True love never goes out of style….
Once renowned for creating the most envied gowns in London, Madame Follette’s dressmaking shop has fallen far out of fashion. The approaching coronation of King George IV offers a chance to reclaim former glory by supplying stunning new wardrobes to the most glittering society in Regency England. In the face of long-held secrets, looming scandals, and the potential ruin of their shop, the dressmakers of Follette’s are undaunted, not even by the most unexpected complication of all: true love.
The Duke’s Dressmaker by Madeline Hunter
When the Duke of Barrowmore walks into the dress shop, Selina Fontaine assumes her secret identity will be compromised. Four years ago this man’s brother seduced her and abandoned her to scandal, and she holds the duke responsible. To her amazement the duke is more interested in pursuing her than exposing her, however—and that pursuit soon becomes seductively pleasurable.
The Colors of Love by Myretta Robens
Delyth Owen’s exuberant passion for her new job as a dressmaker at Madame Follette’s is matched only by her love of diverse, vibrant, and frequently unfortunate color combinations. Simon Merrithew, the pseudonymous author of a well-regarded fashion column, is horrified by the gown Delyth creates for a friend, and suspects her motives. He sets out to uncover her duplicity, but instead, he uncovers genuine joy and discovers the colors of love.
No Accounting for Love by Megan Frampton
Miss Katherine Grant is a lady’s companion, one whose number of dishonorable offers (six) greatly outweigh her honorable ones (zero). Now tasked with making certain her charge, Lady Euphemia, does not contract herself to someone inappropriate, she finds herself inexplicably drawn to Mr. Henry Dawkins, the inappropriate gentleman Lady Euphemia wants to charm, who keeps the books at Madame Follette's. But it seems that Henry only has eyes for Miss Katherine Grant.
A Fashionable Affair by Caroline Linden
Madame Follette’s is Felicity Dawkins’s birthright; her mother founded it, and now she runs it. She's fiercely committed to making it the most exclusive modiste in London. The Earl of Carmarthen also has big plans for the shop—he wants to buy it and tear it down, to make way for a grand new boulevard of shops. One way or another, he’s determined to persuade Felicity…not only to sell her shop, but to explore the passion that sparks between them every time they meet.
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About the Author
Myretta Robens has been nominated for a RITA, and has won the Holt Medallion. Her most recent work is a contemporary short story in the anthology Jane Austen Made Me Do It. She was a founder of the Republic of Pemberley Jane Austen web site, which she continues to manage. Myretta lives near Boston with her giant Corgi and a clowder of geriatric cats. You can find her online at www.myrettarobens.com.
Megan Frampton writes historical romance under her own name and romantic women's fiction as Megan Caldwell. She likes the color black, gin, dark-haired British men, and huge earrings, not in that order. She lives in Brooklyn, New York, with her husband and son. You can visit her website at www.meganframpton.com. She tweets as @meganf and is at facebook.com/meganframptonbooks.
Caroline Linden was born a reader, not a writer. She earned a math degree from Harvard University and wrote computer software before turning to writing fiction. Her books have won the NEC Reader's Choice Award, the Daphne du Maurier Award, and RWA's RITA Award. Visit www.CarolineLinden.com to sign up for her newsletter, or follow her on twitter and on Facebook.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Dressed to Kiss by Madeline Hunter, Myretta Robens, Megan Frampton and Caroline Linden A dress shop in Regency England links these 4 stories. Madame Follettte’s dress shop has fallen out of favor. Daughter Felicity and her brother Henry try to convince their mother that her fashions need to be updated. The approaching coronation of King George IV offers a chance to once again dress the aristocracy IF Madame Follette can change. When she refuses, she is banished to the coast and Felicity, an accomplished seamstress, takes over. The Duke’s Dressmaker by Madeline Hunter Selina Fontaine --- not her real name --- works at Madame Follette’s. The Duke of Barrowmore escorts his spoiled sister-in-law into the shop. Selina and Randall Woodville have a past. Selina believed that the Duke was responsible for his brother jilting her. With a ruined reputation, she fled to London. Instead of exposing Selina, Rand encourages the patronage. Romance, rendezvous and risks between Selina and Rand ensue. Madeline Hunter builds her characters with warmth, charm and faults, too. I enjoyed this story very much! The Colors of Love by Myretta Robens Although Delyth is a seamstress at Madame Follette’s now, she was a theater costume designer. She loves color! An outrageous gown she designed for a society lady catches the eye of a fashion columnist ---- and not in a good way! Simon believes that Delyth intentionally set out to embarrass the woman. He decides he must meet her. Some funny moments, romance and misunderstandings occur. Love conquers overcomes all. No Accounting for Love by Megan Frampton Henry has grown up to be a large, shy young