Never a Bride

( 125 )

Overview

Set in London during the captivating Regencyperiod, Never a Bride is an exhilarating tale of a young woman who steals as many kisses as she possibly can-and the dashing man who steals her heart.
Read More Show Less
... See more details below
Available through our Marketplace sellers.
Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (32) from $1.99   
  • Used (32) from $1.99   
Close
Sort by
Page 1 of 4
Showing 1 – 10 of 32 (4 pages)
Note: Marketplace items are not eligible for any BN.com coupons and promotions
$1.99
Seller since 2010

Feedback rating:

(3864)

Condition:

New — never opened or used in original packaging.

Like New — packaging may have been opened. A "Like New" item is suitable to give as a gift.

Very Good — may have minor signs of wear on packaging but item works perfectly and has no damage.

Good — item is in good condition but packaging may have signs of shelf wear/aging or torn packaging. All specific defects should be noted in the Comments section associated with each item.

Acceptable — item is in working order but may show signs of wear such as scratches or torn packaging. All specific defects should be noted in the Comments section associated with each item.

Used — An item that has been opened and may show signs of wear. All specific defects should be noted in the Comments section associated with each item.

Refurbished — A used item that has been renewed or updated and verified to be in proper working condition. Not necessarily completed by the original manufacturer.

Very Good
Book shows a small amount of wear - very good condition.Selection as wide as the Mississippi.

Ships from: St Louis, MO

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Canadian
  • International
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
$1.99
Seller since 2010

Feedback rating:

(3864)

Condition: Good
Ex-Library Book - will contain Library Markings. Book has a small amount of wear visible on the binding, cover, pages.Selection as wide as the Mississippi.

Ships from: St Louis, MO

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Canadian
  • International
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
$1.99
Seller since 2010

Feedback rating:

(5563)

Condition: Good
This book has a light amount of wear to the pages, cover and binding.Blue Cloud Books ??? Hot deals from the land of the sun.

Ships from: Phoenix, AZ

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Canadian
  • International
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
$1.99
Seller since 2009

Feedback rating:

(10903)

Condition: Very Good
Light wear to edges and pages. Cover and spine show no easily noticeable damage.A tradition of southern quality and service. All books guaranteed at the Atlanta Book Company. Our ... mailers are 100% recyclable. Read more Show Less

Ships from: Atlanta, GA

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Canadian
  • International
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
$1.99
Seller since 2009

Feedback rating:

(6729)

Condition: Good
Ex-Library Book - will contain Library Markings. Only lightly used. Book has minimal wear to cover and binding. A few pages may have small creases and minimal underlining.Book ... selection as BIG as Texas. Read more Show Less

Ships from: Dallas, TX

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Canadian
  • International
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
$1.99
Seller since 2006

Feedback rating:

(59920)

Condition: Acceptable
Shows definite wear, and perhaps considerable marking on inside. 100% Money Back Guarantee. Shipped to over one million happy customers. Your purchase benefits world literacy!

Ships from: Mishawaka, IN

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Canadian
  • International
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
$1.99
Seller since 2014

Feedback rating:

(2570)

Condition: Good
Book has some visible wear on the binding, cover, pages.Biggest little used bookstore in the world.

Ships from: Reno, NV

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Canadian
  • International
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
$1.99
Seller since 2006

Feedback rating:

(59920)

Condition: Very Good
Great condition for a used book! Minimal wear. 100% Money Back Guarantee. Shipped to over one million happy customers. Your purchase benefits world literacy!

Ships from: Mishawaka, IN

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Canadian
  • International
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
$1.99
Seller since 2014

Feedback rating:

(9)

Condition: Good
0515130621 A GOOD LOOKING mass market paperback book!! EXACT BOOK PICTURED ON AMAZON! Some creasing of the spine. Book is a little curly / wavy from being stored in moist ... area. Do not settle for worn, torn, throwaways. Pay a few pennies more for a nice copy! Read more Show Less

Ships from: Montgomery, AL

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Standard, 48 States
$1.99
Seller since 2009

Feedback rating:

(7550)

Condition: Good
Minimal damage to cover and binding. Pages show light use.With pride from Motor City. All books guaranteed. Best Service, Best Prices.

Ships from: Brownstown, MI

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Canadian
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
Page 1 of 4
Showing 1 – 10 of 32 (4 pages)
Close
Sort by
Never a Bride

Available on NOOK devices and apps  
  • NOOK Devices
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK
  • NOOK HD/HD+ Tablet
  • NOOK
  • NOOK Color
  • NOOK Tablet
  • Tablet/Phone
  • NOOK for Windows 8 Tablet
  • NOOK for iOS
  • NOOK for Android
  • NOOK Kids for iPad
  • PC/Mac
  • NOOK for Windows 8
  • NOOK for PC
  • NOOK for Mac
  • NOOK for Web

