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5.0 out of 5 stars A GREAT, GREAT ROMANCE!
I can't say enough good things about Seduced by a Scoundrel. The characters were fascinating and unforgettable. Alicia is a lady who is forced into a desperate situation -- her younger brother lost the last of their money at a gaming club owned by the infamous Drake Wilder. Drake offers to forgive the debt if she'll marry him and introduce him to high society...
Published on Jan. 3 2000 by Amy

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Not all that original
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...
Published on May 1 2000 by Thorn


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3.0 out of 5 stars Not all that original, May 1 2000
By 
Thorn "thornsilver" (Forest Hills, NY United States) - See all my reviews
Ce commentaire est de: Seduced By A Scoundrel (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
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Ce commentaire est de: Seduced By A Scoundrel (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. Drake is kind and generous to every pregnant maid, orphan, brain-rattled former boxer, etc., that he meets - this felt a little manipulative after a while.
While Alicia manages to convince herself that she is marrying Drake to save the family, especially her mother, she soon discovers that she is attracted to her charming husband. Misplaced pride keeps her from her husband's bed, and her only recourse when she finds herself about to surrender to Drake is to hurl insults at him. She started off as a likable, capable heroine, but she is also ready to believe the worst of him, even though he has been nothing but kind to her family.
There were other problems with this book, the worst of which was Gerald's painless cure from his gambling addiction, and his new career as counselor, working in Drake's hall. Anyone, with any form of addiction, will tell you that his recovery was just a little too swift to have any degree of verisimilitude.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Plot like a sieve, Jan. 13 2000
By 
Passionate (Miramar, FL United States) - See all my reviews
Ce commentaire est de: Seduced By A Scoundrel (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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5.0 out of 5 stars A GREAT, GREAT ROMANCE!, Jan. 3 2000
Ce commentaire est de: Seduced By A Scoundrel (Mass Market Paperback)
I can't say enough good things about Seduced by a Scoundrel. The characters were fascinating and unforgettable. Alicia is a lady who is forced into a desperate situation -- her younger brother lost the last of their money at a gaming club owned by the infamous Drake Wilder. Drake offers to forgive the debt if she'll marry him and introduce him to high society. Having a sweet but crazy mother to take care of, Alicia has no choice but to agree, though she insists on a marriage of convenience. Little does she know, Drake planned the whole thing. He wants to get back at his nobleman father who abandoned him at birth. Drake grew up on the streets and had to rely on his wits to become the rich owner of a gambling club. Now he wants revenge, and Alicia is his pawn. I just loved the both of them -- they started out with lots of misconceptions about each other, and she slowly learns Drake isn't entirely the hard-as-nails man he appears to be. He too learns Alicia isn't a shallow lady who looks down on base-born commoners. Seduced by a Scoundrel kept me fascinated to the very last page. It was tender and touching and exciting and sexy. I intend to recommend it to all my romance reading friends!
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1.0 out of 5 stars I'd give it no stars, if I could, Dec 23 1999
By A Customer
Ce commentaire est de: Seduced By A Scoundrel (Mass Market Paperback)
This was probably the most unromantic romance I have ever read. If you'd like to read a good romance with a strikingly similar theme, but with MUCH better character developement and romance, I recommend Lisa Kleypas' "Dreaming of You"
I can't not recommend "Seduced by a Scoudrel" enough. The two characters spend the bulk of the book squabbling with each other in a most unattractive way, all the while lusting after each other. Which tends to be a bit of a romance novel trademark, sure, but first, usually the banter is witty, and second, the characters will also exhibit an attraction to each other outside of the physical. The hero is your typical hurt, brooding male with a tough-as-nails outside, but with a softy inside (in this hero's case the characteristics are in comicly extreme proportions such that it's hard to swallow anything about him). The heroine is the down-on-her-luck but she'll-pull-through-with-amazing-tenacity romance female. Again, as with the hero, she is an over-the-top stereotype, and really not likable nor believable.Throw in your expected romance meanies, and, for some reason, an insane mother, and I assure you, your patience will truly be tested.
The story line and relationship developement is stock and trade romance novel, where the author hits all the expected romance points, but she does it with a minimum plot, minimum effort, and no attempt at a logical progression or explaination of emotions or motivations.
Pass on this one.
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1.0 out of 5 stars disappointing, Dec 20 1999
By A Customer
Ce commentaire est de: Seduced By A Scoundrel (Mass Market Paperback)
Nothing about this book works, not the plot, not the characters, not the dialogue, and - unfortunately - not the romance. The heroine is forced into marriage to save her brother from debtor's prison. She agrees to marry a millionaire gambling-den owner as long as he agrees not to have sex with her. What he wants out of it is an introduction to the ton. Say what? A girl whose family has been humiliated by a public bankruptcy of five year's standing is in no position to introduce anyone to the ton. The hero was born to bastardy and poverty and his mother died when he was ten, but he has this elegant classical education. I don't think so. The heroine finds the hero physically attractive but refuses to sleep with him. I couldn't figure out why and M. Smith certainly wasn't telling. The portrait of dementia is as botched as the rest of plot and the dialogue. By the by, the reason people shied away from marrying the offfspring of the insane was fear that the condition might be heriditary, not fear that the insane relative might be socialy embarrassing. Ms. Smith knows so remarkably little about human motivation that is is difficult to decide if she is more ignorant of regency society or of the human heart. The only thing that is consistant about these characters is that they reliably manage to speak and behave in ways no actual human being woud ever do. In its favor I can will say that I have read worse books.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Sweet and simple, but worth the time..., Dec 19 1999
By A Customer
Ce commentaire est de: Seduced By A Scoundrel (Mass Market Paperback)
I haven't read Barbara Dawson Smith in years, not since DREAMSPINNER, and this was a nice read to get back into her books. It wasn't outstanding, and the title is just a bit too precious, but it was an involving story with likeable characters.
The one consistent problem with this story is that problems are solved much too easily. For example, after Gerald's one horrendous loss at the gaming tables, he is miraculously able to quit and then start counseling other gamblers from betting beyond their means. Is this realistic behavior in the son of a compulsive gambler who is himself showing signs of addiction? Another neatly solved problem is James' acceptance of his disability. For four years he has been wallowing in self-pity, yet after one visit from Alicia and the duchess, and one visit with another disabled man, he is a new man. Given his wallowing in self-pity and refusal to find ways to live with his handicap, is it realistic that he would have been, at the same time, maintaining his upper body strength by lifting weights (in the Regency era no less!)?
Finally, this book repeats the common annoyance of late-20th century names for the hero and heroine. Others in this book have appropriate names, such as Richard, Eleanor, James, Sarah, and Gerald. So why Drake and Alicia for the hero and heroine?
SEDUCED BY A SCOUNDREL is a relaxing read and an enjoyable way to while away a few hours if you don't expect too much. I figured out the mystery as soon as Drake flashbacked to the time when his mother died, but the romance was nice, although I think I would have preferred to read James and Sarah's story, rather than Drake and Alicia's. If you find this book in a used-bookstore, give it a try. If I were grading it, I'd give it a C-plus.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Barbara Dawson Smith's always a dependable read., Dec 12 1999
By 
L. Ponder "linsfolly" (Hamilton, Ohio USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Ce commentaire est de: Seduced By A Scoundrel (Mass Market Paperback)
I really had trouble rating this book. Three and a half stars is probably a more accurate rating, as far as I'm concerned. However, I have so much respect for Ms. Smith's writing....
A marriage of conveniece is forced by the debt of Gerald, brother of the heroine, Alicia. Drake has the mortgage to Alicia and Gerald's home. Drake has set the marriage up, to seek vengeance. In my view, this was the only "scoundrelous" behaviour on Drake's part.
Drake cares for Alicia's mother. He takes into his employment the needy people he encounters--a deaf maid, an accounts manager in a wheelchair, a drunken butler...and so on. The only conflict , is the original motivations for Drake's and Alicia's marriage. I think, because of that, this is a slow read, at times. Also, I felt somewhat manipulated. I felt the author tried too hard to get the reader to love Drake.
This book, has many pluses. I enjoyed the supporting characters; a secondary romance was very entertaining. The love scenes are very well done. There's no purple prose; but each scene, is uniquely sexy.
This book may not be a keeper for me. But, it was definitely worth my time and money!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Another winner by Barbara Dawson Smith, Dec 6 1999
By A Customer
Ce commentaire est de: Seduced By A Scoundrel (Mass Market Paperback)
Gerald Pemberton, the Earl of Brockway, foolishly follows in his deceased father's footsteps and gambles away what remains of the family money that his sire failed to waste. Gerald owes a fortune to gambling hall owner Drake Wilder. Out of fear for the brittle mental health of her mother and unbeknownst to Gerald, his sister Alicia offers her self in barter for her sibling's debt. Drake agrees to marry Alicia in exchange for Gerald's IOU.

