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Counterfeit Countess (Zebra Historical Romance) [Mass Market Paperback]

Cheryl Bolen

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Book Description

28 Feb 2005 Zebra Historical Romance
Maggie thought she was married to an earl... but it seems that her late husband lied to her from the day they met. Now--penniless, stranded in London, and suspected of a most vile treachery against the crown--she has thrown herself on the mercy of the real Lord Warwick. He seems not to trust her at all, though she is innocent of any wrongdoing.

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More About the Author

Cheryl Bolen is the acclaimed author of more than a dozen Regency-set historical romance novels. Her books have placed in several writing contests, including the Daphne du Maurier, and have been translated into 11 languages. She was named Notable New Author in 1999, and in 2006 she won the Holt Medallion (Honoring Outstanding Literary Talent) for Best Short Historical Novel. In 2012 she won Best Historical in the International Digital Awards for eBooks published the prior year, and one of her 2011 novellas won Best Historical Novella. Her books have become Barnes & Noble and Amazon bestsellers.

A former journalist who admits to a fascination with dead Englishwomen, Cheryl is a regular contributor to The Regency Plume, The Regency Reader, and The Quizzing Glass. Many of her articles can found on her website, www.CherylBolen.com, and more recent ones on her blog, www.CherylsRegencyRamblings.wordpress.com. Readers are welcomed at both places.

Cheryl holds a dual degree in English and journalism from the University of Texas, and she earned a master's degree from the University of Houston. She and her professor husband are the parents of two sons, one who is an attorney, and the other a journalist. Her favorite things to do are watching the Longhorns, reading letters and diaries of Georgian Englishmen, and traveling to England.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.0 out of 5 stars  11 reviews
18 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It gets no better than this! 11 Sep 2004
By Detra Fitch - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Edward, the Earl of Warwick, awakened to shouting in his home. Upon locating the source he met Maggie. She claimed to be the widow of the Earl of Warwick, just arrived from America. Edward gently informed Maggie that her late husband, Lawrence Henshaw, had never been a titled gentleman. In fact, Lawrence left England just in time to avoid the hangman's noose. Lawrence had been a traitor to the Crown. Edward informed his superior, in the Foreign Office, about his unexpected visitors and was instructed to keep an eye on Maggie at all times. After all, Maggie could be a spy or Lawrence may have left her something of importance to England.

Maggie Peabody Henshaw had no idea that her countess title had been yet another lie by "The Scoundrel". This bit of news implied that she was now penniless, stuck in London, and responsible for the welfare of her sister and maid. She had no choice but to accept the Earl's help. Maggie needed to marry well, and quickly, if they were to survive. Edward persuaded Maggie to stay at Warwick Manor. Her story was to be that she had married the old Earl shortly before his death and was staying with the new Earl for awhile. During that time, she could search out a husband. She did not know that Edward was only helping her so he could keep an eye on her.

Both Maggie and Edward were attracted to one another. However, Edward was already pledged to Lady Fiona in Yorkshire and Maggie had several men vying for her hand in marriage. Then the attacks on Maggie began...

***** Readers, that is as much as I can say without giving anything vital away. This story is full of romance and suspense. The author, Cheryl Bolen, has added some enticing sub-plots that kept me glued to the book. Within this pages you will find danger, betrayal, many suspects, romance, and some delightful secondary characters that I pray to see have their own stories told someday soon.

Once again the author has proven herself to be one of the best authors in the Regency Romance field today! No one can resist a novel written by Cheryl Bolen. Her writing talents charm all readers. Highly recommended reading! *****

Reviewed by Detra Fitch of Huntress Reviews.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Some good, some ordinary 10 April 2005
By S. Reader - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Edward needs to go back to spy training; he can't be much of a spy to have missed so many obvious questions and dangers. But he's very honorable, refusing to break his almost engagement to Fiona even though he falls for Maggie.

I liked Maggie's occasional outbursts of thinking out loud, but she could also be quite manipulative. It took me a long time to warm up to her, and even at the end, I liked her sister Rebecca better. I really liked Fiona, too.

Much of it seemed to contrived to me. It was an okay book, but I was a bit disappointed in it. Unmasking the traitor was pretty good though (except for Edward's poor spying and the ever-annoying heroine taking off without telling anyone). I found the book average; maybe 3.2 stars.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The intrigue never lets up! 26 Mar 2005
By Judy Gechman - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
The stunningly beautiful Maggie Henshaw doesn't do anything in half measures. Believing herself to be the Countess of Warwick, she invades Lord Edward Warwick's house with her full entourage -sister, maid, cat and fourteen trunks. Edward immediately becomes suspicious about Maggie's involvement in her deceased husband's traitorous activities. When someone breaks into Warwick House while they are out and steals all of Maggie's deceased husband's effects, the intrigue begins in earnest.

After several more incidents, it becomes clear that Maggie's life is danger. The threats against Maggie trigger Edward's protective instincts and draw him to her. Plot twists keep the reader guessing right up until the end.

I enjoyed Maggie, a bigger than life character who blurts out her thoughts with refreshing, if unintended, candor, and who knows she's beautiful, but has no pretensions. She fills the pages with the drama of her personality. She is everything that Edward's almost-betrothed Lady Fiona is not, everything that he thought he did not want or need. What fun to watch Edward struggle with himself and his denial of his true feelings! Once Maggie enters his well-ordered world, his life will never be the same again.

As with Cheryl Bolen's Brides of Bath series, I found this book impossible to put down. The mystery kept my mind engaged, while the romance kept my heart engaged. Best of all, Cheryl's characters are fully developed, complex and delightful. It is no wonder that Cheryl Bolen's Regency romances get rave reviews.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Refreshing page turner, Talented author 12 Jun 2005
By Tobitha - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This book catches your interest from the beginning and keeps it.

It has intrigue, suspense, humor, and of course romance. It is well written and very enjoyable. For those who like romance with intelligence this book is for you. The characters and sub characters weave a wonderful story together, and I love the touches of humor throughout. Great work Cheryl Bolden.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Terrific story 19 Jan 2005
By Colleen Thompson - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I truly enjoyed The Counterfeit Countess. Bolen's characters come alive, her dialogue sparkles, and the romance delivers. The mystery kept me guessing and the story kept me up well past bedtime. I'll look for more from this author.
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