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When He Was Wicked (Bridgertons #6)

4.04  ·  Rating Details ·  23,864 Ratings  ·  966 Reviews
In every life there is a turning point.

A moment so tremendous, so sharp and breathtaking, that one knows one's life will never be the same. For Michael Stirling, London's most infamous rake, that moment came the first time he laid eyes on Francesca Bridgerton.

After a lifetime of chasing women, of smiling slyly as they chased him, of allowing himself to be caught but never
ebook, 384 pages
Published October 13th 2009 by HarperCollins e-books (first published January 1st 2004)
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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5 stars – Historical/Regency Romance

I’ll be honest, this is the book that attracted me to Julia Quinn’s Bridgertons to begin with and the story that I was most looking forward to reading in the series. I mean, with a title like “When He Was Wicked”? Well, I knew I simply couldn’t pass it up. Although I really liked this, surprisingly, it’s not my favorite of the series. That honor is still tied between the breathtaking, fairy tale romance An Offer From a Gentleman and the sweet, whimsical Romanc
UniquelyMoi ~ BlithelyBookish
My Review:

This, the 6th installment of the Bridgerton series, is so different from the rest of the stories that it took me by surprise – a pleasant surprise. Having read and found the previous books lighter, funnier reads, I hadn’t expected to find this one much different. If there was ever any question as to Ms. Quinn’s ability to write a more intense, deeper story, When He Was Wicked has answered it with a resounding yes!

When He Was Wicked is the story of Michael Stirling, Rake Extraordinaire
Khanh (the Grinch)
This book recounts the age-old tale of falling in love with your best friend's girl...but what happens when you get your chance at her hand, albeit at the loss of your best friend through his untimely death?

This is a beautiful Regency romance on grief, loss, and moving on. I've read and mostly loved all the books featuring the Bridgerton family, and this is the book I return to time after time because I think it is the best in the series. It is written in your typical inestimable Julia Quinn sty

I loved this. I haven't read this series in order, I think I've read Sophie's story, but that's it. I've been told that the Bridgertons are entwined throughout the series so it's best read in order. But I gotta tell you, I loved this anyways and never felt I was lost or not privy to previous developments. I do plan on reading the rest of the series and only wish they're as good as this one.

So, Michael Stirling. The man had my attention from the first page. His forbidden love and acutely
After four long years of mourning her beloved husband Francesca Bridgerton Stirling is finally going back into society. Still young, she feels the longing to be a mother, and has decided to find herself a husband. But when her husband’s cousin and once her close friend returns, her simple plan seems to fly out the window.
Michael Stirling has been in love with Francesca for many years, and after the sudden death of his cousin, his life was turned upside down. Feeling he was betraying his cous
Nov 25, 2009 Eastofoz rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Bridgerton series fans, readers who like regency with spice
Ahh Julia Quinn, the best comfort read out there. Not only is this an excellent comfort read but it’s comfort with a surprising twist. I had to check more than once that I was reading a Juia Quinn and not Lisa Kleypas whose steam scenes can be a whole lot steamier than Quinn’s. This book was fantastic!

Filled with emotion that starts out simmering and ends up ready to firecracker high in the sky, here’s the story of Francesca Bridgerton and Michael Stirling friends/cousins through Francesca’s hus
This is definitely the most intense of the Bridgerton series that I've read so far.

Francesca Bridgerton is Michael's ultimate "Jessie's Girl." He has been completely in love with her since the first time he met her. She is his cousin's (who is like a brother to him) wife. He never tries to win her, or even wish for her, but has resigned himself to bitter acceptance and self hatred for secretly wanting his cousin's wife. He tamps all his feelings down and is ashamed of himself.

Well, the cousin d
This one is one of the very best in the series, surpassed only by Colin and Penelope's story in my opinion.

Francesca has always been strangely absent in this series. It's been four years since I read the first books but if I'm not mistaken she's only been mentioned but is never actually there until her own book. I see now that there is a reason for that. Francesca doesn't really fit in with the rest of the Bridgertons. Her personality is different, I would say she's more serious or at least more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
One of - if not THE - best of the Bridgerton series, this is a bit darker in tone than most of the others.

