Friday, March 12

Review: Lessons from a Scarlet Lady by Emma Wildes

Ouf! Just in time, LOL. We're trying to post at least once a week, but for some reasons, it's much harder than with our regular book blogs. I seriously don't understand why it's so hard given that the books discussions are already done... Okay, I know why it's so hard... because putting the review together is a daunting task and I'm lazy LOL. I'm a procrastinator at heart :P But we're good for this week :)

Hope you enjoy the review as much as we enjoyed this book :) and have a nice week-end!

Lessons from a Scarlet Lady by Emma Wildes
published by New American Library in January 2010
No real lady should take lessons from a scarlet woman...

The Duke of Rolthven's new wife, Brianna, is the perfect aristocratic bride. So what would society say if they saw her with a copy of Lady Rothburg's Advice -- a courtesan's lessons for the boudoir? When his innocent wife suddenly becomes a vixen in the bedroom, the proper Duke is truly astounded by her seductive powers. Following a courtesan's advice might lead to trouble - but will it lead to Brianna's ultimate desire: winning her husband's love?

Genre: Historical romance
Series: none

The Story: The back blurb is pretty much dead on for Lessons from a Scarlet Lady. Brianna and Colton have been married for 3 months and while Colton very meticulously chose a bride that had all the requirements to become a duchess, their marriage was also a love match... and Brianna intends to keep it that way. Brianna fears that Colton will tire of her and take a mistress like so many other nobles. In order to prevent the eventuality, she decides to follow the advice found in Lady Rothburg's Advice, a book about women/men relationships written by a courtesan, to add some passion into their marriage bed.

Meanwhile, Rebecca - Brianna's best friend - feels lonely now that all her friends are married. Her parents want her to choose a groom among the men courting her, but the man that has caught her eyes is the only one she cannot have... Robert Northfield, Colton's younger brother as well as a notorious rake and one that her father strongly disapproves of...

Ames: Ok, so what did we all think?

Nath: Lessons from a Scarlet Lady was a pretty good book, very enjoyable, and I thought the premises were refreshing :D

Monroe: LOVED IT! I did (at first) think that the author spent a lot of time on Robert and Rebecca (is that her name? lol) but in the end it evened out pretty well. I’ve never read a book that had two VERY strong story lines.

Ames: Emma Wildes did something similar with her other book, an Indecent Proposition. I felt the same way as you at first, I didn't want any time taken away from the main couple but then I got into Rebecca and Robert's story.

Chantal: I actually liked Rebecca and Robert's story better than the main one. So much so that I skimmed over many parts of the main story so that I could get to Rebecca and Robert again.

Ames: LMAO! Chantal, you always do the opposite of what I expect. And I love it!

I actually really liked Brianna and Colton's story. I like a woman to take charge of her own sexuality, especially in historicals.

Nath: I was going to say the same as Ames, Chantal, you always have a diverging opinion! LOL :)

Me, I liked Brianna and Colton better. I'd have preferred to have less Robert and Rebecca. I liked the characters and especially Rebecca's character. How she felt, especially on the lack of freedom she had due to convention because she was unmarried as opposed to Brianna who was younger, but married. Very interesting. I simply think Rebecca and Robert could have had their own book instead of having their story crammed in with Brianna and Colton.

Chantal: Hehe. I didn't not like Brianna and Colton, I just liked the other couple better.

Brianna was cool. And my favourite part was when Brianna got on her knees and shocked the hell out of Colton. He didn't know if he should enjoy it or be pissed that she even knew about that sex act. LOL.

Monroe: Ya I loved that at every turn there was a shock in what Brianna would do next! I also loved that Colton really had it in him to do all these things to her but he was scared he would scare her off! LOL.

I like Robert and Rebecca but I too wouldn’t have minded if they got their own book b/c I would’ve liked more of BOTH couples lol Speaking of Robert and Rebecca’s story... I loved that he was a rake but a caring one! He really cared about Rebecca’s reputation! :o) And he was scared to hurt her!

Ames: I loved Colton's reactions to everything Brianna did!

Also, when she asked him to stay - and he had no clue what she was talking about! I thought that was very indicative of Colton's attitude towards marriage. He didn't think it would change the way he lived his life all that much but Brianna sure proved him wrong!

Monroe: YES! I lol’d at the fact that he didn’t know what she meant by stay! Lol I was like how can you be so clueless?!?!? But that proves how far they were able to carry their marriage. They truly BOTH learned a lot about what a real marriage means!

Chantal: I agree. And this is one of my favourite kinds of book--already married couple who find love together again (or for the first time if they have yet to love each other)

Colton took his role as Duke very seriously. This is how a Duke acts and this is how a Duke does not act. He carried that over to his bedroom with his proper Duchess wife. She sure has shown him, though.

Nath: In a way though, I find Colton's attitude very indicative of how men must have thought during that time period. I mean, Colton's attitude towards marriage was not casual. He really intended to have a good marriage with Brianna and it is said that he married for love. I guess these men are really raised not to show too much emotions.

Ames: I think what made the encounters between Colton and Brianna so hot was because we know he took his duke-ish attitude to the bedroom. Like Brianna melted his cold exterior and that really worked for me.

That bath scene. I love bath scenes, they're so sensual!

Monroe: Oh! The part where he washes her then ends up just getting her out of the water soaking wet and throwing her on the bed?!??! YOWZA! I loved when he started playing into it all!

