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Publisher's Summary

In the three years since her husband left her, Lady Kathleen Carhart has managed to forge a fulfilling life for herself. But when Ned Carhart unexpectedly returns, she finds her tranquility uprooted - and her deepest secrets threatened. Though she has no intention of falling for Ned's charms, Kate can no longer deny the desire that still burns in her heart.

Ned is determined to regain his wife's trust by using unbridled seduction. But just as Kate surrenders to Ned's passion, her carefully guarded past threatens to destroy her. Now Kate must place her faith in the only man she's ever loved, and the only one who has ever betrayed her....

©2010 Courtney Milan (P)2010 Audible, Inc.

What listeners say about Trial by Desire

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Plain Blah...

Any additional comments?

I thought this book would be interesting just reading the synopsis...NOT.!! The main male lead leaves his wife not just for a few days or a month but a few years and the female lead character is ok with it?! She just accepts him back as if he was just gone but a week or so? The main plot line is also dumb and how they solve it after a series of boring days or weeks of him trying to get her back and of her just falling for him again is sooo....urgh!!! what was the point of this whole book?! Watching paint dry?!

1 person found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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A nice listen

Setting: Barkshire & London, England 1841 (prologue is 1838)
Genre: Romance
Narration: While Elizabeth Jasicki doesn't have quite the vocal range as some other female narrators, she does a creditable job.
This book was a little unusual for a historical romance in that the woman is the one who is more sexually aggressive. I prefer strong female protagonists, and Kate definitely falls into that category. She has a secret project she won't share with Ned because she doesn't trust him. Ned doesn't share his secret because he believes that the fact of it makes him unworthy. So, the main plot is about Kate and Ned working through their issues and secrets. There is a sub-plot having to do with domestic violence. I would have liked more details about Kate in those years between 1838 and 1841 to give it a more rounded feel, but the absence didn't detract from the book. I liked the characters and how they dealt with their problems. I don't think this is a can't turn it off kind of book, but it is quite enjoyable.
It is worth the credit, and the time spent listening.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Satisfying

This second book by Courtney Milan and book two of the Carhart duology has intense themes but a very satisfying ending.

This is a marriage of convenience (scandal), secret love, second chance romance with an MC who struggles with recurring depression and has struggled with suicidal ideation.
They are protecting a (mutual friend) woman who is escaping from domestic abuse. Neither knows the other very well because this is a 19th century England society marriage. They do want to know and love each other. He has been off on an investigative mission, leaving her alone and feeling abandoned. She doesn’t feel she can trust him with her secret (helping women in DA situations) and he is afraid to open up because of his bouts of depression. They are also stuck with the creepy, abusive husband in their house, trying to pretend to help him find his wife while they are keeping secrets from each other. It is an intricate dance, but it is beautifully executed by Ms. Milan.

You are going to love the ending.

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Just go with it

After reading quite a few of Courtney Milan's books, I find quite a lot to enjoy, especially her plots and her characters. Although we all know the two protagonists will end up together, she keeps me guessing on how it will happen. And that's when I say "Just go with it." The plots can be improbable and disconcerting in terms of the historical period (e.g., why are the servants mostly one-dimensional and usually absent?), but I enjoy the banter and character development. Definitely not your stereotypical characters and not your stereotypical character reactions to situations. I didn't like the books as much once Ms. Janice began narrating. While we can't all be Rosalyn Landor, her mispronunciation of words (e.g., "mullish" for "mulish") and limited range of voices could make me cringe. I'm ready to move on.

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Tackling Modern Issues with a Historical perspect.

It was great to see you tackle domestic violence and have it set in the 1800s.

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Story held my interest.

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes- Good balance of romance and suspense

Would you listen to another book narrated by Elizabeth Jasicki?

Yes

Any additional comments?

It's impossible to write too much about the story or it would give away too much information about the plot and ruin the book for others. But Kate was quite a lady and I loved what she did for other women who needed help.

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Great

If you could sum up Trial by Desire in three words, what would they be?

Compelling, intriguing, heartwarming

What does Elizabeth Jasicki bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

I think she brings it to life. I recently read one of Milan's books and it was fine, but I liked this one better. Jasicki is one of my favorite narrators.




Any additional comments?

The plot centered among other things, on wife abuse and depression. Lady Kathleen tried to save abused women. Her husband who had bouts of depression tried to overcome it.
He needed to prove to himself and his wife that he could overcome it and be there for her when she was in danger. Their story is very heartwarming.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Okay at best

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

I would recommend this book to a select few of my friends. I personally did not like the setting or the plot of the book, and I know its a romance novel but I still expect a good story.

What was most disappointing about Courtney Milan’s story?

The plot.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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Very Interesting premise

What did you love best about Trial by Desire?

All the different back stories, that are going on, around the main characters... It could be very confusing, but Milan made it work.

What other book might you compare Trial by Desire to and why?

I don't think there is one, it's pretty unique.

Which character – as performed by Elizabeth Jasicki – was your favorite?

Loved Lady Kathleen, she was quite the "kick ass" heroine.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

When Ned reveals why he had really left her for 3 years. Also a scene which I cannot reveal otherwise it would spoil the book. Sorry!!!

Any additional comments?

It seems slow at the beginning, but it REALLY is worth it!