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No Man's Plaything . . .

Catherine Fullbright has vowed never to marry. Growing up with a disreputable father, she witnessed male behavior at its very worst. Unfortunately her ambitious parent refuses to marry off Catie's pretty, pliable younger sister until the elder is wed and his underhanded scheming comes to a head when Catie finds herself standing at the altar with her sister's fiance.

No Woman's Fool . . .

To achieve his ambitions, Quint Childers, Lord Valentine, needs a wife, some charming, gracious lovely to play the perfect hostess... certainly not a brash, stubborn hellion like Catherine Fullbright. Why, then, is he mesmerized by the fiery chit? And when an old man's deception puts Catie in Quint's bed, why does the prospect of their union excite the handsome lord so? Winning the remarkable lady's love will be a trial - she doesn't even like him! Still, is that a glint of desire he sees flashing in those exquisite hazel eyes?

371 pages, Mass Market Paperback

First published August 28, 2006

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About the author

Shana Galen

82 books1,461 followers
Shana Galen is three-time Rita award nominee and the bestselling author of fast-paced, witty, and adventurous Regency romances. Kirkus says of her books, "The road to happily-ever-after is intense, conflicted, suspenseful and fun," and RT Bookreviews calls her books “lighthearted yet poignant, humorous yet touching." She taught English at the middle and high school level off and on for eleven years. Most of those years were spent working in Houston's inner city. Now she writes full time. She's happily married and has a daughter who is most definitely a romance heroine in the making.

Want to know more? Visit Shana's website at http://www.shanagalen.com and sign up to be notified when Shana has a new release http://bit.ly/ShanaGalenNews

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5 stars
181 (27%)
4 stars
229 (35%)
3 stars
183 (28%)
2 stars
43 (6%)
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17 (2%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 52 reviews
Profile Image for Debbie DiFiore.
2,013 reviews217 followers
August 17, 2022
I love this book. I can't find anything remotely interesting and so I am going back to my favorites! It did not disappoint!!!

My favorite book - okay one of my favorites. U

I love this book and author. I re-read this all the time and especially when I need cheering up. The scene with the sister in the bushes is priceless and Lord Valentine is swoonworthy. But the true stars of this book are the Spinsters Club members especially Catie. If I were a heroine I would want to be her. The whole series is excellent. A definite 'friend' on my keeper shelf.
Profile Image for kris.
937 reviews186 followers
August 27, 2018
Catherine Fullbright grew up in a scary, abusive home with a scary, abusive father who ends up forcing her to wed her sister's betrothed, Quint Childers, Lord Valentine. Quint, meanwhile, is looking for a wife to serve as a political hostess and the anxious, frightened Catie isn't doing it for him until she lets him do her and then he realizes his boner is IN LOVE. Or something. I honestly couldn't tell you because this was RIDICULOUS.

In many ways, his wife was similar to a rebel colony. She was submissive but willful, coarse but full of potential, beautiful but teeming with hidden dangers. [...] But how did one take a raw, new land and mold it into a nation? Quint sat forward and made a note on a scrap of paper littering his desk. First, one staked one's claim. he could check that off. He felt a bit like Christopher Columbus must have when he mistook the Americas for India. Quint himself had been promised India, but he was in possession of America, and he would make the best of it. [...] But what next? One worked to make the colony profitable. One built settlements and organized laws and—Quint sat back again and smiled. —and one cultivated the land. One plowed the virgin earth and planted one's seed and hoped the endeavor would come to fruition. It was only after a successful harvest—after the settlement reaped what it had sowed—that a great nation could be born.

2. And beyond the nastiness of using a fucking COLONIZATION METAPHOR as an approach to WOOING YOUR ABUSED WIFE is the very passive aggressive nastiness he says about her! He's CONSTANTLY putting her down for not being a shining example of a political hostess. I didn't bookmark them because I was honestly just so done with this fucking dumpster fire but JESUS FUCK I did not believe in this romance at all.

3. When Catie DOES call him on his shit (i.e., making her plan an entire ~~Event without any assistance or support), he PROMISES to do two whole things: come home for dinner, and handle the invitations.

