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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thoroughly Enjoyable
Juliana Gray has happily proven that lightning can strike twice. I enjoyed this book as much if not more than the first book in her trilogy. The relationship/romance between Roland and Lilibet was a sweet one. (Never fear, for those that want it, there was a good dose of sensuality as well) Their love for each other was never something that was in doubt, but how they get...
Published 22 months ago by Jessifer

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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Divorce, English Style
Juliana Gray has used an interesting concept for her trilogy. In the late 19th century, a group of three English women and a group of three English men are both duped into signing a lease on a Tuscan castle for a year. They try to inhabit separate wings of the castle and coexist. Three romances develop. Each of the books so far follows one couple, but often the same...
Published 20 months ago by Ann Elliot


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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thoroughly Enjoyable, November 7, 2012
By 
Jessifer (Charleston, SC) - See all my reviews
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Juliana Gray has happily proven that lightning can strike twice. I enjoyed this book as much if not more than the first book in her trilogy. The relationship/romance between Roland and Lilibet was a sweet one. (Never fear, for those that want it, there was a good dose of sensuality as well) Their love for each other was never something that was in doubt, but how they get to a HEA is a good little journey to take. Roland may just be one of my favorite heroes in recent history. He comes initially comes off as the stereotypical rake but he is so much more. How could any woman resist a guy with such a wickedly fun sense of humor? I was concerned initially that Lilibet would be like how she was initially portrayed (perfect in her manner, never emotional) but she proved to be a woman of deep passions. Her fierce protectiveness of her son made her even more appealing. (by the way, her son was adorable)

Some of the scenes do overlap with what was in the first book. However, HOW they overlapped was fantastic. I won't give away any details but there were two scenes in particular that were in the first book that you get in the 2nd but from a different character's perspective. The result is hilarious given what that character was doing and how you already know what the others had been thinking (man, did they ever get played). The resolution to the book was a bit far-fetched to me (in regards to the over-arching story of the castle and Roland's work) but I don't read these books for their realism. If you liked Ms Gray's first book, I think it's safe to say you'll really enjoy the 2nd. I recommend reading these in order. I cannot wait for Wallingford and Abigail. From what I've learned from both of them in these first two books, it should be a rollicking good time. Only 3 months to go...
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Divorce, English Style, December 16, 2012
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This review is from: A Gentleman Never Tells (Mass Market Paperback)
Juliana Gray has used an interesting concept for her trilogy. In the late 19th century, a group of three English women and a group of three English men are both duped into signing a lease on a Tuscan castle for a year. They try to inhabit separate wings of the castle and coexist. Three romances develop. Each of the books so far follows one couple, but often the same scenes occur, only from a different point of view. Hints of ancient curses pop up and possible ghosts push the action along.

The story demands a light touch -- a well done aspect of the first novel. This one doesn't seem to be able to pick a tone and stick to it. Lots of angst is involved. The hero and heroine tumble into the hay (literally) at practically first sight (they knew each other years ago) and then must spend most of the novel trying to keep apart since she is married and the mother of a young son--and she will be unable to obtain a divorce from her rotten, cheating husband if she is found to be likewise unfaithful.

When the ending arrives (SPOILERS AHEAD), so does the vile husband. He is quite evil and hopes to kill the hero. His wife has seen him do depraved and unspeakable things (although the worst are not described). And yet, they come to a civilized agreement about divorce. The boy will be sent to live with his father part of the year. Excuse me? Did I hear that right? The wife also glosses over the sins of the man who kept the young lovers apart and pushed her into her unhappy marriage.

Perhaps I'm expecting the tale to make too much sense, or perhaps a woman named Lilibet sounds to me like she should live near Florence, Alabama instead of Florence, Italy. At any rate, the third entry sounds as if it will return to the frothy, light-hearted style of the first book. I'm looking forward to that one.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good, but not AS good, September 11, 2013
By 
Linda Jean (LUMBERTON, NJ, US) - See all my reviews
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I really loved the first of this clever series, but I believe I'm starting to tire of series, because I didn't think this book was as good as the first. This author cleverly staged three ladies and three gentlemen thrown (seemingly by coincidence) together and allowed the reader to watch the romances begin.

