Regular readers of the blog will know that I like a good hot sex scene. I read Alisha Rai’s Play With Me recently – very hot. KA Mitchell’s No Souvenirs and Regularly Scheduled Life (scroll down a little after you click the link for a brief review), Heidi Cullinan’s Special Delivery and Double Blind, Cara McKenna’s Willing Victim, most everything by Charlotte Stein – all feature very hot scenes which, for the most part, advance the story and reveal the characters (and not just because they’re naked). In fact, I wrote a post a while back saying that I don’t like fade to black (except when I do) and why. So you might be surprised then, to know that my favourite sex scene ever, is not at all sexy. Not the least bit hot. But I love it. When I need a comfort read and I have a spare 20 minutes, I open the book up just before the scene starts and within seconds I’m sighing in pleasure (er, not that kind of pleasure). In fact, it has happened that those spare 20 minutes have turned into numerous complete re-reads, but I digress.
The book? Heartless by Mary Balogh.
Sadly, it is out of print, but I hope it will be available digitally one day soon. I paid a hideous amount for it on eBay five or so years ago and have never regretted a single cent. ETA: Cue streamers and cries of Huzzah!! it is available again. You can buy it from Amazon here.
It is a book I don’t think I can be entirely rational about. It is my favourite Mary Balogh, a definite Desert Island Keeper and in my top 5 books of all time (don’t ask me to name the other 4 – it’s too hard). I’m sure the book has flaws. I don’t care. I love it. And, I’d like to share with you one of the (many) reasons why.
Here’s the blurb (from Goodreads) Life has taught Lucas Kendrick, Duke of Harndon, that a heart is a decided liability. Betrayed by his brother, rejected by his fiancée, Luke fled to Paris, where he became the most sought-after bachelor in fashionable society.
Ten years later, fate has brought him back home, to the rescue of the very people who had once shunned him. Luke is amused by the advice that a wife will make his takeover of both the title and the family estate smoother, but amusement turns to desire once he sets eyes upon Lady Anna Marlowe.
Unbeknownst to Luke, Anna is also no stranger to pain, but her suffering can’t be so easily overcome, not when her tormentor stalks her to the very doors of Bowden Abbey. Luke and Anna, each made fragile by the past, must learn to trust both each other and their love if they are to have any chance for a future together.