Lessons in Seduction

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Overview

What is a lady to do when her chosen rake changes her lessons in seduction to lessons of love?

Book two in the Once Upon an Accident series

Cecily Ware understands how society works. At the age of twenty-six, she has been around long enough to know that she is doomed to spinsterhood. But she refuses to go without ever knowing what it is like to be with a man. So she comes up with a wonderful plan to find a ...

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Overview

What is a lady to do when her chosen rake changes her lessons in seduction to lessons of love?

Book two in the Once Upon an Accident series

Cecily Ware understands how society works. At the age of twenty-six, she has been around long enough to know that she is doomed to spinsterhood. But she refuses to go without ever knowing what it is like to be with a man. So she comes up with a wonderful plan to find a rake to teach her, complete with a list of possibilities. At the top of that list sits Douglas the Duke of Ethingham.

When he asks Lady Cecily to waltz, Douglas never expected her to request seduction, or that it would intrigue him quite as much. With each glance, each smile, each touch, he finds himself falling under her spell, unable to resist her lure. In her he finds a soul mate, someone as lonely as he is, who understands his pain, and will give herself to him without demands or expectations.

But as he finds himself falling in love, he also discovers a wicked plot to kill Lady Cicely. As they race to discover who wants her dead, they fall deeper in love, leaving them to decide if the lessons in seduction could lead to a lifetime of happiness.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781599985602
  • Publisher: Samhain Publishing
  • Publication date: 1/15/2008
  • Pages: 244
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.55 (d)

Read an Excerpt

Lessons in Seduction


By Melissa Schroeder

Samhain Publishing, Ltd.

Copyright © 2007 Melissa Schroeder
All right reserved.

ISBN: 978-1-59998-560-2


Chapter One

Douglas, Duke of Ethingham, was every matchmaking mama's dream come true and nightmare rolled into one delectable package. Cicely had always thought him attractive, although she'd only observed him from a comfortable distance. Since the familial connection between he and Colleen had been revealed, he'd become a regular fixture at the Penwyth townhouse and estate. Cicely and he had become acquaintances of a sort. He rescued her from being a wallflower. She saved him from debutantes and mamas.

She watched him walk through the crowded ballroom, the candlelight caressing his sculpted facial features. From where she stood, his eyes looked ordinary grey. But, she knew about the hint of blue around the iris of his eye and the way it lightened even more when he laughed. Her heart skipped a beat as he headed in her direction.

"You would think he would have been caught by someone by now."

Cicely jumped, startled by the familiar faint whisper in her right ear, then looked over her shoulder at her aunt Victoria. Petite, yet rounded, Victoria was still the beauty she had been in her youth. While fine lines around most ladies' eyes would make them appear older, it just added character to Victoria's face.

They were much the same height, yet Cicely always felt like an elephant next to her. She turned back around but realized she'd lost sight of Douglas. Disappointed, she gave her attention back to her aunt, an empty feeling lining her gut. He had seen her. She knew it. But, he'd seen something better. She tried to push the negative thoughts from her mind and focus on her aunt.

"I have a feeling that His Grace will not be caught unless he wants to be caught."

Victoria laughed and stepped forward to stand beside Cicely. "That much we agree. Still, he is getting to the point where he should think about putting up a nursery. He is the end of his line. Well, the only one worth anything anyway. I know there is a cousin or two somewhere, but rumor is they are as ghastly as his father and grandfather."

Something cold slithered into Cicely's stomach and settled there. Not from her aunt's description of Douglas' extended family, but rather from the thought of him with another woman. She knew he had to marry, though she had hoped it would not be so soon. At least not until after he helped her with her plan. Okay, really never. If he did have to wed, sharing one memorable night with him would be enough for her to endure whatever simpering fool he married.

She cleared her throat delicately. "His Grace has said before he does not intend to marry for some time."

When Victoria didn't respond, Cicely glanced at her. A mysterious smile played about her aunt's lips.

"You know what they say, Cicely. The right woman could make any man change his mind."

She doubted any woman would change the duke's mind, but she nodded just to agree and get the conversation moving. Knowing that this would probably disintegrate into another discussion on her lack of beaus, something that apparently confused her aunt, Cicely decided to change the subject.

"Did I tell you about the diary I found today at the bookstore?"

Victoria gave her a knowing look but said nothing about her lack of tact. "No, you didn't."

"It was quite amazing I found it because it was buried at the bottom of a crate. The proprietor told me he'd bought it at some estate sale."

"Really?" Victoria's attention had now turned back to the dancers on the floor, but Cicely knew that her aunt had a habit of keeping one eye on her surroundings and her ear to the conversation.

"It is more an accounting than a personal diary. I am not sure what it means or if it is real. But it seems that one of five men kept a diary while they conspired against the throne about the time of the Terror. I have no idea from where they came, but I think they may be very significant."

The first strains of a waltz sounded before Victoria could answer. Cicely really hated this dance. While she sometimes had requests for country dances from various cousins and gentlemen she knew from The Historical Society, she rarely was asked to waltz.

"Lady Cicely."