This is the second couple we meet and their circumstances are very different from the first couple - but somehow not quite as charming. The character development was less impressive and the plot had a lot of ambiguities.

Somehow when the heroine is married, albeit unhappily, with a vulnerable child, and begins an affair with a first love, it doesn't have the ingredients of a good, emotionally satisfying romance - at least to me. And, as for children in romance books - I admit that I'm never excited to read about them because so few authors portray them realistically. In this case, Philip was a bit too precocious. That is not to say I didn't enjoy watching Roland (our hero) squirm while trying to establish a working relationship with him, because I did. But Philip himself seemed too contrived - and instead of enjoying him, he distracted me.

I did like the Hero - very much. He was my favorite part of the book, even though the Heroine was not bad. The Villain, on the other hand, confused me. I thought his actions were a bit ambiguous and vague - and I wasn't totally satisfied with the resolution, even if it did seem to be a happy ever after.

None of these quibbles should keep you from reading the book, because overall it was still an enjoyable read. I was expecting the same pleasure I derived from the first book - and that didn't happen. I'd really like to say 3.5 stars, but I'll opt for 4 because the writing is very good.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My new favorite writer!, December 5, 2012
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Juliana Grey most definitely became my favorite writer! Her two books are outstanding. Great characters, dialogs, story lines. Her writing is full of humor, romance and poetry. I really enjoyed them tremendously.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not All That I Hoped It Would Be, December 4, 2012
This review is from: A Gentleman Never Tells (Mass Market Paperback)
Elizabeth Harewood and Lord Roland Penhallow were to be married at one time, that is until he up and left without any word. Elizabeth, or Lilibet, did what was necessary and moved on with her life, marrying someone else and having a child. As with most romance novels, time brings Elizabeth and Roland back together again. The old flame is quickly ignited and these two are in a battle against the sexual, physical, and emotional tensions that are created between them. Elizabeth, however, has recently escaped the infidelities of her husband, and he is hot on her trail. Roland realizes quickly that his feelings are still apparent when it comes to Lilibet, and that he will do whatever it takes to protect her and her son.

I greatly enjoyed all of the characters that made up this book and I loved how this book coincided with Juliana's first book, A Lady Never Lies. There were a few places that the story progressed really slowly for me and I found myself wanting to skip a few pages. I wasn't as into this story as I was with the first one, but it still had its perks. I really enjoyed Roland's character, at times maybe more than Elizabeth's. All my readers know that this is odd for me because I am usually a strong feminist, and the male characters in romance novels like this one usually get on my last nerve. I found Roland to be rather charming and I liked his fun-loving nature.

This novel is quite humorous and had me laughing at times, especially during some rather heated conversations. I like the spunk that both Elizabeth and Roland had to offer at times, and I think that I enjoyed the scenes when they were together most of all. I just felt like this story too closely resembled many others and I found myself being able to predict a lot of what would happen next. If you read the first book in this series, then I would definitely say to give this one a try!

***Thank you to the publishers at Berkley for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review***
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 5-star writing, 3-star plot., November 9, 2012
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I did not read this with quite as much gusto as I had Gray's debut novel, A Lady Never Lies. The writing is just as good but the plot and characters were not as interesting or unique as that first story of the series, IMO.

You may or may not know, and it really doesn't affect your enjoyment of each book as a stand-alone, but this series has all the books occurring at the same time and in the same place. 3 women go to Italy and are leasing a villa in Tuscany and 3 men also have accidentally and coincidentally ended up in the same place. They all know each other and author Gray is pairing them off romantically, one pair per book, with that particular pair's viewpoint of what's going on, while the other 4 characters serve as secondaries.

This time it's the pairing of Lord Roland Penhallow, younger brother of the Duke of Wallingford (who will be the H of the last book of this series). Lord Roland and Elizabeth (Lilibet) Harewood, Countess of Somerton, were young lovers (unconsummated love) some 6 years ago, but were separated by circumstances. Lilibet was forced by family to marry Somerton, who's a nasty bloke, cold and emotionally distant, almost cruel, and unfaithful to the Nth degree. Lilibet and Somerton have a 5-year-old son, Philip, a child so bright and articulate he certainly puts my grandchildren to shame.

