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Web of Love (Dell Historical Romance) [Mass Market Paperback]

Mary Balogh
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
RRP: 6.99
Price: 5.62 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Book Description

18 July 2008 Dell Historical Romance
New York Times bestselling author Mary Balogh brilliantly captures the passionate conflict of a woman caught between two loves in this classic tale of friendship, devotion, intrigue—and a love that is the most seductive trap of all….

He’d served with her husband on the battlefield—and secretly desired her for years. Yet for Dominic, Lieutenant Lord Eden, Ellen Simpson has remained tantalizingly out of reach—until she is widowed by the war. Suddenly pursued by the dangerously handsome nobleman, Ellen is stunned by the depth of attraction he arouses in her. Soon their friendship flames into something deeper…and as scandal ignites, marriage seems the only solution. But Ellen has a secret—one she can share with no one—that prevents her from fully opening her heart to Dominic. Until he devises his own plan for the ultimate consummation of their passion—and the woman he is determined to possess at any cost…

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Web of Love (Dell Historical Romance) + Devil's Web (Dell Historical Romance) + The Gilded Web
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Product details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 420 pages
  • Publisher: Dell Publishing Company; Reprint edition (18 July 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 044024305X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0440243052
  • Product Dimensions: 3 x 10.6 x 17.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 271,894 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Mary Balogh is a New York Times bestselling author. A former teacher, she grew up in Wales and now lives in Canada. Visit her website at www.marybalogh.com


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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another excellent reissue of a Balogh story 12 July 2007
By Helen Hancox TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Mary Balogh is one of the most consistent authors of historical romances writing today and "Web of Love," a re-issue of a title originally published in 1990, shows this. It is the second in the "Web" series following "The Gilded Web" (reissued last year) which follows the three Raine siblings, Edmund, Earl of Amberley ("The Gilded Web"), Dominic, Lord Eden ("Web of Love") and Madeleine Raine ("The Devil's Web", to be reissued in December 2007).

Mary Balogh's books often have similar themes and this is no different. The Battle of Waterloo and its aftermath plays a significant part in this story (rather like "Slightly Sinful") when Lord Eden is wounded and is tended by the widow of his friend, Charlie Simpson. Charlie's widow Ellen has been following the drum for ten years and in her matter-of-fact, comfortable nature is rather like Sophie in "Irresistible". There is also a disfigured and wounded character who begins to learn about his new limitations and yet new possibilities, particularly in art (like Sydnam Butler in "Simply Love"). And yet although there are some similarities of themes within her books, overall they always seem to work well as standalone novels with far more to them then just romance.

Ellen Simpson and her husband Charlie are deeply in love. And yet as the book starts, she begins to notice Dominic, Lord Eden, as slightly more than her husband's best friend. She ignores this, of course, and sees them both off into battle whilst looking after her stepdaughter, Jennifer. The build-up to the battle is well written as the characters in the story try not to think too much about the possible death and injury and live each day at a time.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great 29 Mar 2009
By Trickle Tree VINE VOICE
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
I cannot get over how much I enjoyed this book. It is the first book I have read from this author and found her writing style so easy and relaxing to read. Loved the era it was set in as I don't know much about this time. The romance was so nice and addictive I kept reaching to this book during the day and evening.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A perfect second book of a great trilogy. 15 April 2012
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I am really enjoying the re-issuing of Mary Balogh books, especially as i haven't managed to read her older books before now. This is the second book in the 'Web' Trilogy, and whilst the first book was good, this is excellent. You can tell that Balogh has settled more into her style of writing and is certainly more confidant about her characters. The plot is alot more polished, and the characters more engaging. The plot revols around Dominic, Lord Eden, who at the end of 'The Gilded Web' was joining the army. You get great details of life in Belgium and Wellington's campaigns. Ellen is the widowed wife of Eden friend, and she helps him recouparte after the battle of Waterloo. Whilst there are similar themes to other historical romances here, Balogh clever twisting plots keep it intresting and different. It is also great to catch up with other characters such as Dominic's family who you have meet in the previous book, and are a few hints as to what is going to happen in last book, which i can't wait to start!
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5.0 out of 5 stars A GREAT book by Mary Balogh 3 May 2011
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This is a delightful book full of great characters, sparkling dialogue and VERY difficult to put down once I started it. The book was in good condition when I received it. If you love Mary Balogh don't leave this off your shopping list.
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Amazon.com: 4.0 out of 5 stars  29 reviews
30 of 35 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars What is love really? 7 Sep 2006
By Bookivore - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
However normal she might appear Ellen Simpson is a fairly psychologically abnormal heroine hiding in an everyday romance.

