Prelude to a Scandal – Delilah Marvelle

Historical Romance
384 pages
HQN Books
December 21, 2010

5/5 Stars

Favorite Quote: “I want what goes on inside your head and inside your heart before these legs will ever part.”

Marriage is not the end of desire…
Lady Justine is willing to trade her good name, her reputation and her place in London’s gossip-hungry ton to secure her father’s release from prison. But when the notorious Duke of Bradford counters her offer with a proposal of marriage, the stakes grow higher still. For while the smoldering lord is famous for his conquests, the man is oblivious to both her devotion and her charms.And Justine is soon afraid she has wagered all for naught…
Are you ready to be scandalized?

When Justine’s father, who is an Ethologist (studies animals in the wild), is thrown in jail for his view that goes against the society’s belief Justine only has one thought to help him out…write the Duke of Bradford a note that if he saves her father from prison he can have a few nights of lovin’.  The Duke of Bradford has another idea in mind, marriage.

Radcliff (the Duke) is a flawed hero, he has an addiction to sex that he has developed over several years and a fresh physical flaw that he has been hiding for months in seclusion.  He knows that a marriage would be good for the public eye and thinks that Justine would be perfect for him since, during his time of seclusion her weekly letters were the only thing that kept him sane.

Justine has always had a crush on the dashing Radcliff and is stunned by his offer but hopes that this will be the end of her fathers suffering as well as a new beginning to her life.  She just isn’t aware of Radcliffs flaws and doesn’t know how much effort and faith she is going to have to put into the marriage.

With Justine by his side will Radcliff be able to get over his addiction and his self-consciousness about his physical flaw?  Will Justine be able to stay with Radcliff with all his issues?  Will their stubbornness lead to their marriage failing?

This was my first historical romance and I am very happy that it was.  Marvelle does a wonderful job discussing an issue that has been in the current media but several people (men in particular) have been struggling with for years.  I thought she had a very creative way about showing society in general back in the 1800’s London as well as the interactions that occur between Radcliff and Justine.  There are a few other characters in the book that I think build on Radcliff and Justine’s growing relationship including Radcliff’s half-brother and his half-brothers mistress, Matilda.

I loved the excerpts at the beginning of every chapter from “How to Avoid a Scandal”, Author Unknown.  I would love to know if Marvelle made these up herself or if she is using a book…of course there is no work cited so it must be from her.  They are wonderful and related very well with each chapter!

The love scenes are very, VERY hot and got my heart racing several times!  I love the way Radcliff treats Justine and how he really is trying to be a better man and get over his addiction.  I also love that Justine is a very strong woman and keeps to her values no matter what.

All in all, it was a great book and I would recommend it to anyone curious about the historical romance genre.

Scandal Series:
Prelude to a Scandal (out now)
Once Upon a Scandal (February 1, 2011)
The Perfect Scandal (March 1, 2011)


4 responses to “Prelude to a Scandal – Delilah Marvelle

  1. This does sound interesting. Thanks for the review!

  2. Oooh…I love the sound of that hero!! I’ve never read this author..going on my tbr!

  3. Mandi – I’m happy to hear you are adding this book to your TBR. It’s a series but the books can be read as stand alones since the characters aren’t the same in the books.

  4. Pingback: Weekly Update – January 2-8 | Book Review's by Deanna

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