Want a NOOK? Explore Now

NOOK Book (eBook)
$7.49
BN.com price
(Save 6%)$7.99 List Price

Overview

Set in London during the captivating Regencyperiod, Never a Bride is an exhilarating tale of a young woman who steals as many kisses as she possibly can-and the dashing man who steals her heart.
Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Joan Johnston
Charming and delightful-a must-read!
Meryl Sawyer
Wonderfully sensual.
Library Journal
In an effort to discover who was responsible for driving her beloved cousin to suicide, an unconventional noblewoman almost ruins her reputation in her quest. Then her long-lost fiancé unexpectedly returns from America, and things change dramatically. This lively Regency-set historical was originally published in 2001 by Jove.
Never a Bride
An amazing, beautifully written story... a fast-paced page turner and a keeper.
— April
My Book Addiction and More
An amazing, beautifully written story... a fast-paced page turner and a keeper.
— April
Jennifer
Grey does an excellent job combining mystery and romance amongst the Regency era backdrop.
Fresh Ficiton
A delightful tale full of mystery and intrigue.
Rakehell
Delightfully charming...
— Valerie
The Long and Short of It Reviews
I absolutely adored this story. The characters are beautifully developed, their chemistry is unmatched, and the story is written so superbly that you fly through the pages and are swept away.
Rundpinne
Amelia Grey sweeps the reader back to the Regency era...
— Jennifer
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780515130621
  • Publisher: Jove
  • Publication date: 6/5/2001
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Pages: 304
  • Product dimensions: 4.24 (w) x 6.72 (h) x 0.88 (d)

Meet the Author

Amelia Grey's awards include the Booksellers Best and the Aspen Gold, and writing as Gloria Dale Skinner, the coveted Romantic Times Award for Love and Laughter and the prestigious Maggie Award. Happily married for over twenty-five years, she lives in Panama City Beach, Florida.
Read More Show Less

Read an Excerpt



Chapter One


WILL THIS BE THE YEAR?


Another Season opens and the patient Miss Mirabella Whittingham begins one more year waiting for her long-absent fiancé to return. One would hope that Viscount Stonehurst would appear this year to claim his bride. Hmm. Lord Stonehurst knows how to keep us guessing.
Society's Daily Column


"Mirabella, what's this I hear about you being free with your affections?"

    Mirabella Whittingham froze at the sound of her uncle's voice. Heaven have mercy, she was caught. And she'd bet the amethyst earrings she wore that Sir Patrick Stephenson was the young gentleman who'd given her away.

    She forced herself to remain calm and formulated a plan to pretend she had no idea what Uncle Archer was talking about. But as sure as she knew her name, she knew what he intended to say.

    She wrinkled her nose and tried to come up with an expedient prevarication to explain her recent actions. Nothing coming to mind, she decided on the truth—at least part of it.

    "Now, Uncle. I haven't been free with my affections." In fact, what she was doing would end up costing some young man a great deal when she was through with these London dandies. But her uncle didn't need to know that. "I've only kissed one or two."

    As soon as the words were out of her mouth, she realized truth hadn't been the way to go. Archer Hornbeck's round face flamed red, and a telltale vein popped out on his wideforehead.

    "Blue heavens, Mirabella. I can't have your father or anyone else hear you say something like that, even in jest."

    Guilt pricked her. The last thing she wanted was her ill father to know what she was doing. At all cost, she wanted to keep this from him. If he found out, she'd never accomplish her goal.

    Her uncle's pale blue gaze darted across the empty dance floor, around the perimeter of the great hall and back to Mirabella. He touched her elbow and ushered her to a secluded corner of the brightly lit room. There was no dancing or music at the moment, but it was far from quiet at the party. Dowagers chattering, men chuckling and young ladies laughing behind fluttering fans filled the air around Mirabella.

    She had to strain to hear her uncle's whispered voice.

    "I'm happy to be your escort while your father is ill, but I cannot allow this sort of behavior."

    Indeed Archer Hornbeck was her chaperone for the Season, but he wasn't her true uncle. He had been her father's friend since Mirabella was a little girl, and had insisted she call him uncle ever since.

    He was looking to make a match for himself and often found reasons to excuse himself from her during parties so that he could dance with an eligible young lady or wealthy widow. No doubt her father would be furious to know Uncle Archer had not remained faithful to his duty, but right now it worked to her advantage that he was neglectful.

    "I won't have gossip about you making the rounds while you are in my care." A pallor washed his face. "If your father should get wind of this, he would look to me for answers."

    "You are a sweet, dear man to worry so about me." She reached out and gingerly patted his forearm.

    Archer's expression softened, and he sighed. He took her gloved hand and squeezed her fingers affectionately. Looking down into her eyes, he said, "I'll do anything for you, my lovely Mirabella. That includes stopping scandalous talk. But you must do your part and stop this ... this kissing."

    Mirabella hated putting him through this, but she'd made her choice. She couldn't stop now. Certainly not for her reputation. She had been an enigma in Society since she'd made her debut. She attended the parties and balls each Season, but she wasn't eligible to make a match. She had been betrothed for six years to a man she had never met. A man who had made no attempt to marry her despite his promise.

    "I'm sure the gossip will pass. It always does. Next week someone else will be on the tips of all the loose tongues."

    His thin lips widened into a forced smile. "I must insist that you don't put yourself in a position to catch the attention of the gossipmongers. They can be fierce and unforgiving when given a reason. If any hint of this should hit the Society papers, you'll be ruined. Not even marrying a duke would save you from their scorn."

    Mirabella kept a strained smile on her face, too, as she searched for the right thing to say this time. She hadn't made her decision lightly, and she couldn't make any promises. There were only five weeks left of the Season—five weeks in which to carry out her plan.

    "You have no cause to fret about me, Uncle." She slipped her hand from his. "This is my fourth and final London Season. By now, I know how these things work."

    "If that were the case, you wouldn't allow yourself to be alone with a gentleman."

    "I have nothing in common with the young girls making their debuts each year, which is where all the attention will be. All of my friends have married and have babies to occupy their time." She swallowed a sigh, having accepted her fate long ago. "I should be married, too, but I've come to accept the fact, given my unfortunate betrothal situation, that I'll go through life never having been a bride. So what does a little gossip matter?"

