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The Romantic

(Book #5 in the The Seducers Series)

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Format: Hardcover

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Book Overview

A passionate new historical romance in Madeline Hunter's nationally bestselling Seducer series. This one features a fifth member of the London Dueling Society, the reserved, enigmatic lawyer to the... This description may be from another edition of this product.

Customer Reviews

5 ratings

Simply exquisite

Penelope is, once again, on the run for her life. For years, she has enjoyed living a life estranged from her evil husband, the Earl of Glasbury. He is a man with sadistic sexual tastes who keeps a house far from London, unknown to anyone, staffed with Jamaican slaves who are constant victims of his sexual abuse. Now the Earl is determined to have Penelope back to bear him an heir, but Penelope will not have him. As soon as she discovered she was being followed, she fled Naples for London, to the arms of the only person who can save her from Glasbury, Julian Hampton. Julian successfully kept Penelope hidden while she pondered her options. She wanted to flee to America but Julian managed to talk her out of it. When the situation finally became desperate, she agreed with Julian that the only way to get herself out of her marriage would be to have a very public affair and force her husband's hand. But just when things were beginning to go their way, Glasbury is found murdered in his house and the primary suspect is Penelope. Julian swears to Penelope that she will always be safe and he will see to it. She has no idea how far he'll go to keep his oath, until the police arrest him for the murder. I think The Romantic is my favorite Madeline Hunter book...so far. I don't think there's anything more romantic or sexy than a hero who has secretly loved the heroine from the time they were children, and is consistently plays the knight in shining armor to her damsel in distress. Julian is by far my favorite character in this series. He has kept his love a secret, instead pouring it into his poems and letters. He has never failed in his devotion to Penelope, always there when she needs him; always there to save her from whatever trouble she's in. He is, by far, the consummate romantic hero. The writing is exquisite as usual. Madeline Hunter is such a gifted writer. She weaves enchanting stories of larger than life heroes and heroines that it's hard not to fall in love with her books.

I have to say that Madeline Hunter's latest The Romantic

Certainly lives up to its title. It's a beautifully written story about the unrequited love and frustrated passions of Julian Hampton, solicitor to the powerful and very wealthy. While Julian is outwardly calm, cool and collected inwardly he's a man tormented by a powerful love for a woman who is not only a member of the aristocracy but married as well although unhappily so. Over the years he has become very adept at hiding his true feelings from the object of his devotion and the outside world. He vents out this inner turmoil by writing passionate sometimes angry love letters and poems to his oblivious love until one day she shows up on his doorstep pleading for his help and protection. Julian Hampton has always been Penelope's, the Countess of Glasbury, knight in shining armor. So, when her estranged husband decides to end their mutually agreed upon separation, she turns to her life long friend and defender for help once again. Only this time something has changed and she begins to develop a dangerous attraction to him. Dangerous not only because she's a married woman but also because her husband is a ruthless monster of a man who will stop at nothing to get what he wants and after a decade long separation he decides he wants his wife back. Ms. Hunter has written a beautiful love story and a keeper in every sense of the word. Of course what makes this book so unforgettable is the hero. Julian is my idea of the perfect romantic hero. He is wonderfully tortured but not by the usual my momma/ex-wife/lover done me wrong but by his life long love for a seemingly unattainable woman. Not only that but he's also willing to sacrifice anything and everything for his woman. What could be more romantic than that? I know that my fellow romance readers will agree with me when I say that sometimes I can enjoy a book but not truly believe in the happily ever after. Or not truly believe that the characters love for each other is more than just good sex. Well, this book isn't one of those. By the time you turn the last page you will believe that Julian and Penelope will be together forever and not just because the author decided it should be so but because their love transcends the pages it's printed on. As wonderful as this book is I feel I have to issue a little warning for those of us who consider adultery a hot button issue. Adultery is a major hot button issue for me. However, I was able to accept it in this book because of the nature of Penelope's marriage and the fact that her husband was an animal, pure and simple. I also thought the author did a wonderful job of describing the way women in that time were virtually enslaved to their husbands regardless of how cruel or abusive said husband was. So, I would entreat those who would normally not read this type of story line to give this book a try. The Romantic is romance at its finest and I highly recommend it.

