Her Husband's Harlot (Mayhem in Mayfair #1) by Grace Callaway

Print Length: 367 pages
Publisher: Amazon Digital (December 23, 2011)

From Goodreads.com: 
Not Quite a Wife . . .
After a disastrous wedding night, proper Lady Helena Harteford fears for the fate of her new marriage. Disguised as a doxy, she tracks her husband down at a bawdy house to reason with him . . . and instead discovers the thrill of forbidden passion. An innocent ruse turns into a risky deception; how far will this once-wallflower go to win her husband's love?

Unfit to be a Husband . . .

Orphaned at an early age, Nicholas Morgan escapes his violent beginnings to become a successful merchant--only to discover that he is the legitimate heir of the Marquess of Harteford. His transition to the ton is rocky and made rockier when he marries above him. Torn between guilt and lust, he tries to protect his sweet, innocent wife from the demons of his past. But can he safeguard her from his own raging desires?

Caught between Past and Present . . .

When a dangerous nemesis rises from Nicholas' past, husband and wife must work together in order to survive. From the drawing rooms to the stews of Regency London, they find themselves caught in a game of passion and seduction. Will true love prevail? Or is Helena destined to remain . . . Her Husband's Harlot?

WARNING: This book is for mature audiences over the age of 18 due to sexual content and language. 


My Rating: 5 stars out of 5

This was my first novel by this author, and I am very happy to say that it will not be my last! 

The characters were deeply flawed, but still well-written and even like-able when you didn't want to smack them for not seeing what was right in front of them. Helena was a strong woman, who despite her husband's attempts to push her away at times remained true to her marriage and her love for her husband. Nicholas was a complex enough character having grown up in the stews only to become a successful merchant - a profession that made those of the ton turn their noses down at him even after he was declared the legitimate heir of the Marquess of Harteford - but the horrors that he faced in his childhood were enough to make even the coldest of people feel sympathy for him and his plight. 

This was a story that was honest, and while some readers will not finish it simply due to the sexual content and crude language, what I enjoyed most about this story was that it wasn't just about the sex. There were several different threads all inter-woven together that made this story worth reading. From Helena's desperate attempts to win her husband's affections, to his efforts to keep her safe from his past - the interactions between husband and wife outside of the bedroom, as well as the inclusion of all the secondary characters (who were all three-dimensional in their own rights) and perials (both physical and psychological) would have made for a remarkable story on their own.

I will admit that I do NOT believe that those of you who only read "clean" romances will enjoy this story due to the crass language and sexual content, however I do believe it will appeal to a wide variety of other people. And if you are that put off by graphic sex scenes and vulgar language, but are still interested in the overall plot? You can always skip those scenes and still enjoy a beautifully written story. 

Her Husband's Harlot (Mayhem in Mayfair #1) is available from Amazon.com 

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