The Devil You Know
by Victoria Vane
"The Devil DeVere" series continues, or should I say begins, with The Devil You Know. As the title suggests the third installment in the erotica series of novellas. This installment is set for us to learn what has made Ludovic DeVere turn into The Devil DeVere. We've followed Ludovic through two stories now in which his closest friend and then his brother find their own happiness, while he stays seemingly content with his bachelor lifestyle. Of course, in the second installment we meet Diana, a woman that seems to hold quite the mysterious history with Ludovic.
Diana knows her husband is up to no good, has felt for some time that he has secrets. When she finally arrives at the country estate of Viscount Ludovic, it is with the expectation that her husband has been there for three days. When it is discovered that he never arrived the search begins, only to end when he is found at a neighbor's estate drinking and gambling.
Ludovic has always had to fight against a terrible case of ennui. Nothing holds his attention for very long, which is the case with his latest lover. When he is introduced to Diana, he sees a solution to both of his dilemmas. Diana deserves more than her husband can ever give her, but when Ludovic's lover shows up uninvited he finds himself unable to give her the attention she deserves.
Diana wants nothing more than to feel desired as a woman. From the very beginning, her husband has blamed her for their marriage bed troubles. Ludovic has no lack of desire for Diana, but for the first time he feels more for a woman then desire.
There has been something about this series that has intrigued me from the beginning. Ludovic is the typical Rake that fills his days and nights with pleasures, all the while hiding a deeper side to himself. In the previous two stories, his actions have just skirted that line of forgiveable, but I've needed to know why I would be willing to forgive this hero his sins. This book definitely gave a glimpse into the reasons behind Ludovic's actions, but nowhere near enough. I could do nothing but feel empathy for Diana. She has done everything in life to try to please those around her and received no happiness in return. For once in her life, she is determined to reach for her own happiness.
For those that have been following the series, you are definitely going to want to pick this one up! The author suggests reading this one in order that they were intended, I would have to agree that the investment needed to enjoy these characters is definitely garnered from starting at the beginning.
August 2012, 127 pages
Publisher: Breathless Press
Who can find a virtuous woman... Beautiful, respectable, and dutiful, Lady Diana Palmerston-Wriothesley, has long resigned herself to her twelve-year loveless and childless marriage to a feckless husband...until his gambling pushes them to the brink of financial ruin.
Sometimes the devil is in disguise...as a gentleman... Viscount Ludovic, "The Devil DeVere," is a man accustomed to taking what he wants, according to his whim and heedless of the cost...until he encounters a woman who won't be had at any price.
When dealing with the devil, it's easy to be burned... When Diana discovers a secret that shatters the carefully built façade concealing her private pain, she seeks aid and comfort from the most unlikely place...the devil's arms. But will a single night of heavenly passion damn them both forever?