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Confessions of a Little Black Gown Mass Market Paperback – 1 Apr 2009

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Confessions of a Little Black Gown + Love Letters from a Duke (Avon Historical Romance) + Tempted By the Night
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Product details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Avon; Original edition (1 April 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061373230
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061373237
  • Product Dimensions: 10.6 x 2.4 x 17.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 602,124 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


“All of Boyle’s signature elements—high wit, delightfully original characters, and a wildly creative plot spiced with deception and desire—blend together brilliantly.” (Booklist)

About the Author

Elizabeth Boyle has always loved romance and now lives it each and every day by writing adventurous and passionate stories that readers from all around the world have described as "page-turners." Since her first book was published, she's seen her romances become New York Times and USA Today bestsellers and won the RWA RITA® and the Romantic Times Reviewer's Choice Awards. She resides in Seattle with her family, her garden, and always-growing collection of yarn.

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Helen Hancox TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 21 July 2009
Format: Mass Market Paperback
When the second sentence of this English-set historical romance had a character say, "Yes, yes, Lizzie, I'm nearly done here," my heart sank. We don't say "done" but "finished" in this context and I feared another book chock-ful of historical dialogue inaccuracies and more.

Although accuracy wasn't this book's forté, after I had read for a little while this aspect of the book paled a little as I began to engage with the story. Thalia Langley, known (irritatingly!) as "Tally", is staying with her sister the new Duchess of Hollingdrake and helping her to organise a house party. When Tally meets her brother-in-law's cousin, a vicar, Mr Ryder, she finds him a mixture of appealing and ordinary. Something about him attracts her, but his ineffectualness and limp handshake hardly suggest he's the hero she's been waiting for.

Mr Ryder isn't quite what he seems. Lord Larken is a master spy who has been sent to assassinate an escaped prisoner, a prisoner that it appears Tally and her cousin Pippin may have rescued from gaol. Larken is also trying to get to the bottom of the mystery of the woman who killed his father many years ago. But with Tally around things aren't going quite as planned.

Overall the pacing in this story was good, with some action, some romance, several different plot threads (some of which I imagine are followed on in the next book) and a variety of characters. There were, however, many occasions when believability suffered - I was not convinced that Tally would wear a costly dress that she found in a trunk that wasn't hers, it's tantamount to stealing. As mentioned about, the historical accuracy of dialogue isn't always very good but with books like this that's often a secondary issue.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By josie82 TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 30 April 2009
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
Thalia Langley has always wanted a grand adventure with a rogue who sets her heart on fire. When she spies a man in the shadows at a house party, she's sure she's met her dream man. Despite the man's claims that he's a bumbling country vicar, Tally is convinced there's more to him than meets the eye.

Lord Larken is certainly no vicar but rather a spy sent to kill a traitorous pirate. But he didn't count on stumbling across the enticing Tally and the way that she makes him forget his name, his mission and his heart.

This is the fourth book in Elizabeth Boyle's Bachelor Chronicles series (after This Rake of Mine, Something About Emmaline and Love Letters from a Duke) and there was a lot of continuing and linking storylines from the previous books in this one. I would suggest that perhaps it's best to have read the previous books in the series before reading this one for everything to make sense.

Overall, I'm sorry to say that I was a little disappointed by this book as a whole. There didn't seem to be much emotion between Tally and Larken and the plot got so overly complicated and convoluted that it was hard to take it seriously. I also found that Pippin and Dash's story completely overshadowed the main love story and while I'm looking forward to their book (the next in the series,
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 0 reviews
10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
Mediocre Read 25 April 2009
By Dallas Reader - Published on
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Elizabeth Boyle is one of my favorite authors: she is an autobuy for me. This book just never grabbed me. I did not feel the emotion between Tally and Larken. After I read an historical romance, I think about whether or not I could have written it. If the answer is yes, then I know the book's not that great. Sad to say, I think I could have written this book. There are some amusing secondary characters but this book was not driven by characterization. There was quite of bit of telling and now showing in the plot. I'm sorry I wasted my money. I'm giving it 3 stars only because I usually enjoy the author's books.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
I Confess. It's Not That Good. 11 Nov. 2009
By Sunny Skies - Published on
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This was the second book I read in this series by Elizabeth Boyle. The first, Love Letters from a Duke, was much better written well-rounded characters, interesting dialogue and a realistic plot. Confessions of A Little Black Dress features a love story between Talley and Vicar Ryder/Lord Larken. The entire premise of her falling instantly in love with a shadowy figure sitting in a chair was unbelievable. Basically, the course of their romance and adventure occurs over the course of about 3 days. The entire "mystery/conflict" was predictable. I had a hard time even getting into this book initially, but I had just finished Love Letters so the characters were familiar and I decided to finish it.

Parts of the story were interesting, Larken's flashbacks to the murder of his father and the Black Lily sisterhood of spies. Unfortunately, they were only given occassional mentions, even though the Black Lily sisterhood was a bigger component of the story and outcome.

