Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Julie Anne Long "The Perils of Pleasure" & A Book GIVEAWAY

Is it possible I could love this book more than Like No Other Lover (which I forced my entire, non-romance-reading book club to read.) The only bittersweet part of reading this book was knowing that I had used up some of my best superlatives on her other book. Well, that and the back cover, WTH?

Madeleine Greenway is hired to orchestrate Colin Eversea's escape from the gallows. He was to be hung by the neck until dead for murdering someone in a pub who insulted his sister. He is innocent, of course, and once he's free the person who hired her tries to kill her instead of paying her, giving her an incentive to help him prove his innocence and try to recover her fee.

Julie Anne Long can write herself some damn fine characters. Her prose is slightly more restrained in this book than in Like No Other Lover and I would dare to say this plot is just a hint leaner than the other as well. Making this one of the finest books I've ever read.

And since you've probably either read about or guessed my penchant for well recounted infatuation, I'll point out that she is the master in this department as well.

Historical Romance 2008: 5 of 5 'masculine problems.'

Now about the book give-away. Because, as I mentioned above, I forced my book club to read a romance novel, and because I was feeling guilty about it and because I therefore bought a few extra copies of Like No Other Lover since the library's were mostly out.....I'm hereby spreading the joy these books have brought me and offering two (used) copies of Like No Other Lover by Julie Anne Long to two randomly selected commenters on this post. Deadline is midnight, April 7th, a week from today. Go crazy.

And in case you're interested, an excerpt:

"Could anyone have been hurt today?" he faltered. "The explosions..."
"No," she said coolly. "Not from the explosions alone, anyhow. They were low explosives, meant for loud noise and smoke only. ....set off by very strategically placed boys , paid out of my pocket, ... and all for your benefit, Mr. Eversea. I don't suppose we can discount a turned ankle or a fit of apoplexy in the crowd ...but other than that..."
"Or a trampling," Colin added with dark irony. "Can't discount a trampling."
"Your concern for the thousands of people who came out to cheer as you died horribly is touching, Mr. Eversea."
"I don't think they all came to rejoice in the event."
"I wouldn't be too certain," she said tartly.

And this for some perverse reason made him smile. She wasn't any happier to be here with him than he was to be with her. And she was so very ready to volley, and good at it. He'd wanted a conflict; she'd given it to him and he felt as though he'd spent himself in a good tennis set.

"You really don't exert yourself to charm, do you, Mrs. Greenway?" he mused easily.
"Charm, Mr. Eversea, will cost your family an additional ten pounds if and when I return you alive and whole."
"I should like to see the menu of available services , then, if you please."
He turned back to her just in time to see her smile crack like lightning. It was dazzling, genuine, a thing of natural beauty. [sic] Seconds later it occurred to him both that he was gaping and that he should probably breathe again.


Anonymous said...

I loved LNOL, too. Have had TPOP on my TBR shelf for ages, but no time ot read, darnit!!

The nice thing is having several Long books still ahead of me so I don't have to wait for new relases. I just love her.

Great review!

Stewart said...

Send me my free book!

Anonymous said...

Oooo, I've heard so much about this author and particularly this book, would love to win. I have a few of her older books on my TBR but am told she has improved immensely and I'm afraid I might not get a real sense of her as a writer if I read them first. Not to mention, they're alphabetized and I will never be able to get to the Ls. ;-) -- willaful

Marg said...

I haven't ever read any Julie Anne Long books. If you are willing to send overseas I would love to be entered into the draw.

Anne said...

Pick Stewart, pick Stewart! I want to see him curled up on the sofa with his Snuggie and "The Perils of Pleasure"!

Ana said...

OK, you convinced me, I read this and bought the Perils of Pleasure straight away. woohoo! Can't wait to read it. : )

M. said...

I've never read this author but i keep hearing that she's very good at the funny bits.

I'm often nervous to persuade my Book Club to read my recs in case they don't like them! You are brave. What did your clubbers think?

Heloise said...

Jessica: anticipation is a good thing. :)

Stewart: you have to sign an affidavit that you will actually read the book, while wearing the snuglie!

Willaful: Her more recent books are very different, more metaphor as Jessica points out in her review of LNOL. The old ones are good, but I just really like her voice in these two more recent ones.

Marg: for you, I would totally send a book overseas. :)

Anne: you've added yourself to the contest dear so you have the same danger, snuglie and all.


M: this one is slightly less funny than Like No Other Lover but slightly tighter in plot and language. They are both terrific. :)

Heloise said...

The book club thing was challenging. Three friends read it out of 11. One didn't like it, she just couldn't get over that she knew they were going to get together in the end. :) One really enjoyed it and read another romance novel the next week, and one enjoyed it and was pleasantly surprised the writing wasn't horrible.

After book club discussion, several others said they would read it, but I wonder. It seems the hardest thing is getting them to actually try. Remember, I bought most of these books for these ladies, or they got it from the library. :)