Title: The Temptation of Laura
Author: Rachel Brimble
Genre: Historical Romance
Story Setting: Bath and London, England
Published by: eKensington
Published Date: February 20, 2014
Sold by: Penguin Random House Publisher Services
Publisher’s Summary: Laura Robinson has always been dazzled by the glamour of the stage. But perhaps acting and selling one’s favors are not so different—for Laura must feign pleasure with the men she beds to survive. Now, with her only friend at death’s door and a ruthless pimp at her heels, escaping her occupation seems impossible. Hoping to attract a gentleman, she attends the theater. Yet the man Laura captivates is no customer, but a rising star and playwright. . .
Adam Lacey has been driven to distraction since the moment he saw Laura. She is his ideal leading lady come to irresistible life—and so much more. Certain they can make the perfect team on and off stage, he is determined to win her heart—and discover her story. But that is precisely what Laura fears. And she has no idea that Adam harbors shameful secrets of his own. Will the truth free them to love—or destroy all their dreams. . .?
My Thoughts: In many ways this read rather a sad story. It also has a powerful message with well-developed complex characters.. The events and situations which Adam and Laura find themselves, individually, are desperate. But can their attraction with the willingness to share life make this a happy ever after?
Laura Robinson and her best friend of seven years are in desperate straights. Bette, an older woman, has pneumonia, and daily she slips a little further from life. Laura is crushed with concern for the woman. She admires Bette’s joie de livre and a determination to look at the bright side of life when one’s plight would have others give up. But not only does deprivation of money weigh heavy on these two women, danger lurks literally at their door.
Baxter, the local pimp and rent gouger, preys on women who have little else to sustained themselves. Laura is absolutely determined she is out of the business of selling herself and fights not to allow Baxter to take what little they have—their dignity.
Money is dangerously low and Laura needs a job. With that in mind she makes way to the local theater and procures a job providing sweets and fruit and to those watching the play. She loves the feel of the theatre and finally gets to see the wonderful actor Adam Lacey.
Sparks fly when Adam catches sight of Laura. Their eyes lock. To Adam he has found his Lucinda, the heroine of a play he’s written. To Laura she has found a man who interests her body and soul.
Adam Lacy co-stars with Monica Danes at the Theater Royal. The play will be closing soon. Adam’s decided to pursue his real dream of being a playwright, but can’t do it until he has an investor. His presently investor is a woman who demands favors from him. He is unwilling to continue to pimp himself. He must find another way—a new investor and to jump the challenges of getting Laura to be his Lucinda.
Adam and Laura struggle as they learn who each are, and ultimately, what each want. This story touches the soul and while these two, whose love fairly flies off the page, are willing to solve their problems, will they be able?