Did I miss something? The Prologue of the book had Lizzie and Horatio reading the play written by Talley and Pippin and they talk about wanting to produce and star in said play because it was so wonderful. These characters were never mentioned again.

Overall, a somewhat disappointing read, but I will try another book by Ms. Boyles, only because I enjoyed the first book I read so well.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Confessions of a Little Black Gown 14 May 2009
By M. Nix - Published on
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Upon hearing the voice of a mysterious stranger in her brother-in-law's study, Thalia Langley thinks she just might have met her destiny...or not. How could the duke's bumbling, poorly-dressed vicar of a cousin be the man of her dreams? From the moment she meets the awkward Milo Ryder, Tally knows there must be more to him than meets the eye. And when a mysterious little black gown lands in her lap, Tally knows just how she's going to ferret out Mr. Ryder's secrets.

Geoffrey, Baron Larken has been sent by the Crown to find and eliminate an escaped American pirate. A pirate that the beautiful Ms. Langley may have had a hand in freeing. Larken can't afford to make mistakes, and he definitely can't allow himself to be distracted by Tally. Yet what man can resist the woman who tempts him when she dons a deliciously scandalous dress?

Passion, danger, intrigue, romance, and the perfect little black dress - Confessions of a Little Black Gown has it all. The fourth installment of Elizabeth Boyle's Bachelor Chronicles is a wonderfully entertaining read I could not put down.

Tally is a heroine you have to adore. She's bright, inquisitive, caring, has a few unusual skills for a lady (such as her talent for picking locks), and has a slight knack for trouble. Ms. Boyle made me feel like I was following Tally along on her adventures, and I couldn't be more delighted. As for Lord Larken, he's the perfect spy hero: honorable, tormented, and genuinely good-hearted. With two such likeable protagonists, it was impossible for me not to root for their romance. Tally and Larken were perfectly matched with one another. Indeed, I couldn't put Confessions of a Little Black Gown down because I was so enjoying their almost cat-and-mouse game with one another as each tried to uncover the other's secrets.

Though I'm not new to Ms. Boyle's work, I am new to this particular series and can say that this book only mostly stands on its own. All the information I needed for Tally and Larken's romance is provided in this book, but it was clear I was definitely missing information from previous books. Though that fact didn't prevent me from enjoying this story, I did end up emailing a few friends who had read the previous books and asking them some questions.

All in all, I greatly enjoyed Confessions of a Little Black Gown. What's more, I'm incredibly grateful Tally's cousin Pippin's story, Memoirs of a Scandalous Red Dress, comes out soon because Confessions of a Little Black Gown ends with one heck of a cliffhanger for Pippin. Engaging and delightful!

Reviewed for Joyfully Reviewed
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
I really enjoyed this book 13 May 2012
By carolyn - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The story line has been covered so I won't go there. I really enjoyed Tally's story. Was it my favorite one in the Bachelor Chronicle series? Probably not, but every book in a series can't be your `favorite' . . . I still loved it and enjoyed it tremendously. When a book in a series makes me love the character I had liked in the previous books then it works well for me. When it makes me want to continue the series that's a major plus . . . both of these points were well covered. I have enjoyed every one of Elizabeth Boyle's books in the BACHELOR CHRONICLES along with the BACHELOR CHRONICLES: THE STANDON WIDOWS (they are interwoven with some of the same characters). Both series are quite accommodating with great seduction scenes, entertaining banter between lovers, laugh-out-loud scenarios and a good story always prevails.

Perhaps the historical details of the ton and attitudes are not absolute (as some readers have pointed out); however, when I read an historical romance novel I'm not looking for perfect details, I'm looking for a great story, character building (throughout the series) and entertainment. I want to be made a part of the scene the writer is "painting" . . . I want to feel the carriage bumping over the cobblestones; on my skin the silk or the velvet of the dresses the women are wearing. Ms. Boyle delivers that for me all wrapped up in a very neat little package. If I want the most accurate details regarding every point of the story I won't be reading an historical romance novel . . . it will be a history book or an anthropology text book.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Almost Stands Alone 16 Jun. 2009
By E. A. Montgomery - Published on
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I think this series would have benefited from being released three months in a row, like the recent Balogh series. Confessions almost stood alone, but having read the previous book greatly enhanced my enjoyment of it. There are several elements that made it enjoyable on it's own - the primary one being Tally's sense of who Larken is on the inside, despite how he presents himself on the outside. It was enough to make me half wish that the external Larken would stay Larken - that Tally, who dreamed of a dashing adventurer, really would find herself enraptured by a clumsy vicar. Read it in one sitting.

The side story of Dash and Pippin wasn't thrilling me - I am most certainly not a fan of that storyline. But it ends so beautifully, so perfectly, that I was grateful for their inclusion. Sometimes, Dash, you can't rely on charm to save the day. It was the perfect shocking end to send me digging in my book bag for the next book well after sensible women have gone to sleep.
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