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Scandalous Virtue Mass Market Paperback – 24 Feb 1999

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Product details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 378 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins (24 Feb 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 006101379X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061013799
  • Product Dimensions: 10.6 x 2.4 x 17.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,757,126 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Life is all about change, so it's not surprising that over the past twenty years my career--and my life--have changed a lot. I expect that will continue to be true, and my intention now is that every change will ultimately be for the better. When I started writing traditional Regency romances, I was a stay-at-home mom to two toddlers, determined to sell a book before my youngest started first grade, so that I wouldn't have to get a "real job." I met that goal by the skin of my teeth, and went on to sell six Regencies and a Superromance to Harlequin over the next few years. I'd found the perfect career for an Army wife, and life was good--and relatively predictable. Then, within the space of a year, Harlequin closed their Regency line, my husband changed careers, our family moved from Texas to Indiana and I lost both of my parents. My writing stalled for a while as I tried to find new bearings. When the muse became insistent again, I began writing single title historical romance and found a new home with HarperCollins, where I published a total of eight books, most of them set in my comfy Regency period. After a while, however, my muse became restless, just as I was trying to adjust to a new change --an empty nest. A period of self-discovery followed, and I gradually came to the realization that happiness in life and my career were no one's responsibility but mine. What a freeing, terrifying concept! I began to pursue more outside interests, to include scuba diving (I have over 70 dives to my credit now), community theater and Taekwondo, where I am now a second degree black belt. Hiking became another love of mine, and in the summer of 2010, I hiked the last 100 km of the Camino de Santiago in northern Spain with a group of like-minded women, some of whom were also writers. I also began experimenting with other kinds of writing: plays, women's fiction, then my new and current love, teen science fiction romance.

Throughout my career, despite all of the inevitable changes, I have been passionate about helping other writers, particularly educating them about the realities of this business so that they might avoid the myriad pitfalls lurking for those of us who live on dreams. To that end, for twenty years I moderated a weekly Novel Workshop on AOL where I answered questions on every writing topic imaginable; I taught (and still occasionally teach) online writing courses, and I began collecting and sharing data on author earnings from various publishers, so that writers could make more informed decisions about their careers. I feel strongly--have always felt strongly--that in this business as in any other, knowledge is power. Historically, it has been difficult for writers to gain the knowledge they need to make informed career decisions, and I have tried to do my part to change that. I plan to keep changing and growing, and I challenge everyone reading this to do the same.Today really is the first day of the rest of your life. Seize the day!

Product Description


A sheltered and inexperienced young widow, Nessa Haughton finds herself drawn to Jack Ashecroft, the new Marquis of Foxhaven, who must reform his rakish ways in order to inherit his fortune and who is searching for a proper wife to redeem his reputation and earn respectability. Original.

From the Author

Brenda Hiatt is glad to be back with SCANDALOUS VIRTUE.
Hello! I'm Brenda Hiatt, author of SCANDALOUS VIRTUE, my "comeback book." I'd previously written several Regency romances and one time travel romance for Harlequin, but then Life with a capital "L" intervened. Now I'm back, with what I believe is my best book ever, recharged by my brief hiatus. My first single title historical romance, SCANDALOUS VIRTUE tells the story of a sheltered, strait-laced young widow who is ready to kick up her heels for a change, and a notorious rake who is ready to reform. Each sees the other as just the ticket to help make a change--with suprising (and hilarious) results. Their steamy adventures (and a scandal or two) take them from Regency London to Paris and back, as they both learn about life and love. I hope you'll enjoy reading this book as much as I enjoyed writing it! I love e-mail from my readers, so let me know how you liked the book. (And thanks for reading this far! <g>)