I listened to the audiobook version, narrated by Simon Prebble, who does an absolutely wonderful job. I don't have time to write a full review at the moment, but perhaps one day...
Katrina Passick Lumsden
*Fanning myself*


This book should get two stars from me, but here's an interesting fact; Michael Stirling rates an entire star on his own. I found myself frustrated with Francesca's behavior. It's not that I couldn't understand it, just that it dragged on for far too long. I've noticed that a propensity to draw out a story is one of the weaknesses in Quinn's writing. This isn't the only book of hers I've read that had me heaving a sigh, rolling my eyes, and uttering -

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But if you can get
Preparations necessary when reading When He Was Wicked:

Materials needed:
bucket of ice -to douse the heat
handkerchief -to wipe off the sweat
blood pressure cuff and heart rate monitor -to monitor if your BP and pulse are still in safe levels
guardian angel -to prevent infection of wickedness
handcuffs -to prevent being wicked
sedative -to reduce excitement

Preferential reading temperature:
20 or lower -things can get hot

(1) Breathe slowly. (Especially when approaching Chapter 17)
Dec 31, 2015 Ashley rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the ninth Quinn I've read, and always after finishing one of her books I've thought, well, that was quite nice and clever and well-written. There have been some books of hers I've rated two stars. There were quite a few I thought were good, solid three star reads, and then there was Romancing Mister Bridgerton, which had many elements I loved. I consider it a favorite but not a five star read. All in all, while I've liked and enjoyed Julia Quinn's books, I never really got the hype unti ...more
Cassandra Dexter Colby
A ver cómo me explico... Estaba entre tres y cuatro estrellas. Desde luego, no parece de la serie Bridgerton porque apenas hay toques de humor, salvo cuando aparece Colinalsdkjfñalskjdgañsldkfas o la madre. Pero el tema me ha parecido interesante. Yo, que soy más rancia que las protagonistas de estas novelas y no me dejaría comer el tetamen así de buenas a primeras, me he puesto muy en la piel de Francesca. Puede cansar su actitud, es cierto, sobre todo SPOILER una vez que hay tema (y qué tema, ...more
hmmmm.... I'm very torn on the rating.

This is my first JQ novel and not sure if it was the novel I picked or JQ that is not my style.

Don't get me wrong I'm not saying she's a bad writer. She has legions of fans. I'm just not quite sure she's for me. Perhaps I should try one of her more humorous novels before giving up.

The setup here was quite realistic in many ways and I was drawn into the first half. The loss of the heroine's first husband and hero's best friend/cousin was dealt with well. The
Lady Gabriella of Awesomeness
2.5 stars

This book...was slow.

I didn't really find it as exciting as the rest of the Bridgerton series (n i've read them all.)Even though it did have the family's trilling flavour, the book lacked JQ's usual sarcastic humour and chemistry...though I guess the treasure hunting was supposed to make up for it.

All in all an OK READ.
“You have to say it,” he said. “If you feel it, then you have to say it. I’m a greedy bastard and I want it all.”
She looked up at him, her eyes bright. “I love you.”
Michael touched her cheek. “I have no idea what I did to deserve you,” he said.
“You didn’t have to do anything,” she whispered. “You just had to be.”

*whimpers* Sorry. My heart needs a moment to deal with the sudden onslaught of feels.

When He Was Wicked was without a doubt the most emotionally draining of the Bridgerton books, but t
♥  Sam ♥ ~S2~Im made of awesomness
....'Thou Shalt Not Covet Thy Cousins Wife'....

Straight away with this chapter of the Bridgerton series you notice how different it is from the prior. Firstly there is the very noticble lack of Bridgerton family presence. Also, there has never been any real mention of Francesca in the past books. I dont even remember her being married but apparently that happened also.

Thinking back over the Brigerton Series to write these reviews I realised this was one of my favourites.Francesca (Frannue) is h


This one definitely had a different feel than the previous books in the series. It's a bit darker, deals with the lovely Francesca Bridgerton and her newly wed husband, John KilMartin of only 2 years, when he complains of a headache, goes to take a sleep, and never wakes up...

The surprising thing about this story was that Francesca and John are happily passionately in love with each other, when tradegy strikes, so your heart really breaks for her. Shockingly, your heart breaks for Mic
Brittany B.
Changed my mind... 4.8 Stars!! :))
4.5 stars for Narration, by Simon Preeble.

Wow! What an intense story! One hell of an audiobook, to be sure.
I dont know if it was more of Simon Preeble's interpretation or Julia Quinn's writing, but this was one seriously intense, melodramatic historical romance!
I secretly love it (secretly- meaning I wasn't sure how I felt until reflection.) And I changed my rating after relistening to a few bookmarked sections.

First things first: This can definitely be rea
Annie (Under the Covers Book Blog)
Posted on Under the Covers

Michael Stirling is known as the Merry Rake. Seducing and flirting is his forte. However, Michael is in love with the one person he can never have. Married to his cousin John, Francesca is unaware of Michael’s feelings for her. The three of them are best friends, but her presence makes Michael hurt in the worst of ways.

But when a loss shatters both their worlds, Michael and Francesca don’t know how to deal with the pain...or the presence of one another. The question s
Apr 08, 2010 jenjn79 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to jenjn79 by: continuation of a series
Rating: 4.5 / 5

I think maybe this is my favorite book in the series so far. The romantic aspect and the passion of the book was excellently done. I was completely hooked into this one and just wanted to keep reading.

