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The Perfect Waltz [Mass Market Paperback]

Anne Gracie
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
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Book Description

Nov. 1 2005 Merridew Series
Society rogue Sebastian Reyne's search for a practical wife comes to a crashing halt when he dances with the effervescent Hope Merridew--and is seduced into a delicious intrigue of sensuality and desire.

 


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The Perfect Waltz + The Perfect Rake + The Perfect Kiss
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lyndak Jan. 30 2008
By Lynda K
Format:Mass Market Paperback
It was an enchanting story. A sub-tale involving the hero's best friend was quite humorous as well. The best friend had wit laced with just the right amount of sarcasm. The hero was battling his own demons and the heroine was courageous and likable.
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Amazon.com: 4.1 out of 5 stars  37 reviews
58 of 60 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Anne Gracie delivers again Nov. 10 2005
By tregatt - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Much as I enjoy Anne Grace's novels, I wasn't sure that I was going to enjoy the second installment in the Merridew sisters' series, "The Perfect Waltz" mainly because I wasn't sure if the beautiful and (almost) perfect Hope Merridew would be able to sustain my interest. I worried needlessly: Hope may be the almost perfect heroine, but Anne Grace made her intelligent, compassionate and determined enough to make her an interesting heroine and one that it was easy to root for -- add this to an extremely interesting storyline and a secondary romance subplot that possessed sizzle as well, and you have a fairly memorable romance novel that is sure to win raves!

Beautiful and lively Hope Merridew's days of suffering abuse from her grandfather are long over. These days, she and her sisters are able to enjoy lives of luxury and ease thanks to the generosity and love of their granduncle, Oswald, and to the splendid and advantageous matches that her two elder sisters made ("The Perfect Rake"). No, these days all Hope has to worry about is which ball to attend and which gown to wear. That is until she meets the dark and enigmatical Sebastian Reyne. Rumour has it that he is a pushing mushroom and an illegitimate son of some sort who may have murdered his first wife -- not the sort of man a much sought after diamond should be interested in! And yet, something about Sebastian intrigues and fascinates Hope (much to her chaperone's dismay). After all this is one man who seems to be able to tell her and her twin apart! And yet, much as he seems to practically devour her with his eyes, Sebastian seems to be courting another lady. What should Hope do? Should she concentrate to meeting other, more eligible gentlemen or hold out in the hope that Sebastian will come to his senses? She knows that she and Sebastian are meant to be, but how to convince him?

"The Perfect Waltz" could have ended up being a book all about a young woman's determination to nab the man she wants. Fortunately, it was not. By factoring in Sebastian's and his younger sisters' unhappy histories and his attempts to make things right for them, and Hope's unhappy memories of what life was like before she and her family escaped to London, Anne Gracie packs her book with enough backstories to give structure to the romance that develops between Hope and Sebastian, thus making it more believable and credible. And speaking of romance, I esp liked the one that developed between the lady that Sebastian was ostensibly courting and his best friend. It had quite a bit of sensual heat. The pacing was smooth and unfrantic and characters, well all fairly well developed -- and these two vital ingredients, along with the absorbing storyline really did contribute to making this a very enjoyable and riveting read for me. So that all in all, I'd say that that fans and romance readers are in for a treat with "The Perfect Waltz."
17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Sweet story, but writing is at times a little cumbersome. Jan. 18 2006
By statengirl - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I had a little trouble with this author's writing style, but I enjoyed the basic storyline and liked all of the main characters. The story's hero is Sebastian Reyne, a self-made man who has to fend for himself after being orphaned at the age of fourteen. Destitute, young Sebastian must work long hours at a local factory. He pays for his two young sisters to be watched by a neighbor, who then disappears with them. Ten years pass before Sebastian, now a wealthy manufacturer, finally locates his sisters and rescues them from a London orphanage. The sisters - now twelve and fourteen - have extreme difficulty adjusting to Sebastian and their new life, so he decides to look for a wife who can act as a mother to them. He sets his sights on Lady Elenore Whitelaw. She is a self-disciplined and serious-minded spinster who overseas a home for girls and Sebastian feels that she will therefore be ideally suited to handle his sisters. While at society dance in order to pursue Lady Elenore, he meets the lovely debutante Hope Merridew. Sebastian is instantly smitten (as is she), but he rigidly resists Hope because he mistakenly believes that she does not have the background or disposition to make a strong mother for his troublesome sisters. However, circumstances continuously throw together Sebastian and Hope, and he is forced to reevaluate his preconceived notions about her.

