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Breath of Scandal, A (Reckless Brides) [Mass Market Paperback]

Essex , Elizabeth

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Book Description

16 Jan 2013 Reckless Brides (Book 2)
Breath of Scandal by Elizabeth Essex. Forced by her family into an engagement with a man she can never abide, Antigone Preston knows only a scandal will save her from a loveless marriage. But knocking a man down to the ballroom floor with her fists brings dangerous consequences. She may have ruined her reputation, but now she's endangered her heart...The son of an earl and a career navy man, Captain William Jellicoe has no interest in the frivolities of London--and even less in the institution of marriage. But there's something steering him toward Antigone. He has never met anyone as brazen and unconventional as...himself. But will he risk it all for a woman who still has the breath of scandal hot on her lips?

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Product details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: St Martin's Press (16 Jan 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1250003806
  • ISBN-13: 978-1250003805
  • Product Dimensions: 17.3 x 10.4 x 3 cm
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,254,981 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

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Product Description


PRAISE FOR ELIZABETH ESSEX and her magnificent historical romances...A Breath of Scandal Essex's second Reckless Bride certainly suits the title. The bold heroine easily wins readers' hearts, along with her officer and gentleman hero. Essex brings a breath of fresh and funny air to the Regency while her stylish writing and intelligent characters appeal to hearts and minds. Pure, delicious, sexy pleasure awaits readers.Romantic Times Book Reviews Almost a Scandal Elizabeth Essex will dazzle you with her sophisticated blend of vivid historical detail, exquisite characterization, and delicious sexual tension. Almost a Scandal is a breathtaking tale of rapturous romance and awe-inspiring adventure!USA Today bestselling author Julianne MacLean The perfect blend of fast-paced adventure and deliciously sexy romance. I couldn't put this book down! Almost a Scandal gets a place on my keeper shelf I will read anything Elizabeth Essex writes!New York Times bestselling author Celeste Bradley Essex sweeps readers away with this high-seas, high-stakes romance featuring a daring heroine and a hero to die for. Brimming with explosive danger and smoldering passion, Almost a Scandal is a romance to treasure. --New York Times bestselling author Tessa Dare

About the Author

Elizabeth Essex is the critically acclaimed author of historical novels including The Pursuit of Pleasure, A Sense of Sin and the RITA Award nominated The Danger of Desire. When not re-reading Jane Austen, sipping tea or mucking about her garden, Elizabeth can be found writing, making up wonderful stories about people who live far more interesting lives than she. It wasn't always so. Elizabeth graduated from Hollins College with a BA in Classical Studies and Art History, and then earned her MA from Texas A&M University in Nautical Archaeology, also known as the archaeology of shipwrecks. You can visit her web site at www.elizabethessex.com.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.0 out of 5 stars  15 reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars You cannot buy me, what I will not sell 26 Jan 2013
By Mary J. Gramlich - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Antigone Preston has aspirations, plans and anticipates a life after she finds a husband for her beloved sister. Antigone never thought her mother was contractually obligating her to marry a man old enough to be her father. It is supposed to be fiction not fact so that everyone gets want they want, but can that happen.

The plans were going swimmingly until Antigone met William Jellicoe and every thought but gazing upon his handsome face left her mind. Will was a Commander in Her Majesty's service and in a bit of limbo deciding where to go next with his career. For the moment, the only decision he wanted to make was how to get Antigone in his life and decide if he wanted to keep her there. The problems that became the explosion that forces everyone to show their true emotions and deepest demons displays true character and the wealth of love between two people.

Elizabeth Essex captures the best and worst within each of us with shining glory and brilliant prose.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Endearing couple 10 Jan 2013
By Melissa - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
Elizabeth Essex's Breath of Scandal is a breath of fresh air due mostly to her leading characters who are a little unpredictable. Antigone Preston and her sister Cassandra have recently lost their father and they are near penniless. Their mother, a scheming greedy woman, has promised Antigone to their neighbor, Lord Aldridge who is at least a generation older than Antigone. Since her father recently passed, Antigone is able to prevent this engagement from being public but she knows she is on borrowed time and she has no desire to wed the loathsome Lord.

The one positive Lord Aldridge brings into the hushed arrangement is invitations to local balls and events and it is at such a gathering that Antigone causes a scandal by punching a groping young Lord on the dance floor. Her mother is scandalized but Antigone is not and neither is hero Will who admires her spunk. The two have a rousing conversation and both are admiring the finer qualities of the other. Will is charming, roguish and daring. Antigone is brave, a little reckless and loyal to her sister. They become fast friends.

The leads have a romance that starts as an adventure. Will learns that Antigone, who he endearingly calls by her last name, Preston, is self-sufficient. Will is a second son and a naval officer hoping to go back to sea, he does not expect to stay long at his family's estate. Antigone knows this and wants to squeeze all the time she can with Will. Antigone is caught in a fine mess. She does not want to jeopardize her older sister's chances of making a good match by causing a scandal but she just cannot stay away from excitement and she loves spending time with Will.

