodness. If you have never read any of Laura Landon’s books, I highly recommend them. I am confident that you will find her ability to give her readers an emotional story as satisfying as I do. Happy reading!

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