As the book opens Ellen is married to Captain Charles 'Charlie' Simpson and we have several chapters of them emphasizing how in love they are. In fact she overemphasizes it a time or two showing that she recognizes that she is attracted to their frined Lieutenant Lord Eden (Dominic). As a red herring she is the 25 year old stepmother of Jennifer, a young miss similar in some ways to other young ladies that Dominic has fancied himself in love with in the past.

In one hundred pages of buildup various characters are introduced and bundled off and the two soldiers are sent off to Waterloo. Charlie is killed and Dominic is seriously wounded. In confusion and under the urge to tell Ellen her husband is dead he directs his rescuers to take him to her house where she receives the news and takes him in.

After he become stronger Dominic and Ellen fall into a 6-day affair, which blows up in their faces and she states that she never wants to see him again. This is where all the confusion about how could she love so soon, etc. etc. comes about. But this is a 350 page book and there's plenty of time for the two main characters to agonize about things and develop further psychologically.

Discerning readers will notice that Dominic has strange notions about love and thinks he can decide whether or not he can fall into love with another young miss apparently for the fun of being in love.

Ellen also has strange ideas although she appears to be a normal loving wife. She met Charlie when she was 15 - in short, having lost the support of all the adults in her life, she is rescued by Charlie who was 30 at that point. She tells Dominic later on that Charlie wanted to send her off to his sister but Ellen convinced him to marry her. Her love is a desparate attachment to the only solid point in her life.

Only on her husband's death, and likely inevitably on her husband's death, Ellen realizes that she is strong and that there are other lovable human beings in the world, even though they might not be as strong or perfect as a child would imagine.

This is a good story and an interesting story, with two other subplots filling in the spaces. My main complain is that many of the characters are overdrawn to make the points the author wants to make and it makes the realism of the book suffer.
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another excellent reissue of a Balogh story 12 July 2007
By Helen Hancox - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Mary Balogh is one of the most consistent authors of historical romances writing today and "Web of Love," a re-issue of a title originally published in 1990, shows this. It is the second in the "Web" series following "The Gilded Web" (reissued last year) which follows the three Raine siblings, Edmund, Earl of Amberley ("The Gilded Web"), Dominic, Lord Eden ("Web of Love") and Madeleine Raine ("The Devil's Web", to be reissued in December 2007).

Mary Balogh's books often have similar themes and this is no different. The Battle of Waterloo and its aftermath plays a significant part in this story (rather like "Slightly Sinful") when Lord Eden is wounded and is tended by the widow of his friend, Charlie Simpson. Charlie's widow Ellen has been following the drum for ten years and in her matter-of-fact, comfortable nature is rather like Sophie in "Irresistible". There is also a disfigured and wounded character who begins to learn about his new limitations and yet new possibilities, particularly in art (like Sydnam Butler in "Simply Love"). And yet although there are some similarities of themes within her books, overall they always seem to work well as standalone novels with far more to them then just romance.

Ellen Simpson and her husband Charlie are deeply in love. And yet as the book starts, she begins to notice Dominic, Lord Eden, as slightly more than her husband's best friend. She ignores this, of course, and sees them both off into battle whilst looking after her stepdaughter, Jennifer. The build-up to the battle is well written as the characters in the story try not to think too much about the possible death and injury and live each day at a time. We also meet the hero and heroine from the first book in this series, the Earl and Countess of Amberley, three years after that story ends and with two children. Amberley's family take Jennifer back to England before the outbreak of the war but Ellen stays with her husband, as always, in Brussels - as does Madeleine, Lord Eden's twin, staying with a friend elsewhere. As reports of the fighting come in Ellen and Madeleine prepare to treat the wounded. Eventually Eden is returned to Ellen's house dangerously wounded and with the news that Charlie has been killed. Ellen nurses him with great care and Madeleine finds herself nursing Lieutenant Allan Penworth who has lost a leg and an eye in the battle. Yet Ellen's time with Dominic, Lord Eden, leads to rather more than they both initially expect before guilt causes Ellen to ask him to keep away from her.

On returning to England, however, Ellen finds herself occasionally in company with Lord Eden. And there's a rather important piece of information she needs to give him but she cannot bring herself to. She ends up staying at Amberley with Jennifer and the Earl and Countess, as well as Madeleine and Lieutenant Penworth and several other people, and learns that she cannot keep all her own secrets as other people are involved.

