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And Then He Kissed Her (Girl-Bachelor Series #1)

And Then He Kissed Her (Girl-Bachelor Series #1)

4.1 153
by Laura Lee Guhrke

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An expert in etiquette, Emma takes her pristine reputation most seriously.

But the devilish Lord Marlowe is determined to prove that some rules of proper behavior are made to be broken . . .


An expert in etiquette, Emma takes her pristine reputation most seriously.

But the devilish Lord Marlowe is determined to prove that some rules of proper behavior are made to be broken . . .

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Infuriated when she realizes that her publisher employer, Viscount Harrison Robert Marlowe, has been rejecting her manuscripts without reading them, aspiring writer and most efficient secretary Emmaline Dove resigns her post and is immediately hired to write a pseudonymous weekly etiquette column (as Mrs. Bartleby) for the widely read Social Gazette. Emma is thrilled until she learns that Harry has acquired the Gazetteand is once again her boss. Magnetic, appealing characters, delicious sexual sparring, and witty comments from The Bachelor's Guide(Lord Marlowe) and Advice to Girl Bachelors(Mrs. Bartleby) add sparkle to this thoroughly delightful Victorian that nicely touches on the social inequities of the times. Guhrke (She's No Princess) lives in Idaho.

—Kristin Ramsdell

Product Details

HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
Girl-Bachelor Series , #1
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2 MB

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Read an Excerpt

And Then He Kissed Her

By Laura Lee Guhrke

HarperCollins Publishers, Inc.

Copyright © 2007 Laura Lee Guhrke
All right reserved.

ISBN: 9780061143601

Chapter One

Working for a handsome man is fraught with difficulties. To those girl-bachelors so employed, I recommend an unflappable temperament, an unbreakable heart, and plenty of handkerchiefs.

Mrs. Bartleby
Advice to Girl-Bachelors, 1893

"Why?" The exotic, raven-haired creature in tangerine silk started to cry. "Why has he done this to me?"

Miss Emmaline Dove did not venture a reply to that question. Practical, as always, she saved her breath and pulled out a handkerchief. She handed it to the woman on the other side of the desk without a word.

Juliette Bordeaux, the now-former mistress of Emma's employer, Viscount Marlowe, snatched the offered square of cambric. "Six blissful months we have had together, and when I receive from his footman the pretty little box, I am happy. But then I find a letter with the present, a letter which ends our amour. Mon Dieu! He thinks with jewels to soften the blow that shatters my heart! How cruel he is!" She bent her head and sobbed with an abandonment that was wholly French and somewhat theatrical. "Oh, Harry!"

Emma shifted uncomfortably in her chair and cast a glance at the ormolu clock on her desk. Half past six. Marlowe could return any minute, and she wanted tospeak with him about her new manuscript before he went on to his sister's birthday party.

She was fairly certain he'd be back to his offices yet this evening. The present she had purchased for Lady Phoebe on his behalf was still here, wrapped and waiting. Unless he had forgotten the evening's festivities altogether, which she had to admit was not an unheard-of possibility, he had to fetch the gift from here before going home.

This was her best chance to speak with him, she knew, for he was leaving on the morrow for a week at his estate in Berkshire. With no meetings to be rushing off to and no deals to negotiate, and with his family remaining in town, he would have leisure time at Marlowe Park. Emma hoped the serene atmosphere of the country would put him in a more relaxed frame of mind and enable him to see her work in a more favorable light than he had in the past. It was worth a try anyway.

Emma's gaze moved to the typewriting machine on her credenza and the tidy stack of manuscript pages beside it. Her own birthday was only eight days from now, and if Marlowe agreed to publish her writing at last, what a wonderful birthday present that would be.

Suddenly, a vague disquiet stole over her, something so at odds with the delicious sense of anticipation she'd been savoring a moment before that Emma was startled. It was a feeling hard to define, but there was dissatisfaction in it, and a sense of restlessness.

She tried to dismiss it. Perhaps she was just afraid of another rejection. After all, Marlowe had rejected her four previous literary efforts. He felt etiquette books were unprofitable, but Emma knew that was because the advice offered in most of them was hopelessly old-fashioned, not at all in keeping with this modern age. In light of that, she had worked especially hard with her newest manuscript to create something fresh and current. If she could just explain to Marlowe why this new book would have pop-u-lar appeal, he might be more receptive to it, especially if he was then able to read it with no distractions in the relaxed atmosphere of the country.