    Uncle Archer opened his mouth to speak, but a bevy of young ladies suddenly rushed by them in a flurry of satin skirts. Mirabella noticed that a short, pretty blonde deliberately knocked his arm. When he looked at the young woman, the blonde smiled at him and winked before rushing away with the others. Archer watched her all the way down the corridor until she moved out of sight.

    He cleared his throat and said, "There is no such thing as a little gossip. And, of course you'll be a bride."

    She was thoughtful a moment while she considered his words. "Perhaps I'll marry when I'm old and gray," she answered, stating almost verbatim what she'd overheard her fiancé say that day so long ago when she was listening outside her father's library. She never saw her fiancé's face, but she would never forget the words he spoke.

    "Nonsense. Your father told me he sent word to Earl Lockshaven stating that if his errant son doesn't show his face by the last party of this Season he'll consider the engagement broken, and the dowry will have to be repaid. You'll be free to make a match with another young man."

    "Oh, Uncle, I am not a fanciful debutante anymore. Who will want me if the man I'm betrothed to won't return to London and marry me? Everyone already looks at me as having been put on the shelf."

    "Pure rubbish, my dear girl. With your beauty and your father's wealth any man would want to marry you."

    His words reminded her of Sarah and the reason she was having this conversation with her uncle. Her dear friend had had only a very small dowry, no beauty and no offers of marriage. Gentlemen had always confounded Mirabella. Why would they seek beauty and money when looking for a wife and ignore the kind of love and attention Sarah could have given? She would have been a devoted wife and loving mother.

    Mirabella turned away from her uncle and looked at the crowd of people gaily dressed in their finest clothes milling about the great hall. Her fiancé perplexed her more than most. She could understand him rejecting her had they met, and he had found her unsuitable. But he hadn't broken the engagement, and he hadn't come for her. She had not heard one word from him since he left six years earlier.

    "Why would I want a man who only wants to marry me for my dowry or because I have a pleasing face? Should Lord Stonehurst ever return to London, I shall be forced to marry him to please my father, but if he continues to stay away as he pledged he would, I shall be happy to remain an old maid."

    "Blue heavens, girl. Your father would never allow you to remain unwed and neither would I. Not marry indeed." Uncle Archer took hold of her upper arm, and she turned to look at him. "Because I'm not your real uncle, but I am your father's closest friend, I would marry you before I'd let you be an old spinster." He smiled. "I would consider it an honor."

    "An obligation would be more like it. Even if I didn't consider you almost family, I couldn't take you away from the ladies who are fighting for your attention at all the parties we attend."

    "I would be foolish to contemplate a match with another woman if there were any chance I could have you."

    There was something too serious about his tone. She stepped away from him and said, "Enough of this talk, Uncle. I need a moment to collect my thoughts before the next dance. Would you please excuse me?"

    His thick, gray eyebrows shot up, wrinkling his brow into a deep frown that settled his features in a questioning glare.

    "Don't worry. I shall behave," Mirabella quickly said before he had the chance to protest further.

    She didn't tell him that she intended to collect her thoughts outside. She wanted to get away from the party, from the people and merriment that crackled in the ballroom, to feel the night air against her skin.

    It was well past midnight when she slipped out the side door, having been stopped twice by young men who wanted to remind her that they were on her dance card. She took in a deep breath of air heavy with moisture. A full moon shone down on her from a velvet sky. Scattered mist lingered and wafted across the garden in front of her.

    Mirabella gathered up the hem of her silk skirt and petticoats and stepped onto the dew-covered lawn. She stayed on the stone walkway that split a lush garden. Her mind swirled with thoughts as she passed through a wooden gate and followed the footpath that led away from the house. Between patches of openings in the tall shrubs and blooming bushes that lined the edge of the road she could see horses and carriages. She heard snatches of muted conversations from the drivers who waited for their employers to call for them.

    The smell of tobacco smoke and wet horse hair mingled with the fragrant scent of dampened foliage. Mirabella stayed well away from the wide hedgerow and, not wanting to be seen, stepped noiselessly onto the pebbled path.

    Her dear friend Sarah should have been with her tonight. They should have been sharing whispered conversations about the cut of the young men's hair, or the styles and colors of the young ladies' dresses. Mirabella missed her.

    Despite what her uncle had said, she was determined to find the man who had seduced Sarah and caused her death. And if kissing was the only way to get it done, so be it. As far as Mirabella was concerned, kissing was far overrated anyway. The pressing of dry lips upon hers left her cold and uninspired. There certainly had been none of the warm, tingling feelings she'd heard other young ladies whisper about in the retiring rooms.

    She had carefully and accurately made a list of all the young bachelors Sarah had danced with more than once last Season who fit the description Mirabella had read in Sarah's diary. That had been a wearisome task, which would have been impossible had Sarah not kept her dance cards that listed each gentleman. At any given party there were never more than two or three names written down.

    One by one, Mirabella was allowing each young gentleman to take her into the garden for short interludes. While he kissed her, she would carefully brush her hand along his neck, her little finger quickly slipping beneath his neckcloth in search of a wide, raised scar, the main clue she had to the despicable man's identity. When she didn't find it, she just as quickly disentangled herself from the gentleman and made her way back inside. The men rarely knew what had hit them since it happened so fast.

    But perfunctory kissing had proven to be the only foolproof way Mirabella had come up with to get close enough to determine if a man had the scar. She had tried searching their necks while dancing, but it was impossible with the wide, fancy cravats and neckcloths covering the very area she needed to inspect.

