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A Perfect Secret (Rogue Hearts) (Volume 3) Paperback – December 14, 2013
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From the Inside Flap
Immerse yourself in the Regency Romance era of Jane Austen and Lord Byron. Donna Hatch's historical romance romance novels will sweep you away into a magical new world.These meticulously researched and beautifully written Regency romance novels will transport you into the glittering world of Regency England, a unique era of British history.
Every "sweet" or PG-rated historical romance penned by Donna Hatch brings feisty heroines and tortured heroes together into a glorious happily ever after.
Dance with a duke, battle pirates, save a kingdom, and fall in love.
Believe in happily ever after.
About the Author
Author of Historical Romance and Fantasy, award-winning author Donna Hatch is a sought-after speaker and workshop presenter. Her writing awards include the Golden Rose and the prestigious Golden Quill. Her passion for writing began at age 8 she wrote her first short story, and she wrote her first full-length novel during her sophomore year in high school, a fantasy which was later published. In between caring for six children, (7 counting her husband), her day job, her work as a freelance editor and copywriter, and her many volunteer positions, she still makes time to write. After all, writing IS an obsession. All of her heroes are patterned after her husband of over 20 years, who continues to prove that there really is a happily ever after.
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Top Customer Reviews
In Georgian England, mutiny is a hanging offense. Officers on a ship engaged in mutiny are often hanged for their part, however large or small. Genevieve's father hides the fact that at 17 he allows a mutiny to happen under his charge. The horribly slithery Lord Wickburgh has discovered the fact and uses it to force Genevieve to marry him, both to torment her in the safety of his home, and to deny Christian his one true love.
What's a girl to do? Either she marries sadistic Wickburgh and denies herself any hope of happiness and saves her father from the noose, or she follows her heart and her father and thus the family go down in ignominy. She chooses to cut Christian off and sacrifice herself in aid of her father.
But she never thought how horrible Wickburgh could be, not in her wildest dreams did she imagine she would be tortured, beaten, imprisoned, and forced to watch those she loved die under the fist of her despotic husband. She finally cannot stand another day and takes matters into her own hands.
Christian rides to her rescue only to find that it's his faithless sweetheart, the one he'd given up as a jilt.
I enjoyed the pace of this book, the twists, the love Christian shows the girl he never really stopped loving, and his loyalty to her. I liked that Donna allowed Wickburgh one saving grace--that he was a man of his word. It rounded the monster out a bit. I would have liked to know Wickburgh's motive, however. I get that we don't always know what lies behind evil like a giant abscess, but in this case it would have helped make him a tiny bit more rounded and explained his drive to own, torture, and then kill Genevieve.
I like that Christian isn't just a one-dimensional pretty boy as well. He has his own demons to banish.
I also enjoyed that despite being so victimized, Genevieve could pick herself up, brush herself off, and shoot the man beating up on her. I want to think that I might do that, in spite of all my battered body parts and the power he has previously wielded over me.
I had a difficult time trying to put this one down and I can't wait to read other offerings by Donna Hatch. Thank you!
This is the third book in the Rogues Heart Series. Christian is one of the side characters in the previous book, “The Guise of a Gentleman”, and seemed the perfect man—handsome, liked by everyone, and able to help save his brother’s life; just the man every woman would love and want to be loved by. So when I saw the next book in the series featured him as the hero I couldn’t wait to read it. Unfortunately I found the basic premise of the story so unbelievable it was all I could do to force myself to keep reading hoping it would get better. After all, I have loved all the previous books and was sure the story would improve.
Really, the reader could skip the first six chapters of the book and start at chapter seven and not miss much except the inner pain of watching the characters do the dumbest things in their life.