I liked Antigone. She was forthright for the most part and even though she was a spectacular horsewoman dressing in breeches, she was still feminine and she did not need to prove that she was a strong female by being combative with her male lead. These two knew how to disagree without being disagreeable. She also recognized her strengths and her self worth, two fine traits in a heroine. I look forward to the next book in this series.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Horrifying villains, relatively little offsetting chemistry between heroine and hero 12 Feb 2014
By Rachael Ruby - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Elizabeth Essex is a great writer, and I heartily recommend many of her books - but this one leaves a lot to be desired. The heroine is a typical, and typically pleasing, spunky resistor of Regency norms. She is also a devoted sister, which is how she finds herself in an engagement with a much older, and not very appealing local lord, Lord Aldridge. I enjoyed the set up of this novel a lot, and really loved the meeting between the heroine and hero. Our heroine, Antigone, punches a handsy young man on the dance floor at a ball, and retreats to the library. The hero is William Jellicoe, a character we met in "Almost a Scandal". (I loved that novel, and although Jellicoe had only a small role, I was very happy to meet him as a grown man.) He, too, wants to get away from the stultifying atmosphere of the ball, and makes his way to the library. The two engage in a lovely conversation that establishes their connection as friends (how great is that?!?), and ultimately go on to pursue a night of adventure, with a dollop of sexual chemistry. Wonderful! But sadly the novel does not maintain this level of charm and engagement.

**Spoilers to follow** Although Jellicoe is clearly enamored by Antigone, and pursues a relationship with her, he apparently thinks it's obvious that they won't marry because of his naval career. This obliviousness doesn't make sense, given his reliable and honorable character. Antigone falls in love with Will, but she, too, knows he won't marry her. This, too, doesn't quite make sense to me. And even as Antigone and Will's relationship continues to develop, Antigone's engagement with Aldridge is maintained. The more we learn about him, the worse he seems. At first, he's cold and controlling. Then, for a while, Antigone believes he's marrying her just for her horse. She's unhappy upon learning this, but at least it gives Aldridge a motive for wanting to marry her, which he had thus far been lacking. But then it turns out that Aldridge is actually a pedophile who finds boys in London to use for sexual gratification. Apparently this fact is widely know by his peers, but no one admits it or does anything about it. I don't know if this is a possibility in Regency England. Perhaps it's perfectly historically accurate. But it makes for pretty heavy going in a romance novel.

Moreover, the horrors don't end there. Finally, we learn that Aldridge had actually wanted to marry Antigone when she was 12 because she was a boyish girl. Her father refused multiple offers from Aldridge, but Antigone's mother was open to making a match between them. When Antigone's father dies, that opens the door for the mother to take up Aldridge's offer, even though she knows exactly who Aldridge is, what he does, and why he wants to marry Antigone. Antigone's father is described in the book as loving and wonderful, but also financially irresponsible. Her mother is presented as shallow and anxious about money and station. By the end, the mother is revealed as a moral monster, wholly willing to pimp out her daughter to another monster in order to secure her own well-being. I found it deeply unpleasant reading, as well as more than a little confusing. Supposedly, Antigone's parents loved each other. If her father was a deeply decent person, how can the sociopathic nature of his wife have escaped his notice? And how have Antigone and her sister lived normal, happy, healthy lives in the care of such a person? The moral psychology here makes no sense at all.

So please - do yourself a favor and go read "A Sense of Sin" or "The Danger of Desire", and give this one a pass.
5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Typical regency, no surprises or plot twists. 27 Dec 2012
By Cheesehead - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
THis is the second book in the Reckless Brides series. While an OK read, I found this book to be a stereotypical repetitive regency plot, and that's why I gave it a 3 star rating.

Plot synopsis - heroine's father dies, leaves them peniless, she is forced into a betrothal not of her liking. She rebels, sneaks away with the hero to do scandalous things. The hero is a naval officer, younger son of nobility, no responsibility to marry or beget an heir. Lots of sneaking around, "scandalous" moments, and the bethrothed older man finds out and it ends. Does this sound familiar?

I thought this book had potential, but was stale and really didn't develop the charecters as well as it could have. Again and OK read but nothing new.
5.0 out of 5 stars Book Two in the Reckless Brides series. 1 July 2014
By Karin Anderson - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Book Two in the Reckless Brides series.

Will Jellicoe, previously a midshipman from the Audacious, earned his Command in the Navy just before the war with France ended. Now he is back on land waiting for a ship to come along. Meanwhile, Antigone Preston's father has passed away and her mother has engaged her to a vile older man, so that her sister Cassie can be well wed. When the two meet at a ball, mischief and mayhem commence.

If you're looking for a story of love, betrayal, scandal and fun, this is the book for you!
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