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The Pleasure of Her Kiss (Avon Romantic Treasures) Mass Market Paperback – Nov 2003

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Product details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Avon Books (Nov. 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0060514116
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060514112
  • Product Dimensions: 17.2 x 10.8 x 2.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,819,256 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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"One whining, overripe Hapsburg prince delivered safely to the cellar door at Buckingham Palace," Ross said, loosening his neck cloth as he slid a leather packet across the map table. Read the first page
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Loves Reading VINE VOICE on 15 Aug. 2007
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This is a great story, it has a romance, the hero is dashing, the heroine is beautiful, then the plot has a few twists and turns that lifts it up from a stereotypical historical romance. The hero (Jared, Earl of Hawkesley) needs to get married immediately, he marries Kathryn and then he dashes off to sea. He leaves his marriage unconsummated and his wife behind. When he eventually returns she doesn't recognise him and he is amazed to find his house has been turned into a business and she has adopted 9 starving Irish children. He wants the marriage to continue and she wants an annulment. Well worth reading.
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By vickyb on 16 Jan. 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Delivery very quick from ordering. Very happy with it, Very entertaining read. I very much enjoy the storytelling quite enjoyable
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By Carol Seaton on 5 Oct. 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
This book starts a little odd and slow, starts to get better and at the end it feels like even the author got bored and gave up! Alright but nothing special...
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 10 reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Honestly? There were times I wanted to smack the heroine 2 Sept. 2005
By TheSchemer - Published on
Format: Mass Market Paperback
After eighteen months of secret service to the Crown, Jared Westbrooke, the Earl of Hawkesby, is back in England to finally claim the wife he barely remembers. After all, they'd only known each other a few minutes before circumstances forced them to wed on board his ship in Egypt. Eager to make a fresh start with his countess, Jared is thrown for a loop when he arrives at his estate to find his personal hunting lodge turned into a hotel currently catering a sporting tournament. And his barely remembered bride? She's turned out to be smart, beautiful, and has no idea who he is. Deciding some reconnaisance is called for, Jared decides not to reveal his real identity just yet.

Her husband was coming home and the time of reckoning was at hand for Kathryn Westbrooke née Trafford. Left to her own devices by a husband she can barely remember, Kathryn has devoted herself to helping those suffering from the great potato famine in Ireland. Not only has she taken in several orphans and used her husband's estate to raise funds, Kathryn is leading a secret life few know of. When an attractive gentleman unexpectedly arrives claiming to have a reservation, Kathryn is forced to put him up and somehow finds herself continuously running into him. However, the tables are soon turned when Kathryn realizes who her mystery guest is.

The first in Linda Needham's Gentleman Rogues trilogy, THE PLEASURE OF HER KISS tries for an interesting premise but never manages to rise above its flaws. While Kathryn is supposed to be an independent and strong-willed heroine, more often than not she comes across as abrasive and manipulative. The question at the heart of this story is never answered. Why? Why does Kathryn embrace the cause of famine relief so vehemently, to the point that she breaks the law? She isn't Irish, nor does she have any Irish relatives or friends, other than those she meets after she gets involved. Given the absence of an answer, she's a bleeding heart who's out of control. As for the hero, it's hard to like one that seems to take a back seat to such an overpowering heroine. Given the time period and the setting of this story, Jared's continuous acceptance of Kathryn's actions is just one more discordant note in an already uneasy mix.

Sadly, Ms. Needham has once again fallen into the trap that awaits writers of historical romance, characters who just don't belong in their settings. Unanswered questions and implausible character traits leave THE PLEASURE OF HER KISS a disappointing tale.

