Title: Prelude to a Scandal
Author: Delilah Marvelle
Publisher: HQN Books
Buy Link: Buy Prelude to a Scandal Here!
Rating: You Gotta Read
Reviewed by: Mickey
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 ….
Delilah Marvelle's newest hero is almost as irresistible as her latest novel. As the reader sees from the moment we are first introduced to Justine and Bradford - sparks appear to fly. These characters are irresistible, to both each other and to anyone fortunate enough to be able to enjoy Prelude to a Scandal reading it as one of the first of many times. The story, like Bradford, manages to pull you in and make you want to invest time, and like Justine we find ourselves inventing reasons not to leave as time goes on.
Prelude to a Scandal is at times poignant, humorous, refreshing and very sensuous. I enjoyed the interplay between the characters: Justine and Bradford struggle to uphold the mores and morals of the society they inhabit, yet they are also such strongly independent people in such a rigid time. Interestingly, they share an unusual relationship, frequently mirroring the typical Victorian marriage, bound by all the formality and restrictions society places upon it, yet still struggling to break out and have the passionate union they both ardently long to share. Ms. Marvelle is a very talented writer, working within her contemporary time period and still managing to envision and create a lush and realistic Victorian world. She does an exceptional job of showing that society at it's most straight-laced, allowing her to find and show the humor in some of the more interesting rules and regulations. I truly enjoyed Prelude to a Scandal; who wouldn't enjoy laughing out loud upon occasion?!