Genre: Historical Romance
Series: Book 4 of the Windham series
Publisher: Sourcebooks – (November, 2011)
Rating: A; Nearly Perfect; A Keeper!
Heat Level: 4; Very hot
The Virtuoso by Grace Burrowes
Perfection, enchanting and stunningly sensual are the best ways to describe The Virtuoso by Grace Burrowes. This tale is a lovely romance filled with spectacular characters and with plenty of heart and charm.
When Lord Valentine Windham lost his ability to play music, he thought he lost his reason for existence. Lost and weary, he thinks fate has dealt him a tolerable hand when he wins an estate in a card game. Determined to use the time and effort to repair the property as an excuse to ease his despair, he becomes even more interested in the widow next door. The same young widow he stole a kiss from last summer and the woman he cannot stop thinking about. This neighbor, Ellen, Baroness Roxbury feels the same attraction towards Valentine, but is reluctant to act on it. For one thing, she is worried about risking her heart. She is also worried about revealing secrets which will make Valentine despise her forever. As they both realize their passion will not be denied, Ellen must decide if she can tell the truth and risk losing Windham forever.
Valentine was a unique hero and somewhat odd, but in a charming way. As he finds it easy to express his emotions by music, he just as easily expresses his feelings toward the heroine. His openness was refreshing and surprising. Amid the turmoil of his inability to play the piano anymore, he still maintains a calm attitude. He is always thoughtful and considerate, going to great lengths to ensure he protects his family and those important to him first. Ellen was very reserved and somewhat shy. She was constantly holding secrets that kept her from completely giving herself to Val. Her situation in life forced her to spend much of her time alone, so the relationship she builds with Val becomes very important to her. She wasn’t completely inexperienced but this book showcased that she had much to learn from the hero about love and about life. You can easily tell Burrowes carefully crafted these characters. They are unique, intelligent and delightfully vibrant. Of course they are wonderful in the beginning, but by the end after building such a strong relationship, they are even more captivating.
The passion between these two characters was fabulous. Most scenes were drawn out and very lengthy, and overwhelmingly intimate. You could feel these were two people that were very caring lovers experiencing much more than physical pleasure. It was stunning as their passion is one that burns slowly and beautifully. I am a sucker for any historical romance novel about musicians, but it was about so much more than that. This was such a heartfelt and tender romance story that entranced you from beginning to end. It becomes apparent later on that this novel is about Val realizing his music wasn’t the only thing to be passionate about in life…which I desperately adored because it was so romantic!
The Virtuoso was my first Grace Burrowes novel and it certainly will not be my last. This novel was truly an enchanting journey. A slight disclaimer though to those who prefer to read a series in order must be mentioned. The other brothers from Burrowes previous releases are brought into the story and have active roles. I fully enjoyed it as a stand alone, but others may feel left out without having read the previous installments.
If I haven’t stressed it enough already, The Virtuoso is a beautiful story and one you must read as soon as possible! Grace Burrowes has a wonderful talent at creating a beautiful corner of the world in a fantastic time period that you will simply never want to leave! She pens a powerful romance with a prose that is delightful and will easily captivate you. The Virtuoso is nothing less than fabulous.