He manages dinner (but immediately leaves after) AND HANDS OFF THE INVITES TO HIS SECRETARY. I MEAN WHAT THE FUCK.

4. The handling of consent walked a line. I won't say it did a great job, but it did a slightly better job than I was expecting?? FAINT PRAISE?

5. This was just. Not a good book. It's not a good romance; it's not a good character study; it's not a good thing, period. There's just too many shortcuts and strange farcical bullshit and whatnot for it to land in any solid, good way. AVOID AT MANY COSTS.
Profile Image for Monique Takens.
497 reviews5 followers
August 25, 2022
Dit boek is eerder uitgegeven als Candlelight Historische roman 728 met de titel : Liefde op het tweede gezicht en die heb ik dus gelezen , maar ik geloof dat alleen de titel veranderd is dus het maakt niets uit welke van de 2 je leest .
Ik voelde mij wat te oud voor dit boek wat duidelijk voor wat oudere tieners of jonge twintigers is geschreven . Na de eerste paar hoofdstukken heb ik het versneld doorgelezen door alleen zo hier en daar nog een stukje te lezen . Wat opviel was het voor die tijd onwaarschijnlijke gedrag van zo'n beetje iedereen in dit verhaal .
Er zijn nog 2 delen in deze serie , ik ga deel 2 proberen om te kijken of het ook maar enige verbetering bied op dit eerste deel .
Profile Image for ChloeLeeNH.
286 reviews41 followers
July 24, 2008
What I liked- The relationship that built up between the h/h. He was very loving and caring which she needed from her abusive family history. I liked her relationship with her cousins. I am looking forward to their stories.
What I didn't like- Her abusive history. It was a bit hard to read about her past.
Profile Image for Lori.
1,234 reviews63 followers
January 20, 2012
3.5+ stars

A book that walks a tough line... Regency romance but with a social-issues twist.

Catie might be the oldest, but her sister Elizabeth (Lizzy) has always been the darling. Their father is a second son, a drunk, and a man who uses his fists. He beats Catie, locks her up in a small closet with spiders and vermine, and mocks her whenever it suits him. And it suits him often. Her younger sister Lizzy is as much a tormentor as her father; it gives Lizzy great joy to tattle on Catie and to be her warden. Catie's mother is glad that it's Catie, and not her, and so her mother is almost as harsh; she fears that if she doesn't go along with her husband's treatment of Catie, that he'll turn back on her.

But Catie (Catherine) has 3 allies - her cousins Maddie (Madeline), Josie (Josephine), and Ashley. They rescue her whenever they can, give safe haven, and offer their full and total support. It's enough to get Catie through the worst of it.

Everything is threatened once again, however, when Lizzy is engaged to England's most up-and-coming politician, Lord Valentine (Quint). Quint is on his way to a Cabinet appointment, and he needs a wife to push him over the edge. A pretty wife who can host his political parties and balls and be an asset to him. A wife who allows him in her bed - enough for some pleasure and to produce an heir or two. Quint doesn't expect more than that. How Quint can have been fooled by Lizzy is anyone's guess. Then again, Lizzy must have been able to fool most in the "ton", because she moves quite freely in society and has her share of admirers.

For some strange reason, Catie's father decides that he can't allow Lizzy to marry before her elder sister (Catie) is married. OK< it's a plot device, and a bizarre take-off of "The Taming of the Shrew", but still... So again, for the strangest of reasons, their father decides that he'll substitute Catie for Lizzy, so that Lord Valentine marries Catie. How? Well, first, early on the morning of the wedding, Catie's father frightens her into thinking that he'll sell her to a horrid man for 10 pounds unless she promises to do exactly as he says. Catie is in fear of her life, so she agrees, even though she knows what her father means to do. When Catie protests that Lord Valentine will notice the difference and refuse, her father tells her that he's bribed one of Valentine's servants to drug him with opium, as her father is about to do to Catie.

