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In Praise of Younger Men (Signet Historical Romance) Mass Market Paperback – March 1, 2001

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Setting: England and Scotland, 1667 and 1816

Sensuality rating: 7

A titillating twist on the May-December romance, this offering from four popular authors, including New York Times bestsellers Jo Beverley and Cathy Maxwell, explores the reawakening of romance in women of experience, delivered in the delightful form of virile younger men. Cathy Maxwell's "A Man Who Can Dance" introduces readers to Graham McNab, a man standing on the cusp of achieving his lifelong dream of becoming a physician. However, fate intervenes in the form of woman--a gorgeous, flaxen-haired woman. Graham will do anything to make the vision his own, even if it means entering into a bet with his nasty cousin Blair. To win the bet, Graham must rely on his best friend, governess Sarah Ambrose to teach the untutored doctor to dance, in spite of his two left feet. Close proximity and the rhythm of the dance emulate the rhythm of love for Sarah and Graham. Will they become partners for life? Lauren Royal introduces readers to widow Clarice Bradford, who is devoted to raising her young daughter, Mary. Clarice is not looking for love when she is invited to attend a local wedding, but the ardent attentions of a younger man, Sir Cameron Leslie, make Clarice wonder just how thoroughly on the shelf she is or if there is a possibility of "Forevermore" in her future. "Written in the Stars" by Jaclyn Reding pits two lovers against an ancient prophesy. Harriet Drynan must marry a younger man to ensure the survival of her clan. But she's in love with her twin brother's best friend, Tristan Carmichael, and he loves her. Harriet fears the legend's curse that proclaims if she marries Tristan, he will die before the marriage can be consummated. A little leap year magic may bring the answer to our star-crossed lovers' prayers. "The Demon's Mistress" by Jo Beverley opens with a bang--almost. Maria Celestin, known by society as the Golden Lily, a beautiful widow just out of mourning, arrives just in time to stop George, Lord Vandeimen, from taking the coward's way out from under his debts and crumbling estate. Her proposition, that Van act as her affianced for six weeks in exchange for enough money to pay off his creditors and make the most urgent repairs to his home, intrigues him, as does the lady herself. Van suspects that Maria has an ulterior motive for approaching him, but he's willing to deliver whatever her heart desires. And her heart desires Van. From four of today's most popular romantic authors, In Praise of Younger Men is praiseworthy itself. --Alison Trinkle

From Publishers Weekly

Four talented authors team up to celebrate the virtues of younger men in an enduring quartet of stories that historical romance enthusiasts are sure to cherish. Maxwell (The Marriage Contract) kicks off this anthology with "A Man Who Can Dance," a scintillating Scottish tale about a young doctor who must learn to dance in order to win the hand of the garrison commander's daughter. In the midst of his lessons, however, the doctor falls in love with his instructor. Royal's fans may recognize the heroine from "Forevermore," a 31-year-old widow and mother who appeared in Amethyst. Here she rediscovers the joy of intimacy in the arms of a young Scotsman. In Reding's (White Mist) heartwarming "Written in the Stars," an ancient curse threatens to prevent a young woman from marrying her childhood sweetheart, and unless she can circumvent the curse, she may have to marry another. Completing this collection, Beverly's (An Unwilling Bride) "The Demon's Mistress" spins a darkly erotic tale of a wealthy widow who saves a financially ruined younger man by hiring him to act as her betrothed for six weeks. Atmospheric and charming, these vignettes are delightful bedtime stories. (Mar. 6) Forecast: With its sweetly suggestive cover, intriguing premise and combination of authors, this anthology will undoubtedly garner respectable sales. For many readers, this compilation will also prove to be a nice introduction to Royal, a promising new talent.
Copyright 2001 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Product Details

