Seven Nights To Forever
by Evangeline Collins
Paperback: 320 pages
Publisher: Berkley Trade
Available: November 2, 2010
Genre: Historical Romance
She offered him one week of pleasure. No more and no less…
Some sacrifices are more difficult than others. Left destitute after her father’s death, Rose Marlowe has debts to settle and a younger brother to support. But she also possesses an unmatched beauty-one that could command quite a price…
Now, every month, Rose secretly travels from her country home to spend one week at a decadent London brothel, where she’s become a sought-after prize. Elegant and accomplished in the art of pleasure, she spends her nights fulfilling the fantasies of the gentlemen of the ton while denying the wish buried deep in her heart.
Then one night a wealthy merchant gentleman walks through her door. Handsome, kind and compassionate, with a lonely soul that matches her own, James Archer is not her usual client. Falling in love with a client, never mind a married one, is unthinkable. Yet Rose can’t help but lose herself in his arms as one night becomes seven-and seven nights lead to a chance at forever…
Reviewed by: Sophia (FV)
After her father’s death, Rose Marlowe soon realizes he has gambled away most of the family’s money leaving her and her brother deeply in debt. In order to protect her younger brother who idolized their father and to save their family home, Rose seeks a protector. Not wanting to be a mistress she leaves her first protector only to end up with another who becomes abusive. Once Rose realizes she must find another way to support her brother and repay her fathers debts she makes a decision. Once a month she works at a posh London brothel where gentlemen are willing to pay a very generous price to spend time with her. She has became so sought after that she earns enough working as a prostitute one week a month to repay her debts, maintain her country home, as well support and send her brother to University.
James Archer, a very wealthy merchant is miserable and lonely. He is in a loveless marriage arranged by his father in an effort to gain standing in high society. His wife is not happy at all about being married to James and makes no secret of it. She takes many lovers and flaunts her infidelity in his face, however she will not allow James to take a mistress, threatening to withdraw her sponsorship of his younger sister if he does. James loves his sister and wants to see her marry well so he tolerates his wife’s emotional battery since his sister will hopefully marry soon.
One night, feeling lonely and worn down by his wife’s demeaning behavior toward him, James decides to visit a brothel in search of physical comfort. He is introduced to Rose and is taken by her beauty, and lovely demeanor. Although he has paid to spend time with Rose and basically have his way with her, James finds it such a relief to just spend time with a lovely woman who seems to welcome his company and he spends the evening talking and getting to know Rose. Rose in turn finds James to be a charming gentleman but she is confused by James’ lack of interest in having sex with her.
James cannot get Rose out of his head and he returns the following night to see her. In the course of the week, Rose and James develop a lovely friendship and they eventually become lovers. Not wanting to let Rose go at the end of the week, James tries to come up with a way for them to be together. James has much to lose if his relationship with Rose is discovered and Rose does not want to become his mistress. She has many responsibilities and is determined to manage them herself.
While Rose and James lead very different lives and it seems unlikely they would find any sort of commonality with each other, they come together out of loneliness. As they begin to know each other it is revealed that they are both selflessly making a huge personal sacrifices for the well being of a younger sibling. James is not your typical romance hero. Although he puts up with his wife’s brow beating for the sake of his sister he never comes off as weak or wimpy. Instead I always got the sense that he was simply willing to sacrifice himself for the sake of his sister’s future. He is a gentleman and gives the typical alpha hero new levels to aspire to. Rose, is a strong heroine, determined to use her assets to keep what’s left of her family afloat. Not wanting her brother to face the shame of finding out their father squandered the family coffers, essentially leaving them in dire straits, she does whatever she has to do to see to it that her brother lives well and gets an education. Both James and Rose are kind and generous to those they love and they are perfect for each other as well.
One of the things I loved most about Rose and James is although they had misunderstandings, they were refreshingly honest with each other and avoided serious relationship issues with their openness. Trust was built between them slowly and they both constantly surprised me with their gentleness and kindness. They were strong characters yet very vulnerable and I found them both to be extremely likeable.
Seven Nights To Forever is a lovely story about about two very endearing people who, against the odds, fall in love and find their way to happiness together. Evangeline Collins delivers a wonderful historical romance novel that is well written, nicely paced and a pleasure to read. I look forward to more from this author.
“Do you plan to join me, or do you plan to linger by the door all evening? I hope you aren’t expecting an offer from me to watch,” he said, all playful indignation.
A laugh burst from her throat at the unexpected comment. Her back almost propping up the door, she must look just as he had nights ago, when he had hesitated to take more than a step into her bedchamber.
“Not expecting, but if the offer’s there . . .” she trailed off, arching a suggestive brow. His eyes flared slightly, his expression momentarily blanking. Goodness, was that a blush staining his cheeks?
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