Passion? Sure. Love, not so much.,
This review is from: The Passion (Mass Market Paperback)Lady Aurora Demming hasn't been lucky in love. First she loses her beloved lifelong fiancé, then her father betroths her to a cold man twice her age. It's not surprising that she's willing to take any chance that comes her way to avoid the match her father made, so she's decided to visit her cousin in the West Indies to avoid the marriage for a little longer.
Nicholas Sabine is an American shipping magnate who is caught behind enemy lines during the War of 1812. Because he's defended his ships when the British attacked him, he is labeled a pirate and sentenced to hang. He was behind enemy lines for a good reason, to bring his sister home with him, and despite being sentenced to death is most worried about finding a way to take care of her when he's killed.
With an idea you would only find in a romance novel (and probably already have), on the eve of his execution Nicholas asks Lady Aurora to be his wife. He'll leave her a great deal of money if she'll find and take care of his little sister for him, and for Aurora it means she doesn't have to marry the man her father's chosen. Oh, one last thing, she has to agree to consummate the marriage so no one can say it isn't legal.
So they marry, consummate, he lets her think he's dead. She finds his sister, heads back to England, mourning the husband who made her "feel things" on her wedding night. He escapes, heads to England to find her. She's shocked that he's alive and doesn't know if she wants to be married to him now that he's back. After a bunch of bedroom scenes her "dead" fiancé shows back up. You can probably imagine how it goes from there.
In a historical sense, there's a lot wrong with "The Passion"; actually in any sense there's a lot wrong with it. Aurora seems to care about what society thinks and yet she willing marries a condemned American pirate. Her cousin offers her another way out of her unwanted marriage, but she doesn't take it and instead marries a criminal. Then, when said criminal shows back up, she's not sure she wants him for flimsy reasons about the fact that he's a rake and her not being sure of him, or what people would think. Honestly, her reasons for not wanting to be with him are nonsensical and just an excuse to keep the story going an extra two hundred pages. She's an English noblewoman, who is legally married in the early nineteenth century-she's not going to find some magic way out of it.
Before I let on that the book is totally past redemption, I do have to say that I like Nicholas. Obviously, I think the heroine is totally unworthy of him. I'm never really certain that either of them are in love, despite what they say, but he seems committed to giving her the benefit of the doubt and still wants her even after she rejects him about a hundred times. There's something noble about most of his actions. In fact, he's the only reason I kept reading the book after about page 100. I skimmed every scene he wasn't in past that point.
I give "The Passion" two stars. It's really not very readable, and the hero is the only thing saving it from being a total disaster. Oh, and the love scenes? I didn't see anything special. There were a lot of them, to be sure, but nothing earth shattering. If you want to see this story done right, I'd read Kathleen E. Woodiwiss's "Shana". This was my first Nicole Jordan and probably my last, so I have nothing else of hers to recommend in its place.