Roland has been working as an undercover agent for the government, with his cover being that of a rather hedonistic man-about-town womanizer. Lilibet has been resentful about his tomcat ways and also about the fact that he had disappeared on her 6 years ago when she needed rescuing from marrying Somerton. Roland has his reasons for all this but can't tell anyone. Thrown together in Italy, they have a lot of misunderstanding to clear up, although the strong physical attraction has never waned.

Problems reach crisis level when Somerton comes into the picture in Italy. Roland's grandfather also gets into the story and things you didn't know about Somerton and the grandfather come to light. The story has lots of coincidences and contrived plot, yet Gray's talents make it fun to read anyway. And for me, perhaps more heartwarming than the love story between Roland and Lilibet is the love story of Roland and Lilibet's son Philip.

The book is written with warmth and humor and I'm looking forward to reading Wallingford and Abigail's story, A Duke Never Yields (Affairs By Moonlight Trilogy), coming out in February of 2013. I guess all loose ends will be tied up then.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Book 2, June 22, 2013
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I enjoyed reading this book. I love the characters and I liked the way the characters all stay entwined. It was a good read. Looking forward to the next book. I have not quite figured out the old Duke. He is a key part in all the books and is quite the character. He seems to show up at the last minute. Grab a box of chocolates and enjoy.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Lovely second book of the trilogy, April 13, 2013
By 
Cindy DeGraaff (Scotts, Michigan) - See all my reviews
Juliana Gray is one of my new favorite authors. I am enjoying this trilogy a lot, and looking forward to the third book. The writing is excellent, the editing is perfect and the plot has enough twists and turns to keep you guessing.

When three English women and a child came to rent an obscure castle in Tuscany for a year, they didn't know that the rental agent had rented the castle to three English gentlemen also. They all knew each other, but they all had their reasons to stay quietly in Italy.
Lady Elizabeth and Lord Roland had been seriously courting seven years ago when he was unexpectedly called out of the country for several months. By the time he came back, Lilibet's parents had forced her to become engaged to someone else. For all this time, Lord Roland has secretly been a spy for the government and has cultivated a reputation as a man about town and a rake. She married a cold, cruel man who abused her and was completely unfaithful. The only good thing to come out of her marriage is her son. She has kept scrupulous notes on her husband's infidelities and plans on filing for divorce. To do so, she must be blameless.
Unfortunately, Lilibet and Roland shared one night of passion at an inn on the way to the castle,( before they knew they were castle mates) and now she is pregnant.
As they become closer, living at the castle, Roland's contacts tell him that her husband is the one out to frame him for treason, the reason he had to leave England. Lord Somerton is also hunting his wife and son. All of Roland's energy goes into caring for Lilibet and young Philip. Can he keep them safe until a divorce is granted?

Heat factor moderate.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Suspend reality and read for the joy of it, March 7, 2013
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Loved this trilogy. You really need to read the books in order. This is book two. It's fun to read all three close together.
Love the premise: three couples inhabit a castle in Italy for a year to study. The writing style is witty. I laughed aloud and cared about the characters.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb Writing and Characters that Stir Your Heart, December 14, 2012
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Juliana Grey's writing is glorious. She pulls the reader into a lush world of deep sensibilities and madcap yearning. Of pandemonium and magic.

Her characters are detailed, evocative, incisive, each one emerging gradually in warm and seductive humanness. I loved the character of Roland Penhallow. He has the personality of an adorable and intelligent dog, really. Floppy and good-natured, loyal and loving. His relationship with Lilibet's son, Philip, is sensitive, insightful and kind. The boy is wise beyond his years while his mother is devoted yet adrift in her difficult world. In need of the friend who has stood wistfully at the margin of her life for so long.

This is romance writing at it's best. Actually, it is writing very much at it's best.
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A Gentleman Never Tells
A Gentleman Never Tells by Juliana Gray (Mass Market Paperback - November 6, 2012)
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