Pages: 320 pages
Challenges-100+ Reading Challenge, Outdo Yourself Reading Challenge
Buy this Book: Amazon, Powell's, Indiebound
Summary from publisher:
All of England rejoiced on her wedding day. But Judith vowed that her husband would get only what he took from her!
At the flower-bedecked altar, the first touch of their hands ignited an all-consuming passion. Gavin Montgomery looked deep into her golden eyes and burned with desire for her...but his heart had been pledged to another.
Humiliated and alone in a strange castle, Judith resolved to hate this husband who took her body, but rejected her love...never admitting her fear of losing him.
But destiny held another fate for Judith...a fate that would keep at last...The Velvet Promise.
I have been looking forward to this one since I bought it. I am a big fan of romances with tons of angst and particularly badly behaved heroes. I have a particular penchant for those old school romances where the hero proved he loved the heroine by behaving at his absolute worst (yes, even the ones where the dolt hero cheats). This one was perfect because it had all that and even more. It’s an arranged marriage with a hero that behaves very very badly and happens to have a mistress who he believes he loves. Yep, perfect.
Judith was one of the few heroines that I have ever come across that I can honestly and without reservation say that I loved. Gavin, to be completely honest, treated Judith like crap. I truly felt badly for her. I liked Gavin as much as I like all badly behaved heroes. Gavin is the prototype of the cheating hero. He does bad things and yet you want to forgive him and yet want the heroine to forgive him.He thinks he loves this other woman and is forced to marry Judith for money. Some of the early scenes of their marriage were so heartbreaking. Gavin was so neglectful of Judith that I wondered how she would be able to forgive him. I sometimes wanted to bash him over the head with a blunt object but the man was really misguided.
Cheating heroes are one of my favorite guilty pleasures. It is something I would never tolerate in real life but in a romance novel, I can’t seem to get enough of them. I think it’s a quirk resulting from reading my mother’s bodice rippers when I was probably way too young. I really did love this book—as I do many of Jude Deveraux’s older books. There was angst, tear-jerking moments, action and adventure. All those good things. I spent much of the book towing the line between wanting to beat Gavin to a bloody pulp and for Judith to leave his dumb ass and wanting them to kiss and make up. Considering this is a romance novel, guess what happened?
This is definitely not a novel for the faint of heart. You have to be prepared for bodice ripper type of situations. There is cheating, abuse and the hero rapes the heroine. This is all stuff that is common in older romances but if it’s a trigger for you or too intense, it’s best to avoid. I am going to be reading many of these books in the future so instead of typing all of this hubbub, I will just write BR Warning.
*This book has been provided by me for my own personal reading pleasure. My opinion is my own and has not been influenced in any way. Any monies made from associate or affiliate accounts are recycled back into the blog.