Author: Courtney Milan
Series: Turner, book 2
Genre: Historical Romance
Source: Review copy from publisher
“Her only hope for survival…
Handsome, wealthy and respected, Sir Mark Turner is the most sought-after bachelor in all of London—and he's known far and wide for his irreproachable character. But behind his virtuous reputation lies a passionate nature he keeps carefully in check...until he meets the beautiful Jessica Farleigh, the woman he's waited for all his life.
Is to ruin the man she loves…
But Jessica is a courtesan, not the genteel lady Sir Mark believes. Desperate to be free of a life she despises, she seizes her chance when Mark's enemies make her an offer she can't refuse: seduce Mark and tarnish his good name, and a princely sum will be hers. Yet as she comes to know the man she's sworn to destroy, Jessica will be forced to choose between the future she needs…and the love she knows is impossible.”
Unclaimed is the second book in the Turner series by Courtney Milan.
When Sir Mark Turner wrote A Gentleman’s Practical Guide to Chastity the last thing in his mind was becoming famous, he wrote it because he wanted to share his way of thinking with others, nothing else. He never expected his book to become as well-known as it did, giving him a superstar status in the ton with hundreds of followers and admires nationwide. Even Queen Victoria awarded him with a knighthood because of services to society thanks to his book. His situation is so dire that he can’t leave home without a group of people following him around. Everywhere he goes ladies and men alike follow him wanting his autograph or at least to cross some words with him. All the mothers with single daughters are trying to get him to marry one of their daughters and the press is reporting his slightest movement.
Sir Mark can’t take it anymore and decides to escape to the country where he hopes to find the anonymity he so much misses. And how mistaken he was…
Jessica Farleigh is a young courtesan tired of her life. A life she wants to leave behind but for that she needs money, money she doesn’t have. When her former protector and enemy of Sir Mark, offers her a substantial sum in exchange of the seduction and downfall of Sir Mark, she accepts without second thoughts. She learns of Sir Mark whereabouts and soon she is living in the same little town in the country. She thought her deed was going to be an easy one but Sir Mark is not at all what she was expecting, he is not an usual man, he is completely extraordinary. Now the seductress is taking the risk of being seduced.
I met Sir Mark in Unveiled, book one of this series and was eagerly waiting to read his story. To be honest I was a bit worried about it, I wasn’t sure I was going to like a virgin hero, I prefer my heroes towards the rake side. But Mrs. Milan did a magnificent job with Sir Mark making him virginal and chase but at the same time he is a very real man. Sir Mark is a man of principles, owner of his action and his feelings. He may be still a virgin, that doesn’t mean he doesn’t lust, he does, as much as any other person, he just has control over his impulses. He hates the double standards of society in regards to male and female behaviors and that was one of his reasons to write his book. He has decided that when he gives himself to a woman he will do it completely and forever. *swoon* (If you are not half in love with him right there you are a cold heartless… woman).
I wanted not to like Jessica, she is a woman who uses her body to get what she wants, making her a difficult pair for my Sir Mark. But when I started to learn more about her, her past and her circumstances I started to like her more and more until the point that I was cheering for her. Jessica is a smart, loving woman. She has done what needed to survive in an unforgiving society where the simplest mistake can ruin your life.
The attraction and tension between these two had my reader steaming. Their relationship was not an easy one because it started with lies and deceives but at the end as with any good love story love conquers all. The dialogue between them is smart, witty and sassy making of Unclaimed and even more enjoyable read.
I really loved seeing more of Sir Mark’s older brother, Ash and his wife Margaret (Unveiled) and how they have settled into their marriage.
Another favorite is Sir Mark’s other brother, Smite. He is a very interesting and mysterious man and I’m dying to read his story.
Unclaimed has everything a perfect historical romance book should have, unique characters, smart writing, well developed plot and a mix of mystery and romance with some twist and turns to spice it all. The only complaint I have is something Jessica did almost at the end; I thought adding that to the story was completely unnecessary, you will see what I’m talking about when you read the book, and I know you are going to read it because this book is so good that you have to!
I loved Courtney Milan style in Unveiled and after reading Unclaimed she has won me over, becoming one of my favorite historical romance writers.
Unclaimed can be read as a stand-alone but Unveiled was as good as this one, so I recommend you to read that one as well.
The next book in this series Unraveled, will be Smite’s story, needless to say I dying to get my greedy hands on him.
My Verdict: 4 ½ Paws
Other books in the series
Unraveled (Nov, 2011)
Other reviews Goodreads