The entire day is a blur to Catie. She barely remembers the ceremony, or whether or not her own name was spoken. She only remembers the moment when Valentine lifted her veil and frowned; Catie knows that at the moment, he realized whom he'd married. The next thing she knows, she wakes in a bed, naked, with a naked man beside her. It's Valentine. And now, it's impossible to annul the marriage - not without a scandal that would take down not only Catie, but Valentine's entire career and reputation.

Quint is certain that Catie was behind her father's scheme. (Nothing is said about the servant who was bribed... strange. Don't you think Quint would immediately fire that person?) But Catie's actions show her as fearful and mistrustful. She shrinks back from him and flinches as if he'll strike her. And her clothes are missing. When Catie takes to the streets in only a sheet, Quint goes after her - but not before they catch the attention of folks on the street. Catie is afraid Quint will return her to her home, where she's certain her father or Lizzy will kill her.

As Quint is trying to calm Catie and reason with her, Catie's cousins scale the wall and enter through the bedroom window. They instantly take Catie's side, and show Quint they mean to protect her from HIM. From their conversation, Quint realizes there must be more going on than he knows... he begins to wonder how complicit Catie was in the marriage scheme. You see, Catie had tried to convince Quint at the betrothal ball that Lizzy wasn't who she seemed to be. Quint had already noticed Catie and was unnerved by her without understanding why. The night of his betrothal ball, Catie wasn't wearing the sacklike clothing she usually wore; no, she was in a figure-hugging dress and took his breath away. He was about to kiss her when Lizzy stormed out and caught them.

Even on his wedding morning, Quint was dreaming of Catie in his bed. Now that she's been in his bed - naked - he can't keep his mind off her. Is she a scheming witch? Or is she another victim? Either way, Quint knows that he must stop the scandal. He puts it about that he changed his mind and offered for Catie. He knows that won't stop all the gossip, but it will help. He's got an impeccable reputation. But what to do about this "marriage"?

Quint decides the only thing he can do is try to get to know his new bride - in his country house, where they can have some peace and quiet. He discovers Catie's secrets there, when she wakes, screaming, from her nightmares. Quint realizes that Catie's father is behind all of this. And that he, Quint, is falling in love with his bride. But can he woo her enough to gentle her? To have her fall in love with him? And how can he secure this Cabinet position? Catie is afraid of crowds and rejection... she's not been out much in society or at balls. How can she ever be the wife he needs?

A very interesting trip into the small village helps Catie to learn much about herself and about desire. She's learning to trust Quint, little-by-little... to crave his kisses and controlled passions. At the dressmaker's shop, Catie finally sees that she can be pretty. And at the inn, when she and Quint are the only witnesses to a couple making love, Catie squirms with desire and discomfort. Can a man be gentle and loving? She allows Quint some liberties as they watch, and her eyes are opened - wide - to the pleasures of passion. A few nights after, Quint asks her to be his wife in every way and gives her complete control over him. Together, they make love and discover the joys of each other.

When Quint's man-about-business and secretary, Meeps, shows up with the gossip sheets and telling him that his political rival is now up for the Cabinet position, too, AND his rival's wife is hosting a huge ball... Quint decides he must return to London and fight his rival. But is it too soon? Catie interprets his news as a man's prerogative - to demand his own way. It's all about his career, she thinks; he only seduced me to get me to do what he wants. And he wants her to host a ball for 400 people, including the prime minister and the prince regent! How dare he!

Will Quint and Catie ever be able to completely trust one another - to truly share their hearts and their love? Or will they always mis-read and misunderstand one another? Will Lizzy interfere with the big ball that Catie must host? Will Catie be able to do her duty or will she fail miserably and be abandoned and mocked? Will Catie's father cause trouble?

It's a touching story, although it does like to make things a bit melodramatic at times. The solutions are very romance-y and neat. But Catie's fears and hurts aren't glossed over or made "neat". She's been abused in every way except sexually, and the author helps the reader to see and hear and feel Catie's pain and loathing... her fear to trust and love. You hurt with her, seeing how her father used love as a weapon - hugs one minute, followed by beatings the next. While you want to throttle Quint until he realizes that Catie isn't acting, you cheer him on as he carefully woos her. You know that Quint is a good man, who truly wants to banish Catie's fears and make her safe. But you wonder about his ambition... will it be his and Catie's undoing?

