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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable anthology
This book is the result of a competition whereby fans of the four authors (Stephanie Laurens, Mary Balogh, Jacquie D'Alessandro and Candice Hern) were encouraged to submit ideas for a storyline which each author would use for a short story. The winning storyline was: the hero, a younger brother of a titled lord, had a career in the army but has lived as a recluse since...
Published on 9 April 2011 by Helen Hancox

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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Too much of a good thing
I bought the anthology because I'm a Mary Balogh fan but Jacquie d'Allessandro's was the best one by far.

Stephanie Laurens tale was too tall - the heroine's 'Sisterhood', the 'mission' all a bit far fetched. The heroine is described as being so beautiful you don't really understand why she is still 'on the shelf' after however many seasons and all in all it...
Published on 10 April 2011 by CJ


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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable anthology, 9 April 2011
By 
Helen Hancox "Auntie Helen" (Essex, England) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
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This review is from: It Happened One Season (Mass Market Paperback)
This book is the result of a competition whereby fans of the four authors (Stephanie Laurens, Mary Balogh, Jacquie D'Alessandro and Candice Hern) were encouraged to submit ideas for a storyline which each author would use for a short story. The winning storyline was: the hero, a younger brother of a titled lord, had a career in the army but has lived as a recluse since returning from the war with France. The heroine is shy or unattractive and, after many Seasons, has never had a suitor. The hero's brother has only daughters and asks his brother to marry to try to ensure the succession."

This plot summary is developed by all four authors into different stories, all ending happily of course.

Stephanie Laurens' "The Seduction of Sebastian Trantor" used the familiar theme of a `fake engagement' to divert attention from a potentially scandalous scene. Mary Balogh's "Only Love" felt rather familiar - with elements of her books `Irresistible' and `More than a Mistress' woven together in a story of a widow receiving a second chance at love (although apparently doing her utmost to scupper the opportunity!). Jacquie D'Alessandro's `Hope Springs Eternal' has a young lady whose rather racy artwork has caused her to be cut by polite society finding love with her deceased brother's commanding officer - a man with secrets. Candice Hern's story, `Fate strikes a bargain', featured a disabled young lady who hasn't ever found a suitor but who may be just the thing for a retired soldier suffering mental traumas from Waterloo.

All four stories were enjoyable but I particularly liked Candice Hern's story. Her heroine, the disabled Philippa Reynolds, was extremely well written and the way in which she deals with her disability was impressive. Perhaps the story glossed over some of the hero's mental problems - he says he can be incredibly ratty and grumpy, but we don't really see that - but I felt this story rounded off the book very well. As usual with modern Regencies there are some errors of dialogue but nothing too appalling for this picky reader. This is a book worth picking up for light and enjoyable reads.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Too much of a good thing, 10 April 2011
By 
CJ (London, UK) - See all my reviews
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I bought the anthology because I'm a Mary Balogh fan but Jacquie d'Allessandro's was the best one by far.

Stephanie Laurens tale was too tall - the heroine's 'Sisterhood', the 'mission' all a bit far fetched. The heroine is described as being so beautiful you don't really understand why she is still 'on the shelf' after however many seasons and all in all it was a story I skimmed.

Mary Balogh's Only Love was a bit of a combination of some of her longer books as one of the other reviewers points out but it was quite sweet and well told. Not very memorable and not that satisfactory.

My favourite of the four was the story by Jacquie d'Alessandro in which the heroine is an artist and sister of the Hero's sergeant who died at Waterloo. The Hero feels responsible for her brothers death and looks her up to find that she is in desperate straights having lost her job through no fault of her own. The reason I liked this story is that they get married early on and you see their married relationship develop before the slight complication at the end. It was a sweet tale and more realistic that some of the others and well told.

Candice Hern's version was alright. The Hero's battle trauma was not very evident but ther heroine's disability was well dealt with.

The plot line that they were given was a bit too restrictive to allow each to vary too much in my view and it did make the stories rather repetitive. I thought 'It Happened One Night' which was a previous anthology by the same four authors worked better and seemed to give each author more scope for variation so you didn't end up with four similar stories told in slightly different ways. I think that's why I enjoyed J d'A's version most this time - partly because it was the most different of the four.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A GOOD READ, 31 Mar 2011
By 
Elaine "Elaine" (Clacton on Sea, Essex) - See all my reviews
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A big Thank You firstly to Phyllis Post, the lady who won the Avon Books competition for coming up with the idea(s) of the plotline.

The Seduction of Sebastian Trantor - Stephanie Laurens
Only Love - Mary Balogh
Hope Springs Eternal - Jacquie D'Alessandro
Fate Strikes A Bargain - Candie Hern

The plotline for these four stories is:
1. The hero, younger brother of a titled lord - had a career in the army - now living as a recluse since returning from war.
2. Heroine is either and/or shy, unattractive - had many Seasons without a sniff of a suitor.
3. Hero's brother has only girl offspring and badger his brother into finding a wife a.s.a.p. & set up his nursery to ensure succession.

I shan't go into each individual story (I'm sure there are far better critics out there to do so), except to say that, my personal favourites are Candice Hern's & Jacquie D'Alessandro's great efforts, but still overall an ok read.
I would recommend this book, even though the storylines are obviously the same.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Well Done, 5 Mar 2014
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I thought all the stories were well written as you would expect from 4 of the better writers of this genre. The idea of basing them on the same concept added to the interest. Georgette Heyer they are not but life has moved on from her time and a bit of spices now expected. It is of course highly unlikely to have taken place in this time period and even less likely to have had such a pleasant outcome but come on we read these books to suspend reality.
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5.0 out of 5 stars jc, 14 Oct 2012
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This review is from: It Happened One Season (Mass Market Paperback)
Purchased for my wife who is an avid reader and has said that this particular novel is up to her usual high standard
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3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Plain Janes Get The Men, 10 April 2011
By 
Mrs. Leanne A. Lingwood (Leeds, England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Four amazing stories where the unlikely girl gets the man.

Given that each author had the same theme, the four stories are completely different. It is always nice reading about the "plain jane" girls getting the man over all the so called beauties and these four stories each have their own "plain jane" where their own beauty grows under the attentions of the man.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Disappointed, 5 May 2011
This review is from: It Happened One Season (Mass Market Paperback)
A collection of four stories thinly linked by a formula plot. The marketing ploy of using Stephanie Laurens as the author suckered me in to buying it! Her novella was OK but the others were pretty tedious! In fact so dull that I can remember little about them!
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4.0 out of 5 stars book, 13 Aug 2014
This review is from: It Happened One Season (Mass Market Paperback)
good read
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1 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars easy read, 24 April 2011
i love period romances and so enjoyed the story.however as i was taught that spelling and grammar is important i found it very distracting that words were split up that should not have been and lots of words were hyphenated unnessessarily in fact i have never seen so many hyphens in a book before.
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It Happened One Season
It Happened One Season by Mary Balogh (Mass Market Paperback - 29 Mar 2011)
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