man. He is the accountant for the shop and knows numbers, not women. Effie has pursued him for years. She tricks him into dancing lessons and then foists her companion Katherine on him. Henry and Katherine discover they are kindred spirits. Could Effie have planned this? A Fashionable Affair by Caroline Linden Felicity has worked hard to reclaim Madame Follette’s on the fashion scene. Solvency and esteem are within her grasp when a new threat appears. The shop is in a shabby run down part of London. The Earl of Carmarthen has bought up the properties on her street and is determined to buy Madame Follette’s. Felicity drives a hard bargain. As they come to know each other, they begin a steamy affair. However, the re-appearance of Madame Follette and secrets may drive them apart. I would have liked an epilogue for all 4 stories a year later. I always want to know about “happily ever after”!
4.5 rounding to a 5 This is a very original idea. Novellas set in a dressmaker's shop! I appreciate new books that don't make me feel like I've read the same story before. Felicity Dawkins and her brother Henry were both raised in Madame Follette's shop. The shop is losing customers as their mother refuses to change with the times. They convince her to leave for awhile and let Felicity run the shop. Then old King George dies and the entire ton will need a new dress for the upcoming coronation. The Duke's Dressmaker - Madeline Hunter - One of my favorite authors who never disappoints. Her story is the dressmaker who falls for a Duke. The Colors of Love - Myretta Robens - a new to me author - A gossip columnist writes negatively about a seamstress's colorful gowns only to fall for her. No Accounting for Love - Megan Framapton - Mr. Henry Dawkins, bookkeeper, falls for a young lady's companion. But believes he's not good enough for her as she is a lady. A Fashionable Affair - Caroline Linden - another favorite author - Evan Hewes, Earl of Carmarthen is determined to buy every property on Vine St. and remodel it into fashionable area. But Felicity doesn't want to sell her shop unless he finds her a better location. Maybe with him!
This book is an anthology with four stories, all of them connected by Madame Follette’s dressmaking shop. I’ll give my opinion about each of the stories individually and then I’ll bundle them all up. The first story, written by Madeline Hunter, is about the Duke of Barrowmore and Selina Fontaine, one of the dressmakers. Selina already has a story connected with the Duke, and when he enters the shop, she became scared that he’ll reveal that she is gentry, and most importantly, that she had been practically abandoned by her almost fiancé. As you can imagine, the stories aren’t very long, so I won’t dwell on them, or I risk telling you everything. It’s a sweet romance, with witty and sexy scenes and, as always, Madeline Hunter’s writing creates an atmosphere that leads to a well-spent time reading one of her stories. The second story, by Myretta Robens, was my favourite probably because it was a bit different than what I’m used to – not that that means that it’s not a Regency romance that ends well, it is, but it shows the two main characters, Delyth Owen and Simon Merrithew, in a different light that I enjoyed (an example is the way the two of them meet). Delyth is the most recent dressmaker at Follete’s, and her style is, at the very least, irreverent. This doesn’t mean that she has a bad sense of style or that she is cruel to her costumers (in the way that she would be dressing them poorly and making fun of them), like Simon initially thinks. I really liked seeing Simon changing and, consequently the reader, which led to an understanding of Delyth’s love for colour and fashion, making Simon fall in love with her, and the way she loves life itself. I think that was my favourite part, the fact that it had so much life, so much colour, so much… of everything! The third story, by Megan Frampton, ended up being the one I liked least. Not that it wasn’t sweet (in some way it may even be the sweetest of them all), but it lacked credibility regarding the characters, which made me feel quite distanced from them. The last plot is by Caroline Linden, and it’s the story of Felicity Dawkins and the Earl of Carmarthen. Felicity, which showed up briefly in the other stories, seemed more interesting there than here, she seemed to have a bit more wit and a stronger character, which is too bad because it raised my expectations for her story and when I read it, it didn’t quite reach them. However, I would like to mention that Felicity is the kind of woman that takes matters into her own hands, and can deal with whatever problems that shows up, no matter how difficult they are. About Carmarthen there’s not much to say, which is sad, because I think he could have been much more developed and explored, making him a more interesting character. Although it was a good story, it left too many unanswered questions for my taste, because this story was where I thought we would actually know what would happen to everyone, but that did not happen. In conclusion, a reading that gave me great pleasure, full of romance and beauty, that showed a turning point in the history of fashion, regarding styles and colour, bringing at the same time a regency love story that will please the readers.
