One Night with You

( 45 )

Overview

Anything can happen after dark . . .

Tired of being treated like a servant by her own family, Lady Jane Guthrie finally has a chance to escape . . . at least for one night. Attired in a daring gown, she arrives at a scandalous courtesans' masquerade ball looking forward to her few hours of freedom. But when she sees Seth Rutledge, her skin begins to tingle with anticipation. Many years ago, Seth broke her heart by falling for her beautiful, ...

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Overview

Anything can happen after dark . . .

Tired of being treated like a servant by her own family, Lady Jane Guthrie finally has a chance to escape . . . at least for one night. Attired in a daring gown, she arrives at a scandalous courtesans' masquerade ball looking forward to her few hours of freedom. But when she sees Seth Rutledge, her skin begins to tingle with anticipation. Many years ago, Seth broke her heart by falling for her beautiful, title-hungry sister. But now here he is, right in front of her, offering her his lips . . .

Embittered by war, Seth returns home to inherit the title that would have once won him the woman of his dreams. Though duty demands he wed, he's convinced passion no longer has a place in his life . . . until a masked siren sets his heart aflame. Desperate to find her again, he has no idea it's his childhood friend Jane—and that after one night together their lives will never be the same.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780061339264
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 1/1/2008
  • Series: Avon Historical Romance Series
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Edition description: Reissue
  • Pages: 368
  • Sales rank: 706,439
  • Product dimensions: 4.18 (w) x 6.75 (h) x 0.92 (d)

Meet the Author

Sophie Jordan

Sophie Jordan grew up on a pecan farm in the Texas hill country, where she wove fantasies of dragons, warriors, and princesses. A former high school English teacher, she's also the New York Times bestselling author of Avon historical romances and the Firelight series. She now lives in Houston with her family. When she's not writing, she spends her time overloading on caffeine (lattes and Diet cherry Coke preferred), talking plotlines with anyone who will listen (including her kids), and cramming her DVR with true-crime and reality-TV shows.

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Read an Excerpt

One Night With You

Chapter One

Lady Jane Guthrie stared out her bedchamber window, her gaze following a lone carriage as it rattled down the dark and silent street. A great lumbering beast, it crawled through the night fog, its inhabitants unknown, its destination unknown, yet she wished she were aboard it, sheltered within its depths.

The evening wind tossed the curtains at the carriage window in a taunting farewell. She splayed her hand over the glass, cool and lifeless against her palm, watching as the carriage turned the square and disappeared from sight. Her stomach churned as the fading clatter of hooves echoed dully in the night.

Gradually, she exerted more pressure, pressing harder, as if she could break through the glass and transport herself away, outside—far from Desmond and Chloris and her three fractious nieces who delighted in heaping abuse upon her.

A shaky laugh spilled from her lips, filling the silence. Unreasonable expectations. A year well past mourning yet here she was, a glorified servant in the home she had once managed.

The door opened behind her with a soft creak. She jerked back from the window and spun around, fearing her thoughts had conjured forth demons to stop her night's plans, to put her in place—in her cage. Her pulse beat furiously at her throat and her hand flew to her neck as if she might still the clamoring beat.

Anna stepped inside the room, her middle-aged face wreathed in a broad smile. Jane dropped her hand and drew a calming breath, the thud of her heart quieting in her ears.

"Mr. Billings has left for his club and Mrs. Billings retired to herrooms for the evening." Anna paused, her great bosom lifting with excited breath. "It's time."

Jane nodded, her heart loosening inside her chest with the knowledge that Desmond had gone, that the same roof did not cover their heads. No risk of running into him in the corridor, of suffering his lecherous, insolent stare.

Nothing would stop her. Nothing barred her from seizing an evening out, a night of freedom. Tonight belonged to her. Even if the rest of her life did not.

Jane pressed a hand to her stomach to still the dance of butterflies there. "Heavens," she breathed, "you would think I've never attended a ball before."

"Well. It has been an age," Anna rejoined with a wry twist to her lips.

Jane turned to the cheval mirror to inspect her appearance one final time. The pale blue gown had been buried in the back of her wardrobe behind all the mourning rags. She hardly recognized herself in anything save dismal black crepe and paramatta.

"It's good to see you in color again." Anna stroked her chin thoughtfully. "But something is missing."

Jane lifted an eyebrow in question.

Anna opened a small lacquered chest sitting on top of Jane's dressing table. Few items filled it. Her husband had not been one to lavish her with jewelry. At least not for her.