True to its title....Romantic

This is truly a wonderfully written, stimulating, mature romantic story. The various scenarios and subplots are also true to the pre-Victorian era it's written in respect to several social issues it touches upon. Julian Hampton, `The Romantic', is a well respected and trusted solicitor for the Laclere family. Throughout his adolescence and adulthood, Julian Hampton clandestinely desired the affections of Penelope (Pen), the Countess of Glasbury. His safest discourses of expressing his pent-up desires are passionate love letters and poems addressed to her, but never dispatched. He carefully wrote and hid them away for over ten years - since he was 16 yrs old. Pen's mother, in an attempt to save her family from financial ruin, as well as fulfill her young daughter's excitement and fantasy of having a husband, coyly encourages Pen to marry a presumably respectable Earl, Count Glasbury - who agrees to give her family a significant endowment to wed her. After a year of marriage, Count Glasbury introduces his naive wife to the darker side of his sexual passions and lusts. Needless to say, due to her lack of experience and isolation from people outside of Glasbury, Pen believes these new versions of bed play are `natural' - although they were emotionally upsetting and physically painful for her (i.e. whips and chains, bondage, crawling, etc.) Pen eventually confides in "Mr. Hampton" (Julian), and discloses the embarrassingly sordid secrets of why she wants a legal separation from her husband. Discreetly, Julian secures her a separation from Count Glasbury with alimony - by threatening to publicly expose his sexual appetites to the ton. Ten years later, upon finding out that his heir (last remaining male in his family line), nephew, cannot have any children, the Count wants to nullify the separation and re-enforce his marital rights as her husband. He is determined that no one will stop him from getting his wife back and will use any means necessary, legal or otherwise, to have her back under his roof. Here is where Julian, beyond a doubt, is a knight in shining armor. His unconditional, surrendering love for her is unveiled. Julian offers himself (from her list of possible lovers) to demonstrate to her what it's really like to make love with someone who truly loves you. As a result their very public act of adultery - Pen's efforts to high handedly force Count Glasbury into divorcing her vs submit to his `unnatural' sexual desires, Julian's poems and letters are literally and agonizingly laid bare for all of society to `judge' him to the point of possibly convicting him to hang for murder to save Penelope. Don't let the word "adultery" wrestle you away from reading this as a romance story. There is so much more to it that it will stimulate your mind and kindle your heart which can not be expressed in any brief review.

Wonderfully romantic.

It had been a while since I read a book that I did not want to put down for a moment. I was in the middle of reading another novel, when surprisingly, I found this one in the bookstore. I immediately bought it and as soon as I got home "dumped" the other book and started reading this one. I had been waiting for Julian and Penelope's story almost since the first book in the series, I had already begun to think that it was not going to be written, because of all the time that had passed within the series (15 years), but it was worth the wait, because as much as I like the other books, this one just became my favorite of this series. I was always intrigued by Julian Hampton, I knew that beneath the cool facade and reticent silences, lay a man of deep and powerful pasions. This character is so compeling that for him alone I would have given the book 5 stars. That doesn't mean that the book itself doesn't deserve the 5 star rating, the story is fast paced, full of suspense, pasion, tendernes, heart wrenching moments, and above all; love. I only wish this book had been placed earlier in the series. Between The Saint and The Charmer would have been a good spot for it. It's just that I feel sorry for Julian and Penelope. They had to wait so long to find happiness! The delay in writting this book makes me think that the author hadn't planned to write it at all, that it was only because of the interest generated by these characters that it was decided to create this book. In any case, I'm grateful it was written, because it is one of my favorite novels of all times.

Literature-Quality Regency Romance for Smart Modern Women

"The Romantic" is the fifth and final official installment of Madeline Hunter's enjoyable Seducer series, set in Regency and pre-Victorian England. The entire series is a revelation: Engaging plotlines and remarkably period appropriate, yet readable dialogue propel these books beyond the usual light romance reads. Hunter writes quality, detail-rich stories, appealing to educated romance readers who enjoy a great book with a lively plot, superior historical accuracy and vibrant characters with full, rounded lives, and interesting goals. Throughout the Seducer series, Hunter's characters face believable challenges within the social and political context of the Regency and pre-Victorian time setting, interspersed with steaming hot sex scenes that are sensual as well as quite anatomically workable, and unlike some authors' scenes, don't leave the reader wondering if a winch, truss, or chiropractor would be required by either participant afterward. This novel picks up the relationship story of the fifth major ongoing male character in the Seducer series - that of Mr. Julian Hampton, the Laclere family lawyer and lifelong friend of all of the Duclairc siblings. Over the course of a thoughtful storyline, we experience the resolution of Penelope, the Countess of Glasbury's tragedy of a marriage which has been chronicled as a fifteen-year secondary story in all of the Seducer series. Needless to say, the quiet, enigmatic, darkly handsome Julian Hampton is involved. The Romantic is a fitting finale to this fine quintet, and I rated this book a five. Read in sequence, it is easily a five-star read. The only flaw (and it is a small one) in the Seducer series, is that the books are each richer if you have read the series in sequence, as there are delicious details throughout each book that expand upon and update previous storylines. Indeed, the series, when read in order, more resembles a single epic-length novel with five distinct parts written in different characters' voices. Each hero and previously introduced heroine is featured as an important secondary character in each of the subsequent novels, and because of this, the details of the stories can be harder to pick up in the first chapters if the books are read out of sequence. In some reviews, Hunter receives some criticism for slow exposition in this series. Given that each book (except for the Seducer) opens with characters we already know, so we have an immediate understanding of the motivations for their actions and interactions, I have some sympathy for stand-alone readers who must play catch-up for a chapter or two. I argue that this effect is entirely eliminated when the series is read in order. However, because of this issue, as a stand-alone book, I would withdraw half a star, and rate The Romantic a four and a half -- Still a pretty great read! My recommendation if you haven't read the rest of the series: Buy all five! -- You will not regret this. For the most enjoyabl
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