THE VISCOUNT RISKS IT ALL: Lose Time, Gain Experience

The Viscount Risks It All


The Viscount Risks it All Cover

The Prelude to a Kiss Series #4
Penguin Random House/Signet | 5 Jan 2016 
Mass Market Paperback  & ebook | 336 Pages

E-Galley provided by publisher for review. No remuneration was exchanged and all opinions presented herein are my own except as noted.


Gavin Stark, Viscount Derington, learned his lesson when his childhood love was swept off her feet by another man before Dering could declare himself. Ever since, he has lived a life of no regrets—reaching for what he wants while never again allowing himself to lose his heart. If the experience taught him anything, it was never to risk what he wasn’t willing to lose.

Lady Felicity Danby had everything she ever wanted in life until the moment her husband died, turning her world upside down. A year and a half later, she is finally ready to return to Bath to spend the summer visiting family. She finds comfort in her old childhood friend, but is taken off guard when passion begins to simmer between them. She’s already lost everything once—can she possibly risk her heart a second time.!prelude-to-a-kiss/cjf


My Take Oblong


Erin Knightley’s THE VISCOUNT RISKS IT ALL is  story about how people can learn to find their way back to happiness after tragedy.

When I was much younger, I just fell out of love with someone like a light switch turning off. When I broke up with him, he was really angry (as nasty letters from him showed) and I thought he never really got his life back on track. Perhaps it is some sort of narcissistic tendency, but I always felt somewhat responsible. Later in life my husband and I were tenuous friends with this man, but right now I don’t know where he is.  This story reminded me of him and told about the influence one person can have on another and how we all need to treat each other with care.

It has a happier ending than the story of my old relationship.

While this story offers a lot of sexual tension there is no sex, so it is a good choice for someone who prefers clean romance, or as a “mental palate cleanser” between more torrid tomes. It is pretty close to chaste.

Quite a lot of time is spent in developing relationships according to the customs of the time. It offers a lot of detail, and that is fun. I love reading about a time when merely touching a woman’s ungloved hand was  “sweet torture.”

It’s hard to imagine how Felicity, with a sick, and then dead, mother and a very cold, unaffectionate father was able to become such a lovely person. And then with her young widowhood, aftre so much trauma, in an area where she had no family,  it is easy to understand how she would have become such a recluse.  Gavin’s ebullient, fun, party-boy personality is easier to understand, he stuffs unhappy emotions and distance into the short-lived type of interactions.  It’s also unusual in the genre as the men are usually “Ugh, the Ton,” and seem, always to dislike parties.

And Gavin, in particular seems very introspective.  Felicity, a little less so as her life, has recently become so bleak and easier not to  examine. I wonder if that is a function of having less media distraction (or, in fact, NO media distraction).

The book read a little slowly for me, and I attribute it to my recent traveling, and the things I need to do that do not allow me to read; I am listening to books more now than I ever have.  It may also be attributable to the lack of sex in the book. Lacking sex, and any real action  other than running through the woods, the book did not get my heart pumping  and hands turning the pages.

But, it is nicely done.

As these friends work a convoluted route back to each other, it could be easy to dwell on the time they lost and the man she lost, but I think the characters can look on it more as a way to gain life experience so their childhood friendship can develop into something more mature. Both characters experience the tragedy of lost love, which makes finding new love more cherished.  

I highly recommend this one!

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