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The Promise in a Kiss (Cynster Novels) Mass Market Paperback – November 5, 2002

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Product Details

  • Series: Cynster Novels (Book 8)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Avon; Reprint edition (November 5, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061031755
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061031755
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1 x 6.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (109 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #319,658 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews Review

One unforgettable night, Sebastian, the Duke of St. Ives, stole a kiss from a beautiful young woman at a French convent. They didn't share their names but neither of them ever forgot the magic of that innocent kiss, and when they meet again in London seven years later, each instantly recognizes the other. Helena, the Comtesse d'Lisle, is searching for a manageable husband to thwart her controlling guardian, and Sebastian, a London rake who has sworn never to wed, is clearly not an appropriately biddable candidate. The lovely French comtesse is the one woman who can change Sebastian's view of marriage, but convincing Helena is a task that challenges even the powerful Duke of St. Ives. While Sebastian is courting and seducing the reluctantly tempted Helena, her powerful guardian sets in motion a scheme that threatens the happiness of the lovers and endangers their lives.

In this tale of the passionate couple that parented the unforgettable Bar Cynster siblings, author Stephanie Laurens pulls out all the stops with high adventure, dueling swords, intrigue, and sensual romance. Rounding out the novel with witty dialogue, great secondary characters, and detailed descriptions of the London society scene of 1783, Laurens gives readers another Cynster novel they're sure to love. --Lois Faye Dyer --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

Continuing the story of the Cynsters, begun in several paperback best sellers.
Copyright 2001 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

More About the Author

#1 New York Times bestselling author Stephanie Laurens began writing romances as an escape from the dry world of professional science. Her hobby quickly became a career when her first novel was accepted for publication, and with entirely becoming alacrity, she gave up writing about facts in favor of writing fiction.

Laurens's novels are set in the time period of the British Regency, and her settings range from Scotland to India. Laurens has published fifty-three works of historical romance, including 31 New York Times bestsellers. All her works are continuously available in print and digital formats in English worldwide, and have been translated into many other languages. An international bestseller, among other accolades Laurens has received the Romance Writers of America prestigious RITA Award for Best Romance Novella 2008, for The Fall of Rogue Gerrard.

Her continuing novels featuring the Cynster family are widely regarded as classics of the genre. Other series include the Bastion Club Novels and the Black Cobra Quartet. For information on upcoming releases and updates on novels yet to come, visit Stephanie's website.

Customer Reviews

The story line was great and the love scenes where just wonderful.
Cathy Rivera
I'm a fan of Stephanie Laurens, I have read all Cynster novels and all I can say is I love this series.
So, with reluctance I had to give this book 3 stars instead of the 4 it deserved.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

