Yup, we’ve got that one

And more than one million more. Become a member today and read free for two weeks.

Read free for two weeks

Magic under the mistletoe . . .

One spectacular Christmas, Lady Perdita Selby, known to her friends and family as Poppy, met the man she thought she would love forever. The devilishly attractive Duke of Fletcher was the perfect match for the innocent, breathtakingly beautiful young Englishwoman, and theirs was the most romantic wedding she had ever seen. Four years later, Poppy and the duke have become the toast of the ton . . . but behind closed doors the spark of their love affair has burned out.

Unwilling to lose the woman he still lusts after, the duke is determined to win back his beguiling bride's delectable affections . . . and surpass the heady days of first love with a truly sinful seduction.

Topics: Christmas, Marriage, Second Chances, Nobility, Series, Georgian Era, Paris, and France

Published: HarperCollins on
ISBN: 9780061797637
List price: $5.99
Read on Scribd mobile: iPhone, iPad and Android.
Availability for An Affair Before Christmas
With a 30 day free trial you can read online for free
  1. This book can be read on up to 6 mobile devices.
We often view the 18th century through the lens of the Victorian era, and this book suffers from modern POV and sensibility. I found myself jolted out of the story by anachronistic dialogue, and the story isn't strong to begin with. Weak offering.more
Not my favourite, but the set up for the next in the series sounds promising.more
A solid four-and-a-half stars, I thought. Loved, loved, loved Fletch...er, John, but Poppy's itchy hair? Not so sure. I suppose a bad allergy *might* distract one from (ahem) other things, and later on she does admit to feeling a twinge of something a time or two, but still. That part of it just seemed a bit silly. I was definitely rooting for them in the end, though. The rest of the book more than made up for the stretch of belief that was required (and can I just say how glad I am not to have lived in that era? Between panniers and feathers, wax, and powder in one's hair--ugh! No thank you.) to swallow the premise. The "scientific" debates/discussions/curiosities were just too funny ("God would never have placed false evidence on Adam's body!" as part of the NO argument about whether or not Adam and Eve had belly buttons); I love those little touches that James throws into her stories. The side characters and their stories were, as always, absolutely wonderful--now I'm almost as eager for Villiers's story as I am for Jemma and Elijah's!--and James's dialogue never disappoints. It never fails--I'm always chastised at least once by my daughter while reading an Eloisa James book; "Mom, stop laughing. I"m trying to (fill in the blank with activity that is disturbed by parental giggling)" I try to read in solitude, but those darn kids just won't go away....more
Another book with an interesting central idea, what happens after the fairytale wedding, well for Poppy and Fletch it’s a slowly crumbling marriage because Poppy, whose mother rigourously trained her to always act as a Duchess should, doesn't like sex. Eventually their marriage crumbles and Poppy moves in with another unhappily married women, Jemma, Duchess of Beaumont. While her mother moves in with Fletch and the scene is set for the pair to repair their marriage. A fun read.more
I really did enjoy this story about a young woman who finds herself very confused, told by her mother what she should expect and how she should react to sex in her marriage. Her mother is soured by her experience with her husband. This leads to their relationship souring. Perdita 'Poppy' Selby now Duchess Fletcher, is trying hard to be the perfect wife, unaware that she is driving a wedge between herself and her husband, finally she cracks and goes to stay with Jemma, the Duchess of Beaumont, who is toying with another man herself, during this period Poppy learns how to love herself and how to be herself, but how will the Duke react when they come together again?I did enjoy this, you could see how the situation set itself up and how the two characters could have ended up in the situation. I also liked some of the background characters and couldn't but feel a little sorry for Poppy's mother, who was more to be pitied than scorned, I don't know that she knew any better.more
I read this over the week of Christmas and it was quick and quirky read that had me laughing out loud at times.more
Charming historical romance. Part of James' Duchess series. The prose is excellent, the characters are interesting, and the historical accuracy seems pretty good. This is the Georgian period, not regency, but James seems spot on.more
