Published by Lyrical Press on September 27th 2016
Purchase: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo
Inside the glittering walls of a famous hotel, an ingénue experiences first passion . . . As she stands before the gilded doors of The Grand Russe Hotel, Alecia Loudon is poised on the threshold of a profound awakening. It is the Roaring Twenties, and London is buzzing with opportunities for adventure . . . and indiscretion. The young personal secretary knows nothing of the ways of men, but a chance meeting with the hotel’s handsome night watchman sets her imagination afire. Ivan Salter has noticed the quiet Englishwoman and wonders what delicate beauty might be lurking behind Alecia’s plain clothes. As the handsome Russian draws Alecia further into the hotel’s luxurious world, he introduces her to fine food, cool jazz, and forbidden assignations. Their dalliance is tested, however, by a surprising link between Ivan’s family history and Alecia’s bosses. Tangled up in international intrigue, the lovers must decide if their sparkling new romance is worth the cost . . . Praise for Heather Hiestand’s novels“One Taste of Scandal is a delicious, multi-layered Victorian treat." —Gina Robinson, author of The Last Honest Seamstress and the Agent Ex series
“A fast read with a different view point than many novels in the genre.” —Library Journal on His Wicked Smile
“This is definitely one for the keeper shelf.” —Historical Romance Lover on His Wicked Smile
“A delightful, sexy glimpse into Victorian life and loving with two wonderfully non‑traditional lovers.” —Jessa Slade, author of Dark Prince's Desire, on His Wicked Smile
¬¬Review by Meril¬¬
Set in the Roaring 20’s in the the luxurious Grand Russe Hotel in London, and populated with glamorous people, jazz music, dancing and flappers, this novel explores a time frame not often found in novels. Add in intriguing characters and Russian and British politics, and a murder scheme and as they say, the plot thickens.
Alecia Loudon, a secretary to a married couple of aging actors struggling to find work, longs for excitement and loves the music and dancing she finds at the Grand Russe. She finds herself attracted to Ivan Salter, the devastating handsome Russian night watchman. Ivan has lost his family to the war, except for his politically radical sister, whose boyfriend has murder on his mind.
As Alecia and Ivan become closer, they each have to deal with problems. Alecia has to try to keep her job in spite of unreasonable demands from her employer. Ivan has to try to keep his job in spite of unfair accusations. Both have to try to convince the police about a mysterious danger about to visit the Grand Russe, before it happens.
The book offered a view into the heady days of the Roaring 20’s when booze, jazz music, dancing, and luxury were the order of the day for those with the money to buy them. The people who served them were portrayed as well, a la Downton Abbey. With the politics of the day also portrayed, it made an interesting book.
I voluntarily reviewed an Advanced Readers Copy of this book.