Let the fun and games begin.
I love the way Victoria Vane uses the language of the Georgian England. It is a fun, fast, sexy and humorous reading with memorable characters that will leave you begging for more.
Ned is a simple man who lost his wife three years ago and has been in celibate since then. Upon arriving in London, he meets with an old friend, DeVere, a notorious rake. Even though DeVere is his best friend, he is also a man that cannot seem to settle down or diminish his vast appetites even for one evening. DeVere takes Ned to a private party made for pleasure and sexual indulgence thinking that this is exactly what Ned needs right now. But as DeVere indulges in fornication, Ned meets a mysterious woman called Kitty that seems out of place just as he does. They both feel desire for one another. Phoebe, or Kitty as she called herself whilst introducing to Ned, came to this party with an agenda. She needs a sponsor for her career as an actress and she hopes Ned might help her out. He refuses even though his body responds to her. So she asks him to introduce her to devil DeVere. Ned does as asked but he hates it just the same. DeVere saw the struggle in his best friend and decided to help him fall for the beautiful blonde Kitty. That plan involved a wager with the Prince of Wales and fornicating in King's bed with devil DeVere stuffed unconscious in the linen closet. I will say no more for that is the best part of the book.
A Wild Night's Bride really brings out the best of Victoria Vane. Unbelievable turn of events, humorous and witty remarks, erotic flare...
Ned is a man that doesn't fall in love easily and when he does he stays faithful. He was married for eighteen years and he mourned his wife for three years. They had a beautiful daughter Vesta. He came to London to secure a town house for Vesta as she was about to be brought out in society. If not for the alcohol and an exotic drink from the private party he would have never participated in a wager and would have never taken Phoebe in King's bed. And his linen closet.
Phoebe is an unfortunate young woman that was fired from her position as princesses nurse because she fell for the prince and in her naive state gave him her innocence. After being fired she took a position in a theater but could not really prosper for she didn't have a patron as all the other actresses did. When the theater closed down for renovation she found herself jobless and penniless and in dire need of a sponsor. She came to the private party only to find a suitable sponsor but she got far more than she bargained for.
DeVere is an impossible notorious rake and a scoundrel but he does care for his friends. He takes woman, liquor, bargains and gamble when and how he pleases. And he doesn't hide it. He even boasts with it. When his best friend returned to London he immediately saw what Ned needed the most. And in his own wicked way he helped his friend more than anyone else.
One thing that I would have liked more is a longer ending. The ending where there was a bit more anticipation and uncertainty in question. Instead we got a short wrapping up of a Ned/Phoebe story and a long epilogue of Vesta and Diana (Vesta's aunt) who are not pleased with Ned and Phoebe. This epilogue is obviously a prologue for the sequel in the series but I felt that gap and I think there was more room for the original story and its prolonged unfolding.