Series Note:
You should probably read the series in order, but this one has a pretty independent storyline.

Francesca Bridgerton thought she had a great life ahead of her with the love of her life John Stirling, Earl of Kilmartin and a wonderful friendship with John's cousin, M
Jan 23, 2016 puppitypup rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Historic Romance Not at all what I expected

I've only just finished the first three chapters, and I'm already in tears. I had no idea this book had so much depth. I am not a fan of his and her perspectives, but in this case, (view spoiler) And the writing...exquisite, sheer perfection.

Well, now that it's done, I feel like I've been through the wringer on my grandmother's old hand crank washer. Lots of tears with this one, bu
Oct 22, 2015 Yolanda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
me ha encantado. Michael y Francesca me han encantado y, como no, la aparición de Colin es LOVE. He tenido unos ratos de risa..
(view spoiler)

Los Bridgerton son encantadores
Duchess Nicole
Jul 30, 2011 Duchess Nicole rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: e-pcs, read-in-2011
This is a beautiful and touching book. Michael and Francesca's story was not as lighthearted as the other Bridgerton sibling's books. While I did get frustrated with Francesca at times, overall, I was so engaged in both characters that any frustration was overshadowed by the delight of seeing their relationship develop. This is how lovers should begin, by building on a friendship, and letting the rest come naturally.

Although this was a heartbreaking story at times, I do want to mention that the
This was an amazing book! Michael and Francesca's story was totally believable and I enjoyed every minute of it. Sometimes I find it really annoying when the hero and heroine in a story take forever to let go of their hold on their feelings and fall in love. But in this story it makes sense! They both loved John so much and Michael had such guilt that it took a while to find peace for both of them. My emotions went on a roller coaster ride through this story and it was thrilling!! I recommend it ...more
Brenda (b)
Francesca was the sister least talked about in the previous novels. I wasn't sure if I was going to connect with her, but I think I did. For me, this one has been the most emotional of the Bridgerton stories so far. Michael's unrequited love was heart-rending. John's death was so sudden and tragic. Francesca and Michael both had to come to terms with losing him and they needed each other so much. The epilogue, the letter from John's mother to Michael, did me in.
Olga Godim
Jun 09, 2016 Olga Godim rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: romance
A re-read. This story is one of the most sensual of Quinn’s romances. Its hero and heroine deal with a real problem – the problem of their past. In that past, Francesca was married to John. They loved each other. John’s cousin Michael loved Francesca too, but he also loved and respected his cousin and he never betrayed his longing for John’s wife. He tried, unsuccessfully, to resist his love. His one saving grace was that neither John nor Francesca ever suspected his feelings. They were just goo ...more
Jun 14, 2010 Ally72 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was a huge five star book for me. The BEST Julia Quinn book I have read...I loved it!!!
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#1 New York Times bestselling author Julia Quinn loves to dispel the myth that smart women don't read (or write) romance, and in 2001 she did so in grand style, competing on the the game show The Weakest Link and walking away with the $79,000 jackpot. She displayed a decided lack of knowledge about baseball, country music, and plush toys, but she is proud to say that she aced all things British an ...more
More about Julia Quinn...

Other Books in the Series

Bridgertons (8 books)
  • The Duke and I (Bridgertons, #1)
  • The Viscount Who Loved Me (Bridgertons, #2)
  • An Offer From a Gentleman (Bridgertons, #3)
  • Romancing Mister Bridgerton (Bridgertons, #4)
  • To Sir Phillip, With Love (Bridgertons, #5)
  • It's in His Kiss (Bridgertons #7)
  • On the Way to the Wedding (Bridgertons, #8)

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“In every life there is a turning point. A moment so tremendous, so sharp and clear that one feels as if one's been hit in the chest, all the breath knocked out, and one knows, absolutely knows without the merest hint of a shadow of a doubt that one's life will never be the same.” 143 likes
“Oh, God, Francesca,Now there’s a good one.Why?Why? Why?” He gave each one a different tenor, as if he were testing out the word, asking it to
different people.
“Why?” he asked again, this time with increased volume
as he turned around to face her.
“Why? It’s
because I love you, damn me to hell. Because I’ve always loved you. Because I loved you when you
were with John, and I loved you when I was in India, and God only knows I don’t deserve you, but I
love you, anyway.”
Francesca sagged against the door.
“How’s that for a witty little joke?” he mocked. “I loveyou. I loveyou, my cousin’s wife. I loveyou, the
one woman I can never have. I loveyou, Francesca Bridger-ton Stirling.”
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