Summary: Poppy and the Duke of Fletcher met in Paris and fell madly in love. However, thanks to Poppy being conditioned to think that women can never enjoy sex, relations between them have grown cold and frigid. It’ll take a special Christmas to bring them back together again.Review: After the disappointment that was Desperate Duchesses, I thought that Eloisa James would improve if I gave her another chance. I have enjoyed some of her books in the past and she has a knack for amusing subplots and great secondary characters, not to mention an eye for historical detail. But what I’ve come to realize is that whenever I pick up one of her novels, I look for those things and practically ignore the main romance. Which, for a romance novel, is probably not a good sign.Why do I dislike many of her romances? Mostly, the genre cliches. The excessive sentimentality, the sideline homophobia (because men and women! come together like cookies and cream! so there can't possibly be any alternate sexualities that matter!), the creepy idealization of French culture, the naive heroines, the hyper manly heroes, the requisite “aww, aren’t we happy with our brood of five million children?” epilogue. Yeah. You’ve seen it before and you see it again. Poppy had her decent moments, such as her interest in the natural sciences, but her overwhelming naivete and sweetness was too much for me to stomach, especially when James tried to give her some forward-thinking, modern qualities as well. There are authors who can combine these two sets of qualities together and make it work (that is, create a 3D character), but James isn’t one of them. At her worst, Poppy seemed like a case of trying to have your cake and eat it too. Look, she’s smart and strong and operates on some feminist ideals sure to appeal to the modern reader! But look, she’s also demure and shy and easily convinced by everyone around her! She has no dark moments, only angelic ones! Weird.It’s a shame that Poppy and Fletcher’s romance bored me to tears. Because James really is good at constructing other types of stories. I absolutely loved the plot with Villiers, Charlotte, and Dautry. The interaction between Villiers and Charlotte fascinated me, and I would have loved to have seen an entire book revolve around them instead of boring old Poppy and Fletcher. Villiers himself is a great character, both cynical and dark but with sartorial elegance, hooray! He isn’t afraid that liking fashion means he’s a woman (which, gods forbid, is the Worst Thing Ever).So I will continue reading this series, mostly because Eloisa James continues to draw me back with her intriguing secondary characters that I want to see appear in future books. It's funny, but I think I would appreciate her in a different genre. Maybe more of a comedy of manners? I would love her romance novels as long as she left out the romance, haha. No, really, I'm serious.Conclusion: Poppy and Fletcher who?more
This is the first time that a couple started out truly disliking each other. Most romances begin with that "you annoy the heck outta me, but gosh, golly, how I lust for you" theme, but Poppy and Fletch have been married for four years, and their feelings for each other are nearing disgust and contempt. James takes them on an interesting route to figure out what went wrong, and she manages to get the characters to change enough to fall in real love.Though I care more for the peripheral characters in this one (love Charlotte Tatlock and the Duke of Villiers), I did enjoy this one! (Especially loved the glimpses into Georgian life - descriptions of Poppy's duchess level hairstyles and the effort - and gross additions - that went into them were fascinating!)more
This book is actually three stories - Fletch and Poppy's, Jemma's, and Charlotte Tetlock and the Duke of Villiers'. Unlike in her other books, it's hard to say which one is really dominant - they're given close to equal time. The main story - Fletch and Poppy's - is, in my opinion, the weakest, replaying parts of "Your Wicked Ways" that were done better there - the innocent bride who finds sex horrible and it tears apart their relationships, but they actually still love each other...blah, blah. Read "Your Wicked Ways" - it's better. However, the Duke of Villiers is a fantastic story, and his story - even though he's in bed the whole time, recovering (very slowly and painfully) from a sword wound he received in a duel in "Desperate Duchesses" - it's the part that captures you and keeps your interest.more
Eloise James is surprisingly hit or miss for me, but this is her worst book by far. I found the plot tedious and the characters annoying. After 4 disappointing years of marriage, Fletch is on the verge of having an affair but learning of his disappointment, his perfect wife leaves him instead, and finds herself. Then they reconnect and fall in love. Actually that makes it sound far better than it did. It could have been one of those serious, makes you cry and think romances, but it tried to keep it's fluffy/bright aspect and instead the whole thing became leaden. I might have liked a seroius, passionate exploration of marriage and the delusions we have before going in and what is love anyway, but this is not the book for that conversation. Instead it was just the annoying Poppy, cutting off her itching hair and discovering her inner French womanmore
This was a very different story because it involved a married man and woman in england after the marriage. It basically picked up where all of the storybook "we fell in love, got married, and then..." leave off. A woman and her husband dont' enjoy enjoy sex together, and it's the story of how they ignite the flame of their marriage and it also shows a little more of the first of the duchess books. Not bad at all!more
Read all 14 reviews

