Sophie Ashley is doing the best she can to provide for her son she bore out of wedlock by attempting to become a courtesan. She sneaks into a Cyprian Ball to find a protector and meets Fitzwilliam Montcleif better known as the Duke of Caradon or Cary to his friends.
Cary has been reclusive since he returned from the war in Ceylon where he was held as a prisoner of war. Before he left for Ceylon, Cary was a rake, sewing his wild oats throughout London and his past buried. The war has triggered memories of what happened when he was five. He knows he needs to find a wife and get an heir so he lets his friends take him to the Cyprian Ball. While Cary desires Sophie, he is unable to complete the act due to his tragic past. They must battle a ghost from his past to find true love.
I was hooked from the first chapter. The characters were different. Sophie wasn't a London debutant looking for the Duke and Cary wasn't the perfect Duke. Both had flaws. I truly enjoyed reading this novel. It was the perfect balance between sensual and erotic. The resolution of Cary's nightmare from when he was kidnapped at age five was quite a surprise. And the final resolution was perfect.
I received this ARC from NetGalley and the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!