Monday, July 18, 2011

Review: LILY MINE by Annabel Joseph

Lily Mine
by Annabel Joseph
Publisher: Scarlet Rose Press
Release Date: June 30, 2011  

When Lily wends her way down the country lane to Lilyvale Manor, she hopes the coincidence of names bodes well, for she is in dire straits. She's been disowned by her London family and finds herself desperately in need of a job.

Lord Ashbourne is equally at ends, his fiancée having jilted him for a commoner and run off to the Continent. Her powerful society family is determined to delay the breaking scandal in order to save the younger sister's prospects. When a servant leads Lily to his parlor, James is astonished to discover how closely she resembles the missing lady of the manor.

He hatches a plan, convincing Lily to play his absent wife & to keep the gossips at bay. He reassures her it will be in name only, but soon enough, playacting turns to real attraction, and friendship to aching, mounting desire. The strictures of society and unforeseen tragedy combine to test the pair's forbidden love, even as they are driven ever closer into one another's arms.

This novel contains spanking, light bondage, and light BDSM elements.
~ From Goodreads

Annabel Joseph’s latest novel, Lily Mine is a historical fantasy that takes place in England during the mid 1820’s. Twenty-one year old, Lily Kendall has just been disowned by her father for an indiscretion that has caused him to lose his job. Lily makes her way from London to the English countryside to seek employment as a gardener. Her dream is to one day have her own greenhouse and flower shop. After turning down several offers of housekeeping work she is directed deeper into the countryside towards Lilyvale Manor to inquire about gardening work.

After asking to speak with the head gardener or mistress of the house she finds herself in the main parlor being introduced to James Atherton, Earl of Ashebourne. Lily feels an immediate attraction and James feels shocked at the uncanny resemblance to his wife that has been lost to him. James hires Lily to be his gardener, but after she leaves he decides to make another bolder proposal. As a doppelganger to his wife, Lilliana, he decides to ask Lily to act as his wife either until she returns or until the next year. In exchange he will set her up with her own greenhouse and flower shop. She agrees to this name only arrangement but soon the sexual tension between them becomes too great to ignore and James and Lily give in to their primal urges. There are scenes of bondage, spanking and cropping.

I really liked Lily’s honesty when she was able to articulate her feelings. And I really loved James’ quiet, calm but dominant personality. I thought he paced himself well. He wasn’t overpowering and didn’t push Lily beyond her comfort zone which surprisingly went further than he thought. The mind games were absent from this novel which was refreshing. But there were some external conflicts that had the potential to derail their love affair. And James taught Lily how to read and write which made me love him more. Once she learned how to read she would sneak up into the attic to read his “porn” collection. She was such a naughty girl.

Lily Mine was a really sweet love story with very light BDSM elements. I didn’t really like James at first because he seemed a little cold and calculating in the beginning. But as he opened up to Lily I saw him in a better light. I was rooting for Lily to get her happily ever after because she was such a deserving person. There was a nice twist of fate at the end of the book that really made this an enjoyable read. Lily Mine was a great historical romance that would appeal to any erotica romance junkie. This novel gets 4 dragons.


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