She possessed only one item of value. This, Anna pulled from a black velvet pouch, the stones sparkling as though lit from a light within. "Here you are."

Jane brushed her fingers over the necklace, smiling in fond memory at the grandmother who had left it to her. Her fingers caressed the lustrous stones. If possible, they seemed brighter than she recalled. The canary diamonds felt warm, almost electric. Their age-worn surface glided seductively against her palm and the gold chain winked in the light. As a girl, she had believed any woman wearing it could only look beautiful.

"Very well." Turning, she lifted her hair, the tendrils silky smooth. Anna had pulled back the heavy mass with two jet-studded combs and arranged it to trail down her back. Usually coarse as a horse's mane and wound tightly into a knot, her hair felt like it belonged to another woman.

"There now." Her maid stepped back to survey her handiwork. "You don't look the crow anymore."

Jane eyed herself in the mirror, stroking the diamonds weighing heavily at her throat. Her fingers moved from the necklace to the blue sleeve of her dress, rubbing the satin between her fingers. "For one night at least."

"You'll wear color again," Anna vowed in a voice hard with resolve, her dark eyes glinting beneath thick gray brows.

Jane forced herself to nod. Desmond's leering face flashed across her mind and her stomach dipped. If her brother-in-law had his way, she would never wear color again, nor would she rejoin Society.

A deep sigh welled up from her chest. One year, four months, and ten days had passed since Marcus's death, but Desmond remained as determined as ever to sequester her from Society, to keep her dancing attendance to the demanding needs of his daughters . . . and staring at her with what she had come to consider the look.

The look reminded her of a gorilla she'd once seen at a zoological exhibition. The beast had swayed behind its bars, his eyes liquid pools of yearning, eager to break loose and devour her.

Anna interrupted her musings. "Come now. Your friends are waiting, and you've an evening of dancing ahead."

Dancing. Jane wondered if she remembered how. She had not been much of a dancer when Marcus lived, spending most of her time on the edge of ballrooms with dowagers long resigned to each other, and matrons preferring each other to the husbands they suffered at home.

Shaking off the cheerless realization that her state of widowhood had not greatly altered her social patterns, she moved to the door, determined to thwart her insufferable relations if only in this small act. Tonight was not about dancing or leisure entertainments. Tonight was an exercise in rebellion. To prove, if only to herself, that she was no one's prisoner, that she alone controlled her life.

"Do try and enjoy yourself. Forget about those little monsters down the hall." Anna settled Jane's cloak about her, giving her shoulder an encouraging squeeze. "You deserve some happiness."

One Night With You. Copyright © by Sophie Jordan. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold. <%END%>
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 45 )
Rating Distribution

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 46 Customer Reviews
  • Posted December 9, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    A nineteenth century romance

    Since her husband died, his family led by her brother-in-law treats Lady Jane Guthrie at best like a poor relative but for the most part as a servant. Jane chaperones her fickle nieces and puts up with the outrageous abuse of her mean spirited sister-in-law.-------------- Jane sneaks out to attend a courtesan masked ball although she knows her behavior is scandalous as she does not belong there. To her misfortune, her in-law catches her, but to her good fortune, Lord Seth Rutledge intercedes. When they were younger she loved Seth, but he chose her sister, who rejected him as he was title-less with no prospects. , Seth has returned from the war angry at society that now finds him acceptable. Only his beloved blind sister can reach him until he meets the masked siren, who vanishes on him. When he next encounters his disguised minx, she seduces him although she fears his reaction if ever finds out that his childhood friend is his secret paramour.----------- This terrific historical romance star two walking wounded as Jane has not recovered from being a lord¿s wife to a second class citizen and Seth suffers from post traumatic stress disorder caused by his combat experience. The story line is fast-paced while also containing neat unexpected but plausible spins. Fans will enjoy Sophie Jordan¿s charming nineteenth century romance.-------- Harriet Klausner

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted December 7, 2007

    Another Gem from Ms. Jordan

    Once upon a time, Jane Spencer fell in love. And shortly after that, life intervened. Sean Rutledge, the man of her dreams, fell for her sister, was rejected, and shipped off for a life at sea. Herself married off into a life of loneliness, Jane never imagined things would grow worse with widowhood. Oppressive relations usurp her freedom, pressing her into service as governess for their three vulgar daughters. Jane yearns for a bit of adventure, an escape from her abysmal life, and on her friends¿ advice, attends a daringly inappropriate masquerade ball. And there her Prince Charming waltzes back into her life. Battle-scarred and heart-hardened, Sean is in London searching for a bride¿his only criterion that she not recoil at the sight of him¿but instead finds himself trysting with a mysterious beauty who triggers forgotten memories of the painful long-ago. Jane thrills at the seductive exhilaration of her dangerous game, but how long can she keep her secrets? And does she truly wish to? In One Night With You, Sophie Jordan has crafted a luxurious, redemptive tale of love lost and found again. A captivating read, highly recommended.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 15, 2007