She glanced over her shoulder to find Douglas standing to her left, a smile curving his beautiful lips. Curling her toes into her slippers, she told her heart to stop doing flip-flops. All she could do was stare at him. His wavy dark hair never seemed to stay in place, yet always looked tidy. The mischievous twinkle in his eye sent heat racing up her spine. A few murmurs reached her and brought her out of her stupor. It was then she realized her faux pas. Flushing, she curtsied.

"Your Grace."

He took her offered hand and waited for her to rise before asking, "Would you honor me with this dance?"

She didn't pretend not to hear the whispers growing louder. Accustomed to them or not, they were still disturbing. Regardless, she held her head high and looked him right in the eye. "I would be delighted to dance with you, Your Grace."

He led her out to the dance floor and within moments they were whirling with the other dancers. The feel of his strong hand providing gentle pressure on her waist, his body close to hers made her head spin. The heat of him warmed her front, though she tried not to think about it. Her body already tingled, and she knew from experience she lost all thought when that happened.

"I owe you a world of thanks, Lady Cicely." He smiled down at her, a genuine smile because the man thought she was no threat to his bachelorhood. And she wasn't. She didn't want marriage, but she did want him. "Lady Sara has been after me since I walked in the door and I shudder to think what would happen if I had to dance with her."

She tried not to laugh, but she couldn't help it. "You should be ashamed of yourself, Your Grace. She cannot help it that she can't dance."

"I danced with her last week and my feet will never be the same. Who would have thought such a small woman could inflict that much pain?" He shook his head and chuckled, clearly amused with himself. "So I am serious when I tell you I owe you a boon."

This was almost too good to be true. "You will grant me a favor in return?"

He nodded and expertly twirled them around a slower couple. She licked her lips and numbly followed his lead. Truthfully, she knew he thought nothing of the offer. In Douglas' mind, she was sure he assumed she might ask for a ride in the park, or the use of his box at the theater. This had been handed to her on her silver dancing card.

"Your Grace?"

He leaned closer to hear her. She normally didn't speak that loud, but with the sound of the orchestra, not to mention the fact she was out of breath from dancing, she understood he was having problems hearing her.

"I call in your boon. I do have a favor to ask of you."

Nodding, he straightened and again twirled her around. "Ask and you shall receive."

"I was wondering, if you wouldn't mind, would you teach me how to seduce a man?"

(Continues...)



Excerpted from Lessons in Seduction by Melissa Schroeder Copyright © 2007 by Melissa Schroeder. 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.

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Customer Reviews

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 61 Customer Reviews
  • Posted March 30, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Lessons in Seduction turned more into lessons in disappointments

    I'm just going to come right out and say it.I was disappointed. More I think from my own built up expectations of what this book would be about than anything drastically wrong with what the author wrote. I expected Lessons in Seduction to be.well, mostly about lessons in seduction.
    I adored Lady Cicely and thought her approach to experiencing desire fit her personality despite taking place in the stringent rules of the Regency period. She views herself as a plain spinster, and has issues with her looks and her body, all created and reinforced by her unloving and demented mother. She has resigned herself to living a single status despite her generous dowry due to scandals in her family. So, the oh so proper and bookish Lady Cicely approaches the Duke of Ethingham because he is the man she has secretly been in love with and is her first choice in a list of potential lovers. He does not respond well to her request, and denies her despite not wanting another to be the first to experience her passion.
    Douglas, the Duke of Ethingham considers Lady Cicely a family friend, and until her makeover /transformation doesn't even consider her for her looks.as if she were a backdrop in his life; always there, but disregarded.a convenience when avoiding matchmaking mothers and their eligible daughters. He has secretly vowed never to marry because of the bad genes inherently passed down to each generation; cruelty and vice cultivated from father to son...from Duke to Duke. Consequently, he is passably happy with his bachelor existence.

    All of these things are what I loved about the story. Unfortunately the plot also involved a dangerously hidden secret society that had planned to over throw the monarchy in England much like what had happened in France. Lady Cicely finds an old diary that divulges thoughts, plans, ideas, and actions taken by this society and finds herself and the book hunted and in perilous danger.

    I felt that this addition to the story was completely unnecessary, and while adequately written, was a disappointing distraction to what I felt was the better story; Cicely and Douglas overcoming their beliefs and finding love. The reader is told that Cicely is in love with her Duke without much to base it upon, and Douglas's love seems to be solely based on her attractiveness after her transformation. I never felt that the "lessons in seduction" changed into "lessons in love" which is why for me this book was a lesson in dissatisfaction.

    There was so much potential in this story because of each of their pasts, and even thinking back on the novel after some time has passed I'm just as disappointed. Part of that could be because of the enticing blurb and Samhain "Warning", that I based my expectations on, and that it had been sitting in my TBR for a very long time despite my desire to read this book. probably even building it up in my mind to be more than what it could ever possibly live up to. In that respect I have to take part of the responsibility for my disillusionment, but I also strongly believe that Lessons in Seduction would have been a much better story if it would have been solely about Cicely and Douglas and ditched the whole plot of the diary and the danger surrounding it. Maybe the story was trying to be too much for the length of the book (even though Samhain classifies it as a novel) and as a result the romance (not the love scenes but the interaction between the H/h) and reasons for love were sacr

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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