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Almost Innocent Mass Market Paperback – 1 May 2001


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Product details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 432 pages
  • Publisher: Bantam USA; Reissue edition (1 May 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0553573705
  • ISBN-13: 978-0553573701
  • Product Dimensions: 3.1 x 10.5 x 17.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 362,993 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 5 Aug 2002
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I have read many historical books by Authors varying from Georgette Heyer to Francis Burney. I did not think that any other author could capture England in the 1300's with such details and accuracy after Heyer. I was moved by this story. I was impressed by the background setting. I was engulfed in the plot. I adored Guy's character as well as the heroine's. I could feel the visualize the characteres. I would recommend this book to anyone who has a taste for historical romances which are not just centered on characters alone.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 41 reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
There's a reason I love Jane Feather's novels 26 May 2005
By pmacph - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Mass Market Paperback
And this book pretty much exemplifies that. Like the others I've read from Feather, there's much more than fluff involved. The characters are clearly at home in the setting she's chosen for them and they act as one would act in the circumstances and time period and not how one would act today. And you have to love a romance novel that's more than just sexual tension and consummation. This one had a good story, and that's what more of Feather's contemporaries need to learn.
I'm always impressed at how her heroes are less than the perfect ideal compared to the standard, and Guy is no exception. Though there are times you want to strangle him for not being typical ultimately it enriches the story. Magdelen is as what's to be expected for the genre, a woman vs her lot in life, but she doesn't have that selfish nature that's so exasperating in other heroines, like the modern 90s woman trapped in some nightmare. Like Guy she ultimately does what's right for herself, her child and her country, even with the personal sacrifice, and that's what makes this story believable and the culmination is better for it. Nobody's perfect, and Jane Feather doesn't try and pretend otherwise.
The secondary characters, as always, are as interesting as the main characters, and no one writes a more wicked villan than Jane Feather.
Add to all this the fact that Feather has clearly done her research in respect to the medieval world and you have a romance novel that's less romance and more escapist.
I'll add my voice to the reviewers who have said that this is not for the reader who wants something generic with flawless characters, nor one who wants to read about a period past through the presentist's eyes. And I'll also add my voice to that of the reviewer who says that Jane Feather should break out of the genre for a little bit and try her hand at a more general fiction novel.
14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
Fantastic Hero, Unfortunate Heroine 1 Jun 2001
By K. N. Nelson - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Mass Market Paperback
It is puzzling that a writer as talented as Ms. Feather would consciously choose to portray her heroine Magdalen as such a self absorbed, narcissistic, ignorant, rebellious character with zero sense of morality. This is a disservice to women, both now and then, and one has to remind oneself that this tale is set in a period of time that was equally barbaric and chivalrous, at least on the part of the knights charged with the safety of the realm and its peoples.
Magdalen's lover and protector, Guy de Gervais, is a truly nurturing and loving man despite the fact that he has at "un pointe non plus" slapped her to remind her that her wilful disobedience gravely threatens Guy's task to keep her safe from harm that was placed upon him by her father, the Prince John of Gaunt. At issue is an uneasy truce between England and France that governs the political balance of power and she is a major player.
She is utterly absorbed in her passions and physical neediness, rendering her extraordinarily unlikeable. Yet, this may reveal the realities of women in that era, who is to say? The tale is a fascinating slice of history which makes it worthwhile reading for this fact alone. I do hope that in the future Ms. Feather makes her heroines more sympathetic, because, in all fairness, she is nearly as gifted as Guy Gavriel Kay in her ability to evoke the reader's deepest involvement with her characters which makes the story unforgettable on many levels.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Truly Different 30 Nov 2002
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I will not repeat the synopsis since it's right here but I will say that I never found the story to be boring and I really enjoyed the author's writing style. This is not your typical romance novel. There aren't steamy love scenes on every other page and the characters do not always behave sympathetically.
This IS a story about adultery, so if that bothers you, you will never like this book. HOWEVER, it is worth noting that Magdelen never had a choice about her marriage. It was decided when she was just a child, and she did try and prevent it.
Finally, lets be honest about Edmund, who is Magdelen's husband. Everyone goes on and on about how great he was and how he did not deserve what Magdelen did to him. Come on, maybe he was great for his time, but not only did he cheat on Magdelen with prostitues, he raped a woman who's husband he had killed. So, in short, he got no sympathy from me.
Read this if you are looking for something other than a mindless boddice ripper. Although judging from the reviews here, most people aren't.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
OK, but I had a few issues 12 Jun 2004
By Alexis Coxon - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This is the first Jane Feather novel I've read, and I enjoyed it. It was well-written and had a compelling plot. Overall, I did like the heroine, but the adultery thing DID bother me. It would've been one thing if she'd truly believed her husband was dead, like her lover did, but she DIDN'T.
I didn't have the issues that some of the other readers did. You have to take a novel set in medieval times in historical context. Children were beaten back then. So were wives. Men raped women.
All of those things were very, very common Magdalen's times. It's like the outrage over the scene in the first "Outlander" book when Jamie beats Claire. It's just how things WERE back then. And they're distasteful to us, and I'm sure they were no great shakes then, either, but if you're reading a historical novel, you need to be prepared for historical reality.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Unsatisfying and Frustrating 28 Sep 2005
By RReader - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Like Chase the Dawn (another of Jane Feather's novels), Almost Innocent portrays the female lead, in this case Magdalen in a bad light. Here Magdalen is portrayed as a selfish woman, a temptress who causes trouble for men. But if you really see past this, Magdalen hasn't done anything wrong - she loved a man and warned him of her intentions. As for her beauty - it is hardly her fault that men love her. She never knowingly flirted or used her power over them. That is why she is 'almost innocent'. Guy, the man she loved since she was a child is a widower and looked after Magdalen as a child to marry her off to his nephew. Since her marriage, Magdalen has made efforts to make her feelings known to Guy and he has been understandably shying away. His sense of honour would not allow him to do anything else. His continual denial of his feelings is frustrating whereupon he forces Magdalen to deny the true parentage of their child who was conceived when he believed that Magdalen's husband was dead. His sense of honour is a likeable trait but he isn't portrayed as someone romantically in love with Magdalen, which is she is seen as the one who is at fault. She pursues him and he is happy to go along with the ride (when he believed her husband was dead), and this is what is missing from the novel - the give and take between the two. Magdalen loves Guy more than he loves her. It is not until the end when he really declares his feelings but that is such a shortchange compared to his actions in the novel. Not a bad book, but not my cup of tea. It doesn't have the right balance to make a truly romantic novel.
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