I find it interesting that there are 4 cousins, and yet only 3 books in this series. But I'm curious enough to read the others, hoping for a glimpse of Catie and Quint along the way.
Profile Image for Katyana.
1,459 reviews191 followers
May 27, 2017

I re-read this, because I couldn't remember it at all but I like the author, and I wanted to check out later books in the series.

Okay, so. It wasn't bad. But it was a bit flippant with Catie's recovery - she just seemed to "snap out" of a lifetime of abuse. And then after her miraculous recovery, it felt very cheeseball. Lots of melodramatic "why oh why can't he just stop trying to help poor suffering people in his career, and be happy with me instead?" It was selfish and petty, and it felt very thin to me. Overall, Catie in the last half of the book felt thin to me - suddenly over the abuse, suddenly over what seemed to be a phobia of crowds, playing weird petty game of like "if you love me, then you'd ..." ... it just didn't seem like the person she was in the beginning could really become this person.

And because of the miraculous recovery, Quint didn't really take much about the situation seriously.

So I don't know. It was kind of bullshitty to me, in terms of the cohesiveness of these characters.
Profile Image for K.
32 reviews
September 21, 2021
Another one of those. Another romance where the girl is so damaged, the hero has to glue her back together. Been there, done that. I think this plot has been done to death. Let's bury it. Catherine is abused by her father and sister. She has trust issues. She thinks she's uglier than homemade soap. Okay. The hero is far more decent than some of the sociopathic pieces of crap that fill shelves at a used bookstore. But Quint isn't perfect. He's in love. In love with himself and his misplaced sense of duty. He's got a hankering for a political career. He just needs a proper wife to go along for the ride. After poor Catie and Quint are tricked into marriage, he spends half of his time moaning about his misfortune. Dude, be glad you didn't end up with the sister! When he's not moping and whining about how Catie pounced on his bachelorhood (he was betrothed to the bitch of a sister and still complains when he's married to the nice one), he's trying to figure out how to get into her drawers. The guy's weird.

The whole book is a mess, if you ask me. Two people who ought to be relieved they found each other spend half their marriage being suspicious of each other or doing stupid and selfish things. Quint has to earn Catie's trust because her father liked to stuff her under the stairs with rats and things. So she's understandably traumatized. I hate books where the hero has to calm the girl like she's some prize filly he bought at auction. Couldn't they have been friends first? I felt the romance and sex were a little rushed. He tells her he wants her, fondles her in a pub, then practically begs her to let him into her bed.

The story isn't memorable or full of characters that leap off the page. While Quint isn't an abusive asshat and comes to care for Catie, he gladly pushes her aside for his political career. He's never home. And is outraged when she asks him to come home for dinner. Then when she's thinking of hopping a ship for the States, gets all wounded and whiny. "She's leaving me? But why?"

Then, knowing how much she hates public events and people, he decides she's the perfect person to arrange and plan a ball! He sort of springs it on her. "Yo, honey! I know you hate people, but you're totally gonna plan this society ball 'cause it'll help my image! Oh, and you'll benefit too because people will envy you."

Selfish prick.

One-star for could have, should have, but isn't a heartfelt romance. Not to mention too many sex scenes. One or two, fine. The last one... give me a break!

If you find a copy, read it, then dump it into a recycling bin. That's all it's good for.

Profile Image for Nisha.
788 reviews238 followers
May 13, 2013
At the risk of sounding insensitive, I think the fact that the heroine, Catherine, was abused by her family, was the best thing going for this story. Everything else was just too over-the-top and painfully unrealistic that I lost interest in the story.

