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Improper Relations (Improper #1)

3.46  ·  Rating Details ·  631 Ratings  ·  161 Reviews
Dorset, 1858

When Hannah's caught watching her late husband's cousin debauch the maid in the library, she's mortified--but also intrigued. An unpaid companion to his aunt, she's used to being ignored.

The black sheep of the family, Leo has nothing but his good looks and noble birth to recommend him. Hannah ought to be appalled at what she's witnessed, but there's something a
Published April 23rd 2012 by Carina Press
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May 10, 2012 Stella rated it it was amazing
I will shamelessly admit that I started reading Improper Relations because of its beautiful and sensually suggestive cover, and let me tell you that this is a little gem of story you shouldn't miss out on!

I have heard that there are several historical romances exploring the trope of initiation of the young and clueless widow into the pleasures of the flesh, but I haven't read any such novels yet so I can't compare them to Improper Relations. I can only tell you that this book is an extrordinary
Aug 30, 2016 Kay rated it it was ok
Actual rating: 2.5 stars, a cross between "It was okay" and "I like it." So I guess, "I kind of liked it."

I appreciate this ebook because it is a straightforward smut romp, and doesn't pretend to be anything else.

I despise it when clearly smutty books are wrapped up in flimsy, transparent plots and a host of painfully one-dimensional characters who justify their libido with deep emotional scars from the past. It's cliche, hard to pull off, and an offensive blanket psychological assumption for p
Jan 20, 2013 Sheri rated it really liked it
This was a fun short story featuring Hannah and Leo. Hannah had been taught that a wife's duty was basically to just tolerate her husband. She had never experienced any personal pleasure from sex and didn't even know it was possible. When Leo offers to teach her a thing or two, she realizes she wants to know everything.

This was a quick, easy read told from Hannah's point of view. The story flowed smoothly, the characters were likable, and the sex scenes were sensual. I think the author did a gr
Anna (Bobs Her Hair)
May 24, 2012 Anna (Bobs Her Hair) rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Erotic Historical Romance fans
Grade: B or 4 stars…An erotic historical romance by promising debut author!

Dorset, 1858

Widowed Hannah Bell lives in the shadows with her late husband’s relatives. She is the poor relation dependent on the charity of Lady Dorchester, and Hannah is her unpaid lady’s companion. Her daily life is monotonous and drab. The only thing that has ever shined is the presence of her husband’s wastrel cousin.

Hannah has admired Cousin Leo from afar. He is funny, intelligent, and always has a kind word. Yet,
Aug 01, 2012 Julie rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Historical Romance Lovers!
Hannah, a prim and proper widow, has been left at the mercy of her late husband's wealthy relatives. She is now the unpaid companion, receiving only room and board, to the Duchess of Dorchester. She does not live. She exists. That is, until she finds herself a surprisingly willing witness to her late husband's youngest cousin's debauchery. Leo is the second son of the Marquess of Dorchester, and as such, has dedicated his life to gambling, racing, and women. At least, if one is to believe the v ...more
Apr 15, 2012 Emmy rated it really liked it
“Tell me what this feels like,” he demanded.

How should I answer? “It’s very nice,” I said,which seemed to fit the moment.

“Nice? That’s all you have to say? Nice?

“I beg your pardon---”

“It’s more than goddamn nice,” he growled. “It’s bloody perfect, that’s what it is.”

Wowsa. That was a hot one. This novella is set in England in the year 1858. We meet Hannah who is widowed and a companion to her late husband's aunt. One day in the library she witnesses the passion between her cousin (by marriage)
Every now and then, I find that I just fancy a nice little smutty novella to clear the decks between books, or when I don't feel like reading a full-length book. I also find that historical romance novellas cut out a lot of the pointless "filling" that full lengths sometimes resort to. You know, all that tea-drinking and endless descriptions of clothing, that, quite frankly drive me nuts. I started this one, provided by netgalley, after finishing up another book, and I was too tired to figure ou ...more
Mar 01, 2016 Michelle rated it really liked it
I'm surprised by how much I enjoyed this. I thought it was going to be another story about a couple of people who wanted to be pleasured and have a side affair but it wasn't just that. The relationship between Leo and Hannah was without judgment, games, and held true honesty. It was very refreshing. I felt like she did fall in love a little too fast but it's a novella so there isn't that much time. The ending was so lovely. I definitely recommend this one.
Apr 27, 2012 Alyssa rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: fans of Victorian romance
I read an excerpt from this novella months before it was released, and was anxious to see more. Juliana Ross has a lovely and convincing historical voice, and she sets up an atmospheric opening that quickly draws the reader into the world of her repressed but curious Victorian heroine.