    Her plan had been progressing very well until tonight. All the young gentlemen she'd encouraged throughout the week had been easy to manage. Some had even been polite, but earlier in the evening Sir Patrick Stephenson had lived up to his brash reputation. After she determined he didn't have a scar, he had refused to let go of her. She shuddered remembering how tightly he held her, laughing and forcing her to remain in his arms. She was sure she'd still be fighting him if they hadn't heard someone approaching the secluded garden nook where they stood.

    How else was she to discover the identity of Sarah's seducer? She hadn't decided on this course lightly. When the idea first came to her, she had rejected it completely. But she hadn't been able to keep the possibility from drifting back into her mind. It had consumed her for more than two weeks before she'd made her decision. She'd labored over all the possible consequences. The price for success would be high.

    Mirabella knew she would be talked about and shunned if word got out, but she hadn't expected the gossip to start so early in the Season. The truth was, she had never been known for agreeing with what Society thought was of the utmost importance: parties, beauty, the latest fashions and who to marry. Not to mention one's reputation. She grimaced at the thought. Her main concern was that her father not find out what she was doing. She didn't want to cause him undue distress in his weak condition.

    She had gone too far to turn back now. She had made it through the easy part of her list. The rest of the gentlemen would be more difficult if Sir Patrick Stephenson was any indication of how the older bachelors behaved. In future encounters she would be more careful.

    The distant sound of carriage wheels clanking over rough ground caused Mirabella to stop and look around With a start, she realized she had made her way past the back garden and had ended up on the street behind the house. Rows of high town houses and tall shrubs lined each side of the road.

    She was without her velvet pelisse and the damp nighttime air penetrated the thin layer of lavender silk skirt and yards of flimsy petticoats, making her shiver. Her satin party slippers were wet from the dew-soaked grass. She was thankful her gloves covered her arms all the way up to her capped sleeves.

    Just as she turned to head back the way she came, a voice out of the darkness stopped her.

    "Miss? Are you all right?"

    Mirabella spun and looked up into eyes the color of shiny chestnuts sparkling from a handsome face. She hadn't heard the man approach. Quickly she looked him over from head to toe to assess whether she was in immediate danger. He was tall and expensively dressed in a gray suit of lightweight wool. His silk neckcloth was simply but expertly tied. It appeared he was a gentleman, not a marauder.

    His unfashionably long, brown hair was brushed away from his face exposing a broad brow. A well-defined jawline accentuated a square chin. She guessed his age to be near thirty.

    "I didn't mean to startle you," he said, when she didn't answer. "Are you out here alone?"

    "No. I mean, yes." Merciful heavens! She was sounding like she had an affliction.

    "Which is it?"

    There was an expression of concern on his features. She had never been any good at lying, and obviously tonight was no exception. "That is, I meant to say, I'm alone right now but I won't be shortly." As soon as I can get back to the party.

    Mirabella quickly glanced back, but the house was concealed by a tall thick hedge. The street was lighted by moonlight, and there wasn't a carriage or another person in sight. She was alone—with this persistent stranger. She should have been frightened, but she only felt a shiver of awareness.

    His shapely dark eyebrows formed a curious expression. "I see. Are you waiting for someone to join you?"

    She took in the man's face. In the bright moonlight she saw that his face was a golden shade of tan. Sun lines creased the corners of his eyes. His mouth was boldly masculine with full, well-defined lips. He was broadly built with wide shoulders and chest, yet his waist and hips were attractively trim.

    Feeling more at ease, she met his gaze comfortably and said, "No. The truth is I was attending a soirée not far from here and decided to get away by myself for a few minutes."

    He regarded her a moment longer and nodded his head in understanding, though Mirabella knew he was thinking that no properly brought up young lady should wander away anywhere without a chaperone. And he was right. But proper had become less and less of a concern for her these days.

    "I didn't expect to meet anyone out here at this hour."

    "I should think not."

    Mirabella realized he was carefully looking her over to decide if she was a lady from polite Society or merely a well-dressed lady of the evening. Heat rose up her neck at his blatant appraisal.

    She tilted her nose back a fraction. "I assure you, sir, that this is not something I do often."

    "In that case, you shouldn't be left alone without a chaperone."

    She liked the sound of his voice. It was soothing, comforting in its richness of tone and a bit authoritative. There was no doubt he was British upper class, but she detected a faint American flavor to some of his words. She'd seen that same golden brown color to his skin on some of the visiting Americans she'd encountered in London.

    "I'll escort you back to the party," he said.

    She blinked. Although she had been doling out kisses like they were sweets, even she recognized that returning to the Talbots' party escorted by a stranger was beyond the pale. She'd have to slip back into the formal garden the way she had stolen out of it, and the sooner the better.

    "No, I couldn't let you do that. I arrived here safely and have no doubt I shall return the same. No cause to worry. A short stroll, and I'll be there."

    She started to turn away, but he touched her upper arm briefly and she stopped. It was only a featherlight brush of his hand, and it didn't linger, but the touch was enough contact to send sizzling tingles across her breasts. For reasons she didn't understand, there was something strangely compelling about him, and somehow she knew she was not in any danger from him.

    "What kind of gentleman would I be if I allowed you to walk back to the party alone?"

    "A perfectly fine one," she insisted.

    "I think not. I only want to make sure you come to no harm. If it will make you more comfortable, I'll flag the next cab that comes along and have you driven there."

    Drive her there? Then she realized that he couldn't tell that a party was going on in the house beyond the hedge and gardens. Thank goodness he didn't know where she had come from. The less he knew about her the better. The last thing she needed was another man talking about her impropriety.