Catherine had a legit reason for not marrying, seeing the risk of marrying a man like her father, a worse evil than being under his thumb forever. Her sister, is also a pain, who has managed to make the suffering with her family even more tragic. Somehow, her tyrannical father decides that he must marry off his homely looking first daughter before marry off his 2nd, more beautiful dauther. Unfortunately, despite the threats, he sees that Catherine is staunchly against his plans, and uses some weird blackmailing and drugging to get Catherine to marry the younger sister's beau, Quint - who is also drugged (yes, this is really as crazy as it sounds). The rest of the story is about Catherine and Quint's forced marriage, fruiting into a loving supportive relationship.

Throughout the story, we see Catherine range from a raging spinster, a petulant child, and a nagging wife. Apprently, at the end, her gumption manages to help her husbands career. Quint starts off as a Prig, but he's a sweet and good-hearted Prig. I feel bad that he has to deal with such craziness from Catherine and her family.

The problem isn't with the story. I think it could have been salvaged if it was written is a way that would help us sympathize with Catherine. It was just all the things she did was so over-the-top and annoying, that it made me think that Quint was too good for her. Her cousins, who at first thought would be a very positive influence, midway became annoying and obnoxious, as they try to battle Quint. They redeem themselves later...but after all my hopes, I expected better.

Overall, it was a mediocre book with a lot of potential of being pretty good.
Profile Image for Laura.
279 reviews
August 31, 2011
I've read a few of Galen's later books (The Making of a Duchess and The Making of a Rogue) and liked them a lot better than this one. This is an earlier book and it definitely felt rough - the characters didn't feel as rich and fleshed out and things happened just to happen, not because there was any true character motivation to them. For example, the end of the book has a scene
Profile Image for L.A. Miller.
Author 9 books16 followers
May 7, 2013
As usual Ms Galen did not let me down. Her books are always filled with a vivid picture of history, well developed characters and the tortured romance one comes to expect. From the initial meeting of Lord Valentine and Catie the reader gets the sense of their chemistry though the two obviously are in denial. With each new contact you route for the two to find the happiness they deserve and after their marriage your heart will go out to Lord Valentine as he tries to woe his wife to his bed and into his heart. Great job Shana, look forward to the next in the series.
Profile Image for iamGamz.
1,511 reviews43 followers
September 21, 2014
A lovely story about Catherine, a Cinderella like girl who is abused by her family. Because if that abuse she has sworn never to marry until her father forces her into marriage with her sister's fiancé, Lord Valentine.

I really liked the way Catherine and Quint's relationship develops as the story unfolds. The learn to trust and respect each other and the attraction they tried to deny. While not a great book, I still found it entertaining, especially Catherine's cousins. I look forward to reading the other girls adventures.
April 14, 2018
Thin plot, a lot of time spent setting up series.

I started out liking the book, but it seemed lacking in details other than the sex. I think the author was trying to set up a new series, and we end up with characters who are not as developed as I would like, and not much of a plot. It was a little too detailed with the sex scenes for my taste. I found myself skipping over several pages of it, wishing it was spent on character development. I think the next books may be better since the other characters are already set up. I will give them a try.
Profile Image for Claudine.
153 reviews
December 23, 2017
Entertaining to read, but a bit too melodramatic.

Catie's abusive past was pretty well handled, and her reactions to it-- being mistrustful, acting out even with the expectation of receiving more abuse-- were well written and believable.

Quint? Was a pretty forgettable character and outside of him being non-abusive, I didn't much like him. He was completely obsessed with his political career, which made him seem a little bit more interesting than he actually was. All of his supposed kindness and generosity was... really second-hand, more what other people thought about him than what was actually shown on the page. I found him to be lacking in compassion and kind of slow. It took him way too long to decide Catie wasn't an active participant in the deception that resulted in their marriage, but he never suspects Lizzy at all. It didn't make sense to me.

The conflict of the book arises when he drags Catie to the country despite her being terrified of being alone with him and isolated from her friends, a decision which was stupidly selfish and did little to endear him to me. Instead of focusing on his political career and, y'know, staying in London with his wife just like she wanted to do in the first place, he spends enough time away that his political rival has gathered support in his absence. So then he drags his wife back to London and orders her to throw a huge ball, despite her fear of crowds, so that his political career can flourish even though he could have just, y'know, listened to her and stayed in London in the first place.

