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Never Lie to a Lady [Large Print] [Hardcover]

Liz Carlyle


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Book Description

September 2007 Never (Book 1)
In her dazzling new historical trilogy, New York Times bestselling author Liz Carlyle plunges readers into the steamy underworld of nineteenth-century London. Among the swirling glitter of English high society, a scandalous rogue gets more than he bargained for in the lady of his desires.

Lord Nash is a creature of the night -- his wealth and title provide but a tenuous entrée into polite society. Notorious for his sophisticated manners and a dark, dashing elegance, rumors abound of the men he has bankrupted and the women he's left heartbroken. But when Nash leaves his lair for a rare foray into the ton, he faces a lure of temptation all his own -- an extraordinary moment of passion with a mysterious lady in the moonlight -- and an obsession that will lead him into a hellish world of smugglers, spies, and intrigue. And as for his damsel in disguise, the witty and beautiful Miss Xanthia Neville, he soon learns, is as unattainable as she is tempting. And now Nash must decide if she is also dangerous. . . .
--This text refers to the Mass Market Paperback edition.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 575 pages
  • Publisher: Thorndike Press; Lrg edition (September 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0786298014
  • ISBN-13: 978-0786298013
  • Product Dimensions: 22.2 x 15.5 x 3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 680 g

Product Description

From Booklist

Xanthia Neville knows exactly how to run a successful worldwide shipping business, but navigating the social waters of the ton is another matter entirely. At a London soiree, the mystery man with whom Xanthia shares a kiss turns out to be notorious rake and gamester Stefan Northampton, the Marquess of Nash. Xanthia knows that any romantic liaison with Stefan is social suicide, but she can't forget the dark and dangerous lord. Xanthia gets a second chance with Stefan when the British government asks her to use her business connections to look into Stefan's possible connections to gun-smuggling in Greece, and Xanthia soon finds herself ensnared in a dangerous game of seduction and intrigue with the sublimely sexy Stefan. With the first in an irresistible new trilogy, Carlyle cleverly fashions another of her fabulously rich confections certain to captivate readers with its delightfully unique heroine, deliciously dark hero, and delectably witty writing. Charles, John --This text refers to the Mass Market Paperback edition.

Review

"Liz Carlyle weaves passion and intrigue with a master's touch." -- Karen Robards, New York Times bestselling author --This text refers to the Mass Market Paperback edition.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 3.8 out of 5 stars  29 reviews
25 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Relax, lie back and think of England.... June 22 2007
By C. Farley - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This is a delightful, big old chunk of a book that refuses to be hurried. The author is a master of this genre and not for a moment will your reading pleasure be taken for granted. We care greatly for the male/female leads seeing in both of them the pain of the outsider and how their very forward-thinking behavior contrasts with the rest of the stuffy ton. Plus the secondary characters!!! There are enough wily servants, clever Scots, Irish, effeminate "stylists/decorators" and plotting family members to stock a small Shakespeare company. Each one is carefully personalized--individual enough so that we enjoy their character, smile at their interference in the leads' lives and wait for their next "bit o' business". Of course, there are subplots, spy deals, smuggling and all that kind of window dressing but appropriate for the time and the business of international shipping--which our female lead handles with ease and independance. If you need to rush--this book is not for you. But for a lovely vacation or all that time waiting in the orthodontist's office--this gem is perfect.
19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Full-strength Carlyle June 28 2007
By Suburbanbushbabe™ - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Carlyle's most recent efforts, while they were quite enjoyable, don't quite pack the punch of earlier books like No True Gentleman or My False Heart, both of which are on my keeper shelf. With Never Lie to A Lady, Carlyle is drinking caffeine again. A strong, beautiful heroine who runs a business and has needs of her own; a libertine English marquess by way of Montenegro who hates the Turks. Two people drawn to each other, a gun-running plot and the search for a spy. Carlyle knows her pre-Victorian London and she draws it almost as well as Barry Eisler does Tokyo in his Rain series. The difference is Carlyle's London hasn't existed for almost 200 years. But you see the Docklands and the Pool, the bustling commerce, the lawns running down to a rural Thames. If you loved Max Rohan and Elliott Armstrong, the Marquess of Nash is cut from the same exciting cloth. And Max and George Kemble are back in this book, partners in crime-fighting yet again. I read this book from cover to cover in one sitting.
17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Boring and unsatifying to a die-hard L. Carlyle fan July 9 2007
By PandaBee - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I didn't feel anything for the characters at all. They bored me to tears. They meet... they're attracted to each other... they wow each other with their "radical" outlooks... they have sex... then stroll in the park, talking blandly about a bunch of boring stuff (business, politic)... then they have sex again... and apparently the sex is so mind-blowing that the hero falls in love with her. And all the while, she's trying to decide whether or not he's a traitor. Okaaay.. where's the romance?

I've always loves the independent heroine type; women who take their lives into their own hands and create a world for themselves that doesn't revolve around their husbands. I adore those kind of people... but independent disposition aside, there should be something else worth liking about their personality; A fun, refreshing sense of humour... an optimistic, unique outlook on life... a special skill or ability...a sweet, generous nature... a daring and quick wit...or even a fiesty, willful temperment. Anything at all that makes her stand out among her peers... not just the fact that she's independent. Because anyone can be independent, but still bored you to tears with their lack of personality.