***************WARNING***SPOILERS AHEAD***STOP NOW IF YOU DON’T WANT TO READ THEM********************
To sum up the opening plot: Christian finally meets the girl of his dreams and asks her to marry him. Genevieve loves him so much her life is finally complete and she is flying around the house in glee because he is going to ask her father for her hand that day. She overhears her father arguing with a local Viscount and eavesdrops. She hears the evil Viscount blackmailing her father over a crime he committed while in the navy and wants a huge amount of money. She can’t tolerate the Viscount because he is always staring at her like he wants to eat her up. She steps in to intervene and the Viscount changes his requirements to having her marry him that same day. He shows them the letter his brother wrote on his deathbed confessing his part in the crime and her father’s responsibility since he had been their commanding officer at the time. Her mother has a heart condition and the scandal would kill her, and Christian comes from a ducal family and Genevieve fears he would never marry her if the scandal came out. The letter gets handed around for each person to read. Genevieve tries to throw it into the fireplace but there is no fire so the Viscount grabs it back. The Viscount has a special marriage license with him and the wedding is to take place in a few hours at his house. She writes Christian a letter telling him she had been using him to get the Viscount’s attention, she didn’t love him, and would not be marrying him. He rushes to the scene of the wedding but she tells him she doesn’t love him and wants to marry a man with a title and become a Viscount’s wife. As Christian is leaving he is beaten up by four thugs and told to stay away from the Viscount. He is left with a tiny scar near one eye and that is the only imperfection in his perfect face. A year later, hundreds of miles away, Genevieve tries to commit suicide by jumping into a roiling river. Christian is riding buy and sees a woman jump into the river and jumps in to save her. He takes her to his brother’s home. After they both recover he is there when she wakes up and coldly tells her to go back to her husband. We learn she has lost a baby but he doesn’t know that.
That covers the first 60 pages of the book.
1. The only proof of the father’s wrongdoing is a deathbed confession by one of the participants
2. It is the only copy, written on paper, but no one thinks to just tear it up
3. The girl thinks Christian, the perfect man, could not forgive her for her father’s mistake
4. The blackmailing Viscount and Father are talking in a room with the door open, loud enough for anyone in the vicinity to hear—blackmail doesn’t work unless it is kept secret.
5. The Viscount wants money at first but when Genevieve intervenes for her father he changes it to a demand for her to marry him. Today! And he just happens to have a special license in his pocket. Really?
6. Genevieve is stupid enough to agree to the wedding thinking it will save her Mother from dying of her heart disease. Won’t her mother die anyway when she marries an awful man that afternoon? Talk about a shock to the system.
7. What kind of man is her father that he would allow her to do that?
8. A year later Genevieve’s suicide attempt takes place just as Christian is riding by—what????
9. Christian would risk his life for a woman he doesn’t recognize but act in a hateful manner to a woman he used to love who has obviously been abused?
I know every plot has to have a problem to be overcome, but this set up is so full of holes it is painful to read. In a real world they would all need lots of therapy! The reader knows they will eventually fall in love again but the setup makes them look so stupid why would we even care about them? Why should the reader invest the energy of reading the story “hoping” it will get better? What a bummer. I’ve lost all respect for Christian and he should walk away from the woman immediately.
But now you can start reading at the beginning of chapter seven and I’m sure the rest of the story will be wonderful—I hope.
OK, I finished the book. It has a really good ending. That’s the best I can say about it. Genevieve, Christian, and towards the end Genevieve’s father all are too overcome by their self guilt, to the point I got tired of reading about it. Her mother went through at least three horrendous and terrifying situations and came out perfectly OK. You know there will be a HEA because this is a Regency Romance and they all come out OK. If there is another book in this series I will read it because I love the brothers that have been the main characters in each book. I’m sure there can’t be a worse plot than this one had.
The writing was a little maudlin; and there were a few strange typos that kind of took me out of the story: at the wedding they came out of the wedding breakfast to leave but it sounded like they came out of the church to get in their carriage. ??? The breakfast is usually at the house.
The book was clean with no sex, I don’t think there was any foul language, but there is a shootout at the end there are hints of wife abuse but they all fit into the story and aren’t very shocking.
Oh well, I’m glad it is over and I can move on to the next book, “The Suspect’s Daughter”.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Desperate to protect her father from trial and death, Genevieve breaks off her engagement with Christian Amesbury and marries a blackmailer.Read more