Drake has a secret agenda and the lovely Alicia provides him with giant steps towards achieving is goal of attaining entrance into polite society. He also has the double satisfaction of knowing he possesses the woman his estranged father wants. However, against all his desires, Drake soon falls in love with his wife and in spite of his mistreatment of her she reciprocates those feelings.

SEDUCED BY A SCOUNDREL shows why fans think Barbara Dawson Smith is one of the genre's top historical romance writers. The story line centers on love conquering hate, but done in a fast-paced Regency format. Drake is an enigmatic character whose need for vengeance thrusts the story line forward. Alicia is a warm, intelligent, and brave person who sacrifices her own needs for her ailing mother. The secondary players provide a feel to the era, especially the gambling "hells" and the shunning of a person born on the wrong side of the covers. Ms. Smith imbues the plot with plenty of sexual tension, a move that will elate Regency readers who love a touching tale with lot of spice.

Harriet Klausner
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5.0 out of 5 stars Exciting and poignant historical regency, Dec 3 1999
By 
Ce commentaire est de: Seduced By A Scoundrel (Mass Market Paperback)
Gerald Pemberton, the Earl of Brockway, foolishly follows in his deceased father's footsteps and gambles away what remains of the family money that his sire failed to waste. Gerald owes a fortune to gambling hall owner Drake Wilder. Out of fear for the brittle mental health of her mother and unbeknownst to Gerald, his sister Alicia offers her self in barter for her sibling's debt. Drake agrees to marry Alicia in exchange for Gerald's IOU.

Drake has a secret agenda and the lovely Alicia provides him with giant steps towards achieving is goal of attaining entrance into polite society. He also has the double satisfaction of knowing he possesses the woman his estranged father wants. However, against all his desires, Drake soon falls in love with his wife and in spite of his mistreatment of her she reciprocates those feelings.

SEDUCED BY A SCOUNDREL shows why fans think Barbara Dawson Smith is one of the genre's top historical romance writers. The story line centers on love conquering hate, but done in a fast-paced Regency format. Drake is an enigmatic character whose need for vengeance thrusts the story line forward. Alicia is a warm, intelligent, and brave person who sacrifices her own needs for her ailing mother. The secondary players provide a feel to the era, especially the gambling "hells" and the shunning of a person born on the wrong side of the covers. Ms. Smith imbues the plot with plenty of sexual tension, a move that will elate Regency readers who love a touching tale with lot of spice.

Harriet Klausner
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Seduced By A Scoundrel
Seduced By A Scoundrel by Barbara Dawson Smith (Mass Market Paperback - Dec 15 1999)
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