Honestly I don't actually hate him as much as it sounds like, I just found him pigheaded and stupid. Why endanger your career at all by running away to the country? Why couldn't he have asked her to throw a smaller, more intimate affair?

There's SO MUCH melodrama in this book and the worst part is that literally ALL of it could have been prevented if he was just a little bit more considerate. He ignores every single one of Catie's arguments or fears, and instead makes her do what he wants because it's "for her own good" which was ridiculous. It never occurs to him to ask her how or why her father forced her to marry him, he never even asks why she dislikes her sister. It never occurs to him to consider her feelings as valid or important, because after all she's just a silly woman.

It would have been nice to see him actually paying attention to her wants and desires, and for her to value the good he could do as a politician, but that character development never comes.

Still... this was an entertaining read, and Quint gets some points for being really understanding about Catie not wanting to have sex with him. He also seems to pick up on the fact that she's afraid of him, so he tries to appease those fears. He tried, so I'll give him one star.

I am gonna give Catie two more stars, though, because she had enough guts to storm out of the house wearing only a bedsheet. I love a heroine who knows when to cause a scene.

Fun and silly, and more melodramatic than a spanish soap opera, but not a bad way to spend an afternoon if you want something fluffy to read.
Profile Image for Sherly.
748 reviews11 followers
November 20, 2020
The book is easy to read. Loved the beginning of the story; both Catherine and Quint's characters. Shana is able to depict each of their fears, ambition, history; what makes them as they are. Catherine is a timid but formidable twenty-year-old daughter of a despicable father who beats, slaps and tortures her frequently. She's melange of characters actually. Fearful (due to her past) but brave at the same time.

Quint is an aspiring political figure. He's a handsome, smart, passionate, strong-minded thirty-year-old bachelor who's looking for the perfect wife to better his political ambition. He thought marrying Catherine's younger sister, Elizabeth, would be the perfect solution. Elizabeth is beautiful, slim with blond hair and vivacious. Or so he thought. She's actually a heartless and conniving person.

I love the story line, however, was a bit put off with Quint's decision towards the end - giving in a tad too easily on his aspiration over love. I find that disappointing. But all in all, a very good read.
Profile Image for Fae.
844 reviews24 followers
June 1, 2020
I haven't read Shana Galen's books in a long time as I was busy with other authors' books and this was a pleasure to read honestly. While Catherine overreacted in the first few chapters sometimes, it was understandable after what her family did to her. I just love how Quint was so patient and understanding with Catherine. he was a great man and Catherine is so lucky to have married such a kind guy. It was very nice to see their relationship progress over time. the only thing I disliked about this book was how they wouldn't be facing certain problems if they had just communicated/talked to one another about their thoughts and worries. Catherine should have talked to him about her insecurities and Quint should have reassured her with words since he knew how low her self-esteem was. Other than that, I loved this book. Galen never fails to impress me.
Profile Image for Dani.
135 reviews2 followers
May 21, 2023
Uma leitura fácil de futuros cunhados que se odeiam mas que por uma estratégia do pai da mocinha acabam se casando e tendo que se acertar, mesmo com a resistência pesada inicial da mocinha. Gostei da leitura, o casal têm muita química, o mocinho surpreendeu positivamente na questão de ser compreensivo com a mocinha, eles foram muito bonitinhos juntos. Não vai para os favoritos pois prefiros romances mais intensos e elaborados, e a questão da irmã vilã da mocinha dá muito um tom de 'novela mexicana' que eu não gosto nos romances.
577 reviews5 followers
March 5, 2020

