SECRETS OF SEDUCTION Nicole Jordan
Legendary Lovers , Book 3
Ballantine Books
ISBN-13:  978-0-345-52531-4
May 2014
Historical Romance

East Sussex, England 1816

At the age of thirteen, Lady Skye Wilde spotted The Earl of Hawkhurst at a party at her house, but she was devastated to learn he was married.  Years later, a fire at his estate killed his wife and young son, and in his sadness he headed to the Isle of Cyrene to work for the Guardians of the Sword, a clandestine branch of the British Foreign Office.  Skye's Aunt Isabella recently told her Hawk has returned to his estate to find a wife and marry, and Skye is determined she will be his new love.  Besides, her cousin Katharine is trying to matchmake for her cousins using fairy tales and is plotting for Hawk and Skye as Beauty and the Beast, because of his scars from attempting to save his wife and son.

During his nightly bottle of brandy, Hawk hears a pounding at the front door during a storm, and a beautiful woman is there who claims to know his good friend Isabella and can she stay the night because of the storm?  Then Skye tells him she wants him to find her Uncle Cornelius's long lost love from twenty five years ago.  Lady Skye has found out the lady faked her own drowning because of the physical abuse of her husband, and left her baby daughter behind.  Only a hero and member of the Guardians would have the knowledge and contacts to investigate and find her dear uncle's beloved.  After Skye and her brother's parents and her cousin's parents died in a boating accident, Uncle Cornelius was given the job of raising five parentless children, and she recently found love letters from a lady named Rachel that he had hidden away.  It is time he deserves some happiness in his life, and it is also a way for Skye to spend time around Hawk to see if theirs is really a match and he is the man she could call husband.

Hawk just wants to be alone to make renovations on his estate and start paying court to the niece of Sir Gawain Olwen, the leader of the Guardians, who wants to retire soon.  The Guardians require someone related to the original founders of the group, and through marriage to his niece, Hawk could be the next leader.  With no other joy or happiness in his life, Hawk figures a quiet young lady might make a good wife.

Skye's story is to ask Hawk to help. With his experience and contacts he is sure to be able to accomplish such a task even though it has been twenty five years.  She makes sure she is involved in all the planning and uses all her wiles on Hawk to bring him out of the sadness that fills his life.  Little does Hawk know that the seduction has started, and, well, he just has no chance of resisting the adorable Skye.

Nicole Jordan again takes us on a journey with Katharine's idea to match her cousins with lovers from fairy tales; so far two of her cousins have married successfully, and she is sure Skye will be the next.  Hawk knows nothing of this plan, and he soon finds out Skye is drawn to him for some reason, scars and all.  Skye is determined to decide if Hawk is all she dreamed he would be all those years ago, and nothing she learns changes her mind; he is destined to be hers.

Secondary characters are Isabella, Skye's aunt; Uncle Cornelius; and Rachel Farnwell, Cornelius's lost love; and Edgar Farnwell, the new Lord Farnwell.

SECRETS OF SEDUCTION has a mystery about finding a woman thought to be dead, and the tale of a young woman trying to seduce a man who feels he doesn't deserve any happiness in his life.  Skye is determined, and she has love on her side.  The Legendary Lovers have once again been proven to help find the destined match for a member of the Wilde family, and we look forward to Skye's elusive brother Quinn meeting his match and to see what fairy tale he will try in vain to elude.  SECRETS OF SEDUCTION will capture your interest and keep you glued to the pages all the way through.

Carolyn Crisher