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The Wedding of the Century & Other Stories: The Wedding of the Century\Jesse's Wife\Seduced by Starlight Mass Market Paperback


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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: HQN Books; 1 edition (May 24, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9780373775507
  • ISBN-13: 978-0373775507
  • ASIN: 0373775504
  • Product Dimensions: 6.6 x 4.6 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,669,136 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestseller Mary Jo Putney is the author of thirty-six books of historical romance and fantasy romance, including A Distant Magic, The Spiral Path, and Dancing on the Wind. She lives with her family in England.

Charlotte Featherstone writes erotic historical romance, and historical romance for Harlequin Spice, and HQN Books. Her writing style has been described as beautiful, haunting, emotional and sensual. Charlotte lives on Lake Erie's North Shore in Ontario Canada, with her husband, daughter and two lovable but ill behaved dogs.

Charlotte's website address is www.charlottefeatherstone.net

 

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.


Swindon Palace

Spring 1885


After two weeks of dizzying social activity in London, a visit to the English countryside was an enchanting change of pace. Nature had cooperated by blessing the garden party with flawless weather. Puffs of white cloud drifted through a deep blue sky, the grass and trees were impossibly green, and the famous Swindon gardens were in glorious flower.

Yet the grounds were not half so splendid as the guests, who were the cream of British society. All of the men were aristocratically handsome and all of the women graceful and exquisitely dressed. At least, that was how it seemed to Miss Sarah Katherine Vangelder, of the New York Vangelders. As she surveyed her surroundings, she gave a laugh of pure delight.

The woman beside her said, "Don't look so rapturous, Sunny. It simply isn't done."

Sunny gave her godmother a teasing glance. "Is this the Katie Schmidt of San Francisco who scandalized English society by performing Comanche riding stunts in Hyde Park?"

A smile tugged at the older woman's lips. "It most certainly is not," she said in a voice that no longer held any trace of American accent. "I am now Katherine Schmidt Worthington, Countess of Westron, a very proper chaperon for her exceedingly well-brought-up young American goddaughter."

"I thought that we American girls were admired for our freshness and directness." A hint of dryness entered Sunny's voice. "And our fortunes, of course."

"The very best matches require impeccable manners as well as money, my dear. If you wish to become a duchess, you must be above reproach."

Sunny sighed. "And if I don't wish to become a duchess?"

"Your mother has spent twenty years grooming you to be worthy of the highest station," Lady Westron replied. "It would be a pity to waste that."

"Yes, Aunt Katie," Sunny said meekly. "If I'm very, very impeccable, may I view the rest of the gardens later?"

"Yes, but not until you've met everyone worth meeting. Business before pleasure, my dear." Katie began guiding her charge through the crowd, stopping and making occasional introductions.

Knowing that she was being judged, Sunny smiled and talked with the utmost propriety. She even managed not to look too excited, until she was introduced to the Honorable Paul Curzon.

Tall, blond and stunningly handsome, Curzon was enough to make any woman gape. After bowing over her hand, he said, "A pleasure to meet you, Miss Vangelder. Are you newly arrived in England?" His question was accompanied by a dazzling smile.

If it hadn't been for her rigorous social training, Sunny would have gaped at him like a raw country girl. Instead, she managed to say lightly, "I've been in London for the last fortnight. Before that, we were traveling on the Continent."

"If you'd like to visit the Houses of Parliament, Miss Vangelder, I'd be delighted to escort you. I'm a member." Curzon gave a deprecatory shrug. "Only a backbencher, but I can show you what goes on behind the scenes and treat you to tea on the terrace. You might find it amusing."

"Perhaps later in the season Miss Vangelder will have time," Katie said as she deftly removed her charge.

When they were out of earshot, Sunny said with awe, "Mr. Curzon is the handsomest man I've ever seen."

"Yes, but he's a younger son with three older brothers, so he's unlikely ever to inherit the title." Lady Westron gave a warning look. "Not at all the sort your mother wants for you."

"But as a Member of Parliament, he actually does something useful," Sunny pointed out. "My grandfather would have approved of that."

"Admiral Vangelder would not have wanted a penniless younger son for his favorite granddaughter," Katie said firmly. "Come, I want you to meet Lord Traymore. An Irish title, unfortunately, but an earl is an earl, and he's charming. You could do worse."

Dutifully Sunny followed her godmother to the next knot of guests, though she promised herself that she would slip off and view the famous water garden before she left. Until then, she would enjoy the color and laughter of the occasion.

She was also guiltily glad to be free of her mother's rather overpowering presence for a day. Augusta Vangelder was the most devoted and solicitous of parents, but she had very firm ideas about the way things ought to be. Very firm. Unfortunately, she was laid up in their suite at Claridge's with a mild case of the grippe, so Sunny had the benefit of the more liberal chaperonage of her godmother. Not only did Lady Westron know everyone, but she made racy comments about them. Sunny felt very worldly.

More About the Author

A New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USAToday bestselling author, Mary Jo Putney was born in Upstate New York with a reading addiction, a condition for which there is no known cure. Her entire romance writing career is an accidental byproduct of buying a computer for other purposes.

