Review: The Illicit Love of a Courtesan by Jane Lark

Today, I'm delighted to share my review of The Illicit Love of a Courtesan by Jane Lark, a fast-paced romance with a strong dose of adventure.

It's currently on blog tour with Rachel's Random Resources. Make sure to check out all the other fabulous tour stops.

The Illicit Love of a Courtesan

Jane Lark

As longstanding mistress to the powerful Lord Gainsborough, Ellen Harding lacks nothing material: jewellery, fine gowns, exciting nights out in the gaming-hells of London. But she's nothing but a trophy the odious man shows off, and she lives her life in his gilded cage.

Ellen is used to the men in those sinful dens sending her lustful glances, and she can't always stop their wandering hands. But when she locks eyes with the man sitting opposite her benefactor one night, she spots something else. A glimmer of hope?

For not all is as it seems in Ellen's life, which now takes a turbulent turn as Edward Marlow, younger brother of an earl, is keen to discover her secret – one she keeps hidden deep inside.

The Illicit Love of a Courtesan is a delightful romance adventure. We follow Ellen's story as it unfolds in this whirlwind of a novel.

Ellen is aware of her place in the world, and she is resigned to her fate for reasons that become clear over the course of the novel – until Edward awakes feelings she never thought she'd experience. Without giving away any of the plot, Ellen's is a journey of fear, loss, self-discovery, and ultimately, courage. To watch her slowly gaining confidence is a delight.

We have to thank Edward for her journey. Instantly smitten with the beauty, his attitude changes through the novel as he discovers the woman behind the mask. But he is a second son, without prospect, and how can he compete with the powerful Gainsborough.

But there's much more to Ellen's story, as Edward slowly discovers. I found her reluctance to tell him her secrets realistic, as she has a deep distrust of men. But after a while, once his intentions are clear, I think she should have told him her ultimate secret. It does create tension, but he is deeply loyal to her, despite her fears.

The Illicit Love of a Courtesan is an intriguing romance with an unlikely heroine, whose background is revealed bit by bit (and a little foreseeable), and the fast-paced adventure Ellen and Edward find themselves in makes for entertaining reading.

A romance with a series of clever twists. Fans of historical romance should add this fabulous novel to their reading lists.


In the eyes of the ton, Ellen Harding lives a charmed life - she is the beautiful, exquisitely adorned mistress of Lord Gainsborough.

But on the inside, behind her glamorous façade, she is empty - a vessel - deaf to the voice of morality and blind to shame. Unable to escape the gilded cage she has been trapped within.

Kind, gentle Edward Marlow could prove to be her salvation... With one look he gives her hope. With one touch he sets her senses alight.

Lose yourself in the passionate intensity of this stunning debut from exciting new talent Jane Lark.

Buy Links:

Available on Kindle Unlimited on Amazon

The Illicit Love of a Courtesan Book 1 -

The Marlow Family Secret Full Series -



Barnes and Noble:


About the Author:

Jane Lark

Jane has been shortlisted for several industry awards. She is a Kindle bestselling author and a writer of compelling, passionate, and emotionally charged fiction. She loves writing intense relationships and is thrilled to hear readers say they have loved a book so much they have read it more than once.


  1. Thank you for taking the time to read the book and share your review, I'm thrilled you loved it.

    Best wishes,



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