Widowed Hannah is nearly thirty and so mousy and marginalized she's not even "Hannah" anymore but "Mrs. Charles Taylor Bell," her identity subsumed into that of her dead husband. As companion to her wealthy cousin
Mrs.Vishous-Kattalakis-Belikov :::Para Itch Reviews:::
A quiet night in the library for Hannah changed her life when she caught her sexy cousin(by marriage) pleasuring one of the maids. Being mortified by their debachery yet intrigued at the same time. Cousin Leo, then insists that he teach Hannah the sex can be enjoyable. Knowing only pain and discomfort in relation to sex, Hannah quite the skeptic until Leo shows her pleasure like no other. But Hannah never expected to fall for him. Now their secret affair is starting to become too much for her, e ...more
Improper Relations starts with an improbable scenario of a young widow risking her reputation and livelihood by succumbing to the seduction of her cousin through marriage. Unwittingly Hannah witnesses a tryst between the marquis' second son, Leo, and Ida the maid. Instead of making her presence known, she watches and confronts Cousin Leo in a very direct discussion.

So begins Hannah's education to the pleasures of the flesh.

The continued seduction itself is a very clinical business. They never
Jess the Romanceaholic
This is a Quickie Review. For the full review, please visit The Romanceaholic.

Expected Release Date: April 23, 2012
Publisher: Harlequin
Imprint: Carina Press
Author’s Website:
My Source for This Book: Netgalley
Part of a Series: No
Series Best Read In Order: N/A
Steam Level: Hot

My biggest issue with this novella is that I’m just not a big fan of “blunt” or “crude” language in romances, nor do I care for anatomy lessons during lovemaking. It’s simply not a writing style that appe
♡ Sassy ~ Amy ♡
LOL! So the penniless widow cousin is up in the loft darning socks, when her cousin (not really a cousin, but related to her dead husband)comes in and has his way with the maid. When the maid leaves, he acknowledges her & says he knew she was there the whole time.

I thought it was funny because she now wants to know everything about it & he is a willing teacher. I am not sure it was meant to be funny, but it had me laughing. It's a very short novella & definitely worth the read. It do
Farah Hanani
Feb 07, 2016 Farah Hanani rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley, ebook, romance
This is the first time I read erotica. Second on romance. And I have to say though, that I'm not disappointed. I love that the set was set in a historical era.

Hannah's naiveness caught my attention. She's the girl who works unpaid for Leo's aunt for food and shelter. Leo earned himself quite a reputation among the maidservants. When Hannah caught him with a maidservant, she was bewildered and quite curious as how a woman can feel such pleasures. Improper Relations somehow reminded me of some fai
Mar 13, 2014 Delta rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Delta by:
Although written and edited well, the story was extremely predictable. The erotic scenes were very clinical and not romantic. Not continuing with this series...
Heather C
Whoa...this was HOT!!! Too bad for the rushed ending.

3.5 stars
Neyra ♦
Jul 13, 2012 Neyra ♦ rated it really liked it
Shelves: erotica, historical
Review also found @Darkest Addictions' Book Reviews

Maybe I'm just a modern kinda girl, but my only issue with this book was that it was set in the 1800's. The way the characters spoke kind of put me off a little, not in a bad way, and they were too proper, I know the irony of the title doesn't escape my notice x]

Improper Relations, is a short story about a young woman named Hannah, who lives with her late husband's aunt, Augusta. One day while in the library, Augusta's youngest son, Leo comes i
3.5-4 stars

This was a pretty good story. Hannah was a really good heroine and I liked Leo as well but wished we could have seen some of his PoV at times. This is the first book by this author that I've read but I liked it and am willing to try more of her work in the future.