This is a story to be read and enjoyed! It is about Catherine Anne Fullbright and Quint Childers, the Earl of Valentine.
Catie was drugged by her father when she and Quint were married. The only thing Catie knew was that most men were abusive. With Quint her idea changed because he was not like her father.
This is a book I would recommend to read to see how things end up!!
Profile Image for Tim Covell.
Author 3 books5 followers
March 2, 2022
Some dark elements for a romance, and some of them are resolved a little too easily, or seem at odds with the occasional over-the-top elements. I didn't care much for the hero, and the removal of relationship obstacles did not seem to require much work or sacrifice. However, some great set pieces.
Profile Image for Mel.
596 reviews14 followers
April 2, 2019
It's been a while since I've read Historical romance and this was nice. There were a few 'really dude, come on' moments but I don't know enough about the era to make a guess if they were accurate. Still, the romance was not instaLove which is always good.
Profile Image for Arines.
137 reviews
December 6, 2022
I get the idea, but the execution of the idea is just........ Dunno how to put it in words
Profile Image for Lee.
100 reviews1 follower
July 28, 2012
[3.75 STARS]

The story itself was good. However, at one point, I just didn't enjoy reading about Catherine. There's either the complaining how she doesn't want to marry Quint, thinking that Quint wants Elizabeth (her sister), she wants to runaway from this loveless marriage, or that she was scare (though she won't admit it) of meeting new people and of course Quint himself (thinking that he'll punish her, hit her, lock her, etc).

At first, all these problems (that was wrong with her and how she acts) was fine. Catherine had a hard childhood and her family did not help her but continued to hurt her. However, what I found interesting was that unlike other novels was that I have read so far, instead of turning into a head-strong girl who protected herself, Catherine turned into a weak-shivering girl who was afraid of people. Which also prove the reality that most people treated this way will end up becoming.

But, eventually, I just couldn't decide to pity Catherine because of her past or feel annoy because of how she is now. I think Quint did an excellent job of keeping his rings on his lust and how patiently he tries to make Catherine comfortable with him. And Catherine took a very long time to get use to him, trust him, and develop feelings (not lust) for him.

However, the one thing I got really annoyed in the story was: how childish the girls were. That surprised the heck out of me. I have never read a cat-fight in any of my historical romance novels before. If the female characters hate each other, they do it more witty and more evil-smart kind of way. However, the "girls" (I have to call them girls because they're just too young) are just much like girls. Just the way they act, talk, respond to each other, offer each other advices--so much like girls who are yet to mature. And oddly and sadly, I can't find any appeal to the "Spinster Club" at all.

Nonetheless, Mrs. Galen's writing is awesome and steamy as always! Not her best, but enjoyable to some point. I read it for Quint who was one damn sexy and awesome man! And obviously, I love a man who can put use to their life!

So here is my review:

The Storyline? Quite an interesting concept. Definitely enjoyable.The Characters? Didn't enjoy them, but Quint was definitely a likable hero! The Romance? The romance was good. It was steamy. Overall Thoughts? The book had a lot of potential but Mrs. Galen failed to bring out it out all. Not her best, but enjoyable enough. Recommend it? Yes. Follow the Series? I have the rest of the series, but I will wait on it for a moment. Check the Author`s Other Books? I love Mrs. Galen's writing, therefore, yes.
Profile Image for Sandra R.
2,808 reviews33 followers
August 1, 2016
Firstly I want to say that overall I really enjoyed this book. At first I wasn't so sure. I am a big fan of SG's writing and I have read all of her newer books. It was quite easy to tell this was one of her first. It started out a little silly and 'girly' and threw me a bit. As it fleshed out, the book grew on me and I liked the romance and the interaction between characters. There a 3 other books in the series all about Catherine's friends and I am now looking forward to reading them. This book did feel quite modern in speech and attitudes and that dreaded word 'okay' was in the first chapter - obviously missed by the editor. 4 stars overall and I think you'll enjoy reading this book for the entertainment factor and the excellent writing.
Profile Image for Cherie.
1,151 reviews18 followers
August 1, 2016
Quint was good but not great. He had his hands full dealing with a woman who has been physically and psychologically bullied by her father and younger sister. Even her mother never defended her. She is alone except for her three cousins who are outstanding in their loyalty and personalities.

Catherine, Catie, held up well considering the abuse she'd grown used to. I did not sense any martyrdom syndrome so I found myself clearly in her corner.

Alas, for all that I found the story a bit dull. I did not feel her sister nor her father got what they deserved but Quint and Catie sure did because they got their HEA.
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