Chantal: The best thing about Colton is that even though he has this chilly exterior, he still showed warmth when it was needed. And yeah, having a good woman melted him.

Monroe: Ya underneath Colton's cold exterior is a soft-hearted family man. I don’t even think HE really knew it. But you're exactly right Chantal, it took the right woman to warm him up. Any other woman wouldn’t have even tried! But Brianna wanted the man she KNEW was inside him!

Nath: What did you think of their family background of the Northfield? I enjoyed it. I mean, seems like they had a good father and their mother remarried - that was a surprising tidbits in my opinion.

Ames: Well I liked how Colton realized he missed his grandma and his brothers and that he couldn't stay mad at Brianna over the house party, especially since it brought them all together.

Monroe: They did have a pretty decent family it seemed! And I liked the grandmother!

Ok... we all know I turned back flips when she got preggers…:o) How did yall feel? (Ames we know you and your anti-baby in books rule lol)

Chantal: I giggled. I'm very pro baby in books :-P

Ames: Well I don't think a baby is necessary for an HEA. However, in historicals, it's kind of guaranteed. So I didn't mind it. And I thought it added to the story. Since we missed out on Brianna's and Colton's courtship, it was good to get more out of their marriage.

Nath: I agree with you Ames. I think it was a given she'd get pregnant eventually. It's just embarrassing when as a woman, you cannot recognize the signs and you have your BIL tell you ^_^;

Monroe: If none of the signs told her anything the missing period should have! Lol But then again back then they were so clueless to their bodies... so maybe that’s why.

Ames: I don't think Brianna's mother told her about the birds and bees. Remember she mentioned her mother only talked in metaphors and to do her duty?

It was SO CLEVER how Emma Wildes made the pregnancy somewhat of a conflict, what with Colton doubting the baby's parentage a bit and being truly suspicious over how Brianna gained her knowledge.

I like when couples fight in my books. :P

Chantal: Me too!

Monroe: I get stressed when they fight! LOL

But ya I never thought that Colton would question whose baby it was! I would’ve never thought that he would hire a spy to follow her either. BUT that just shows how our imaginations can go wild and how we overreact. They needed TRUST... and she got that when she tied him up! EPP! lol

Ames: Oh yeah, trust was a big issue.

I like how it all came together.

And I LOVED the fact that once Brianna found out about the spy, she confronted her husband about it. I found her actually communicating with her husband to be very refreshing. I'm sick of characters not talking to each other. Look at how that wound up working for Colton. It DIDN'T.

Nath: I'm not taking Colton's side on this, because really, nobody can't... However, I think that Colton's reaction was quite realistic. Brianna must have learned these things somewhere. It's just sad he didn't ask her and instead, thought it was another man. However, I loved the parts where Colton "asked" advices to Robert LOL :)

Monroe: Yes I hate that too. Most the times a problem can be fixed by just facing it head on! Brianna did that! Yet another great marriage tactic.

Chantal: I was proud of her when she confronted him. Communication is key, and we seem to lack that in books.

Monroe: It is VERY lacking... but then again they would make for uninteresting books. Because then you wouldn’t get your fighting you like so very much! lol

Nath: Very true, Monroe.

So, overall, what grades would you give to Lessons from a Scarlet Lady?

I really enjoyed it: the characters, the storylines and the writing style. Like I said, I could have done without Robert and Rebecca's side story, because I wished they had their own book. Still, I thought the book was fun and enjoyable, so B+.

Ames: I liked it too - a B+ from me. It was hot and I found myself somewhat emotional by the last page. LOL Not crying, but touched.

Nath: True. you kind of get attached to the characters. I liked how well they were developed :)

Ames: Especially Brianna. She was such a great heroine!

Monroe: I gotta agree with the two of you! B+! This book was so great! We got to see two really great relationships blossom before our eyes! I will be coming back to this author!

Chantal: This is really hard for me to rate. I'll go with a small B-, but I think that is generous. As much as I liked the story, I liked the secondary story better.


Leslie said...

Lovely review ladies! Good to see the B grades since I've already bought this one. :)

The heroine sounds wonderful - no tstl antics. Can't wait to read the bath scene!

Monroe Dawson said...

This book is a guarantee good time! Happy reading! Oh and ya bath scenes are always the best! ;)

Chantal said...

You'll like it :)

Rowena said...

Woo hoo, I'm glad you guys liked this book. I adored it and loved both couples. Like Monroe said, I thought in the end, it all evened out so I wasn't mad.

Great discussion ladies!

Monroe Dawson said...

Ya this book stimulated great convo with us girls! Good stuff! ;) Can't wait to read another by this author.

nath said...

Leslie - Oh good, you already have it :D It's pretty good and I'm sure you're going to enjoy it :) And yes, no TSTL antics! Quite refreshing storyline actually :D

Rowena - Thanks! :D We had fun :D

Christine said...

Great review! Well the first 1/2 of it anyway. I didn't read the whole thing, because you gals SOLD me on this one so quickly!!!

Every now and then I really love books that have two strong story lines like it sounds this one has with the two couples.

Also, the fact that the "main" couple is already married... I LOVE those stories, too!!!

nath said...

Christine - Sorry Christine, I completely forgot to put the spoilers tag! ^_^;

I'm pretty sure you're going to like this one, Christine :D Married couples as H/H are always interesting :D