5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Maybe a bit too illogical 14 Nov. 2003
By booksforabuck - Published on
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Two years after his wedding, Jared, Earl of Hawkesly is ready to go home and set about bedding his wife. He expects a compliant young woman and is surprised to discover that Kate has turned his hunting lodge into a tavern, runs an orphanage in his home, and has sold his Turners and other valuables to support her project. Since Kate doesn't even recognize him, Jared adopts an assumed identity in order to discover the truth.
Touched by the terrible potato famine which is depopulating Ireland, Kate has bent all of her resources to saving the Irish. To some extent, that means feeding the nine children she has personally accepted. But to a larger extent, that means stealing grain from the British lords who import food from Ireland despite the mass starvation on that island, returning it to feed the poor. Despite Jared's arrival, Kate is completely unwilling to give up her family and her vocation. What she doesn't count on is that Jared was made Earl because he is a spy for Her Magisty, Victoria's government. Caught in an impass, Kate refuses to consumate her marriage with Jared until he agrees to a good home for the children--and when he finds one, demands that he adopt them. Even then, she keeps her terrible secret--that she is a thief and has involved Jared's ship in action that is illegal and maybe treason.
THE PLEASURE OF HER KISS is an interesting novel. Author Linda Needham's style is approachable and her love scenes sizzle. But both primary characters' logic seems badly warped. Why did Jared wait two years to claim his wife? He never explained, and Kate, oddly enough, never asked. Then too, Jared's decision to go undercover to discover what his wife was up to makes no sense. Why wouldn't he identify himself and call for an explanation. Certainly if he had gone undercover, wouldn't he have investigated instead of gone fishing? The book read as if Needham needed a story hook--and mistaken identity was the one that came up in her whack-pack.
Kate's decision to use theft to supply her Irish soup kitchens simply defies logic. Surely her goal is to save the starving Irish. And surely she knows that she'll be caught eventually if she insists on stealing. If she had already attempted to raise British sympathies and been turned down, perhaps the theft would be more sympathetic.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Likeable characters but bland story. 9 Nov. 2003
By Thea - Published on
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I don't think the characters (Jared and Kate) were unlikable. She is intelligent, independent, generous and compassionate, and unlike so many other heroines, she is not either fighting the hero over nothing during the whole book, or swooning at his feet as soon as he kisses her. She just knows what she wants and although she is very attracted to him, she won't surrender until she can be sure there is solid ground to build a relationship on.
Jared is likeable too, he had a hard childhood that has left him emotionally scarred, but he is honorable, compassionate, protective and sensitive, even if that is not apparent from the beginning. But when he held the orphan baby they had saved against his body to warm her, it melted my heart.
What is the problem then? Why did I not rate this book with 5 stars? Well, for one thing, the story was slow, and there was not much romance in it. It was more about the orphans and Kate's efforts to save the children. What should have been the background of the story (the potato famine in Ireland, and the starving children) became the foreground, mixed in with some romance.
I applaud Kate's efforts to help the starving children, but as admirable as the enterprise is, that is not what I want a romance novel to be about.
And what about the ending? I don't think it was satisfactory at all. Jared agrees to join in Kate's scheme to help the children, which is illegal, so he is risking everything he has worked so hard for and even his life, if he gets caught. I wouldn't suggest that they abandon the children to their fates, but if Jared was the advisor of the queen, maybe he could have gotten her to help with the situation in Ireland, instead of becoming an outlaw. I guess the story will continue in the sequels with Jared friends, Drew and Ross, but I hate to have to read another book to see the conclusion of a story started in this one. I think it's just a marketing strategy to make you buy the other books and I consider this a cheap trick.
Another thing that was exaggerated was the total "re-decoration" Kate did of the Hawkesly state house. When I first read about the condition of the house, I though she was housing at least a hundred orphans. When I found out it was only 9 children I wanted to laugh. It is not necessary to convert a house like that into an orphanage dormitory to house 9 children. They would have fit in the nurseries! Even if they didn't, I'm sure the house had more than 9 spare bedrooms, since in one of the passages it says that the house has more than a hundred rooms.
Another thing that is debatable is how Jared got to his actual position of Earl and advisor of the Queen. How an orphan escaped from a workhouse would even be in a position to meet the Queen of England, much less give her financial advice? Please!
As you can see, the story has too many holes and inadequacies. The book is not the worst I have read, but I wouldn't recommend it either.
This was my first Linda Neeham book. 7 Jun. 2006
By A Mother and Avid Reader - Published on
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I didn't think this book was all that terrible. Definitely not a 4 or 5 star one, but still not awful. Unlike the other reviewers, I liked Kate. She was a bit too perfect, though...I tend to like my heroes and heroines a bit flawed. But her heart was in the right place.

I don't think a person had to be Irish to care about children starving. I thought Kate's cause to be a just one and I applauded her effort to help in any way she could.

There is very little sex in this book and it doesn't happen until near the end of the book. There is plenty of romance and build up, but it definitely lacked in the actual love-making department.

Overall, a decent read. It didn't compel me to read the other two in the series (especially as the 3rd one recieved terrible reviews here on Amazon).
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Abysmal 13 Aug. 2005
By S. Reader - Published on
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Kate was a manipulative, deceitful thing, even while proclaiming her love and respect for her husband. Jared was quick to judge, but then fell in completely with her treasonous schemes -- and him working for the government!!! He's a pitiful spy, and his friends with him. Plus, all three of them orphans and all happen to earn titles of nobility??? Only the children were remotely worth reading about.

Kate, Jared, and the author should be hanged for the indiginities we readers have had to suffer in this sorry excuse for a novel. It only cost me a dollar, and it was a waste of money. There is little pleasure in this book. I should have rated it 2 stars, I guess, but I couldn't change that.
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