In some ways the romantic element is less important in this story than some of the others. The focus is a little more on the war and how it can affect families, changing them not only by deaths but also by injury. Dominic appeared as a rather shallow person in the first book in this series and in this novel he sometimes seems rather carefree, acknowledging to himself that he tumbles into love rather readily. Ellen is a very different character, one of steadiness and deep emotion, and yet it wasn't always easy to get into her mind. Neither person's character particularly changes or grows in this story, it is more a case of Dominic finally finding what he has been looking for and Ellen understanding that it is possible to love more than one man in a lifetime. This was, however, an excellent read and will no doubt be much enjoyed by Mary Balogh's fans.

Originally published for Curled Up With A Good Book, [...] Helen Hancox 2007
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An Excellent Historical, A Sad Woman, and Redemption 8 May 2008
By R. PROVENZA - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I have read all three books of this trilogy and I must say they were sometimes intense psychological pictures of characters you would think to meet in any romance novel. But there is just more to them, the author makes these character richer, deeper and left me thinking about them well after starting some other book.

Both these characters seem to be in some dream world of there own creating, mostly to deal with how they thing life SHOULD be. Dominic and carefree doing only one responsible thing in his life and that was to join the military. Our heroine, runs after her real father, following the drum, when she learns the father she thought she had wasn't. Her father dies in that war and she takes up with the first or only man kind to her at 15, proposing marriage and doing her best to make it the best marriage to a man 15 years her elder. (It is overdone how much they love each other that makes it all the sadder to know when her husband dies.)
Then in her ability to care for the wounded while denying her own needs and fears, is just another example of her ability to adjust her world so she can cope. This goes too far as bestfriend of her husband, family friend, and wounded officer as he gets better then becomes lover in 6 days out of 3 weeks recuperating. Then finally reality sets in and the pain and denial. But Ellen grows she returns to the Father she thought was her's and tells him her woes, he accepts her again as he always has. Their is healing and maturity and finally acceptance of the truth on her part. And a seriousness in Dominic as more responsibility is dumped on him and he demands to be able to be accountable for them.

Also, the desciption of Waterloo is so good I found myself looking up places and people that are mentioned in the book. The author does her research exceptionally well. I found the near site on maps of that time online. Well Done!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Writing Review 3 Feb 2010
By La Blue Eyes - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
There have been so many reviews regarding the plot that I'm not going to bother with that. Instead, I'd like to review the author's style of writing. Now I've read many of Balogh's books and I honestly don't remember if her writing is consistently the same, but in Web of Love the writing was very poor. I am hardly an English major, but when I would have to re-read paragraphs, because the continuity was off it gets rather annoying. The author has a tendency of repeating flashbacks for the different characters in the same scene so we get their separate perspectives, but what it really means is that we as the reader are exposed to the same scene more than once when we think we've already been-there-done-that. So, in all these flashbacks there is a hodgepodge of past and present scenes all mixed up together on the same page which creates this overall confusion. Also the characters would change the subject so often and sudden in their conversations with no sign or acknowledgment of this quick change that I would often wonder if the the author was just to lazy to create a new paragraph. Multiple character's thoughts are run together with no ownership to whose is whose. I guess the author has a problem with the idea of run-on sentences because she wrote so many incomplete ones. This incompleteness broke the flow of the reading, because I would need to stop, re-read, and often go on a guessing game of who or what she was referring to. I suppose the author was trying to create a lot of feeling with this way of writing. However if she really wanted to discover the effectiveness of such a style she should have read some of it aloud like any decent English teacher would suggest because there its seen how the writing style doesn't work. The biggest problem with that dreadful writing is that it prevented me from fully immersing into the story. So, I only gave it three stars, the plot was good, the writing of it was lousy.
8 of 12 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Really STINKS 6 July 2007
By Kbm - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I usually love her books but this one stinks! First off, Ellen's love for Charlie goes on ad nauseum, how he's her whole life, and life would end without him in WAY too many chapters. Then there is way too much battle detail for a book of this type, and then he dies, no mention of his body, etc. I haven't finished it, I'm not sure I will, which is definitely not usual for me. IT's just too nauseating how she goes on and on about her love for Charlie and then suddenly she's having a week long sexual romp with his best friend with little explanation. Then she suddenly turns puritan and uptight and blames him and herself, with little logic or rationality. And the character development for Lord Eden needs work, along with the plot, he comes across as a weak, flaky young thing, not leading man material at all. Ellen comes across as stodgy dowager type. Just boring, all of it, and nauseating. I love Mary Balogh, but this book comes across as something she did early in her career that was dusted off and submitted with no rework or editing.
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