‘The Emperor’s New Clothes’ ‘The Ugly Duckling’ and ‘The Princess and the Pea’ get an erotic makeover and give adults their own version of a bedtime story.
A cousin's ex-lover's ring finds it's way into an irresistible rake's pocket. The deception to win it back leads to some steamy 'missions'; A woman with scars that run far deeper than on her body decides to take the lead and experience pleasure before it's too late; And a princess, masquerading as a man has a pouch filled with the King's diamond and will have to gamble her brother out of the poor house, all while resisting the sexy spy at the tables. All this an more awaits you in between the covers.
[Read an excerpt: here]
The Marquis' New Clothes-Aimee de Miran is embroiled in a scandalous plot and deception to recover the lost ring of her cousin’s ex-lover. Louise d’Arcy’s torrid relationship with Renault de Sard has had it’s fair share of lover spats; but when Renault casts Louise aside, she retaliates but taking his jeweled ring given to him by the king. Louis immediately regrets her theft and wants to return the ring before her ex-lover-who also happens to be the King’s Lieutenant General of Police (and a stick up the butt)-before he has the chance to realize it’s gone and seeks justice. Unfortunately, the ring finds it’s way from Louise’s hand to the pocket of Adam de Vey’s justacorps.
Adam, the Marquis de Nattes, has been infatuated with Aimee de Miran (his good friend’s wife) for many years. With the passing of Aimee’s husband, Adam sees his opportunity to purge the enchanting Aimee from his system once and for all. The only problem is: she hates his guts! Aimee’s husband took advantage of her youthful and romantic feelings, destroying her dreams of love and a perfect marriage by choosing his whores over her. She won’t fall for another handsome rake with a wicked tongue, but Adam is determined to have her.
‘Having Her’ turns out to be easier than Adam expects when Aimee takes the lead and starts flirting with him. Her weird fascination with his justacorps aside, Adam finds Aimee refreshing and alluring and doesn’t believe his whetted appetite will hold him over for very long.
Aimee feels cherished in Adam’s arms, and despite her initial intentions, she can’t help regretting the ploy she’s played a part in. The line between deception and reality blurs and as Aimee searches for Renault’s ring, she may just come across a chance at love.
The Lovely Duckling-
Emilie de Sarron goes to great lengths to conceal the burns on her body she received as an infant. After a horrendous episode during her come-out where she was humiliated, Emilie quickly absconded to the country with her negligent guardians. She started corresponding with Vincent d’Alumbert and withheld nothing as she probed his mind for information on carnal pleasure. Emilie feels she has no chance at love or marriage, but she can’t help but want to experience the sensations of lovemaking before it’s too late. When Emilie’s aunt hosts a masquerade, Emilie sees her chance to not only quell her insatiable curiosity, but meet face to face the man whom she has been corresponding with for so long.
Joseph d’Alumbert has an attack of conscious over his inactivity when his buddies made fun and embarrassed Emilie de Sarron into withdrawing from society. He sends her a letter, posing as his twin brother, Vincent, to alleviate his guilt, but ends up becoming enchanted. He and his brother’s are invited to Emilie’s aunt’s masquerade and he knows of her plan to acquaint her self with pleasure. At first, he didn’t want to become so involved as to be the one to take her virginity, but Emilie would not be deterred, and Joseph (posing as Vincent) saw the only way to protect her from making a huge mistake with anyone else was to have her make it with him.
The emotions the two begin to experience go far deeper then their few days of carnal bliss, but that all may come to a screeching halt once Joseph’s deception is revealed and Emilie’s identity is revealed to the masquerade attendees.
The Princess and the Diamonds- Princess Gabrielle knows the dangers that come with high stakes gambling. Her brother is in far too deep and Gabrielle will have to use the same illegal game that’s left her brother destitute to save him from ruin. She’s as sharp as any Basset player (maybe even more) and she knows when to walk away. She ‘borrows’ some of her father’s, the king’s, diamonds and intends to enter a secret gambling hell disguised as a man to win back the money her brother lost.
Mathias Paul Thomas Tesson, Marquis de Montfort has also been made known to the dangers and destruction high stakes gambling can cause. He’s seen first hand the ruin gambling can cause a family; like his best friend, Charles’, and is determined to do all he can to become part of the solution.
Although the King has put a ban on the popular card game, Basset, many in his kingdom have disregarded his law and have been conducting underground gambling hells in which the illegal game can still be played. Mathias decides to team up with the Lieutenant General of Police of Paris to do an undercover mission to expose a group of gamblers who still play Basset.
Mathias never thought he’d encounter such a sharp player with the sense to walk away while they were still ahead; much less, did he ever think he would find himself attracted to the player. But everything isn’t how it seems and Mathias zero’s in on Gabrielle’s farce. He doesn’t yet know that she’s a princess, or where the diamonds came from, but his need for her body increases and soon the jewels won’t be the only hard things in this princess’s bed! But will either of the two realize the benefits of sticking around instead of cashing out?
Rating: 4 ½ Red Roses
My Favorite Part of the Book: There are so many! This book is over-flowing with memorable scenes and lovely characters. ‘The Lovely Duckling’ was my personal favorite and I absolutely loved when Emilie finally showed him her scars and he reassured her that she was still the woman he wanted to be with. I swooned (but I was reading while lying down, so it didn’t have the same effect)
WOW! This book was simply marvelous! Lila DiPasqua has really perfected the art of great short stories! I always cringe when I see novellas because I never believe I will get the full story experience from them; but this book gives you all that and more! The characters had tons of depth and the plots were surprisingly multi-layered and soulfully satisfying. I actually believed in the HEA! The only thing I want to comment on in a less than glowing light is…: The Dismount. After a satisfying sex scene, the male characters always seem to have a ‘dismount’ or way of disengaging their member and settling back down. For all three short stories, the male leads seemed to share a similar dismount: pick up the panties, whip her clean, whip himself, throw them (very rudely) on the ground. With a collection of short stories, you want to feel like you’re reading a different story every time; and I definitely felt like I was, it was just the dismount that had me drawing a connection. But honestly, this book was so good; you’d be missing out if you didn’t read it!
[Special thanks to Kayleigh Clark
and the author for sending
a copy for review]
*Want more DiPasqua? Try the first collection of Fiery Tales in 'Awakened By A Kiss'!