Read with: iBooks for iPad
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Series: Harlequin Presents, #1728
Hero: Blake Preston
Heroine: Juliana Preston
Date of Publication: February 1, 1995
Started On: September 14, 2011
Finished On: September 15, 2011
Miranda Lee is one of the few select authors from Harlequin whose stories that I read and enjoy. I remember reading my first Miranda Lee almost 12 years back and feeling scandalized because Miranda is one author who definitely knows how to deliver sensuality of the sizzling variety in her novels. Though it has been ages since I read a Miranda Lee, I still identified her voice and the way she generates heat between her two characters that makes for an invigorating read if a short and quick romance is what the doctor ordered for the day. For me, tackling with my migraines, short and quick was exactly what the doctor ordered and though this is not the greatest romance out there, after my forced fast from books, I loved bits of the stories though there were some aspects of it that I didn’t fully agree with.
Juliana and Blake Preston married in the true sense of their marriage being a business arrangement with separate bedrooms and scheduled sexual encounters between them. Blake is the owner of the prestigious Preston’s Toys and Games and is as self-sufficient, self-reliant and self-contained as Juliana who is independent in nature. Blake’s aversion to love and public affection comes from the roller-coaster relationship that was between his father and mother. Juliana’s independent nature comes from witnessing the number of men that had entered and exited her mother’s life. Submerging her true sensual nature and putting up a facade of efficiency and controlled calmness is how Juliana lives her life and that has suited her fine till she finds herself bothered more and more of the distance that Blake ensures that always stays between them.
Juliana’s calm and controlled facade comes crashing down when she receives the news that Blake’s life might have been in danger. The realization that she has fallen in love and may have loved her husband for a long, long time hits her hard and suddenly Juliana finds herself in previously unchartered waters and knows that she is in danger of completely turning into the wild and wanton wife that she has never dreamed she might ever become. Suddenly the bedroom aspect of their marriage looks more daunting when Juliana knows that she is in danger of betraying her new-found feelings to her husband who looks at anything remotely to do with love with loathing.
And thus begins the most difficult time period of their otherwise smooth marriage when Juliana’s emotions comes to the forefront and makes her do a 180 degree turnabout on her marriage and Blake. The story told from Juliana’s point of view and only lets the reader catch glimpses of Blake’s reaction towards the changes that takes place in their marriage and sex life lets the reader draw his or her own conclusions on how Blake feels about Juliana. Though the reader knows that Blake’s feelings towards Juliana is a bit more than just the business arrangement they both embarked on warrants, there were times when Blake’s unfounded jealousy and possessiveness came into play that made me wonder whether Blake knows his wife at all.
Plenty of angst and though not explicit in nature the sensuality is of the toe curling variety that delivers an entertaining read. Recommended for fans of Miranda Lee and old-school Harlequin romances.