Miss Bordeaux, however, showed no sign of departing. Emma studied the distraught woman on the other side of the desk, trying to find a polite way of getting her out the door. If Marlowe's former mistress was still here when he returned, the pair would no doubt have a row, any conversation Emma wished to have with her employer about her book would be impossible, and a golden opportunity would be lost.

Some might have deemed her inattention and lack of sympathy toward the woman opposite to be coldhearted. But that was not really so. As Marlowe's secretary for five years now, she had seen the viscount's mistresses come and go, and she had learned long ago that love had little to do with such arrangements. Miss Bordeaux was a cancan dancer in a music hall who accepted money from gentlemen in exchange for her favors. She could hardly expect love to result from such an illicit liaison.

But perhaps, Emma reflected, these observations were unfair. His lordship did have a potent effect upon many members of the female sex. Some of his appeal, no doubt, was due to the fact that he was one of Britain's rarest commodities: an eligible peer with money. But there was more to it than that. Whenever Harrison Robert Marlowe entered a room where women were present, there was always an inordinate amount of fluttering, hair-patting, and sighing.

Resting her elbow on the desk and her cheek in her hand, Emma considered her employer with thoughtful detachment as Miss Bordeaux continued to weep over him with dramatic fervor.

He was handsome. A woman would have to be blind not to notice that. His eyes, a most extraordinary shade of deep blue, were all the more striking because of his dark brown hair. He was a well-proportioned man, too, very tall, with fine, wide shoulders. He had wit and a boyish sort of charm, the latter trait enhanced by what could only be described as a devastating smile.

Emma imagined that smile without feeling any increase in the pace of her pulse, but she hadn't always been immune. There had been a time early in her employment with the viscount when she had felt that fluttering, feminine thrill at the sight of his smile. In the beginning, she had even patted her hair and sighed a time or two. But she'd realized early on that nothing honorable could come of such hopes. Aside from their difference . . .


Excerpted from And Then He Kissed Her by Laura Lee Guhrke Copyright © 2007 by Laura Lee Guhrke. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Meet the Author

Laura Lee Guhrke spent seven years in advertising, had a successful catering business, and managed a construction company before she decided writing novels was more fun. A New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, Laura has penned more than twenty historical romances. Her books have received many award nominations, and she is the recipient of romance fiction's highest honor: the Romance Writers of America RITA® Award. She lives in the Northwest with her husband (or, as she calls him, her very own romance hero), along with two diva cats and a Golden Retriever happy to be their slave.

