- Decadent Publishing
- Release Date
- February 2012
Erotic Romance, Historical Romance
Ever curious, Elizabeth, Viscountess Rocksley, has turned her curiosity to erotic pleasure. Three years a widow, she boldly employs the madame of a brothel for guidance but never had she expected her education to be conducted by a coldly handsome peer of the realm.
To the Earl of Malvern, the erotic tutelage of a skittish widow is little more than sport, however the woman he teaches is far from the mouse he expects. With her sly humor and insistent joy, Elizabeth obliterates all his expectations and he, unwillingly fascinated, can't prevent his fall.
Each more intrigued than they are willing to admit, Elizabeth and Malvern embark upon a tutelage that will challenge them, change them, come to mean everything to them…until a heartbreaking betrayal threatens to tear them apart forever.
Mar 19, 2013 [ OFFICIAL REVIEW ]
253 people found the following review helpful
I fell in love with this book from the first bewildering, smoldering scene, and was captivated until the last page. It isn't every day that a couple like this comes along, or romance lingers in the imagination long after the book has been finished, and this, without a doubt, is one of them.
All her life, Elizabeth, Viscountess Rocksley, has hungered for knowledge, and has always followed where her curiosity led her. Now, however, she might very well have found herself in over her head. Since her husband's death three years earlier, Elizabeth is desperate to learn the secrets of erotic pleasure, and has gone to a famous London brothel in order to engage someone to teach her the finer points of passion. She never expected the cold, fascinating and remarkably handsome Earl of Malvern to be her tutor.
Though he agreed out of mere curiosity and boredom, Malvern quickly finds himself intrigued by the young widow, whose plain exterior hides a quick mind and an untiring optimism that proves irresistible. Though his talents of seduction are considerable, it isn't long before his student is teaching the jaded and cynical Malvern that joy can be found in the most unexpected places. But can he and Elizabeth ever find lasting happiness, or will the differences between them and their worlds gradually tear them apart? Malvern is heartbreakingly certain that happiness is not for him, but there are still some lessons for even the wisest of teachers to learn.
From its brazen, salacious and uncomfortable beginning, this story blossoms into a remarkably heartfelt romance that grabs the heart and the imagination. Malvern's initial attempts to teach Elizabeth with lectures and outrageously frank directions may be squirm-inducing for both her and the reader, but from their first meeting, the spark between these two is hot and addictive and just a little bit magic. As their relationship transforms, it changes them as well. Though she enters this story shy and unsure, it isn't long before Elizabeth's ingenuity, her wry humor and, above all, her insatiable curiosity shine through. I respected her immediately for her drive and her fearlessness in the face of Malvern's aloof façade, but as all her quirks and wit and charm became evident, I loved her.
Malvern is a wonderful Byronic hero—the kind of man whose boredom and standoffishness hides a truly deep-feeling soul and an enormous heart, even if he isn't yet aware of it. Some of the best scenes in this book are the ones that are seen through Malvern's eyes as he tries to understand, rationalize and cope with his growing feelings for Elizabeth. The simple, raw emotions that their intensifying affair bring out in Malvern are truly moving and balanced beautifully by Elizabeth's sense of whimsy and her ability to understand this remarkable man, perhaps even better than he understands himself.
The secondary characters in the book are well-drawn and nuanced, but also serve to highlight the conventionality of the world in which Elizabeth has always existed, and Malvern has tried so desperately to escape. I loved the comparison between Malvern's seedy companions and Elizabeth's straight-laced sisters, and the world they tried to create together. When it appears that all hope is lost, and that world might crumble around them, I felt the loss just as keenly as our hero and heroine and suffered their heartache as they fought to make it right.
The final scene of the book does a marvelous job encapsulating all the heat and desire and need that is the hallmark of this exceptional relationship, but also proves how far both these characters have come and how far they have yet to go together. I loved this book from start to finish, and though this was my first Cassandra Dean book, I can guarantee you it won't be my last.
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Book Review by Lynn (reviewer)
Apr 01, 2015 [ OFFICIAL REVIEW ]
198 people found the following review helpful
Pleasure can be taught!
TEACH ME raises the question of how a curious, widowed Viscountess goes about learning the art of sexual pleasure. The answer is quite simple-- hire a brothel madam for private tutelage, of course!
Elizabeth has had two lovers in her life and neither brought her the erotic pleasure she has read about in books. She decides she simply needs more information on the basics of giving and receiving carnal pleasure and so she seeks out Lydia Morcom, a brothel madam, to give her lessons. Elizabeth is surprised when the madam sends a replacement tutor; she is even more surprised when her new teacher stimulates her more with mere words then her two previous lovers ever did with touch.
Lydia knows that the Earl of Malvern is bored and disinterested in life in general so she decides to give him a project-- teach a mousy widow about passion. Malvern is intrigued by the idea of the curious Viscountess so he agrees to come up with a proper curriculum and be her teacher.
This book definitely had some steam, made even more enjoyable by the fact that so much of it was between two people not having a sexual relationship. The sexual tension between Elizabeth and Malvern, while they are both making a futile attempt to deny their attraction, is palpable. A perfect amount of comedy ensues while they both work to maintain composure and an unaffected façade during Elizabeth's lessons. The best part for me was when the raw emotions started to peek through. Once these two realize their efforts to deny their growing attraction are useless we get to see the vulnerability, the insecurities, and the lack of trust hiding in each of them. The author does a great job with character and story development. The interactions between Elizabeth and Malvern are honest and genuine and their journey, while ending happily, is not without struggle.
This book was fast paced, entertaining, and emotionally satisfying. A great story for those who like a tortured romance with a hard-fought for happy ending.
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