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Every Scandalous Secret (Scandalous Lady) Mass Market Paperback – September 27, 2011

4.1 out of 5 stars 17 customer reviews
Book 3 of 3 in the Scandalous Lady Series

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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

The secretis out! Now thelady mustsurrender her heart . . .or submit to scandal.

About the Author

After a detour through fitness instructing and computer programming, Gayle Callen found the life she'd always dreamed of as a romance writer. This USA Today bestselling author has written more than twenty historical romances for Avon Books, and her novels have won the Holt Medallion, the Laurel Wreath Award, the Booksellers' Best Award, and been translated into eleven different languages. The mother of three grown children, an avid crafter, singer, and outdoor enthusiast, Gayle lives in Central New York with her dog, Uma, and her husband, Jim the Romance Hero. She also writes contemporary romances as Emma Cane.

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Product Details

  • Series: Scandalous Lady (Book 3)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Avon; Original edition (September 27, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061783455
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061783456
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1 x 6.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #798,653 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Mass Market Paperback
I admit that this book was a little hard for me to get through at times. I just loved the beginning of this book. I am a big fan of banter between characters and this book was chocked full of it in the beginning. I thoroughly enjoyed watching Leo and Susanna go back and forth with each other. But once I got to the middle it's where things seemed to slow down for me significantly. It just seemed to drag on for a few chapters and there wasn't anymore of the banter between Leo and Susanna. By the time I got to the last third of the book everything picked up again I really began to enjoy Leo and Susanna again.

I honestly love the character of Leo. He's just so forth-coming and honest about things. He isn't ashamed of his past and he doesn't make excuses. I really enjoyed watching him pursue Susanna at the house party. We also saw a different side of Leo in this book. In previous books he perceived as a Rake who doesn't really give a damn about anything, but in this book we were able to see that he's actually very intelligent. I secretly love it when the ton rake turns out to be a hidden scholar. I just love a smart and intelligent hero!

As for Susanna, I had my ups and downs with her. I loved her in the beginning of the book. She is a bluestocking and isn't ashamed of it. In fact, while at the country house party she is giving painting lessons. She seems so confident and self-assured. Then, all of a sudden when her and Leo get together she loses all of that. She becomes sort of a downer and is constantly questioning her actions and whether Leo's feelings are real. What happened to the confident self-assured woman I came to love?

As I said before, my favorite part of this book was experiencing all of the banter between Leo and Susanna.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Every Scandalous Secret is a hero's journey from being a person who seems to have no redeeming qualities to becoming a person who loves unconditionally and who has worthy goals and purpose in life. At first this seems to be a story about the ordinary Regency doings... then hints of deeper, more intense, and more fearful issues seep in.

The reader is swept into a unique battle of wits between two very intelligent, determined protagonists and soon feels a chemistry that takes the challenges far afield of the wager concerning a nude painting on display in a gentlemen's club in London.

Susanna Leland, the cousin of the Duke of Madingley, is well-known as a bluestocking, an artist, and most likely a forevermore spinster. Yet, she is at Lord and Lady Bramsfield's house party, with other much-younger ladies, shopping for a "suitable" husband. She promised her family (and herself) she would try once more. But she does have "standards"--none of which Mr. Leo Wade seems to meet.

Mr. Leo Wade's usual pursuits in London have become dull and predictable. His new venture holds promise. He follows Susanna to the house party, wrangles an invitation and sets in to win the wager while having a good time flirting with the women, trying to seduce Susanna, as always avoiding the marriage trap. He feels confident in winning a wager with his two friends Peter Derby and Lord Parkhurst. Little did he know how far Susanna would got to protect her young sister Rebecca and her cousin Elizabeth.

The strict rules of Regency time change things for both Susanna and Leo. They must make the best of what each is sure a BAD situation, but Leo Wade's sense of honor (that few realize he has) will not allow him to do less than what is expected.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
I couldn't wait to finish this book - as in "how much more of this crap do I have to read?" If I wasn't going to review it, I would have chunked it after the first 60 pages - not even donated it to the library, its patrons deserve better.

Gayle Callen's "Every Scandalous Secret" is apparently the third novel in a series, regarding a wager to discover the identity of a nude painting's female model. It begins at a house party, with Leo Wade, our hero, trying to seduce the truth out of Susanna Leland, our heroine, and takes us on a very slow, frustrating, and looooong walk to happily-ever-after.

This book has MAJOR issues. For starters, the story is too drawn out, filled with uneventful events, unnecessary descriptions of and interactions with secondary characters, needlessly lengthy introspections, contrived internal struggles, and constantly encountered, excessive references to the "artistic capabilities" and "superior mind" of our heroine. This 373 page book could have done a lot more for the reader if its editor had slashed 100 pages.

Susanna Leland is a judgmental, conceited, self-centered, insecure harpy - a frustrating character who is trying to find a husband with whom she has a companionable relationship; a husband who has "intellectual pursuits," and appreciates her "intelligent mind" and "art." This is where Callen errs. The author spends the entire novel telling the reader that Susanna is different, intelligent, older, an artist, and so on, but fails to actually show the reader how her female character embodies these characteristics. In fact, Callen manages the opposite.

Susanna's behavior and actions throughout the book make her out to be immature, obtuse, insentient, and obstinate.
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