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And Then He Kissed Her (Girl-Bachelor Series #1) 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 153 reviews.
BookaholicTracy More than 1 year ago
Unique plot, great writing. keeps you entertained
Guest More than 1 year ago
The 30 year-old spinster Miss Emmaline Dove is an efficient secretary to the handsome, sexy rogue and successful newspaper and businessman, Viscount Harry Marlowe. She has kept his extremely disorganized life in check, making him appear the most organized nobleman in society. His office and home run flawlessly. She purchases all of his personal gifts for family and mistresses, and even steps in as the role of comforter to those discarded. She takes comfort in her role and her ordered life, continuing to work for him in order to convince him to publish her book of etiquette. He turns down her most recent effort, published under the name of Mrs. Bartleby. When Emma asks for constructive criticism as to why the work was rejected, he responds with, 'Who is Mrs. Bartleby?' and she realizes he has never taken the time to read any of her manuscripts. Downhearted and then furious she resigns her position. When she enters a shop to purchase a beautiful peacock fan she has had her eye on for a long time, she discovers a beautiful young debutante is purchasing it. It is then that she realizes how much of her life has passed by while attending to the needs of Viscount Marlowe. Harry is beside himself! Where is his efficient, unremarkable and uncomplicated Emma? His life and most importantly, his schedule, is a mess. He is running late and missing appointments, documents are missing, and his staff is panicked. When he realizes that Emma has resigned, he is determined to get her back. When he arrives at her flat in order to convince her to return, Emma informs him she will be working for his most severe competition and will be writing her own weekly newspaper etiquette column in the Social Gazette. Emma's new job is a dream come true. She is an instant success! She no longer has to worry about that rogue Viscount Marlowe, and she has more money than she ever had before. Harry is even more miserable. Not only is his business and personal calendar a wreck, but now he has to spend his breakfast listening to his mother and sisters constantly praise Mrs. Bartleby! Seeing that he cannot lure Emma back as his secretary, he purchases the Social Gazette. Emma is suddenly in constant contact with Harry and is troubled by growing feelings of attraction. Harry is beginning to wonder why Emma is appearing more attractive. Desire and passion build and soon Emma is in the arms of Harry. Harry is in heaven with his Emma. When Emma agrees to become his mistress, he purchases a cottage away from the city where they spend idyllic weekends. But can Emma continue to hide Mrs. Bartleby's true identity and her affair with Harry from her friends? When Harry realizes that he truly loves Emma, can he take the step from lover to husband? And Then He Kissed Her is Laura Lee Guhrke's best novel to date. It is a well-developed pleasurable read that grabs hold of the reader from the first page to the very end. It is sexy and witty with strong characters throughout. This is a book not to be missed!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Very engaging story with humours characters.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was a great unique story! I enjoyed it thoroughly! The main characters were believable and likable. This is the first novel i have read by this author but it wont be the last!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Fianlly, a book that is pure romance! It was all about the main characters and their evolving love, nothing about murder plots or the like. I couldn't stop reading it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book offers lots of steamy scenes with genuine romance. The characters develop over the course of the book and the relationship grows out of intimacy, sexual and otherwise. Some might criticize such 'modern' seeming sensibilities in a Victorian setting, but there truly were pioneers who blazed the paths for women in the workplace, equitable relations between the sexes, and, yes, the now venerable institution of divorce.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed this book. The love scenes were steamy but well done. I think this could have done with a few more pages to wrap up some of the sub-plots at the end. This was worth the read and I will read this again.
Lulu_Burroughs More than 1 year ago
I'm not a fan of the late Victorian time period, but I decided to give this book a try based on the reviews. I'm glad I did because it was a wonderful read with a heroine that's spunky but vulnerable and a hero that's a bit to sure of his appeal but learns a needed lesson. The writing is great and the plot refreshing and witty.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This was my first book by this author and has inspired me to purchase & read all of her books. Very witty, adorable romance, thoroughly enjoyed it and would highly recommend it if you are looking for a good romance read. Has the right amounts of humor, love, etc...
Julietsaf More than 1 year ago
I loved this book. The author created a beautiful story...but why is the cover image portray the complete opposite of the female character in the book? I won't say it directly, but anyone else see what I am seeing? I think the person in charge of the cover should have been given some info...
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love how Harry and Emma's story of love unfolded. Sweet romance without anything else was refreshing. A must read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The title and then he kissed her, well that doesnt happen untill over half the book is over.....the ending seemed rushed and it got really slow in spots, was worth a read but it def lacked that WOW factor, not my fav author prob wont buy anymore of her books, not my style of writting i enjoy reading.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved it
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Harry and emma are intriguing characters. Harry is humorous and kind while emma is very reserved. The story progresses to a great love story with lots of romance. I only which the ending was more detailed. However, since this is part of a series it may be mentioned in the next book. This is the first book i have read by this author. Well written!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great read
regencyromantic1 More than 1 year ago
i completely enjoyed this book. I great read from beginning to end. Definitely worth your time and money.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This author is pretty new to me, so comparisons are not plentiful. I liked the main character (Miss Dove); him not so much. He was pretty spoiled and selfish, but he did "grow" on me. I liked that the they at least got a pretty goods ways into the story before they fell into bed. Then felt like it ended too soon. Overall though, an enjoyable read.
birdie80 More than 1 year ago
I have now read every book b y this author. If I remember correctly these books can be bought in sets of three, which is a savings.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Shortstride More than 1 year ago
Boring-g-g-g-g-! Like a bad note passed in Jr. High. Do you love me? Circle yes or no. What can I say? I didn't like it and I know Laura Lee Guhrke is better than this.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love reading this series! I just wish she would release them to Barnes and Noble at the same time that Amazon gets them. It's torture waiting
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I've read some of this author's other books, liked all, loved a couple, and this is a  very good one. Very likable characters, especially the heroine, very good chemistry, good storyline, really  entertaining. Can't wait to read the next one in this series!