A Midnight Dance by Lila DiPasqua (Fiery Tales #3)
August 2, 2011
Reviewed by Mandi
This is the first full length book by Lila DiPasqua, although it follows her previous short stories with a twist on erotic fairytales. In A Midnight Dance, we get a version of Cinderella. Sabine Laurent was once a wealthy young adult. Her father owned a very respectable theater in Paris that catered to the elite. Sabine and her twin sister Isabelle used to spy on all of the handsome men in the theater crowd. In particular, Sabine became very enamored by her very own Prince Charming – Jules de Moutier. He may not ever notice her, but she is in love.
But the fairytale is about to enter dark times. Eight years later, Sabine’s father is dead and they have no money. Her father ended up having to sell his estate to Jules’ family, and now owe his family taxes – that are raised all the time. Her father sent Isabelle away to work, and now she is presumed dead as well. Her family and friends from the theater owe taxes, and they have no money to pay them. Sabine’s plan? Rob a group of privateers who have an abundance of silver. Due to her theater background, she acts as a harlot, out to seduce the leader of the group. Her cousins will come in with her with tainted wine, so everyone passes out. Then Sabine can run off with the silver saving her family from debtor’s prison. But guess who leads this group of men?
Jules has fallen on hard times too. A traitor has disgraced his family. Jules has turned to privateering for the past five years – gathering Spanish silver so that one day he can repurchase his family’s lands. When Sabine saunters into his camp (he doesn’t know who she is from his past) her saucy demeanor attracts him to her. He has gone without a woman for some time. But after he debauches her, and realizes she is (or was) a virgin, he knows he has been played. Sabine is desperate to steal his money, and Jules is just as desperate to keep it, and punish Sabine for her lies.
After I read the first few chapters, I honestly didn’t think I was going to like this book. Jules and Sabine not only have sex from the get-go, but Sabine tricks Jules into thinking she is this experienced harlot, rather than a well-bred virgin. The way she “seduces” him didn’t seem very convincing – yet he falls for it. Maybe he is just horny, and willing to overlook her meek and mild manner. But it didn’t seem very realistic to me. After he discovers she is a virgin, she then convinces him to keep her with him for the next three days as they travel to the next town. Again I though would he really keep her? The story just didn’t flow for me.
It is not until Jules and Sabine come to the inn where Sabine’s cousins have planned another ambush on Jules that the charm of this story starts to shine through. Sabine becomes this saucy heroine who refuses to back down to Jules. And Jules – oh the anger that pours off him knowing he was duped – yet again. It is so much fun to watch these two go at it. The plot expands to a devious traitor and Jules and Sabine realize they have both suffered, and maybe the other isn’t entirely to blame.
I do consider this an erotic book – there are a lot of sex scenes and they go on for some time. Like I said earlier, I wasn’t a fan of the early scenes, but once these two get to know each other, and Jules realizes he is her “Dark Prince” and he has starred in her fantasies she has had for years, the story becomes very engaging. They battle each other, but then love each other just as fiercely.
Although it took a little bit to get into this one, I really ended up enjoying both the hero and heroine. Quite a sexy fairytale.