Unfortunately, Xanthia falls into this latter department. I didn't find anything worth liking about her personality. Her independence in based on the fact she has a career and she freely takes lovers just like a man. I'd rather have Xanthia be a woman whose independence is defined by the way she defies social expectation. I'd rather have her uniqueness based on the fact that she doesn't give a damn what people think. Unfortunately, she does. Her behavior confuses me. She turns Nash down at first becuase she doesn't want to cause scandal, yet contrary to what society would approve of, she runs a shipping business and works in one of the most sketchy part of the city... Doesn't make any sense. If she's already defying social expectation by having a career, then why care what people think about her taking a lover?

Eventually Xanthia and Nash do become lovers. How and Why? Because Xanthia is spying to see if Nash is guilty of treason... huh...
Before knowing more about what kind of man he is and whether or not he's guilty, she sleeps with him. THEN, she decides "Oh, he must be innocent!" He doesn't SEEM like a traitor...hmmm.. Talk about bias. Instead of being the wise, down-to-earth heroine I hoped her to be (by waiting to learn more about him BEFORE having a relationship with him) she sleeps with him first, develops feelings for him (which from what I've seen are mostly just basic lust and sexual desires) THEN forms a verdict on his innocence. For an independent, free-thinking woman she sure acts like an illogical idiot.

Nash, on the other hand, is also boring as hell. Just a regular ol' rake...only, without any of the irresistible rakish charms. He's neither dashing nor fun nor especially sexy .. at least not to me. He's not physically or emotionally flawed in any way, so there's no compassion to be felt for our hero. He doesn't have a dark past or a shady secret... so he lacks the aura of mystery and danger. He's neither witty or display a unique charm. He doesn't have a skill or an admirable ability. His physical description doesn't leave one dreamy or sighing with wistfulness. Supposedly, he has an imposing and attractive presence, but I sure didn't see it. Nash.... takes mistresses and runs from the idea of marriage...typical, but... uh uh...not my kind of hero.

The couple together is uninteresting. The spy business takes any lightness out of the story and also any of the romance. Who'd wanna read page after page about government policies, conflicts between political parties, the how one country is using spies to infiltrate another. When I pick up a romance novel and I expect to have some fun... go on adventures...see some lovin'... and giggle stupidly like a silly girl. Unfortunately, I was disappointed. When Nash and Xanthia meet, they talk politely, inertly to each other. Their conversations are largely about politics and business... *yawn*... then out of nowhere, one person would make an innuendo to the other... and ooo the passion is simmering. Pff...yeah right. Whatever tension there is between them feels artificial and fake...limited to their shallow admiration for each other's bodies and their desire to couple... She doesn't seem so special that he can't stop thinking about her. And he doesn't seem worthy enough for her to risk that independence she struggles to hard to protect. I can't see what she loves about him and I can't see what he loves about her.So in the end, it's just the two of them adoring each other, with me -the reader- standing to the side, scratching my head and wondering to myself ...why?

All in all, I love Carlyle. I've read her for years, but I didn't like this book. It doesn't touch me in any way. And pardon me for being a little conservative, but I find the idea of her giving him a BJ the first time they have sex a little disgusting... She barely knows the guy! Eww... Not romantic, not sweet... just eww. Ok... That's all I have to say.
Oh and please keep in mind that these are MY opinions. They may not be true for everyone. So, take my word for what it is, but if you want to read the book and form your own opinion, please do... I look forward to hearing what everyone else think..
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Worth reading...but not as good as some of her others...3 1/2 stars July 3 2007
By statengirl - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
A woman married to her work discovers there is more to life than the bottom line in this spy-laden regency era romance. Twenty-nine-year-old Xanthia Neville has for years run her family's shipping business. She is smart, successful and adores her work - but she has never been in love. Xanthia has avoided matrimony, for most men do not permit their wives to work, and her business shares would go to her husband upon marriage. Nevertheless, she has a vague sense of loneliness and is considering the daring notion of taking a lover when she encounters an intriguing stranger, Lord Stefan Nash, on her cousin's darkened terrace. Totally out of character, she allows Nash to take rather far-reaching liberties with her, but at the last minute panics and runs away mortified. Nash discovers her name and tracks her down, but she assures him she expects nothing from him.

A few days later, Xanthia and her brother are visited by investigators from the Home Office who ask if she will befriend Lord Nash, who they suspect of being a gun smuggler. They want her to pretend to be a bit shady in her shipping activities, hoping that Nash will take the bait and use her ships for his illicit activities. Or that she can find something incriminating on him. Xanthia jumps at the chance to help. But is she truly out to trap Nash or, rather, prove his innocence?

I am a big Liz Carlyle fan, and this book is worth the read, but is not as strong as some of her other works. Most of the weakness is in the first half of the book, when Xanthia's spy tactics toward Nash cast a shadow over their burgeoning romance. Her pretending to be corrupt and her in-your-face, incautious sexual aggressiveness are real turn-offs. It is not consistent with the person she first presented to Nash - the one he fell for - and it is hard to believe Nash would find this behavior desirable. Xanthia's watchdog Mr. Kemble, who I liked in previous books, now has irritatingly overdone "interior decorator" mannerisms that are not endearing. The book has a much better second half, when Xanthia softens and is more circumspect. I like the way their relationship evolves, with Nash a very appealing hero right to the end. The scenes at his homes are particularly well done, as his feelings for Xanthia become more evident. The title, BTW, has nothing to do with the book. 3 1/2 stars...with a good finish.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Steamy with a twist June 23 2007
By JLL - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
I was hesitant to buy this book; Carlyle's last two disappointed me. However, she really redeemed herself with this one. She has a great anti-hero, a heroine that appeals to 21st century women, and a couple of nice twists in the end. We are also treated to a visit from de Vendenheim and Kemble from No True Gentleman (Sonnet Books), two characters I was glad to see again.
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