Her novels are known for psychological depth and intensity and include historical and contemporary romance, fantasy, and young adult fantasy. Winner of numerous writing awards, including two RITAs and two Romantic Times Career Achievement awards, she has five times had books listed among the Library Journal's top five romances of the year, and three times had books among the top ten romances of Booklist, the magazine of the American Library Association.

Her favorite reading is great stories, but in a pinch she'll settle for the backs of cereal boxes. She's delighted that e-publishing can now make available books that have been out of print.

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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See all 9 customer reviews
She thinks he married her out of pity; he thinks she really loved the cad.
K. M. Martin
I purchased this book for the Mary Jo Putney story and read the entire book because the other stories were that good.
chb-book addict
The writing is vivid, the stories are unique and well developed and the characters have you cheering for their HEA.
LAS Reviewer

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By ruthjoec on June 21, 2011
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Come on, a girl is allowed a little mind candy sometimes, isn't she? This is one volume made of three Harlequin romances. All the relationships are consummated after the weddings, and yes, we get to watch. There is no literary value to any of these stories, they are all pure fluff and I had a great time reading this book. There is nothing new original or different about any of the stories; as the saying goes, "they are what they are". Grade: B (I can't give any higher rating for this type of story).
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By K. M. Martin VINE VOICE on June 17, 2011
Format: Mass Market Paperback
The Wedding of the Century by Mary Jo Putney

This was such a nice romance. The hero was the quiet younger brother who unexpectedly inherits a dukedom. The heroine an American Princess who has been groomed to be aristocrat's wife. He met her and fell in love before becoming a duke but she almost doesn't remember him because she was entranced with a more handsome and charming rogue at the time. Their marriage has a rocky beginning mainly because she is railroaded into it by her domineering mother and because her mother has made her believe that it is unladylike to enjoy marital passion. Also, he has his own mother issues and is used to concealing his feelings.

Jesse's Wife by Kristin James

Amy is the plain older sister who is overshadowed by her younger, more vibrant sister. When a handsome guest asks her to take a walk in the moonlight, she is flattered. Unfortunately, he is a cad who is determined to compromise her and force her into marriage. She is rescued by Jesse who is a horse trainer on her father's ranch. He has loved her for a long time but knows she is socially out of his reach. Rather than marry the cad, she marries Jesse but the two are not communicating well. She thinks he married her out of pity; he thinks she really loved the cad.

Seduced by Starlight by Charlotte Featherstone

Blossom is a duke's daughter betrothed to a younger son of a neighbor. They love each other but are not "in love." When he finds a woman he loves, Blossom lets him go and clears the way for his older brother Jase. Jase has loved Blossom for years and has the reputation of being a rake. Blossom is afraid to trust him with her heart. But Jase seduces her to his point of view.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By akb--bookworm VINE VOICE on July 5, 2011
Format: Mass Market Paperback
THE WEDDING OF THE CENTURY & OTHER STORIES is a collection of 3 short historical romance stories all about marriage with the most unlikely man. I haven't always been a fan of short stories nor have I been a big fan of anthologies. I'm starting to understand the benefit of being able to sample a few different authors before spending larger amounts of money on them. Having never read anything by any of these fine ladies, I was very happy with this anthology and to discover some new (new to me) authors. I've seen these authors around the blogosphere and on the bookshelves, but hadn't read anything by them before.

***The Wedding of the Century by Mary Jo Putney (131 pages)--4 Stars

American heiress Sarah Vangelder made her British Society debut, but returns home without a match having turned down several offers. Even though she only spent an hour in the presence of Justin Aubrey, she made quite an impression. Such an impression that when his older brother dies leaving the dukedom to Justin, Justin immediately seeks out Sarah as a bride feeling that now he has a title he would finally be worthy of her. Sarah's mother accepts Justin's offer, but Sarah can barely remember the man! And she just accepted another man's offer!

I really enjoyed this story. I loved watching Sarah and Justin meet; even if it was forgettable to Sarah it was memorable to me. I loved watching Sarah and Justin getting to know each other. One thing that stood out to me is the wedding night disaster! Sarah's mother has given Sarah advice to just lay there...things don't go well.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
I love books with short stories as much as full novels by one sole author(ess).
I selected this book in particular because of one of the authors is Mary Jo Putney who I knew from other works by her that I loved.
A book with many stories permits me to know the working mind of authors that I didn't read before, and so perhaps I become a fan of them (my next list to on-line bookstores).
This multi-short-story book I humbly recommend as an entertainment for those breaks when you don't have much time for going through a full novel with long chapters and complex plot, sub-plots, sub-sub-plots... and the risk of losing the thread.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I purchased this book for the Mary Jo Putney story and read the entire book because the other stories were that good. Kristin James is a long time favorite, I'm happy to see her back in form. Charlotte Featherstone is a new author to me and I'll enjoy reading more of her books.

Characters are well developed by all three writers, because of the brevity allowed for the stories, there was no opportunity to explore the characters thoughts and development, however I feel that they were all handled well.

Enjoy!
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