    A reviewer

    Lady Jane Guthrie doesn¿t mind being a widow, but she loathes being treated like a servant in her own home. Sneaking out to a masquerade ball seems a daring adventure until she encounters Seth Rutledge, the man she¿s always secretly loved, and the man her sister bewitched and humiliated. Her mask makes her bold and he clearly desires her. She promises herself if he makes love to her as the mysterious masked golden lady just once, she¿ll be content with her lot for the rest of her life. Seth, the new Earl of Sinclair, needs a wife. Unfortunately he wants the golden temptress he made passionate love to and who now haunts his thoughts. If only he could forget her and find a suitable young woman to marry, someone to be a companion, friend and protector to his blind sister. When his sister insists on renewing her childhood friendship with Jane, the irritating, proper widow arouses the most improper fantasies. Can he really desire two such different women¿the passionate golden goddess and the prickly Jane? Life has damaged Jane and Seth. Once they were best friends but Seth became infatuated with the wrong sister and Jane was given to a man who used her badly. Now years later can they overcome the cruelty and hurt that has scarred their lives and allow themselves to trust each other again? Once again Sophie Jordan brings together a rich, colorful cast of characters in a sexy, original love story. Jane and Seth are both fairly mature by historical romance standards and disillusioned with life. They must contend with personal tragedies and their own mistakes as well as the harsh restrictions of the social conventions of the time. Even so, they have a natural optimism, brought to life by the attraction they feel for each other. I love Ms. Jordan¿s secondary characters for their individuality and depth, especially Seth¿s blind sister who¿s determined to defy a world where her blindness condemns her to spinsterhood and dependence. One Night with You is a wonderful story I couldn¿t put down until the happily ever after. Don¿t miss this one!

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 20, 2014

    This book had so much potential. The exposition of the main char

    This book had so much potential. The exposition of the main characters, Jane and Seth, are surprisingly good for a typical romance novel. I was immediately taken into their world. I felt like I knew them only from the first few chapters and already cared what happened to them. 

    But as the book continued on, major flaws started to reveal themselves. These characters that I had come to care for became sex driven maniacs for no reason. I understand most romantic novels are meant to be steamy and sexy, but this just crushed all the character development it had made and threw it out the window. For example, upon seeing each other for the first time in years, both Seth and Jane recite pages and pages of horny thoughts. They say absolutely nothing of relevance to each other.  They just stare at each other thinking dirty things, which makes absolutely no sense since they’re relationship was more like brother and sister in the past. This is obviously the author trying to create something sensual and exciting for the reader but it ends up just being plain creepy. 

    There are moments where the book brings it back to the relationship and character development, which is the only reason I continued reading. But even so, there are so many plot points that are developed and have the potential to create great drama, but just disintegrating into nothingness.

    I really enjoyed the tension between the characters, the initial idea, and some of the more developed scenes between Seth and Jane. But overall, this just fell flat to what it could and should have been. 

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 22, 2012

    One Night With You

    I loved this book. It held my attention all the way through... I had to dry my eyes a couple of times. I participated with my heart! LOVED the characters.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 13, 2012

    Pass

    I can not believe this book received high ratings. The storyline was a good one but execution was lacking.

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  • Posted September 4, 2011

    So lovely!

    Sophie Jordan is one of my favorite authors and yet again she wrote a book that I couldn't put down. The double love story was lovely!

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  • Posted February 20, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Sweet and touching

    My favorite kind of story. The plot develops and revolves around the character's emotions and developing trust. It's not dependant on sinister plots or convenient misunderstandings.

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  • Posted April 25, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Loved It

    Sophie Jordan only has 5 books out. This is the second I read. I really must say she's got a talent. I loved this one. The mystery. The love. Over all one of my favorite books ever. :] Can't wait for more.

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    Posted October 7, 2011

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    Posted January 15, 2010

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    Posted January 3, 2012

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    Posted October 24, 2010

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    Posted April 20, 2014

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    Posted June 9, 2011

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