In Zoë Archer’s Dangerous Seduction, Alyce Carr has no time for the strange man in her little Cornwall village, no matter how breathtakingly handsome he is. Life in Trewyn doesn’t allow for much fun—the managers of the copper mine barely provide the miners and their families with enough food. Outsiders are suspect and flirts are unimaginable, but Simon Sharpe is as keen as his name…and Alyce can’t ignore him for long.
As the founder of Nemesis, Unlimited, Simon Addison-Shawe is well accustomed to disguise and deceit. Yet he’s not prepared for Alyce’s dogged defense of her people and the injustices the copper mine has dealt them. With Alyce’s help he can change the fate of an entire town, and convincing her to join him is only part of the thrill. Together, they ignite a desire in each other much too powerful to deny. But at what cost?
Oh my.. *fans self* If it’s one thing I can always say about Zoe Archer’s books, it’s that the woman knows how to write some sexual tension. The love scenes were scrumptious, with that kind of ferocity that comes from the couple knowing that they don’t have much time left together, and that they have to make the best of the time that they are given. Yum!
Outside of the relationship between Simon and Alyce, though, was still a beautifully written story. We the readers really get a sense of the daily life of the miners — with the good and the bad illustrated alongside one another. The secondary characters are really given a chance to shine, with Alyce’s sister-in-law especially becoming a favorite of mine.
The angst that came up not only when Simon revealed his true identity and the fact that he had been wooing Alyce partially because he needed her help in his scheming was gorgeous, and add to that the heartache that came from knowing that he and Alyce could never be together for the long term, as she was needed by her family and neighbors at the mine, and he couldn’t give up his work with Nemesis, and let me tell you I was gasping with the despair of not knowing how on earth the author could pull off a Happily Ever After between the two.
My favorite part of the book (outside of the hotness that was Alyce and Simon of course) was watching Alyce blossom from a “simple bal-maiden”, whose daily routine was upset only by confronting the managers about things like rancid butter in the town store, to a self-assured, confident woman who was able to make certain that Simon pulled off his own scheme to bring justice and balance to the mine. Her boldness and confidence, even when she was shaking in her boots, made me love her just as much as Simon came to.
And speaking of Simon, it was glorious to see him transform from a man whose sole purpose in life was to right the wrongs that he saw around him, into a man who actually gave a damn about himself for a change.
One thing I appreciated about this story was that although I adored the first book, I don’t think that newcomers to the series would necessarily be required to read that first book in order to make sense of this one. As a fan of the first book, though, I did enjoy seeing Ava and her brawny husband, Jack, in action. I still, of course, recommend readign the first book in the series, Sweet Revenge, simply because it was a wonderful tale on its own, but it is in no way required to enjoy this story on its own merits.
Recommended for fans of strong female protagonists, a fight for justice, and tons of angst, all liberally doused with delicious sexual tension and a Happily Ever After that is not to be missed.
A very solid 4/5 Stars