I felt Ms. Gracie's prose did not always flow smoothly and the love scenes were sometimes awkwardly worded. That said, Sebastian is an admirable hero with a compelling background and I found his sisters' tale quite absorbing. Also, the author injects some nice humor into the story through Sebastian's friend Giles Bemerton. In fact, the secondary romance between carefree Giles and the tightly wound Lady Elinore, is the highlight of the novel.
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Perfect Waltz--The Perfect Romance Feb. 12 2006
By Pamela Marshall - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I just finished this incredible book and had to comment on it. I'd never heard of the author and bought the book on a whim (as in I needed more books for my TBR pile). Without giving away the story, this book was the absolutely BEST romance I've read in a year's time. Since I'm a Writer WannaBe, I eat up books and probably have read one hundred since last February and this one stands head and shoulders above even the others that I've loved. The hero is very different from most heros and is more human with greater appeal, depth and compassion than most romance characters. He isn't even handsome, yet I fell in love with him and can so understand why the heroine did! As for the heroine, I am normally not that excited about heroines, but this one was just wonderful. Rather than the normal feisty, childish spitfire you read about in so many romances, Hope was truly a mature, compassionate (yes, they both were), winsome and very sympathetic heroine and she won my heart. An amusing background romance goes on and it is also quite amusing with good humor. I can't wait for her next book, and am going to order "The Perfect Rake," her first novel. This is one multi-gifted author!
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars terrific Regency romance Nov. 1 2005
By Harriet Klausner - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
By 1818 once impoverished Sebastian Reyne had become very wealthy through hard work. His motivation was to find his two sisters Cassie and Dorie to bring them home so they can be a family again. He succeeds, but his preadolescent siblings are out of control behaving anything but lady like. Sebastian decides he needs a wife to supervise his sisters as the latest governess fails besides which he objects to the woman using force on his beloved sisters. He chooses Lady Eleanor as the perfect candidate to marry.

However, Sebastian runs into a problem when he dances with Hope Meridew as he finds he desires her even as he pursues another. Hope shares his deep regard, but feels there is little she can do since he still plans to marry Eleanor out of a sense of duty. As his hearts and other unruly body parts sends him one way, his brain keeps telling him to go in the other direction. Of course Sebastian never factored in that his siblings have their own agenda as to whom they want as their new "sister".

This is a terrific Regency romance due the strong characterizations. Hope and Sebastian are a fine couple, but he makes the tale because even though he knows what he wants, his desire clashes with what he believes he needs. Duty vs. love is brilliantly battled as Anne Gracie writes the perfect historical.

Harriet Klausner
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Romance with a much deeper sub-plot thrown in..... July 6 2006
By soulshine75 - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This is the 1st Anne Gracie book I have read and I felt it was enjoyable, although the back cover is misleading to what the story is about. The romance in the book is secondary to the child abuse issues that the book revolved around. This is the story of Sebastian Reyne a bachelor in society who has just been reunited with his 2 younger/orpahned sisters who aren't very obedient. Sebastian can't keep a governess for the girls because their behavior isn't "acceptable", so he decides to find a practical, rational wife who will help him bring them up in society and to show compassion towards their unfortunate pasts. Sebastian isn't looking for a wife to love, but a wife who will help him raise the girls. He decides on Lady Elinore who is all the things he's looking for in a mother to Dorrie and Cassie (his sisters). She's practical, not necissarily pretty and works at an orphanage helping indigent girls. He believes she'll be perfect so he decides to court her. Little does he know he is going to meet Hope Merridew and fall in love with the ravishing beauty, who, according to him, is nothing the girls need because she's probably a spoiled little society brat who has never experienced hard times in her life. Apparently he doesn't know her or her situation well because Hope does know how it is to live a hard life and as he slowly gets to know her her past slowly unfolds. Sebastian finds himself in a sticky situation as he realizes he's falling for Hope, but courting Elinore at the same time.

I liked this story because it took you places you don't normally go in a romance novel. It was much deeper and darker than most so I felt myself being sad quite a bit while reading it. The characters are written realy well...Hope is a great character. She's fiesty, mature, not whiney at all, compassionate, patient, and understanding. Sebastian is brooding, withdrawn, sweet, quiet, loving and has the best of intentions for his sisters. The secondary characters I liked as well, especially Giles. I felt that I liked the ending of the book better than the beginning and middle because I liked the scenes with Hope and Sebastian together where they could focus mostly on themselves. I wanted to cry the first time they made love because they really waited and did it at the right time and it was so sweet. Anyway..I like this author and I hope to read more of her books soon.

Also....the book is named the Last Waltz because Hope always had a dream that she'd meet her dream man during the last waltz at a ball so she always kept her last waltz open on her dance card, then she met Sebastian and saved him for her last waltz..it was really sweet.
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