Reviews

We often view the 18th century through the lens of the Victorian era, and this book suffers from modern POV and sensibility. I found myself jolted out of the story by anachronistic dialogue, and the story isn't strong to begin with. Weak offering.more
Not my favourite, but the set up for the next in the series sounds promising.more
A solid four-and-a-half stars, I thought. Loved, loved, loved Fletch...er, John, but Poppy's itchy hair? Not so sure. I suppose a bad allergy *might* distract one from (ahem) other things, and later on she does admit to feeling a twinge of something a time or two, but still. That part of it just seemed a bit silly. I was definitely rooting for them in the end, though. The rest of the book more than made up for the stretch of belief that was required (and can I just say how glad I am not to have lived in that era? Between panniers and feathers, wax, and powder in one's hair--ugh! No thank you.) to swallow the premise. The "scientific" debates/discussions/curiosities were just too funny ("God would never have placed false evidence on Adam's body!" as part of the NO argument about whether or not Adam and Eve had belly buttons); I love those little touches that James throws into her stories. The side characters and their stories were, as always, absolutely wonderful--now I'm almost as eager for Villiers's story as I am for Jemma and Elijah's!--and James's dialogue never disappoints. It never fails--I'm always chastised at least once by my daughter while reading an Eloisa James book; "Mom, stop laughing. I"m trying to (fill in the blank with activity that is disturbed by parental giggling)" I try to read in solitude, but those darn kids just won't go away....more
Another book with an interesting central idea, what happens after the fairytale wedding, well for Poppy and Fletch it’s a slowly crumbling marriage because Poppy, whose mother rigourously trained her to always act as a Duchess should, doesn't like sex. Eventually their marriage crumbles and Poppy moves in with another unhappily married women, Jemma, Duchess of Beaumont. While her mother moves in with Fletch and the scene is set for the pair to repair their marriage. A fun read.more
I really did enjoy this story about a young woman who finds herself very confused, told by her mother what she should expect and how she should react to sex in her marriage. Her mother is soured by her experience with her husband. This leads to their relationship souring. Perdita 'Poppy' Selby now Duchess Fletcher, is trying hard to be the perfect wife, unaware that she is driving a wedge between herself and her husband, finally she cracks and goes to stay with Jemma, the Duchess of Beaumont, who is toying with another man herself, during this period Poppy learns how to love herself and how to be herself, but how will the Duke react when they come together again?I did enjoy this, you could see how the situation set itself up and how the two characters could have ended up in the situation. I also liked some of the background characters and couldn't but feel a little sorry for Poppy's mother, who was more to be pitied than scorned, I don't know that she knew any better.more
I read this over the week of Christmas and it was quick and quirky read that had me laughing out loud at times.more
Charming historical romance. Part of James' Duchess series. The prose is excellent, the characters are interesting, and the historical accuracy seems pretty good. This is the Georgian period, not regency, but James seems spot on.more
Summary: Poppy and the Duke of Fletcher met in Paris and fell madly in love. However, thanks to Poppy being conditioned to think that women can never enjoy sex, relations between them have grown cold and frigid. It’ll take a special Christmas to bring them back together again.Review: After the disappointment that was Desperate Duchesses, I thought that Eloisa James would improve if I gave her another chance. I have enjoyed some of her books in the past and she has a knack for amusing subplots and great secondary characters, not to mention an eye for historical detail. But what I’ve come to realize is that whenever I pick up one of her novels, I look for those things and practically ignore the main romance. Which, for a romance novel, is probably not a good sign.Why do I dislike many of her romances? Mostly, the genre cliches. The excessive sentimentality, the sideline homophobia (because men and women! come together like cookies and cream! so there can't possibly be any alternate sexualities that matter!), the creepy idealization of French culture, the naive heroines, the hyper manly heroes, the requisite “aww, aren’t we happy