  • Series: Signet Historical Romance
  • Mass Market Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Signet (March 1, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0451203801
  • ISBN-13: 978-0451203809
  • Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 1 x 6.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #835,022 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Dr W. Richards on October 25, 2001
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I bought this anthology solely for the Jo Beverley story, The Demon's Mistress - and I only wanted that because it's the first in Beverley's new series about the Three Georges, continued in The Dragon's Bride and The Devil's Heiress. And it's just as well that this is the only story which interested me, because it was the only one worth reading in this anthology. On its own, Beverley's story would have received four or five stars, but since the others are barely deserving of any, that brings the book as a whole down to two.
The first story, A Man Who Can Dance (Maxwell), suffered first and foremost from being far too short; approximately 60 pages is not long enough to develop characters to the point where I could care what happens to them. Besides that, the story was unconvincing and badly written. Since the hero was Scottish, Maxwell seemed to feel the need to ape Scottish inflexions in her dialogue - this chiefly manifested itself by use of 'Tis here and there, which felt extremely false. She compounded this irritant by using 'Tis and 'Twas in *narrative*, which made me want to stop reading the story. One star.
Moving on rapidly. The second story, Forevermore (Royal), is actually the second in a series by this author, thus putting at a disadvantage anyone who has not read the first book. Besides that, it also suffered from 'anthology-itis', in that it was too short and the characters and plot insufficiently well developed. Again, I didn't really care whether the characters got together or not. That apart, I found the ending very unsatisfying. One star.
The third story, Written in the Stars (Reding), was better written than either of the first two, and actually a little more interesting.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By "noumea3" on September 19, 2002
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I don't like short stories or novellas, they are just not my cup of tea but Jo Beverley's novella (110 pages), "The Demon's Mistress", in this anthology is a keeper. I was disappointed that the first story in the Three Georges trilogy (the others are The Dragon's Bride and The Devil's Heiress, and the trilogy is linked to the Company of Rogues series) was issued as a novella and not a full length romance. Luckily the novella length is long enough here to pack in the complexity of a novel (thank goodness it wasn't issued as a 70 page short story!) and I really got lost in the story and felt like I was reading a full length romance. Must have book to fit into the Company of Rogues/Three Georges series. Characters in the other books are met or mentioned also, and it explains some things about the other two Georges books. Goes on keeper shelf and is sure to be reread.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By S. Reader VINE VOICE on January 17, 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I really wanted to like this book, but the quality is so uneven -- from miserable to splendid -- that each story must be considered individually.
The first, by Cathy Maxwell, was so bad that I'd like to give it no stars. This is the first thing I've read by her and I certainly hope she normally writes better. The characters were poorly developed; she really didn't deal with the age difference; and the entire story was superficial. As a reader, I felt only 1-2 moments of empathy with the characters. The idea of a new doctor and a governess was excellent, but the warm and wise doctor was very foolish with regard to his uncle and cousin and to falling in "love" at first sight. The way in which he gains his uncle's favor was highly predictable. And how on earth did he learn to dance, especially all the steps of the quadrille, in only a few days? The real kicker, though, was Maxwell's use of "tone deaf" as explaining the hero's inability to dance. Dancing is about rhythm, not pitch (which applies to tone deafness). Tone deaf people can dance but not sing. Frankly, even people who can sing beautifully may not be able to dance, since it involves a physical use of rhythm. 1 star.
Lauren Royal's story fairs somewhat better. I am not as familiar with this historical period (the 1660s) and so cannot say how accurate it is, especially regarding social conventions. However, the time period seems to have little to do with the actual story other than an irrelevant song. The hero is pleasant but superficial; the heroine seemed deeper but we are given few details; the child is adorable. Evidently, these characters were introduced in other books and may be more fully developed there. However, someone just reading this story will be left wanting to learn more about them.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Winifred on November 13, 2001
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I picked this up because I'd heard of Jo Beverley and Cathy Maxwell and wanted to try them in short story first before buying their regular books. I received a nice surprise -- and a new author to buy -- in the story by Jaclyn Reding, a new name for me. While the Beverley and Maxwell stories (and Lauren Royal's too) were certainly enjoyable, I really liked Jaclyn Reding's WRITTEN IN THE STARS the best. It was clever and unique and uplifting. I am now going out to buy all her backlist. If you've never read this author before, give her a try. You'll become an instant fan. And if you've never read the other authors in this collection, give this book a try. They are all well-written and enjoyable.
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