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Vixen in Velvet (The Dressmakers Series) Mass Market Paperback – June 24, 2014

4.2 out of 5 stars 107 customer reviews
Book 3 of 3 in the Dressmakers Series

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

*Starred Review* Nothing is more important to Leonie Noirot than Maison Noirot, the London dress shop Leonie owns with her two sisters. Leonie spends her every waking moment balancing the ledgers and thinking of ways to keep the shop in the black. Securing new clients is one way to keep Maison Noirot one step ahead of the competition, and giving Lady Gladys Fairfax a much-needed fashion makeover will demonstrate to the rest of the ladies in the ton the superiority of Maison Noirot’s designs. The only wild card in Leonie’s otherwise carefully calibrated plan is Glady’s cousin, Simon Blair, the marquess of Lisburne. Whichever way Leonie turns, the sinfully sexy nobleman seems to be constantly underfoot, distracting Leonie with some nonsensical ideas about all work and no play. With her gorgeously rendered prose, flawless sense of characterization, and rare gift for effortlessly matching sparkling wit and seductive passion, Chase will once again charm readers into swooning with delight. In a world of off-the-rack romance creations, Vixen in Velvet, the latest in Chase’s Dressmakers series, is a bespoke masterpiece. --John Charles

Review

“There’s something so enchanting about the story, the characters and their relationships that makes Vixen in Velvet more than a love story; it’s joyous.” (Romantic Times BOOKclub, 4.5 stars)

“A new release by Miss Chase is cause to celebrate and Vixen in Velvet has all of Loretta Chase’s trademark style--humor, witticism, delightful sexual chemistry, and fascinating characters.” (Heroes and Heartbreakers)
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Product Details

  • Series: The Dressmakers Series (Book 3)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Avon; Reissue edition (June 24, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0062100327
  • ISBN-13: 978-0062100320
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1 x 6.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (107 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #370,750 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By OLT TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on June 27, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
(4.5 stars) This is a real romance and it's HR writing par excellence. It's also a book with a lovely hero, not the usual jerk I've been finding lately in HRs. This is not, however, a 5-star book for me. I gave it 5 stars because it deserves more than 4, although it didn't give me that extra thrill that Chase's classic Lord of Scoundrels did long ago. But if I compare this to most other HRs I've read lately, it may deserve 6 stars.

Leonie is the third Noirot dressmaking sister to find her true love, after Marcelline in Silk Is For Seduction (Avon Historical Romance) and Sophy in Scandal Wears Satin (Avon Historical Romance). She's the businesswoman/number-cruncher of the dressmaking business, Marcelline being the creative genius and Sophy the marketer/promoter. Numbers and neat columns, credits and debits, weighing pros and cons of everything, that's Leonie's life.

But it's a lonely life now that Marcelline and Sophy are married and much less involved in their dressmaking business. Her sisters' husbands would prefer that the three sisters, including Leonie, leave the business and devote themselves to life in the peerage. But Leonie can't even consider that possibility. "It hurt, physically, to think of abandoning it. The shop was her link to Cousin Emma. She'd made them into a family and taught them to have a real life... How could Leonie give that up? It would be like giving up some part of her heart.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I've loved just about every novel Loretta Chase has written and I enjoyed this one, too. Still, it was a little deflating. I expected Leonie to exhibit the same pizzazz as her sisters in the previous two books and she just didn't, not for me, anyway.

I liked Leonie. I admired her. But she just lacked the sparkle, the panache of her sisters. With very little participation by Marcelline and Sophie, always a feature of their stories, Leonie was sort of cast adrift to carry her story by herself...and she just seemed a little flat to me. I think this was the main problem, actually. In the previous novels, the sisters had been so closely entwined. They were so together against the world! Even after Marcelline married, there was still the ongoing connection, their support for each other.

Lisburne was all that we like in a hero, but he couldn't carry the load all by himself. After her introduction in Sophie's story, I expected Gladys (Lady Clara) to produce some uproarious scenes, but no, this seemed to be only a small table-setter for her story.

This was a pretty fair story and many readers have enjoyed it, so did I. I just wasn't carried away by it. Had I not read the earlier books, I think I would have thought this a good standalone. I had read them, though, and as I said, perhaps I was just expecting too much. I loved the others and I *am* in line for Clara's story.
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Just as in the first two books, fashion plays key role in this installment of The Dressmakers series. In a clever spin on the ugly duckling turned swan trope, the youngest and yet unwed Noirot sister Leonie decides to bolster the success of the family business by making over Lady Gladys Fairfax, a fashion-challenged noblewoman whose first season was a spectacular failure.

The story offers a nice change of pace with the hero who has had a solid relationship with his father and who isn't tormented by deep psychological issues. But, I wish he didn't initially view his pursuit of Leonie as a way to pass the time he had to spend in London. With her two sisters married to noblemen, he should have realized she was no ordinary shopkeeper, and that the only reason for her to keep the family business a going concern was sentimental. I was appeased somewhat, at the end of the book, when she made him work for their happily ever after.

Minor quibbles aside, the romance is light, banter between characters witty, and plot flows effortlessly, making this novel a perfect summer read.
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I've loved the first two books in Chase's "Dressmaker" series and eagerly anticipated the release of Leonie Noirot's book. "Vixen in Velvet" started off with such promise; the first chapter held my attention and immediately set the stage for attraction and banter between Leonie and Simon, the Marquess of Lisburne. In fact, I would say the first 40% of this book was excellent and up to par with the earlier 2 books in the series. But sadly, the well set-up story arc fizzled into the mundane. If you've enjoyed the series, then you're going to need to read this book, but it's likely to be you're least favorite. Also, you really should read the previous 2 stories before reading this book. "Vixen in Velvet" offers only a glimpse of the historic struggles that the sisters of Maison Noirot have endured; and Chase gives the barest details of the sisters' relationships and previous storylines. All that being said, Chase is still an excellent writer and the book moved along and was enjoyed. It simply wasn't all that memorable and I don't think Chase ever truly developed Leonie into a unique, unforgettable character.

***SPOILER ALERT - DON'T READ FURTHER IF YOU DON'T WANT TO LEARN SOME PLOT DETAILS***

I have a few key issues with this story that made it fall flat for me.
1) Sophie does not appear in this book until the very last chapter and I don't even recall a line of dialogue. Marcelline might as well have been left out because she adds nothing to the story the few times she appears. The series went from having the sisters' relationships being a central (and enriching) part of the series to Leonie standing alone. I greatly missed the other sisters, who were each such strong and interesting characters.
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