with our brood of five million children?” epilogue. Yeah. You’ve seen it before and you see it again. Poppy had her decent moments, such as her interest in the natural sciences, but her overwhelming naivete and sweetness was too much for me to stomach, especially when James tried to give her some forward-thinking, modern qualities as well. There are authors who can combine these two sets of qualities together and make it work (that is, create a 3D character), but James isn’t one of them. At her worst, Poppy seemed like a case of trying to have your cake and eat it too. Look, she’s smart and strong and operates on some feminist ideals sure to appeal to the modern reader! But look, she’s also demure and shy and easily convinced by everyone around her! She has no dark moments, only angelic ones! Weird.It’s a shame that Poppy and Fletcher’s romance bored me to tears. Because James really is good at constructing other types of stories. I absolutely loved the plot with Villiers, Charlotte, and Dautry. The interaction between Villiers and Charlotte fascinated me, and I would have loved to have seen an entire book revolve around them instead of boring old Poppy and Fletcher. Villiers himself is a great character, both cynical and dark but with sartorial elegance, hooray! He isn’t afraid that liking fashion means he’s a woman (which, gods forbid, is the Worst Thing Ever).So I will continue reading this series, mostly because Eloisa James continues to draw me back with her intriguing secondary characters that I want to see appear in future books. It's funny, but I think I would appreciate her in a different genre. Maybe more of a comedy of manners? I would love her romance novels as long as she left out the romance, haha. No, really, I'm serious.Conclusion: Poppy and Fletcher who?more
This is the first time that a couple started out truly disliking each other. Most romances begin with that "you annoy the heck outta me, but gosh, golly, how I lust for you" theme, but Poppy and Fletch have been married for four years, and their feelings for each other are nearing disgust and contempt. James takes them on an interesting route to figure out what went wrong, and she manages to get the characters to change enough to fall in real love.Though I care more for the peripheral characters in this one (love Charlotte Tatlock and the Duke of Villiers), I did enjoy this one! (Especially loved the glimpses into Georgian life - descriptions of Poppy's duchess level hairstyles and the effort - and gross additions - that went into them were fascinating!)more
This book is actually three stories - Fletch and Poppy's, Jemma's, and Charlotte Tetlock and the Duke of Villiers'. Unlike in her other books, it's hard to say which one is really dominant - they're given close to equal time. The main story - Fletch and Poppy's - is, in my opinion, the weakest, replaying parts of "Your Wicked Ways" that were done better there - the innocent bride who finds sex horrible and it tears apart their relationships, but they actually still love each other...blah, blah. Read "Your Wicked Ways" - it's better. However, the Duke of Villiers is a fantastic story, and his story - even though he's in bed the whole time, recovering (very slowly and painfully) from a sword wound he received in a duel in "Desperate Duchesses" - it's the part that captures you and keeps your interest.more
Eloise James is surprisingly hit or miss for me, but this is her worst book by far. I found the plot tedious and the characters annoying. After 4 disappointing years of marriage, Fletch is on the verge of having an affair but learning of his disappointment, his perfect wife leaves him instead, and finds herself. Then they reconnect and fall in love. Actually that makes it sound far better than it did. It could have been one of those serious, makes you cry and think romances, but it tried to keep it's fluffy/bright aspect and instead the whole thing became leaden. I might have liked a seroius, passionate exploration of marriage and the delusions we have before going in and what is love anyway, but this is not the book for that conversation. Instead it was just the annoying Poppy, cutting off her itching hair and discovering her inner French womanmore
This was a very different story because it involved a married man and woman in england after the marriage. It basically picked up where all of the storybook "we fell in love, got married, and then..." leave off. A woman and her husband dont' enjoy enjoy sex together, and it's the story of how they ignite the flame of their marriage and it also shows a little more of the first of the duchess books. Not bad at all!more
Load more
scribd