    "Yes, that's a good idea. I will wait here for a carriage. It's not necessary for you to stay with me." She made a point of looking up one side of the quiet street and down the other before settling her green gaze on his eyes "I don't see danger lurking around the corner, and I'm not afraid."

    A smile formed on his lips, and he chuckled. "I'm sure you're not. But I'm not going to leave you out here alone."

    Merciful heavens, why did she have to meet such a gentleman now of all times? What was she to do? He was deliberately not taking her hint that she didn't need his help.

    "That's kind of you, sir, and I'm most grateful," she said, forcing a smile while trying to keep her tone calm and level. "But I truly don't want to keep you from your plans."

    His gaze didn't leave her face. "I've only just returned to London from a long absence, so I don't have anything for you to intrude upon."

    A vagrant cloud sailed past the moon and white light from the sphere seemed to wrap around them, making her forget that she didn't know this man, that she didn't want to know him. She couldn't stop these unsettling, womanly feelings she was having.

    "In that case, sir, welcome home," she whispered.

    The sparkle in his eyes darkened and the corners of his mouth tightened just enough for her to see that something was wrong. The conflicting emotions that flashed across his face made her wonder if he was happy to be back. And if not, she couldn't help but wonder why.

    "You've been in America," she stated without thinking.

    "Yes." He sounded surprised, and his eyes brightened again. His gaze continued to hold softly on her face.

    "Each year we have more and more Americans visiting London, and I've become acquainted with some of them. I heard a trace of their accent in your voice. I see their sun in your face." She lowered her gaze to his hands. "The color of your skin. Not many Englishmen have such a golden hue."

    "You're very perceptive."

    She tilted her chin a little higher. She was intensely aware of everything about him. From his slow, even breaths to the shine on his boots. She didn't know why, but she wanted to drink in every detail of this man.

    "It's not a difficult thing to detect when you've spent time with Americans," she offered.

    "And you?" His expression took on a thoughtful quality. "It would be my guess that you spend the Season in London and the rest of the year in Kent, as do most Londoners. Am I right?"

    "Yes. We have a home outside Kent, but we've spent more than the spring and summer at our town house here in London the past couple of years."

    "Why is that? Most people can't wait to retire to their country estates and begin their house parties."

    Mirabella looked past him to the rows of streetlamps fading in the thickening mist. She could have easily told this stranger they stayed to be near her father's physician, but she restrained herself from being so intimate with him. It was bad enough that she was talking to him.

    Instead she said, "I love London, especially in the winter when the wind has a bite. The commercial district is always so alive with shoppers and businessmen hurrying about their daily duties. The shops are warm and toasty. In the evenings, lamplight glistens off the snow and makes everything so white."

    The last trace of concern left his face. "That tells me you like to take walks and tonight was no unusual occurrence."

    His smile was so genuine, so charming, that she was enchanted. She returned his smile, liking him more with each passing moment. The warmth she saw in his chestnut brown eyes and his caring attitude captivated her.

    The clop of hooves on cobblestones and clank of carriage wheels caught her attention and forced her to glance away from his gaze. "Here comes a cab. That didn't take long."

    "No, not long enough," he said, his voice a rugged breath of sound.

    His words brushed over her, and she was foolishly pleased that he felt the same way she did.

    The gentleman stepped forward and held up his hand, signaling the two-wheel carriage. The driver pulled the horse to a stop in front of them.

    He turned back for her. Their gazes held for a long moment, as if neither wanted to break away first. Finally he said, "The address?"

    His eyes inspired trust. She wanted to give him her address and her name as well. She wanted to add that she could be free for a ride in Hyde Park tomorrow afternoon, but she couldn't say any of those things to him.

    A light breathy feeling fluttered deep in her throat and she softly, reluctantly said, "I can't tell you that."

    The corners of his wide mouth lifted in an amused smile. Her heart tripped. For the first time in her life she was attracted to a man. That he was handsome had nothing to do with it. She'd been kissed by handsome men and never felt this way. This man was kind, clever and cared about her welfare.

    His smile turned into a devilish grin. "Then how am I to give the driver instructions as to how to get you back to the party?"

    Heat flamed in her cheeks for the second time. What a besotted ninny she was to think he wanted to know about her and where she lived. For a moment, the warmth of his smile had her believing he was feeling the same wondrous attraction she felt.

    "Yes, of course. Number one hundred and three Ferrington Place."

    The gentleman repeated the address for the driver, then opened the door of the cab and turned back to her. "Are you sure you don't want me to accompany you?"

    No, I'm not sure. Come with me.

    "Quite." She hesitated. "Though, if you'd like to give me an address or your name, my father will see to it that the fare is repaid."

    "You wound me. I wouldn't dream of accepting money for helping a lady in distress."

    He held out his hand palm up. She paused only for a second before she placed her gloved hand in his. She immediately felt warmth as he closed his fingers around hers. The heat shimmied up her arms, across her chest to flood her neck and face. Her pulse tapped erratically in her ears. For one untamed moment, she felt giddy.

    Mirabella wanted to toss aside caution and ask him to ride with her. She wanted to step into the carriage and be cocooned with him in the darkness. She wanted to smile at him, laugh with him, flirt with him. She didn't want this to be the last time she saw him.

    He lightly squeezed her fingers. An exhilarating flame of desire awakened inside her. This was her fourth Season of London's parties and balls. She'd met gentlemen of all ages, all heights and with many different personalities. This was the first man who made her want to dance under the stars and steal kisses in the moonlight.

