The Second Seduction of a Lady
By Miranda Neville
Publisher: Avon Impulse
October 16, 2012
Max Quentin is spending a few weeks in Somerset winding up his guardianship of young Robert Townsend, who is looking forward to his twenty-first birthday. Max has spent five years regretting a foolish bet that he accepted against his better instincts because he needed the money. How could he have known that the lady he’d bet he could seduce into granting a kiss would be the very woman whose grace and intelligence seduced him into thoughts of marriage? The lady’s discovery of the bet put an end to Max’s plans for the future, but he has never stopped longing for a second chance. He just never expected to find the lady of his dreams taking a stroll on Townsend property.
Max may be pleased when he realizes the woman who reminded him of Eleanor actually is Eleanor, but Eleanor wants nothing to do with him. He greets her with open arms; she greets him by shoving him into the river. But even a plunge into cold water is not enough to cool Max’s ardor. Fate has given him a second chance to seduce Eleanor into marriage, and this time he’s determined to succeed. Meanwhile, Eleanor thinks young Townsend is just the person for Caro’s first innocent flirtation, and Max thinks if Robert harmlessly flirts with Caro, Max will have more time in Eleanor’s company. Can they have forgotten how real and impetuous young love can be?
Miranda Neville has become one of my never-fail authors. Both Max and Eleanor are intelligent strong-minded, and imperfect, qualities I associate with most of Neville’s characters. I loved them both and particularly enjoyed that they were a bit older than the typical hero and heroine. Reunion romances are my favorites, in part because I like a hero and heroine who share a history. And this second seduction is marvelous.In fact, the only thing that I regretted about this story was that the reader didn’t see more of the first seduction. “The Second Seduction of a Lady” is a novella, a mere six chapters, and it serves as a prequel to The Importance of Being Wicked, the first book in Neville's new late-Georgian quartet about art collectors. I wanted more of Max and Eleanor. I would have been happy with a full-length novel.
The novella releases today. It’s a bargain read at $1.99, and it includes a two-chapter excerpt of The Importance of Being Wicked, which is set for release on November 27, with Caro as the heroine. I’ve read TIOBW and adored it. That review will be coming soon. For now, I do recommend “The Second Seduction of a Lady.” It’s a delicious souspeçon, an appetizer for the terrific main dish of a story that’s six weeks from release
Prequel novellas are becoming quite popular. Do you like them, or do they leave you wishing for a fuller story?