Format read: ebook
Series: Book #2 in the Devil DeVere series
Release Date: 29 June 2012
Number of pages: 140 pages
Publisher: Breathless Press
Formats available: ebook
Purchasing Info: Goodreads, Author’s Website, Amazon, Breathless Press, Read an excerpt
Desperate times call for devilish measures… when the object of one’s passion has eyes for another… it’s time to take matters in hand!
Lady Vesta Chambers is accustomed to getting what she wants…Coddled and pampered, since her mother’s death, Lady Vesta Chambers is beside herself when her father goes to London to prepare for her come-out and returns with a young bride of his own. With her world turned upside down, Vesta accompanies her godmother, Diana, to town, where she is smitten the moment she lays eyes on a certain captain of the Seventeenth Light Dragoons.
But when the object of her passion has eyes for another…
Captain Hewett DeVere, younger brother and heir to Viscount Ludovic “The Devil” DeVere, has returned from the American war scarred, disillusioned, and looking forward to settling down to a quiet and respectable life. But when the handsome and straight-laced captain turns his eyes toward the widowed Diana, Vesta is prepared to take devilish measures to prove she is no longer a little girl, but a woman with the passion of … a huntress.
Marlene: A Wild Night’s Bride was so much fun because Ned and Phoebe (the hero and heroine) were essentially very likeable. You want them to get their happily ever after. Vesta Chambers, Ned’s daughter from his first marriage, is something else again. Vesta is a manipulating little baggage. It’s too bad that DeVere is fated elsewhere, they almost deserve each other.
Stella: I enjoyed A Wild Night’s Bride, the first novella in Victoria Vane’s The Devil DeVere historical erotica series, I found it a light and entertaining, a steamy and fun romp, so I was excited to read the subsequent instalment, but sadly I just didn’t really enjoy The Virgin Huntress, the 2nd novella in the series. It’s not even that I had lukewarm feelings towards this 2nd story, but rather that I found it frustrating, and I think the main reason for that (or at least 90%) is the heroine’s fault.
Vesta is a young girl of about 18 years old, who is preparing for her coming out. As such I knew I should expect some immaturity, but what frustrated me was to see the petulant, spoiled brat she was behaving like: she was whining, rebelling and throwing hissy fits constantly. Not only was she childish but she was so selfish, the way she did whatever she wanted without any care in the world about how it would change others’ life irrevocably made me so angry. Even the hero realized this when he said:
“How can you possibly think I could ever love such a spoiled, petulant, self-absorbed, and scheming little wretch?”
I couldn’t put it better myself.
Marlene: Having said that DeVere deserves Vesta, he’s not as black as he’s painted. He manipulates, yes. And he enjoys manipulating the people around him. Very much. But the results, while they amuse him, tend to end up being for the person’s own good. At least the man’s own good. Ned got shaken out of his grief. Hew needs to get shaken out of what sounds like PTSD. If DeVere enjoys watching the show, well, he is a consummate puppetmaster.
Stella: Sorry Marlene but I don’t agree with you, in my opinion Vesta would be too great of a punishment on DeVere, and besides he is too much of a father figure for her. But regarding your other statement I agree. Despite his repulsive debonair, roguish ways (Ludovic DeVere is the most debauched rogue I have ever read about, if there is an orgy he is there and upping the ick factor), he has a warm and generous heart and what he has in mind is his friend’s/brother’s happiness. So in a way he is quite selfless 😉
Marlene: I did say that DeVere wasn’t quite as bad as he’s made out to be, now didn’t I? Having Vesta end up as his sister-in-law will be quite enough of a punishment in any case. 😉 But back to the story as written, Ludovic DeVere seems to be out for his own amusement first, what he believes will be his friend’s best interests second, and whatever happens to the female in the equation is much farther down his list of considerations. Vesta brings any consequences on herself, of course. In the first book, Phoebe gets lucky.
Stella: I already noticed in The Wild Night’s Bride the archaic language Victoria Vane used in the dialogues, and although they made the repartee somewhat stilted it didn’t detract from the story. However in The Virgin Huntress there were a lot of Americanisms that bothered me, they were most prominent in Vesta’s hissy fits and lines (“Vesta gushed”).
Marlene: I enjoy the author’s writing style, but this romance just didn’t have the zing that the first one did. This couple didn’t have the right long-term chemistry. Vesta comes to London because she’s not the center of her father’s life anymore now that he’s remarried. Talk about self-centered! She falls in love with the first man she sees, and kidnaps him to make him fall in love with her. And it works? It forces the marriage, but why does it force an actual happy ending? I’m not feeling it.
Stella: I agree, besides Vesta what made The Virgin Huntress a disappointment was the lack of credibility of the romance (which once again failed due to Vesta’s character). Vesta’s infatuation, childish crush for Hew cannot be called love and whenever she passionately (=whiningly) declared that Hew was the one, he was the love of her life and how much she loved him, it just made me roll my eyes.
“No, this time Vesta would not run away like a child. This time she would hold her ground and fight for the man she loved.”
That’s what she thinks after spying him for the very first time from afar and a 3 sentence meeting. She’s behaving childishly fancying herself in love, which wouldn’t be a problem if she didn’t take it upon herself to force others’ hand and alter their lives irrevocably. That I couldn’t forgive her.
Marlene: The romantic leads in this romance unfortunately do not carry the book. Vesta remains a whining little brat who does not grow up. Her behavior is unfortunately rewarded, so she is not redeemed. Hew, the ostensible hero, is more of a cardboard cutout than an actual man, let alone a hero. The scenes that sparkle are the ones between Vesta and DeVere (her godfather, too delicious) and between DeVere and Diana. Their history is revealed in the next novella, and I really want to know, because it clearly screwed them both up something fierce.
I give this 2.5 rather disappointed stars.
Stella: Sadly I found the heroine of The Virgin Huntress (her actions and motivations) despicable and as there was no character development for Vesta, she couldn’t redeem herself. Though the hero had some promise, he remained quite 2D and undeveloped as a secondary character, DeVere and Diana (Vesta’s chaperone of pseudo-step mom) got more screen time than poor hero, and their scenes were the most vivid and pulsing in the book. I preferred the 1st story in the series, but as the next one will be about DeVere and the woman who will tame him, I’m looking forward to reading the 3rd novella in the series.
I give The Virgin Huntress 2.5 stars as well.