Title: In the Flesh by Portia DaCosta
The Ladies Sewing Circle Book 5
Publisher: HQN Books
Genre: Historical, Erotic, Romance
Length: 382 pages
Book Rating: C+
Review Copy Obtained from Publisher Through NetGalley
Society already believes she’s a scarlet woman. Why not become one?
Posing nude to appease her now ex-fiancé perhaps wasn’t the most prudent idea Beatrice Weatherly has ever had. With the photographs scrutinized up and down the ton and her brother running them into debt, Beatrice’s hopes of making a respectable marriage are dashed.
After one glance at Beatrice’s infamous racy cabinet cards, wealthy, powerful Edward Ellsworth Richie is soon obsessed with Beatrice’s voluptuous figure. His indecent proposal—one month of hedonistic servitude in exchange for enough money to pay her brother’s debts—is one she can hardly refuse.
Determined not to let the rogue best her, Beatrice sets out for the infamous House of Madame Chamfleur to learn how to appease Edward’s well-known appetite. Soon the couple is playing out exquisite fantasies…and feeling emotion that goes deeper than flesh. But Edward harbors a shocking secret, and Beatrice must decide if she’s prepared to give up everything for a man who can offer her nothing, but who means everything.
Portia Da Costa’s newest historical romance In the Flesh is an enjoyable romance that is exquisitely sensual and highly erotic. Having obtained copies of her risqué cabinet cards, Edward Ritchie is immediately intrigued by Beatrice Weatherly and quickly arranges a meeting with the infamous beauty.
In the Flesh is a fast paced and sexy romp. The characters are immensely appealing and delightfully well-developed. Beatrice is extremely likable and rather forward thinking for the time period. No nonsense and pragmatic, Beatrice agrees to Ritchie’s terms and unashamedly embraces her sexuality.
Ritchie is a complex character with a complicated past. He attempts to keep his relationship with Beatrice strictly physical with few emotional ties. Much to Beatrice’s dismay, he does not rush their sexual relationship. Instead he gently tutors and encourages her to explore her sexuality with and without him.
A secondary subplot involving Beatrice’s brother and maid and Ritchie’s servant provide added interest to In the Flesh. This storyline is fairly low key yet very tantalizing. Their scenes were quite entertaining and very, very sexy.
While the overall story was quite enjoyable, the romance between Beatrice and Ritchie felt rushed. Their time together was limited and mostly spent in the bedroom. The conflict between Beatrice and her ex-fiancé was predictable and added little to the plot. The storyline involving Ritchie’s past is also quickly resolved and it is wrapped up a little too neatly.
In the Flesh by Portia Da Costa is a fast paced novel with engaging characters. The sex scenes are plentiful and quite titillating. If you are a fan of historical erotic romance then you are sure to enjoy this deliciously sensual story.