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Sunday, July 13, 2014

Guest Post: Jess Michaels- Sexy Books in the Regency??

Beautiful Distraction (The Pleasure Wars, #4)A Matter of Sin (The Ladies' Book of Pleasures, #1)
About the Book:

                                                Beautiful Distraction
Can true love begin with a lie?
The Pleasure Wars, Book 4
It has been a particularly trying day for Olivia Cranfield. Despite her impeccable manners, stylish clothing and posh accent, another protector has detected her lowborn status and rejected her out of hand.
When fellow courtesan Violet invites her to come to Bath to help with the wicked seduction of the scarred, reclusive Earl of Windbury, Olivia jumps at the offer, eager for some excitement and a change of scenery.
The moment Malcolm Graham lays eyes on the delectable woman lurking in the bathhouse alley, he knows she’s a decoy to keep him busy while her friend seduces the earl inside. For a moment, he allows her to play her game…but one touch, and all he can think about is ending the two years of self-denial he’s endured in the name of friendship.
Instant attraction quickly turns into a decidedly erotic affair that makes Olivia question all she’s ever known about passion. But when the truth behind Violet’s assignment comes to light, betrayal threatens to bring everything they’ve built crashing down around Olivia’s broken heart.
Warning: This book contains a lady lying for a good cause, a gentleman as loyal to his friends as he is passionate in the bedchamber, and a steamy affair that will change them both forever.
                                                          Barnes and Noble
                                                      About the Book:
                                               A Matter of Sin
The Ladies Book of Pleasures, Book 1

The widowed Lady Isabel Avenbury has one remaining younger sister to shepherd into an advantageous marriage, and then she will be free. Free to take a lover to fill her lonely nights—the only option left for a woman on the delicate edge of a certain age.

Except when she chaperones her sister to a country house party, she is taken aback by her sudden, undeniable attraction to the host. And deliciously scandalized when she finds a copy of the notorious, much-gossiped-about Ladies Book of Pleasures in his library.

When Seth Rowland, Marquis Lyndham, notices his book is missing, his interest is piqued as to which of the potential young brides at his party has absconded with it—and he’s shocked to discover it’s Isabel. Though older than the women he’d planned to court, the powerful beauty exudes a sensuality he cannot ignore.

The book inspires them to begin a desperate, passionate affair. But their time together is running out and they must choose. Follow society’s rules, or take a chance at love.

Warning: Found within are highly scandalous books that trigger passionate desires, surrender in the orangery and possibly true love.

                                                          Barnes and Noble
Hi everyone and a big thank you to Mary for having me here today. It’s a very exciting time for me because on Tuesday my new series, The Ladies Book of Pleasures, launches with A MATTER OF SIN. The series centers around a scandalous book written by an anonymous lady that is circulating through Society and three friends whose lives are changed by it. 

In the book The Ladies Book of Pleasures is both a sexual manual for ladies, and also a call to action for those women to leave behind whatever shame they have about their desires. Obviously, this would be a shocking thing for the time. And it is in the book (which is why the Lady is anonymous). 

But since announcing the series, I’ve had several people ask me about these kinds of topics in that time. Were their sex books, manuals, sex toys, etc? The answer is, of course, yes! There have been phalluses found believed to be used as sex toys that go as far back as tens of thousands of years BC. When Pompeii was unearthed, highly explicit pornographic imagery was found on the walls of the brothels and even as part of the everyday household items like pottery. The Kama Sutra has been credited with being written in the second century (with earlier and later dates also being put forth). Erotic stories like School of Venus or Fanny Hill were written in the 1600s and 1700s. And don’t even get into the Victorian erotica, popular during a time when table legs were covered up for their potential to remind their viewers of women’s legs, which could apparently incite coupling. Who knew?

So these things were out there, they were available, albeit discreetly, if you knew who and where to ask. I have no doubt that there were ladies, both married and unmarried, who were exposed to those things either purposefully by husbands or when they stumbled upon them. 

Now would a scandalous book like the one in my book, written by a woman, describing erotic pleasures as well as encouraging independent thought, be popular? Be openly discussed? I don’t know. But I imagined that it could and brought it to life. And I love the stories in the series, I love the characters and I hope you will too.

So what do you think about the historic roots of sexiness? 
About the Author
Jess Michaels is the author of over 20 erotic historical romances, including recent release Beautiful Distraction (June 24, only 99 cents) and the upcoming A Matter of Sin (July 15), which launches the Ladies Book of Pleasures series. You can find her at

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                                   So what do you think about the historic roots of sexiness?  
                                         Leave a comment, we would love to hear from you!


  1. I'm excited for this book! I'm just waiting for Tuesday to get my hands on it. I'm not surprise about the history of sexiness. I did learn a little bit about it when I took a course in drama that somehow talks about it. Very interesting but awkward at the same time.

  2. Fabulous post Jess!! Definitely there were sex books out there in the world. Pompeii for sure and in India and China. In China, there were picture scrolls that the aristocracy kept of naked women and acts of sexual scenes dating back to ancient history.

    The history of sex is definitely scandalous but they were more open I think. Like in poetry and stuff they weren't hidden of their meaning and in definitely in paintings they were more open to nudity.

  3. Hi everyone! Glad you enjoyed the post! It certainly was fun to make up my own sexy, scandalous book. :)

  4. Awesome topic Jess! Because I'm a little Geeky...ehemmm.. I know a little about sexiness in ancient times. I love watching those Discovery Channel series of ancient civilizations. We also see this in the Greek and Roman mythology where sex is open.

    I would love to think that there were books of this type during the Regency era.



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