38 of 41 people found the following review helpful By mirope on January 6, 2002
Format: Hardcover
It would be interesting to know how readers who aren't familiar with the Bar Cynster series feel about this prequel. Standing on its own, I'd imagine that it would be considered a top-notch regency romance. As in all of Laurens' books, the hero, Sebastian, is devastatingly handsome, madly in love with the heroine and woes her with single-minded determination. The plot is entertaining, and the love scenes are intense. My problem with the book? It was difficult to accept the heroine, Helena, who appears in the Bar Cynster series as a family matriarch, as a somewhat flighty young girl. Furthermore, the whole love story was tainted for me because of some facts that Bar Cynster fans already know about the conception of Sebastian and Helena's son Scandal. These aren't characters who cried out for their story to be told; in fact, I would have liked this story much better if it had been totally divorced from the Cynsters.
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33 of 36 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on November 13, 2001
Format: Hardcover
Stephanie Laurens has based her Bar Cynster novels on the premise that even a man who doesn't particularly want to get married will be happily resigned to his fate once he meets his soul mate (even if she isn't resigned at all!).
That premise has served her better in some of the Cynster series than others. It's a comforting premise, that we all have a soul mate out there, but adhering to that plot occasionally causes Laurens to churn out somewhat identical stories. The best of the Cynster series retain enough of this "soul mate" premise to be comforting, but also manage to be original and fresh.
Thankfully, "The Promise in a Kiss" now joins "A Secret Love" and "Devil's Bride" on my list of "Best of Cynster."
Sebastian is pure Cynster, and as Cynster fans all know, even the most boring of Cynster men are pretty ideal. Helena is a wonderful match for him, strong-willed and feisty. In addition, we are given good justification, both for Helena's strong-willed nature and for her resistance to Sebastian's protectiveness. The misunderstandings between them have good basis, and the resolution of those misunderstandings is reasonable and understandable.
My only (small) quibble is that, because the "villain" is off-screen (so to say) most of the book, his villainous nature doesn't exactly loom over the book.
This is a welcome addition to the Cynster series -- Laurens at her best. Enjoy!
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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful By C. Muhlbach on November 20, 2001
Format: Hardcover
This book was well worth the wait! The first page grabs hold of you and the book doesn't let go until the last!
Although a prequel to the Bar Cynster series, this book stands beautifully alone. The two main characters, Helena and Sabastien, are fleshed out very well from hints and descriptions in previous Cynster books, yet it also hold many surprises.
Helena meets her future husband on the Convent grounds, in her night wear, while returning from nursing her ill sister. Sabastien literally falls at her feet. As a reward for misleading his pursurers, he kisses her, inadvertantly leaving them both with a promise for the future. Years later they meet again. The rest as they fate.
Especially satisfying here was that the hero doesn't try to escape his fate. He accepts it gracefully. In keeping with his character grace and charm. The herione on the other sweetly naive, and hilariously direct. The byplay between the two is wonderful!
After a twisted, unusual courtship they travel to outwit a common enemy, have an unwelcome duel, and end with the delivery of an heirlom and a letter.
One of the things that Ms. Laurens does best is to tie up all the loose ends. This story is no different. The epilougue here bridges the gap between the years to the next installment of the family and will leave you with a satisfied smile.
I throughly enjoyed this story, and will look eagerly forward to the next in the series. Thank you, Ms. Laurens, for a great read! Please send the next one soon!!
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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 14, 2002
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This book would have been romantic and spellbinding IF Ms. Laurens had not written Sebastian as an adulterer after marrying his beloved Helena in her later books. I just couldn't get pass this and it made this read all the more disappointing. There is absolutely NO WAY the Sebastian portrayed in this book would ever cheat on the love of his life. As the other reviewers stated, nothing was ever plausibly written as to why he did this and because of it, fathered a son by another woman. The Promise in a Kiss has alot going for it if you can get pass this flaw.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Dr W. Richards on February 8, 2003
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Confession: I have never read any of Stephanie Laurens' Bar Cynster series. I liked a couple of her other regency romances and decided to give this series a try. The Promise in a Kiss was written last, but is a prequel to all the other books, so it seemed to make sense to read it first. And that would have been okay, except that Laurens has a family tree right at the very start of the book. From that I learned two things which made this a doomed romance from the start.
One, Sebastian, the Duke of St Ives, has an affair resulting in an illegitimate child while he's married to Helena. So how can I believe in Helena and Sebastian's love affair after discovering that? I can see why people who have read the entire series also have a problem taking this book seriously.
Second, the family tree shows Sebastian as dead. Now this, I expect, applies to the later books in the Cynster series - but still, even before I've *read* his story, I know that Sebastian dies within about 30 years of the end of his book, leaving his Helena a widow.
It's difficult to get facts like these out of your mind when reading a romance novel, let me tell you!
Anyway, the book itself. Laurens is no Balogh or Beverley, my favourites of this genre, and she does tend to go overboard on the intimacy/sensuality in a manner which simply isn't right for the period, but it's done tastefully. Sebastian and Helena met for the first time when she was seventeen and he stole a kiss. They meet again six years later and know each other instantly. Helena thinks that Sebastian is a confirmed bachelor and enlists his help in finding a suitable husband; he knows that she's going to be his wife and he uses every trick he knows to persuade her.
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