Dressed to Kiss Using the seamstresses of a dressmaking shop as the back drop, four novellas bring a story of a different seamstress from the shop. In each tale, true love conquers all. Madeline Hunter’s novella, The Duke’ Dressmaker, is the first Dressed to Kiss romance. The novella follow Hunter’s usual writing style. The lead characters are strongly developed and the storyline keeps you keenly interested in the outcome. Wrongs of the past collide with the present but love prevails. However, a little more detail could have been provided about the outcome of the secondary characters, i.e. the Duke’s brother and sister in-law. A very good read. The Colors of Love by Myretta Robens is novella number 2. Seemingly, the novella centers on a seamstress with a fascination for bright but poorly connected color combinations. The interested male continues the writing of a fashion column began by his mother and under his mother’s pseudonym. He thinks the seamstress has malevolent intentions toward ladies of society. The author’s description of the seamstress at the beginning of the novella plus the storyline do not give one a desire to finish the tale. I spent 6 days trying… decided I really needed to let this one go. Skip it. No Accounting for Love by Megan Frampton had one ingredient for a great novella – likeable lead characters – but the telling of the story was a slow go. The shop’s accountant (son of the shop’s owner) and a lady’s companion dominate the story. The characters spent 80 % of the story either thinking and/or talking to themselves about their ‘relationship’. I flipped through several pages and felt as though I had missed nothing when I reached the end. A fair read. Closing the four-about-one is A Fashionable Affair by Caroline Linden. Linden’s tale focuses on the manager (daughter of the shop’s owner) of the shop. An entrepreneur – an Earl – seeks to buy the dress shop… he’s purchased all of the surrounding shops and rebuilding is set to begin. The story follows their relationship as he seeks to acquire to shop. A lot of unsavory information is tossed in on the last few pages and the ending seems a bit rushed. A better than average read. Received the book for an honest review.
Caroline Linden's story was particularly good. I read the entire anthology in one sitting!
Dressed To Kissed is an anthology of 4 novellas by Madeline Hunter, Myretta Robens, Megan Frampton and Caroline Linden. Once renowned for creating the most envied gowns in London, Madame Follette’s dressmaking shop has fallen far out of fashion. Now is up to Felicity Dawkins to reclaim former glory to the shop. So the first step is to convince her mother to leave the store to her and hire new dressmakers. Can the dressmakers of Follette face the long-held secrets, looming scandals and potential ruin of their shop……………………………….. The Duke’s Dressmaker is actually the second book that I read by Madeline Hunter and I loved it. This is a story of Selina Fontaine with a secret identity and broken heart. The Duke of Barrowmore is the last person Selina wants to see in the shop, he knows about her past and the scandal his brother caused. But when the Duke meets Selina again after four years, he is more interested in pursuing her than exposing her. The Duke’s Dressmaker is a page turner and a sweet romance. Since Caroline Linden is one of my favorite authors and I love her books, I couldn’t wait to read the two novellas between so I skipped those two novellas (of course I will read later) and started A Fashionable Affair by Caroline Linden. Caroline Linden’s writing is wonderful, romantic and captivating. Felicity Dawkins is fiercely committed to making the shop the most exclusive modiste in London if only the infuriating Earl of Carmarthen let her. The earl Carmarthen has a big plan for the shop, he plans to buy the last shop and tear down and make a grand new boulevard of shops, if only he can convince the beautiful Felicity to give up her shop and move to another location………………. I finished this adorable novella in half a day; I couldn’t put the book down. The chemistry between hero and heroine was great, the story line was wonderful and I really didn’t want the story end. I really enjoyed reading Dressed To Kissed
