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Seduced By A Scoundrel [Mass Market Paperback]

Barbara Dawson Smith
3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)

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From Publishers Weekly

After her father's violent death, it's up to Lady Alicia Pemberton to care for her dotty mother and profligate brother, all the while struggling to make ends meet in Regency London. When her brother gambles away the last of their money, a desperate Alicia offers herself to the infamous gaming hall proprietor Drake Wilder. He in turn proposes marriage. She refuses, but Drake makes it impossible for her to say no. Alicia finally agrees--but to a marriage in name only. Drake believes it's his marital right to seduce her, and so their battle of wills begins. Alicia introduces her husband to society, and he charms them all, especially the women. But she is baffled by his two-sided personality: is he a ruthless gambler or a generous benefactor? They become lovers and decide to make the best of their marriage, until Alicia learns that Drake had purposely ruined her family and is using her as a pawn in his devious plot to further fill his coffers. Smith (Too Wicked to Love) brings a refreshing twist to a familiar plot in this sensual historic romance. (Dec.)
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Review

"Barbara Dawson Smith is wonderful!" --Affaire de Coeur

"A master of storytelling!" --Romantic Times

"One of America's best-loved authors of historical romance!" --RomEx Reviews

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Lady Alicia Pemberton braced herself to commit an act of desperation. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars This book was goooodd Aug. 4 2003
By Skye
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I read this book so many times I lost count...Well actually I think it was 3 but I thought it was a really good book then and now that I found it again after 2 years I think it'd a good book now. I cant wait to read another one of her books!
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4.0 out of 5 stars What a wonderful scoundrel.. July 11 2001
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Just finished my second book by Ms. Smith. I thought Seduced by a Scoundrel was different and again filled with suspense that kept me glued till I finished it. Unlike some I didn't think this was a typical rewind of the usual drivel of the sacrificed virgin trying to save her family. The writing was so much better. I found all the characters different from the usual and Alicia's mother is precious. Even though it didn't get the high rating of her other books I recommend giving it a try.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Not all that original May 1 2000
By Thorn
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This plot started and developed too standartly to be belived. How many books have you read already where the heroine is forced into marriage/sexual relations with the hero/scoundrel because of her family's gambling debts? In addition, we find out the the revenge bent scoundrel is actually a softie, who, though trying to get into his new wife's bed, is nevertherless trying to present himself to her as an unrepentant rogue regardless.
Of course, the heroine hates him at first, but then suddenly has a change of heart and climbs all over him. Plus, she comes to terms with the fact that he had married her to enter into Society, but gets all bent out of shape when she realizes that he is using her to get revenge on his father instead.
The love/lust scenes are good enough, I suppose and the secondary romance is fascinating. (Needed more info on it, though. Would have been much better book.) The final twist at the end is a bit redemptive, but Jamie's sudden change of heart is not explained. Why?
In short: close, but no sigar!
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3.0 out of 5 stars Try Too Wicked to Love instead April 27 2000
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Too Wicked to Love is one of my favorite books of 1999 - but this latest offering falls just short of the mark.
Lady Alicia Pemberton's brother Gerald, Earl of Brockway, loses what is left of the family fortune at Drake Wilder's gambling hall. Aside from her family's declining social and financial status, Alicia must care for her mother, who has fallen prey to dementia. It's up to Alicia to save the family once it is clear that the debt of 20,000 guineas will send them to ruin.
Drake is not prepared for the woman who offers him her virtue as payment for her brother's debt. He demands marriage, not just sex, and not because of any tender feelings, but because his bitter enemy - the father who won't acknowledge him - Lord Hailstock, wants Alicia for his own. To Alicia, who wishes to marry neither man but is instantly intrigued by Drake, the choice comes down to who will be considerate of her mother. Because Hailstock insists that Lady Brockway be kept out of their lives, Alicia chooses to marry Drake, as long as their marriage is a chaste one. Drake, who has agreed to no such nonsense, figures his bride will soon succumb to his considerable charms.
Drake's motivations (or seeming lack of common sense) were a little too convenient to the plot. Aside from forcing Hailstock to recognize him in the eyes of the society he'll be a part of, Drake would "raise his social consequence" if he marries Alicia. Oh, really? Alicia's family was nearly ruined, even before the disastrous loss of 20,000 guineas, and they've been selling off family possessions and Alicia's clothes that are not suitable for any sort of Season. Add to this the well-known dementia of the Dowager and you have, in Alicia, a girl that no one interested in social climbing would marry.
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2.0 out of 5 stars DON'T READ IT FOR THE MAIN CHARECTERS March 6 2000
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
THE REAL STAR OF THIS BOOK IS LADY ELENORE, ALICIA'S MOTHER. IF THERE IS ANY REASON TO READ IT AT ALL, IT WOULD BE HER. THE LAUGHS WERE GREAT.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Hey, did someone pressed the Rewind button? Jan. 25 2000
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Spinstress heroine walks into gambling den owner to ask him to forgo her brother's debts. She has a suitor whom the hero has a grudge against. Heroine, like Joan of Arc, offers her Pure Virtue as a sacrifice on the altar of our hero's lust. Hero proposes marriage of convenience...
Even if I do overlook the utterly predictable story with predictable characters whom I can second-guess their thoughts and actions, there isn't much left to savor. The writing's readable, but everything about "Seduced By A Scoundrel" is uninspired and reeks of deja vu.
Do read "Too Wicked To Love" instead.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Plot like a sieve Jan. 13 2000
Format:Mass Market Paperback
If you must read Barbara Dawson Smith, I'd recommend Once Upon a Scandal, where the plot is much more consistent. Here, we are to believe that Alicia agrees to marry Drake in order to repay a family debt, but only on the condition that their marriage be a chaste one. He agrees. WHY? She doesn't have a penny's worth of leverage with which to bargain.
When they finally do consummate their marriage, we get no real explanation of the reasoning behind Alicia's change of attitude. Why has she decided to stop hating this man, and surrender her prized virginity to him?
Another thing that bothered me was that Drake was too perfect. For most of the book, no sooner did a thought pop into Alicia's head that he knew exactly what it was. That served no purpose except to constantly pull me out of the story to wonder if Drake was psychic. Who else in the world is that perceptive--especially if we are talking about men! Also, all along the story, most of the misapprehensions and errors of judgment belong to Alicia, while Drake sails along with the wisdom of a saint. And the only time he does regret his actions, it's not really made clear what exactly it is he wishes he hadn't done.
The only things that redeemed the book in my eyes were the passably humorous episodes with Alicia's mother, and the sub-plot with James and Sarah. I wish more had been written about their romance, as I thought it was the only part that didn't seem to have been written by a sixteen-year-old.
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