    She gathered her skirt and petticoats with her free hand and, with his help, stepped into the carriage. She quickly turned back to face him, but slowly let her fingers slide through his as she said softly, "Thank you. I wish I could repay your kindness."

    A rakish smile lifted one corner of his mouth. "You can."

    An expectant breath caught in her throat. Her heart tripped for the second time. Would he ask for a kiss? No, she couldn't allow it even if he asked. He was a stranger. But kissing gentlemen was exactly what she'd been doing since she devised the scheme to find the man responsible for Sarah's death. Why not kiss one more? She longed to feel his lips on hers and erase all the trite intimacies she'd endured this past week.

    "Yes," she managed to say, feeling herself lean forward wanting, needing, already offering her lips.

    "Promise me the next time you are at a boring party and want fresh air that you'll ask someone to escort you properly."

    Her lashes fluttered. A flush surged in her cheeks once again as she drew back from him. She swallowed a shallow breath. "Of course, sir. You can be sure I'll do that."

    A dancing light played in his eyes and twitched the corners of his desirable mouth. "You look, somehow, disappointed."

    He was flirting with her, but she didn't mind. She had always been circumspect when with a gentleman until this year. Now it seemed as if she were casting away all her inhibitions.

    Her embarrassment faded and before she could think better of it, she boldly said, "I thought you were going to ask for a kiss as payment for your help."

    His eyes flashed with surprise. "As a gentleman, I couldn't." Then his eyes darkened with desire. "But as a man, if I had thought there were any possibility I'd receive one, I would have asked."

    Mirabella smiled, confidence filling her. All week she had been kissing gentlemen for whom she had no feelings whatsoever. Now she was going to kiss a man because she wanted to. She bent down and briefly touched her lips to the side of his mouth, lingering only a moment but long enough to catch the masculine scent of him, capture the taste of him. She heard his breath lodge in his throat. It pleased her that she had surprised this gentleman.

    He reached for her, but she deftly leaned back into the carriage and escaped his grasp. "Thank you again for your help," she said softly and pulled the door shut behind her.


* * *


"She allowed me to kiss her."

    "Truly? I kissed her, too."

    "All I can add is that she is a delicious morsel, and I plan to have a go at walking with her in the garden."

    Camden Thurston Brackley, Viscount Stonehurst sat back in his chair and couldn't help overhearing the conversation at the next table. He gave it little thought. He had his own kiss on his mind. After walking back to the gentlemen's club and settling into the first chair he found, he had ordered a brandy.

    He could still feel the young lady's invitingly tempting lips on the side of his mouth. He had been with his share of women and couldn't understand why this one had affected him so. But she had. And he didn't even know her name. Maybe that was part of her allure.

    Forcing her from his mind, he turned his attention back to the conversation of three young bucks sitting at a nearby table.

    "With our first kiss she was slipping her fingers down my neckcloth, trying to get under my shirt."

    "Mine, too!"

    "I've not yet had an opportunity to ask her to dance."

    "You'll have to get in line. Every chap in Town is trying to get on her dance card in hopes of slipping out into the garden with her."

    Camden listened, slightly amused by the boasting. From their conversation it was clear that London Society hadn't changed in the six years he'd been gone. Well, maybe some things. The bachelors seemed younger to him now that he was nearing his thirtieth birthday.

    The dim lighting and masculine decor of the room hadn't changed over the years. Neither had the heavy smells of liquor and cooked food or the constant drone of hushed conversations and muted laughter coming from the gaming tables in the next room. Many were the times years ago when he would sit in this very club with his friends and discuss the latest debutantes. The ones bold enough to allow kisses were always a favorite topic of conversations.

    Camden didn't pity the young lady they were discussing. No doubt she was enjoying the attention and assumed she could still make an acceptable match. He knew from experience that for some women one man just wasn't enough, but only the most desperate of men would offer for a young lady who was so free with her affection.

    His thoughts drifted back to the young woman he'd met earlier in the evening. He'd known immediately that she was a woman of breeding and money. Although he had wondered why she was alone on the street. He found it difficult to believe she had wandered so far away from the party simply because she was in need of fresh air.

    The invitingly scooped neckline of her silk evening gown showed the pale skin of her chest and the swell of her breasts. He'd had the urge to reach out and glide his fingertips down her cheeks and outline her lips with his thumb. He wanted to reach over and place a kiss in the hollow of her throat.

    At first it had struck him that she was running from someone, but he discounted that when he looked into her eyes and saw no fear. They were such a clear shade of green, the color reminded him of the fresh appeal of spring's first leaf. Wispy strands of her dark auburn hair had fallen from the confines of the carefully placed bows and flowers pinned on the top of her head. She was slightly built but taller than most young women—and certainly more daring.

    He liked what he saw when he looked at her and what he heard when he spoke to her. She was intelligent, friendly and bold to the point of being careless with her reputation. He liked the way the moonlight shone on her hair and glistened off her beautiful skin. He liked the way she teased him with the brief kiss that had just missed his lips. Had she kissed the corner of his mouth by mistake or design? Did she know that it would intrigue him until he discovered the answer?

    He remembered how the limp silk of her dress had molded softly to her rounded breasts. Their fullness barely peeked from beneath the flimsy material. She held herself well with a slight tilt to her chin so she could look into his eyes. At times, he had felt she hadn't wanted to look away—and neither had he.

    When she'd reached down and pressed her lips to the side of his mouth, he'd caught a whisper of the scent of a spice. Cinnamon or clove? He wasn't sure, though he was sure that he wanted to see her again and find out. But that was impossible. He was destined for another.

