Description from Goodreads
Seduction, passion and the chance for new love. A terrible truth that will change two lives forever.
Venetia Aston-Montagu has escaped to Italy’s most captivating city to work in her godmother’s architectural practice, putting a lost love behind her. For the past ten years she has built a fortress around her heart, only to find the walls tumbling down one night of the carnival when she is rescued from masked assailants by an enigmatic stranger, Paolo Barone.
Drawn to the powerfully seductive Paolo, despite warnings of his Don Juan reputation and rumours that he keeps a mistress, Venetia can’t help being caught up in the smouldering passion that ignites between them.
When she finds herself assigned to a project at his magnificent home deep in the Tuscan countryside, Venetia must not only contend with a beautiful young rival, but also come face to face with the dark shadows of Paolo’s past that threaten to come between them.
Can Venetia trust that love will triumph, even over her own demons? Or will Paolo’s carefully guarded, devastating secret tear them apart forever?
I gave this book five stars out of five
I really enjoyed this book. The plot was moderately paced and brim full of romantic suspense. This was a very well written, and different kind of romance. The alluring cover of this book made me want to check it out, even before I read the description, which only increased my desire to explore this further.
There are many beautifully crafted passages, in particular those relating to the scenery and architecture of Tuscany and Venice, that created a marvellous backdrop to this love story. It was easy to visualise oneself in these magical locations.
I particularly enjoyed the development of the relationship between Paolo and Venetia. The interaction between these two main characters was fascinating, watching their actions and reactions, and learning about the events of the past that influenced each of them.
Learning how Venetia’s father fitted in to the puzzle was very revealing, as was Paolo’s relationship with the stunning Allegra. Another interesting character was the caddish and odious Duke Umberto, whose despicable behaviour towards both Venetia and Paolo, revealed his true nature.
I enjoyed the way that the current behaviour of the main characters could be traced back to the presence of deep psychological scars. There was a lot of sexual tension between the main characters, and I felt that the love scenes were executed in an exceptionally tasteful manner.
The ending of the story was intriguing, and provided an unexpected conclusion to what I considered to be an exceptionally riveting romance. This conclusion suddenly made the title of this book make a lot more sense. I would certainly recommend this to fans of the intelligent and suspenseful romance.
This review is based on a digital ARC provided by Netgalley and the publisher.