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 20 Jun 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Nessa and Jack became my friends for the short time they touched my life. We laughed and cried together listening to Prudence advise... Well written and researched, I highly recommend this book for Regency amd Historical Romance readers...
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 3 May 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This is a book that is easy to get in to and once there is most difficult to put down. I read it in a weekend. It is exceptionately well written.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 22 April 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I really enjoyed reading this book. I would very much appreciate making available other titles by this author.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
i would recommend this book to most i came across it by chance and am glad to have read it
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 30 reviews
28 of 31 people found the following review helpful
Maybe, maybe not 27 Aug 2000
By Amazon Customer - Published on
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This is an excellent book, and the characters are great! Jack, with the reputation of being a rake, marries Nessa, who has the reputation of being extremely virtuous and straitlaced. Through their interactions with each other before and after their marriage they find that, at heart they are not what they seem to be on the surface. The fact is the two of them are really very much alike and even before the end of the book it is easy to see that they are a perfect couple. I recommend this book highly to anyone who likes historical romances!
25 of 28 people found the following review helpful
Starting to wonder who writes reviews.. 7 May 2012
By jhinva - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition
I'm starting to wonder who writes reviews. I would not recommend this book. The characters are not well developed. They're not really even developed. The Tree in The Giving Tree travels a greater emotional distance than any of these characters. The dialogue is not witty. The plot is weak and the book is not fast paced.

It is an OK read for the price, especially if you've got some time on your hands and you'd spend the $3.99 on something more fleeting, like a Starbuck's coffee. Some of the character names are so silly they become annoying. (Lord and Lady Creamcroft? Is this story taking place in Candyland.) I probably would have been less disappointed if my expectations had not been mis-set by the reviews.

Now as far a fiction goes, the review writers get five stars!
33 of 38 people found the following review helpful
A wonderfully amusing regency romance 13 Sep 1999
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I'm not a big fan of historical romance (I usually read contempory romances or mysteries), but I really enjoyed this book. I thought it was very well-written and very funny. The way in which the author handled the hero's past was believable and the hero and heroine were extremely well-matched. It was nice to read a character-driven romance, so many of them relie on contrived events to foster the storyline.
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
The reviews here overlook the final, deeply disappointing, sections of the book 17 Feb 2014
By Rachael Ruby - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
There is so much to love in this novel. Which makes it even more shocking that I came very close to giving it 2 stars.

The good: A heroine who has been subjected to miserably repressive parenting, further subjugated by by an arranged-&-miserably-repressive marriage, who strives to throw off her patriarchal shackles and find her own desires and choices. A hero who is a sincerely reformed rake, aspiring to live up to the loving respect of his deceased grandfather. They each are attracted to the other by what they internally lack, which can be a cliche, but in this case is heartfelt and believable. And the chemistry between them - both physical and emotional - is plausible and compelling. And then - aargh! And then the author decides this isn't enough.

**Spoilers follow**

The heroine's desires for freedom are apparently too extreme, and she needs to learn a lesson. So the hero takes her to Paris, to see that actual sexual freedom is disgusting and degrading, and also revolutionary and anarchic. Or something. She learns this lesson in 2 days, and then they can go to the French countryside (which is not so depraved and awful) and be happy, which is where she is also allowed to realize she's pregnant.

As if this punishment (of what made the heroine interesting in the first place!) weren't aggravating enough, then the plot goes truly off the rails. We end up running around France, hunted by Napoleon loyalists, as well as vengeful former girlfriends of the hero. After which we get to read about truly the most lame kidnapping / rescue I've ever encountered in a historical romance (and that's saying something, since the genre is rife with them) - all to absolutely no purpose. I cannot forgive Hiatt for betraying the lovely work she started with. She didn't trust her readers to accept the relatively simple (plot-wise) creation of Nessa and Jack, and nearly ruined what could have been a deeply enjoyable book. I'm so disappointed, I'm not sure I'll give her another chance at my money and attention.
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
Good romantic story! 4 Nov 2004
By J. Brennan - Published on
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
I actually read several of the other books in this series first then came back to read about Jack who was mentioned as the scandolous Lord who fell in love and sequestered himself forever with his lady love. So, it was interesting to read about how this rake overcame his reputation and ended up with the virtuas Nessa. Of course the interesting part was that Nessa wanted to be scandalous and Jack wanted her to save his reputation. Seeing how they gradually got to know one another and how they came together as this great romantic couple was a pleasurable read!! All of these stories from a similar group of Regency friends are wonderful by Brenda Hiatt!!
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