From the BLURB:
Some Pleasures, Once Tasted...
Even after finding his betrothed in the arms of another man, Nicholas, the Viscount Lancaster, knows he must wed. Propriety and the dire state of his finances decrees it. At least a visit to his country estate provides relief from playing the role of loving fiance, as well as a surprising encounter with Cynthia Merrithorpe. Once his childhood companion, Cynthia has grown into a lovely, alluring woman one who's undertaken a daring ruse to avoid being sold into a miserable marriage.
Are Too Delicious To Forget...
When Nicholas left for London to assume his new title, Cynthia was forced to put aside her girlish infatuation. Now he's returned, more wickedly attractive than ever. And this time, Cynthia is determined to experience the pleasure she's dreamed of for so long. But with a man like Nicholas, seduction is only the beginning of a sensual journey that will tempt them both to defy convention, and uncover the very heart of desire...
This was my first Victoria Dahl book.
I wasn’t overly impressed – I’ve read better historical romances, and authors like Lisa Kleypas and Julia Quinn remain among my favorite authors of the genre. ‘One Week as Lovers’ was just a little too hum-drum for me. The storyline is mediocre; so much is made of the fact that Nick and Cynthia grew up together, were childhood friends who drifted apart when Nick gained the title of ‘Viscount’. But I didn’t really feel the ‘connection’ between them – Dahl relied too heavily on Cynthia’s girlhood crush being the basis for her adult feelings.
The storyline is a bit all over the place as well. There were so many plot lines criss-crossing and starting/stopping; it was a little hard to get invested in any one. For one thing, Cynthia fakes her own death in the beginning to get out of a marriage contract. Nick discovers the ton woman he is engaged to has been cheating on him. Cynthia suspects that she has the map to buried pirate treasure – and when Nick comes to mourn Cynthia’s passing and he discovers she is in fact alive, they set out to locate the treasure trove.
And amidst all these storylines (enough for three separate books, at least) is something shady concerning Nick’s past, and a rumor that he tried to hang himself. This is actually the most intriguing storyline, and one that saves the book. When the truth about Nick is revealed it is an intense climax, heart-breaking and gut-wrenching.
I will say something for Dahl – she knows her way around a sex scene. Seriously good, smutty stuff.
He looked up for a moment as if startled, but she put her mouth on his and brought him back to her.In the dark she could feel everything. In the dark it was just Nick and his taste and smell and touch. In the dark there was no fiancée and no scar around his neck and no ship to America.
I’ve read so many Victoria Dahl endorsements – first from Patti at ‘Book Addict’, and more recently from Mandi at ‘Smexy’. Having now had the pleasure of reading her ‘Tumble Creek’ series, I think Dahl’s strength lies in contemporary romance rather than historical.