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Publisher's Summary

From nationally best-selling author Rebecca Hagan Lee comes a romance set in England during the 1790s. The Earl of Weymouth insists his son marry before going off to fight the French. Lady Tressingham insists her daughter marry as soon as possible as well. The children, however, are very resistant to the institution of marriage. But they do wed as a matter of convenience. When Griffen returns from war, though, he's a different man than before, and he hopes he can prove his love to Alyssa, the woman he left when she was barely a bride.

Narrator Virginia Leishman's tangy performance is perfect for this intimate and steamy tale. Lee's story abut the triumph of love will entertain and delight.

©2003 Rebecca Hagan Lee; (P)2004 Recorded Books

Critic Reviews

"This tightly written novel is well-crafted and has strong characters....As always, Lee touches the right chords in her readers." (Romantic Times)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings


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  • Overall
  • Susan
  • St. Louis, MO, USA
  • 01-14-06

Nice book, strange narrator

This is an interesting and entertaining historical romance. Some parts are a little over-detailed, but overall the book is enjoyable. The narrator, on the other hand, though compentent with a good voice and accent, is SUCKING on something and making awful wet noises throughout the whole book! It's very distracting and I can't believe she was allowed to suck on candy (or her dentures?) during the whole reading. I can't believe this wasn't edited out or corrected. It's just disgusting. I could still enjoy the book, but everytime there's a silence you hear this gruesome sucking noise. Gah. I would like more choice for unabridged historical romances, and would definitely try another work by this author. I will skip this narrator though. Ick.

9 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Wonderful Love Story!

If you love Pride and Prejudice, you will love Barely a Bride. It is a wonderful 19th century romance that will keep your attention from start to finish. Be forewarned that there are many racy sexual parts, with almost nothing left for the imagination! I found myself at times having to manually close my mouth, or look around to make sure no one else heard what I was listening to. I would describe this book as Pride and Prejudice with lots of sex! Have fun!

19 of 20 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • A
  • WinnipegScotland
  • 07-20-05

Barely Memorable

Less than a month since I read this book and it is already a fleeting memory, so I can honestly report it isn't the ground-shattering historical romance I hoped for. Other reviewers have reported this book is on par with Pride and Prejudice, whereas some have said it is pornographic smut. Well, I have to disagree with both assessments. The story was fine, but it wasn't great. Sure there was some sex scenes, but hardly enough to label the book obsene. In terms of plot, it started out pretty good, but I had a little trouble with the somewhat artifical "misunderstanding" that came up at the end of the book. In fact the entire end of the book was rushed and forced. I have to wonder if Ms. Lee's editor wasn't on her case to hurry up and finish. The reading of the book is somewhat problematic. I am more inclined to think it the sound mixer/editors fault for not cleaning up the recording/filtering. Unfortunately at various points in the reading, the narrator can be clearly heard to sip, swallow, and make other small noises which can be distracting. It really is a shame, because the narrator actually has an excellent voice for historical British romance, and minus all the extraneous sounds, she does a fine job. However, if you are distracted by this type of thing, you will find this recording very annoying. Listen to the downloadable snippet and you should be able to tell if this swallow/sip/smacking noise bothers you. If it bothers you to distraction in the snippet, then I have to advise don't buy this book. Personally, I listened to this in a noisy environment, I barely heard the extra noises, they were infrequent, so they didn't interfer with my listening. My rating? Overall I give it 3.5 stars (but I have to give whole stars so will round up). I am not blown away, but then again, I don't read this genre for great inspiration. If I really had spent $80 on this, I probably would feel ripped off, but as a summer sale item at $9, I got my monies worth of a light read.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Too Slow

The story was okay, but dragged by. Nothing to set it apart from a million others, rather than having likable characters. The narration was good.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Jackie
  • Bradenton, FL, USA
  • 09-26-05

Good story, nasty mouth noise

This is a good story, but the narrator sounds like she is sucking a hard candy throughout the entire reading. The sound, more pronounced durring pauses, is quite revolting.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Excellent Love Story

This is an excellent love story. I am a very big reader of historical romances. Set in the 1790's, the author brings together two individuals that are being pressured by their parents to married. Even though they entered in the married believing one only wants heirs and the other a home of her own. They began to love each other. There are parts of the story that are really sexually graph. You do find yourself looking around to make sure know one sees you with a silly grin on your face. I can't wait until her other books are available to listen to.

10 of 12 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Kelley
  • CA, United States
  • 05-21-07

A nice beginning anyway...

I liked both the hero and heroine of this novel very much. They were kind, honest, intelligent people who deserved to be happy together - I personally wish they had been happier longer and more quickly but I usually do. What's strange about this novel is the pace. The bulk of the first half of the novel is the description of a 48 hour period and we know everything that happens from what people eat to what they wear to what they have for lunch to what they had to do to get dressed and order lunch and what appointments they had to cancel to have the conversations they do have and how they got to those appointments... seriously, if a character has to write a note, the author will tell you how he acquires the pen and paper to write it with, how long it takes him to compose it and how and where he has it sent. These laborious descriptions fascinated me up to a point and the unexpected flowering of love is rather nice. Then there's the second part of the book that takes that lovely soufflee of a set up and smashes it flat. It's a great pity.
As for the sex, there is one genuinely moving love scene (pre souffle flatening) but I'd hardly call it a racy book for all that.
All in all the novel is a lovely beginning gone to bad and that's a shame.

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Camille
  • Beavercreek, OH, United States
  • 06-12-07

Unpleasing to the ear

This might be a good book to read, I may never know. However, the audiobok is horrible. The narrator is absolutely awful. You hear her swallowing and it sounds like she's got candy or something in her mouth. I tried listening to this audiobook 4x's. I tried so hard. I just couldn't do it.

8 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Good story with characters you like

I love romantic fiction, especially historical, so I am generally not too hard to please when it comes to this genre. Having said that, I really liked this book. The story was a good one, full of heroism, honor, friendship, self-reliance, and love. The characters were interesting and complex without being inscrutable. I really liked most of them, and my emotions were easily engaged by the dramatic and poignant situations in which they found themselves. ("I laughed, I cried," yada, yada)However, the first part of the book was slow getting started. There were moments when, if I were reading this in print, I would have skipped ahead to see what was coming and how long I would have to wait for it. The quality of the writing is good, so the big build-up is not as painful as with other less-talented authors. But it took me longer than usual to become truly invested in the story. The romance was sizzling. I know that sounds trite, but in this case that description is warranted. If the book had begun with one of her love scenes, there isn't a person alive who wouldn't at least listen to the first hour or so. Once the story took off, I was completely hooked. Therefore, the ending was a little bit of a let-down. It resolved itself the way I wanted it to (mostly), but seemed rushed and forced. Lee did her characters an injustice by not paying as much attention to the end of their story as she did to the beginning. In sum, I give this book 4 stars - an entertaining, if slow-to-start read, with a good story and characters you really like.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Barbara
  • New Ringgold, PA, USA
  • 11-10-05

Loved It!

The writing is smooth, bright and entrancing. She brings warm and happy feelings to the reader.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful