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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Notoriously Sensual!
When it comes to reading an Adele Ashworth romance, readers can expect an excellent story, in-depth characters, and a sensuality that oozes from the pages, keeping a reader riveted to the book. It is no different with this new title "A Notorious Proposition."

Revisiting a place called Winter Garden from a previous book of that name back in 2000, we find two...
Published on April 29, 2008 by Beverly Romance Books

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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Secret tunnels and missing diamonds
'A Notorious Proposition' is a rather misleadingly-titled book as there was no notorious proposition in the book, at least not that I noticed. Instead, set in 1850, it features Lady Ivy Wentworth, a seer whose brother is missing, who has been tasked by the mysterious Marquess of Rye to investigate ghosts in his new property. Two years before Lady Ivy loved and lost...
Published on May 17, 2008 by Helen Hancox


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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Notoriously Sensual!, April 29, 2008
By 
When it comes to reading an Adele Ashworth romance, readers can expect an excellent story, in-depth characters, and a sensuality that oozes from the pages, keeping a reader riveted to the book. It is no different with this new title "A Notorious Proposition."

Revisiting a place called Winter Garden from a previous book of that name back in 2000, we find two people who left an intense emotional and physical love behind two years ago due to undercover government intrigue, mystery of missing Martello diamonds and amnesia. The handsome Garrett Burke, who is the mysterious Winter Garden's Marquis of Rye, left the beautiful Lady Ivy Wentworth in his warm bed after an intense night of love to finish this mysterious business with the intentions of returning and asking for her hand in marriage. But then it seemed everything went wrong and to make matters worse, due to an injury he received that evening while trying to retrieve the famous Martello diamonds, he is left with no knowledge about what actually happened that night and the aspects of his relationship with Ivy. He is so confused that he actually suspects she may actually be involved in the nefarious plot; especially because her brother is missing since that fateful night.

Now it is two years later and the diamonds and other individuals besides Ivy's brother, involved in the original mystery are missing. Everyone seems suspect, but most of all, it is Ivy that is the one deeply hurt at Garrett's treatment of her, past and present, and his suspicion toward her. Her reputation is at stake, together with her fear for her brother's life and his possible involvement in the original theft and current mystery. Garrett and Ivy find themselves thrown together at Winter Garden, at the invitation of the Marquis of Rye, who Ivy does not know is actually Garrett, while walking a fine line of suspicion, love and hate. Will Garrett find the diamonds and who is responsible for their theft and his injury, while at the same time will his memory return so he can remember just how important Ivy is to him? Will Ivy help Garrett by using her famous talent as a seer, to find her brother and somehow rediscover the diamonds and the love she once had for Garrett, while fighting the continuous sensual desire she discovers she cannot put behind her since that fateful night two years ago when Garrett left her in his bed?

Adele Ashworth is a superb talent that seems to get better with each book that is a definite keeper. Crime, mystery, and sensuality combine with excellent storylines and interesting characters to keep readers patiently awaiting a next release.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Secret tunnels and missing diamonds, May 17, 2008
'A Notorious Proposition' is a rather misleadingly-titled book as there was no notorious proposition in the book, at least not that I noticed. Instead, set in 1850, it features Lady Ivy Wentworth, a seer whose brother is missing, who has been tasked by the mysterious Marquess of Rye to investigate ghosts in his new property. Two years before Lady Ivy loved and lost Garrett Burke, a man who was looking for the missing Martello Diamonds. When Lady Ivy meets Garrett in the village of Winter Gardens she has real animosity towards him because of the way in which he discarded her after seducing him. However they soon find themselves having to work together to explore mystery tunnels in the Marquess of Rye's house in their search for the diamonds. Do the tunnels hold more than just cobwebs and dead cats? Is there more to the history of Garrett and Ivy than they both realise? Is there more to Garrett than Ivy realises?

This story was a reasonable read with the characters exploring dusty tunnels, trying to find diamonds, attending a ball, that sort of thing. However it also felt rather loosely plotted without a strong thread of characterisation to hold it together. The names of the characters also felt unconvincing for the time - Ivy and Garrett - and the author's dialogue was peppered with modern-day Americanisms that aren't appropriate for the time and location in which the book was set. The pace of the story ramps up a little at the end where the various threads all join together and the villain or villains are identified but the suspense was never that great and, having finished the book, I doubt I shall remember much about it within a week.

Originally published for Curled Up With A Good Book © Helen Hancox 2008
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Put this one next to Winter Garden on your keeper shelf!, April 29, 2008
Two years ago, while on assignment for the Crown, Lady Ivy Wentworth gave her heart to Garrett Burke, also on assignment for the Crown, only to have it broken. Garrett left her asleep in bed to search for the missing Martello diamonds . . . and didn't return. So, when Ivy, a known seer, comes to Winter Garden at the request of the mysterious Marquess of Rye to rid his new house of ghosts two years later and sees Garrett once again, at first, she is anything but thrilled. They are both after the Martello diamonds and eventually work together to look for them while trying to outrun a villain.

Reunited lovers is one of my favorite romance themes and this story is one of the best I've ever read. While some people consider this a sequel to Ms. Ashworth's WINTER GARDEN, it certainly stands just fine on its own. Garrett and Ivy are very well written characters who practically leap off the pages. Ivy is an intelligent heroine who doesn't overreact or do something stupid when Garrett reveals a secret. Garrett is a sexy hero who is also incredibly sincere. Because of their past, there is a tremendous amount of underlying sexual tension when they are together which makes for a beautiful love story. The scenes when Garrett and Ivy are searching for the diamonds through secret corridors and passageways was very reminiscent of my first book love, Nancy Drew. And it is during those scenes that they rediscover their passion for one another. This book is brilliantly written and I will wholeheartedly admit that I enjoyed it even more than I did WINTER GARDEN. I highly recommend it!
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sensuous and Intriguing, October 30, 2007
By 
Viv (Atlanta, GA) - See all my reviews
Finally, the wait is over for the sequel to the amazing "Winter Garden" and I couldn't ask for a better follow up. "A Notorious Proposition" picks up about two years after "WG" ends and never falters. Benedict Sharon has been arrested and awaits his sentencing and the "mysterious" Marquess of Rye has bought the eerie Rothebery Estate.

Garrett Burke and Ivy Wentworth engage in a passionate week-long affair that ends in heartbreak. For Garrett deceives Ivy though he loves her, but he must complete his search for the Martello diamonds at any cost.

Someone else is searching as well...
Lady Ivy has been hired by the Marquess of Rye because of her preternatural abilities. She has been invited to stay at the estate to investigate supposed hauntings, however, Ivy has her own reasons for staying at Rothebery. And who is the Marquess of Rye that no one has ever met?

Upon arriving in the town of Winter Garden and the estate she discovers none other then Garrett Burke in the parlor. His mission has not wavered as his search for the diamonds continues. What Ivy hoped was a love long buried was unearthed, but she is no shrinking violet. The love story slowly unfurls and the tension smolders.

"Winter Garden" is my favorite book so the sequel had to be brilliant and it absolutely was. The most wonderful part is that Ms. Ashworth enabled the reader who has not had the pleasure of reading "WG" can love "A Notorious Proposition" just as much. It is a stand alone as much as a sequel. The love scenes are classic Ashworth: HOT and the tension is scorching. However, it is the love story that I found most compelling. The plot is intricate and not the cookie-cutter fluffy romance.

"A Notorious Proposition" is a dark, highly intense, and exquisitely sensual novel that will only leave my keeper shelf for frequent re-reads.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars his is an engaging Victorian romantic mystery, May 4, 2008
In 1850 at Winter Garden Garrett Burke was investigating for the Crown the theft of the Martello Diamonds when he met and fell in love with Lady Ivy Wentworth. She reciprocated his feelings. However, after making love with her and planning to ask her to marry him, he went out on his assignment that ended badly; he blamed Ivy, whom he believed betrayed him.

Two years later Garrett and Ivy are together at Winter Garden seeking to uncover secrets long buried there. As they begin to find clues of a treasure in the mansion's secret corridors, their love surfaces as neither stopped wanting the other. However, he does not trust her and she knows how he feels making her angry that her love was not strong enough to persuade him otherwise.

This is an engaging Victorian romantic mystery starring two likable protagonists whose short history together includes making love, falling in love, and distrusting love. Readers will enjoy this amusing suspense tale that takes place in WINTER GARDEN (previous book written in 2000; not read by me) as Adele Ashworth writes another engaging historical as few authors consistently bring to life the 1850s-1860s as consistently vivid as this writer does.

Harriet Klausner
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Notoriously bad, June 30, 2009
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First, as many have pointed out, there is no proposition, notorious or otherwise in this book.

There is very little dialogue, plot or common sense either.

The first half of the book is excruciating as we become all too aware of how acutely AWARE Ivy and Garrett are of each other. The author goes on ad nauseum describing their sense of each others presence and the physical and mental distress/arousal being near each other causes them. Amidst all this angst there is precious little actual conversation which brings to mind rather ridiculous scenarios of them mutely containing their feelings as they sit and stare at each other like a couple of owls in a tree.

Eventually they have sex and you would think they would actually discuss this ridiculous and convoluted mystery they are involved in but of course they continue to defy logic and common sense and hold things back from each other.

Frankly the mystery is the only reason I finished the book, having little respect for two such clueless and obtuse characters. However, the mystery is chock full of holes and loose ends and in the end makes hardly any sense at all.

SPOILERS: Two points being, if Garrett is Lord Rye and requested Ivy investigate the house, why does he continuously ask himself why she is there?? Duh, because you (under the guise of Lord Rye) asked her. There is no indication at the beginning of the story that Ivy has any solid concern for her brother just a niggling doubt about his whereabouts then a little bit of concern as she senses his call for help in a dream, BUT then we find out that out of the blue she says she is being blackmailed to find the diamonds to save him. Really??? When did that happen?

