Prelude to a Scandal

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Prelude to a Scandal

Scandal Series, #1

Lady Justine Palmer would do anything to help clear her father’s name and see that he is released from debtors prison. Her father, the sixth Earl of Marwood, has always been an upstanding London citizen and has recently published his observations on the sexual rituals of animals from his travels as an African naturalist. These observations caused an uproar among proper British society including that of His Royal Majesty, which has placed him in prison and Justine in her current predicament. Justine decides to approach the notorious Duke of Bradford, Rake Extraordinaire, with an offer of her father’s release in exchange for several nights of passion. The Duke of Bradford surprises Justine by asking for her hand in marriage instead. Justine has always been attracted to the dashing Duke and the Duke feels that Justine is the perfect woman to tame his wild ways.

Lady Justine and Radcliff, the Duke of Bradford, settle into their married life, but everything isn’t what it seems. The Duke is harboring secrets from his past and the truth behind how he received a horrible scar on his face. This prevents him from giving Justine the love and respect that she so desperately wants from him. Hopefully, Justine can find the key to his heart with a little help from a book called “How to Avoid a Scandal” before Radcliff pushes her away forever.

Prelude to a Scandal is a much edgier novel from Delilah Marvelle than her previous works. She handles two very difficult topics of sexual addiction and domestic abuse delicately and with compassion throughout the course of this novel. Justine and Radcliff were perfect for each other in this love story. Radcliff was having a difficult time dealing with his past but he knew he needed a strong independent woman that would be able to accept him for who he was as well as be able to tame his inner beast that he himself couldn’t control. Justine needed someone who was strong and would be her partner in life. She had spent most of her life in South Africa and viewed life much differently than her female counterparts in London. She didn’t adhere to the rules of British society and the ton so that was very refreshing to read in a historical romance. The only thing that I wanted was for Radcliff to admit to himself that he deserved to be loved earlier in the novel and accept Justine into his heart instead of trying to fight his feelings for her.

I thoroughly enjoyed Prelude to a Scandal and the ending in South Africa will have you cheering. True love can conquer all and this was a delight to read. Can’t wait to read the next two in the series.

Book Blurb for Prelude to a Scandal

Marriage is NOT the end of desire.


Lady Justine is willing to trade her good name, her reputation and her place in London's gossip-hungry ton, to secure her father's release from prison. But when the notorious Duke of Bradford counters her offer with a proposal of marriage, the stakes grow higher still. For while the smoldering lord is famous for his conquests, the man is oblivious to both her devotion and her charms. And Justine is soon afraid she has wagered all for naught...

A red little book by an unknown author.

Three unlikely couples...and scandal galore.

Look for the rest of the scandal series!


Night Owl Reviews Dec, 2010 4.75