Pleasure For Pleasure

Written by Eloisa James
Review by Nan Curnutt

Josie, the last of the four Essex sisters, is worried. All of her sisters are beautiful. She feels that she is the ugly duckling of the family. At her London debut in 1818, Josie is named the “Scottish Sausage” by the friend of a rejected suitor. That nickname, combined with Josie’s insecurity about her full figure, rob her of much of the pleasure being in society. Garret Langham, the sensual, experienced, engaged Earl of Mayne, is a friend of the family. Mayne decides to teach Josie how to love her own body. In one corset-freeing lesson he introduces Josie to the art of seduction, and this lesson leaves her panting for more.

This is Eloisa James’ final installment in a quartet of novels about the Essex sisters. The descriptions of provocative pleasures are interrupted occasionally by a plot and a few historical details, but not enough to interrupt the flow of passion from one bedroom, or garden, or horse barn, to another. Ms. James’s witty prose and well-developed characters combine to make what would otherwise be an overly sensual historical novel enjoyable.