Author: Victoria Vane
Genre: Erotic Historical Romance
Length: short novel
Having once lived his life only for larks, laughter, and ladies of easy virtue, Captain Simon Singleton has returned from the war with the colonies a shambles of a man. Now free from six years of captivity, he's still fettered by irrational fears that confine him to a life of seclusion.Victoria Vane has the magic touch when it comes to spicing up historical romances. In Jewel of the East we get two emotionally and physically scarred characters that use their sexuality to heal one another.
Once the crowning jewel of the most lavish brothel in London, the exotic Salime finds her reputation and livelihood destroyed by a bitter rival. With a closely guarded secret stripped away, Salime fears no man will ever desire her again. Seeking aid from the man who once saved her life, Salime accepts a proposition to repay her debt to him by becoming a companion to his war-scarred friend.
Circumstance brings these two damaged souls together; but fate ignites a love story worthy of the Arabian Nights.
In previous books in the DeVere series I became curious about Salime. She was a bit of an enigma; sensual,loyal, and trusting. I can't imagine very many 'working ladies' back then were as dedicated to their work as Salime. In Jewel of the East my ideal of Salime was shattered a bit. I slowly realized that all is not what it seems. She's not just a good-time girl that *entirely* enjoys what she's doing
While Simon has his own demons, stemming from being a POW, he brings to light Salime's tragic life which made me understand her much better.
There are a few layers to this book. If you're looking for an erotic romance to give you a little buzz it will do. But if you read deeper there is a darker story that should have been more of a struggle to overcome. With another 100 pages, or so, Jewel of the East could have been so much more. I still loved reading it and recommend it, but I wouldn't be opposed if I Ms. Vane were to lengthen it at some point :)