And poor crazy Desdemona is so intent on finding said diamonds to restore the fortunes of her family yet never bothers to search Benedict's pockets? Even more strange she has the tiara the whole time and doesn't even consider selling it to raise much needed funds for her family?? Nor is it ever explained why Hermione hates Lord Rye so much. What the heck did he do to her? Or to any of her family for that matter? The whole thing makes no sense and the characters actions make even less sense.

Was there even an outline for this book or did the author make it up as she went along??
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A gothic feel, December 11, 2010
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I really liked this book. I loved the mystery & the old mansion with all the hidden passages. It had a gothic feel to it which I really liked. It was also interesting how the author kept you guessing as to who the villian was. I was very suprised! I thought I had figured it out! The romance itself took a while to warm up to. I didn't really like all the secrecy between the two. Just out with it all ready! Once most of the secrets were out, they were much better as a couple. The real reason I didn't give the book five stars was the continued references to the previous book to the series. I haven't read it, so I really didn't know what they were talking about. Other than that, it was a great mystery and love story.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars I couldn't even finish it., March 22, 2009
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I tried really hard to like this book. I'm not hard to please as far as romance novels go. I just need two characters that I really enjoy. I really thought that I wouldn't be able to find a book I didn't like. I'm not picky.

I read all the way to the middle and then flipped to the back to see how it ended, and then flipped backwards through the book to see if there was anything good that I wanted to read and there wasn't much.

The book did have it's good moments. I did like Garrett, he did have a few moments in the book that touched me. Ivy bored me... a lot. It would have been better with More Garrett and less Ivy.

If you are looking for a good romance novel get something written by Jo Beverly (The Malloren series is a good start!) or anything and everything written by Liz Carlyle.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars too many loose ends......., August 10, 2008
let me state that i really like adele ashworth. stolen charms and especially winter garden were great. but.....this book leaves too many loose ends for me... perhaps i dozed through the part of the book that left me wondering:

why does garrett wait two years to confront ivy. yes, he had some memory loss, but he still remembered parts of their past,
why wait until he buys the estate some 22 months after his attack to find answers regarding ivy, was it just because he was able to buy the estate that he decided after 22 months to clarify things,
what happened to garrett during these 2 years, how did he break-off with his fiance, then, a gentlemen did not usually break an engagement, the woman was allowed to break it to save her reputation. since his fiances reputation evidently was still in tact, what happened, no mention of his exploits during the 2 years only that ivy avoided him after the way he treated her and talked about her ability in print
nothing really explaining what ivy did during these 2 years also other than a brief reference to avoiding garrett and the way he treated her when she went to see him,
now they are together, traveling though dark, dirty tunnels and for a woman who feels that she was treated badly and has avoided that person for 2 years, her every thought is about him, and this is before she even has a brief explaination of what happened to him.
what i cannot fathom is that although he had headaches and some memory loss he still remembered bits and pieces about their relationship, why loose the most important part of that relationship and remember other parts, just does not make sense with no explanation of what he did for 2 years.

i would like to have foregone tunnel exploration and had the above points clarified. also, for her to be somewhat of a seer, she did not even have enough "seering" in this book to have it used in the plot.

if ever a book needed an author REWRITE, this book does. if i have dozed and missed these points, please email me so i can go back and find them.
i have given this book 3 stars because of adele, i do like her and will read other books by her. so adele, if you read this, keep your work on winter garden level.
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5.0 out of 5 stars SECRET PASSAGES,GREAT MYSTERY & STEAMY SCENES, March 7, 2014
This book was a surprise for me. Adele Ashworth wrote this Winter Garden series and I loved the 1st book STOLEN CHARMS and I loved it. The next book WINTER GARDEN, I didn't enjoy and stop half way thru. But this book A NOTORIOUS PROPOSITION rocked. Garrett was a man on a mission for missing diamonds and he seemed at first to only care about them. As the story goes on, Garrett just wants that night he "made Ivy his" back in his memory. Lady Ivy is such a different character. She is a respected Seer. In 1850s, it is rare for a woman to have a career and also Seers being respected, even in 2014, is rare. Ivy wants to find her brother, who has been missing for so long. She can sense he is in trouble and she is also being blackmailed for the diamonds. Ivy doesn't know Garrett has no memory of their night and the last thing she needs is having Garrett breathing down her neck with his sexy lips. This story has secret passages, chained up man, steamy scenes, an evil presence, great mystery, diamonds and many twists and turns. I give this book 5 fingers up and 10 toes.
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A Notorious Proposition (Avon Romantic Treasure)
A Notorious Proposition (Avon Romantic Treasure) by Adele Ashworth (Mass Market Paperback - April 29, 2008)
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