I enjoyed this book, which is actually an anthology of 4 novellas with overlapping stories. I found the novel's locale (centered about a dressmaker shop) very interesting. I'll give a brief rating for each novella: The Duke's Dressmaker: 3.5. As a big fan of Ms. Hunter, I found Selina's and Rand's story well-written but just not quite up to what I was expecting. Part of that may be because I didn't especially connect with her hero. I had trouble seeing him as "duke-ly" when he did not assert himself overly much to reign in some of his family members...maybe it's just a personal thing with me. The Colors of Love: 3.5. This is my first book to read by Ms. Robens and while I did enjoy the chemistry between Delyth and Simon, I found her a bit overblown, even with her theater background. I just really did not warm up to her character as I normally do a heroine. No Accounting for Love: 4. This is also a new author for me and can definitely see myself reading more from her in the future. I especially enjoyed her hero, Henry, and his sweet naivete and shy charm were refreshing and new...Katherine made a good heroine for him. A Fashionable Affair: 4.3. I thoroughly enjoyed this novella by Ms. Linden and the way it wrapped up the stories in the novel. I found myself waiting for Felicity's story throughout the book and was not disappointed with her Evan. I found this to be a very sweet, romantic, heartfelt story...this was my favorite. Overall, very nicely done ladies. I received a free ARC of this novel in exchange for an honest review.
DRESSED TO KISS is an anthology based around a modiste shop and four of historical romance’s best authors contribute to this excellent book. So far, I have had the time to read only Ms. Linden’s and Ms. Frampton’s novellas, but I cannot wait to read the other two, as the two I’ve read are fabulous! A Fashionable Affair by Caroline Linden Those of you who have read Caroline Linden’s books know what an exceptionally gifted writer she is, you who have not will need to read this novella to truly appreciate the Ms. Linden’s rare talent. Evan Hewes, the Earl of Carmathen, is bent on modernising and beautifying the area where Madame Follette’s shop stands. Madame Follette’s is located near Bond Street, business is doing alright, but could be better. Feliticy Dawkins is managing the modiste shop for her mother, while the latter is away. Madame Follette’s has been in the family for several years, but when Carmathen tells Felicity Dawkins that she must vacate the premises, she bluntly refuses. And so begins one of the most wonderful love stories ever written. When Carmathen goes to Madame Follette’s, he expects the mother, not breathtakingly beautiful Felicity, but still he won’t budge either. Until Felicity starts to get under his skin, and he decides to help her, whichever way he can. While they agree to disagree, Felicity warms up to the Earl, until she realises that she wants to be his, whatever the consequences; he will not marry a mere shop girl, surely. And oh how exquisitely Ms. Linden conveys those feelings of falling in love, of being in love! I don’t believe I’ve ever read anything, anywhere that describes what love is more accurately, more emotionally. Ms. Linden’s lush and sumptuous prose is so evocative that the words become images; the dialogues are brilliantly simple and historically accurate. Felicity and Carmathen discuss things rationally instead of bickering, they reach compromises. And when the delicious flirtation becomes more, well, one almost wishes that smelling salts hadn’t gone out of fashion, because that’s how it made me feel. What a glorious romance. Felicity and Carmathen’s passion becomes all-encompassing, so beautiful, so touching, and it all feels so real. A FASHIONABLE AFFAIR is a triumph of exquisite, sublime writing, blistering sensuality, and a love so true, it takes a few moments to come back to reality. A FASHIONABLE AFFAIR is a magnificent novella, the epitome of fine writing, and the joy of experiencing love. I believe I have run out of superlatives, but this story deserves them all! No Accounting for Love by Megan Frampton NO ACCOUNTING FOR LOVE is a charming, lovely, sunny story filled with vividly drawn characters, and such glorious fun! Ms. Frampton writes the most fabulous sentences, very matter-of-factly, and you catch yourself laughing hysterically! This romance between a bespectacled, blushing giant and the woman he thinks is one hot number (nudge, wink!) perfectly conveys the dizzying, heady feeling of falling in love and left me sighing and smiling contentedly. Another splendid read by the amazing Megan Frampton! I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.