    The clink of glasses and good-natured laughter caught Camden's attention. The chaps at the next table were on their second round. He had to stop thinking of the young woman who still held his thoughts. He couldn't allow himself to continue to dwell on her dreamy eyes, her heart-shaped face or her softly pale skin.

    Camden sipped his aged brandy and looked around the dimly lit room, searching for a face he recognized among the members. Surely conversation with an old acquaintance would get his mind off her. If he didn't know better, he'd think he'd been thunderstruck by a woman again, after all these years. And there was no way in hell he would allow that.

    He had arrived in Town late in the evening and hadn't wanted to disturb his father's household in the middle of the night, so he had taken a carriage directly to the gentlemen's club his family had been members of since it opened fifty years ago. He knew he would find food, drink and a bed. After securing a room, he decided to go for a brisk walk to purge his senses of the salty sea air that clung to him from the long sea voyage.

    His father, Wilson Thurston Brackley, Earl of Lockshaven, had finally gotten his attention by having his mother write a letter and plead with him to come home immediately. She insisted that he had neglected his responsibilities to his family and that as a man of honor he must come home. He hadn't wanted to return. Not yet. He'd needed another year in America to solidify his investments.

    But while he had ignored his father's appeals for him to marry, he hadn't been able to ignore his mother's pleas that he marry the young woman he'd been engaged to for the last six years.

DAWN IN ECLIPSE BAY


By Jayne Ann Krentz

JOVE BOOKS

Copyright © 2001 Jayne Ann Krentz. All rights reserved.

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 125 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(40)

4 Star

(45)

3 Star

(31)

2 Star

(6)

1 Star

(3)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 125 Customer Reviews
  • Posted March 12, 2012

    I had gotten this freebie quite a while ago and wasn't expecting

    I had gotten this freebie quite a while ago and wasn't expecting much. But I was really surprised at how engaging the story was. Mirabella has been left of the shelf when her intended left the country six years before. She has given up and decides she will never be a bride. In the mean time she on the trail of the man she feels is responsible for the suicide of her best friend. The problems start when she meets a mystery man who really makes her feel special and then gets caught with a man in the garden by her fiancee who has returned. The story of how she can help her friend and not lose the man was full of humor and heart warming moments. Very much worth the time to read.

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 5, 2012

    easy read

    good book for people who like romance with a little spice.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted July 18, 2011

    Loved it!

    I loved this book! There were a couple unique elements to the storyline which I really enjoyed and even though it was bit predictable, some of the dialogue was cheesy, and it was easy to figure out who the villian was, I absolutely loved it! She kept the story moving with some fun little twists, and I liked how she had enough drama to keep the tension between the characters without tearing them apart, which would have detracted from the overall glow of this story. It is the perfect book if you're looking for something fun and heartwarming to read.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 26, 2011

    Better than most 3 1/2 stars

    I really liked Camden, but I didn't really LOVE Mirabella. I thought her decisions were sometimes a bit unrealistic and she was a little too unfeminine for me. He was handsome, sweet, caring, proper, and I really liked the protective streak but she didn't offer many situations to be protected. They didn't quite go together perfectly but I still really enjoyed the book and it only took me two days to read. (btw I totally LOVE this cover, I wish more covers looked like this).

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 16, 2011

    Nice Romance

    Pretty nice read for a free e-book...thanks B&N!

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 3, 2013

    Highly Reccommend

    Was an easy and fun read. A little bit of mystery and romance all rolled into one. Kept me captivated the entire time.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted August 16, 2011

    Good Romance

    Light reading a good summer romance novel

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted July 29, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    More like 2.5

    Dragged in spots. Liked the characters but just in spots was bit nausiating.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted July 19, 2011

    Highly Recommend

    I loved this book so much, I read it twice!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 14, 2011

    Nice but not a keepr

    I thought the heroine was TSTL at times with her antics and I couldn't understand why she forgave her fiancee so easily. But the writer had an engaging way of penning that made me make it to the end. It's more of a 2.5 stars for me.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted July 12, 2011

    Disappointing

    I had a very difficult time getting through this book. I felt that it moved very slowly, and I had figured out early in the book who the "villain" was that the heroine was searching for. I ended up skipping many pages that didn't add anything to the plot, including the love scenes.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted July 11, 2011

    Great Book!

    Very much enjoyed this book. Highly recommend!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted March 20, 2011

    An okay historical.

    2 1/2 stars.

    This is my first book by Amelia Grey. I'd heard wonderful things about her Rogues' Dynasty series and was looking forward to reading Never A Bride.

    The premise of the story was good: Mirabella's father secured her engagement to Viscount "Cam" Brackley. Cam then had no intention of marrying Mirabella until he was old, he only agreed to the engagement because her dowry would help his father pay off debts. Six years later, Mirabella's father demands he come back and marry or Cam's father must repay the portion of dowry he already received.

    Mirabella, however, knows none of this - only that her fiancee has been gone and will probably not come back any time soon. She is on a mission to find out who disgraced her cousin so badly that the cousin committed suicide. In order to do that, she must get the young men of the ton alone and get her finger into their neckcloths in search of a scar the cousin had written about in her diary. Needless to say Mirabella is starting to get a bit of a reputation when Cam unexpectely returns.

    Here's the thing: I liked both Mirabella and Cam, just not together. They were both lovely characters but they didn't "mesh" for me. It was like they just kept bumping up against each other but didn't quite connect. My other problem was that I guessed the "whodunit" very early into the book. I would have preferred a bit of mystery and suspense on that front. It was frustrating to watch Mirabella go through all her machinations when I already knew who it was.

    We also met Cam's best childhood friend, who was unexplainably mean to both Cam and Mirabella, but we never found out why he was such a jerk - jealousy? I'm not sure what he would be jealous of as he was already titled and married and had an heir. I was a bit confused on that point.

    As I mentioed above, while I did like the main characters, this book was just not a good match for me.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted November 19, 2010

    TRULY ENJOYED THIS BOOK

    I loved the chemistry between Camden and Mirabella.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted August 24, 2010

    Beautiful Read

    Originally posted at: www.longandshortreviews.blogspot.com ***** As someone who enjoys a fantastic regency novel, I was extremely excited to dive into Amelia Grey's Never A Bride. Having read the author's previous offerings, I knew I could expect intrigue, romance, well-developed characters, and a story I would thoroughly enjoy.

    When the story begins, we are introduced to Miss Mirabella Whittingham. For the past six-years, she has waited for the return of her fiancé, Camden Thurston Brackley. Society has begun gossiping about his extended absence and, as there has been no correspondence from the man who sailed for America years before, Mirabella has decided she will remain unmarried for the rest of her life. It's a good thing too, because Mirabella has located a diary that has shed light into the death of a close friend who lived under her father's employ and took her life when she discovered she was pregnant and the father refused to accept responsibility. Armed with the knowledge she's taken from the diary, Mirabella is determined to find the culprit named only "Prince Charming," and bring him to justice. Her plan? To kiss as many men from her friend's dancing card from the previous season as possible and search for the scar that the diary indicates exists on the man's throat.

    Unfortunately for our heroine, who believes her reputation is of no importance as she will never marry, Camden has just returned home. His family is in dire financial straits, meaning he must continue with the engagement. So it's both awkward and embarrassing when she makes the acquaintance of her betrothed while in the embrace of another man. Considering that Camden's last fiancé betrayed him and he's sworn never to marry without trust, their relationship ends before it's even given the opportunity to begin. or has it? Both Mirabella and Camden need something from each other and, as a ruse is created to fool society, assist Camden, and give Mirabella enough time to find the man she's searching for, our hero and heroine soon discover that the greatest risk is one they never expect -- to fall in love.

    I absolutely adored this story. The characters are beautifully developed, their chemistry is unmatched, and the story is written so superbly that you fly through the pages and are swept away. Although the mystery is important and provides necessary tension between Mirabella and Camden, it is done in such a manner that is very believable versus becoming draining or tedious. While I had a good idea of who Prince Charming was, that is only because in this sort of story you are given so many players and after a time it's fairly easy to target the one who is always in the picture, yet, remains apart from it. This isn't to say I was disappointed, but rather that the relationship between Mirabella and Camden remains the central focus -- as it should.

    Fans of regency romance have to read Never A Bride. If you've never experienced Ms. Grey's work, this is a perfect way to start.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted July 17, 2010

    WONDERFUL ENCHANTING REGENCY ROMANCE!

    NEVER A BRIDE by Amelia Grey is an enchanting wonderful Regency Romance. It is a re-released. It is set during the 1800's England. It is well written with details and depth. The characters are charming, free spirited, and full of life. The heroine, Mirabella, is intelligent, courageous, smart, full of life, beautiful and out to avenge the death of her cousin. She has been engaged for six years to our hero who has been in America all this time. She begins to believe he isn't coming to claim her hand in marriage, therefore, she sets out on her mission to kiss as many gentlemen as possible to find and avenge her cousin's seducer (she has her cousin's diary with some details about her seducer). Mirabella is aware of the consequences of her action but feels she must avenge her cousin. The hero, Camden, is handsome, strong, been betrayed before, been in America for six years. Comes home to find Mirabella, his fiance, in the arms of another man. Although, their engagement was arranged by their fathers , they have never meet each other before. They find they are intrigued with other and must continue their engagement for a few months to settle some things. During this time they actually realize they are falling in love with each other. This is an amazing, beautifully written story of avenge, romance, passion, sensuality, intrigue, compromise, betrayal, suspense and sacrifice.This is a fast paced, page turner and a keeper. This book was received for review from Sourcebooks and details can be found at My Book Addiction and More.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted December 9, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    Enjoyable Regency romance

    After six years in which her betrothed, Viscount Stonehurst, Camden Brackhurst, left her behind in a single state and went off to America, Lady Mirabella Whittingham adapts to remaining on the shelf. She even finds spinsterhood quite enjoyable that is until her best friend Sarah committed suicide. Sarah¿s diary blames her troubles on an aristocrat with a scar on the back of his neck. Mirabella plans to uncover the culprit¿s identity and take him to task. However, to do so requires kissing all the eligible bachelors in town for the season to inspect their necks because Sarah never names anyone. <P>As Mirabella makes the rounds and shocks the Ton, Camden finally returns from across the ocean. He is appalled at his fiancee¿s behavior, but finds he is very attracted to her. She is stunned to observe the telltale scar on his neck. <P> Though NEVER A BRIDE requires a plausibility leap, Regency romance fans will enjoy the tale. Readers must accept Mirabella¿s way out character behavior, but at the same time will admire her spunk and loyalty. The story line is fun especially when an outraged Camden makes his feelings known. On the other hand, six years waiting for someone who deserted you before you ever met makes his present day behavior seem inappropriate, but perhaps that is a modern day perspective by this reviewer. Still sub-genre fans will receive pleasure from Amelia Grey¿s gender war historical romance. <P>Harriet Klausner

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 2, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted June 13, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted July 14, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 125 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)