Hannah is a widow and poor so she had to become a companion to her aunt (by marriage) who is titled and very full of herself. Hannah didn't love her husband but tried to be a good wife to him. When he died and left Hannah wi
Apr 26, 2012 Katie(babs) rated it really liked it
Juliana Ross’s debut, Improper Relations is too short but oh so good. This historical romance is on the spicier side with a poor, plain widow who knows nothing of passion until she spies her late husband’s cousin, Leo, the black sheep of the family, and a maid getting down and dirty in the library. The widow, Hannah is turned on by Leo and wants to experience the passion the maid apparently has enjoyed. Leo knows Hannah was watching and he’s more than willing to introduce her to sex, all types o ...more
Apr 22, 2012 Lynelle rated it it was amazing
While being left penniless with the death of her husband, Hannah Bell takes up a position as a Lady’s companion for her late husband’s aunt (and also Leo’s mom) even though it pays no wages but at least gave her room and board. She’s used to being ignored, and she has found a haven in the library where no one really goes, until one day when she is up in the galley, Leo enters. At first she watches as he sits and relaxes until a maid entered and she was witness to their sexual encounters.

Alfred (
Mar 21, 2013 Christine rated it it was ok
This review is based on the unabridged audio version narrated by Victoria McGloven.

I thought this book would be just the short, slutty read I was in the mood for. Despite a story that consists of not much more than one sexual encounter after another, I find myself sadly unsatisfied. The premise was fine. The writing was fine. But something was lacking. Where was the passion, the lust, the drowning in physical sensation? The sexual encounters in this story had none of that. Rather they came acros
Jun 19, 2012 cosmogirl7481 rated it liked it
ARC provided by NetGalley

I don't particularly love historical smut. But I liked the premise of this story and decided to give it a shot.

Improper Relations is a novella length story. Novellas work for me in erotica because the length lends itself to telling a good, not too involved story that focuses on the main characters and well, the sex of course.

This book is about Hannah and Leo. To be honest, I was drawn to the name Leo. I've always loved the name ever since Harry Connick Jr. played one on
Mandi Schreiner
May 28, 2012 Mandi Schreiner rated it liked it
After Hannah’s husband dies, she is left with nothing. She is forced to turn to Lady Dorchester for help and becomes her companion. Under this roof lives her husband’s cousin Leo. The wastrel of the family, he drinks, gambles and debauches women on a regular basis. So it isn’t quite a shock, when Hannah is up above in the library’s gallery, and Leo comes in down below with a maid. Except the maid isn’t cleaning. Hannah watches somewhat fascinated, somewhat embarrassed as Leo and the maid engage ...more
Jun 18, 2012 Katie_la_geek rated it liked it
Shelves: adult, ebook-arc
For this review and others come see my blog

*The publisher provided me with this book for review, via Netgalley*

Generally speaking I enjoy historical books like this one, there is nothing quite like a bodice ripper. In the end this book half did it for me and half didn’t.

I liked the storyline the scandalous gentleman teaching the uptight and unsatisfied young widow about intimacy and pleasure. Yes, it has been done a million times before. No, I will never get bored of it. I also liked the charac
Looks can be deceiving....
Hannah is a young widow, with no other means to survive after the death of her husband than to become an unpaid companion to a rich Lady. An experienced widowed woman should have been accustomed to the pleasures and intimacies of married life and not looking for ways to learn what she should have known.
Leo is the second son of an Earl, an aristocrat immersed in anything wickedly pleasurable. He is nothing but a selfish wastrel....or is he?
And then the lessons begin...
Apr 17, 2012 Lynn rated it it was amazing
Hannah and Leo develop an unusual relationship- he offers to be her guide and tutor in matters surrounding pleasure. Leo has much experience in the art of providing women sexual pleasure. Hannah’s experiences have taught her that there is no pleasure in fulfilling your wifely duties with your husband. When Leo offers to show Hannah that she can indeed garner pleasure from sex, alone and with others, Hannah is doubtful but intrigued. Her curiosity gets the better of her and she agrees to allow Le ...more
May 17, 2012 Britainy rated it really liked it
Oh boy, was this a hot one! Juliana Ross got the fire started quickly in this debut novella.

Hannah, having been stuck unnoticed in the library while her late husband's cousin dallies the maid, realizes quickly that she is very much uneducated in the art of sex and pleasure. Leo, knowing Hannah was there all along, proposes an arrangement of "lessons" for Hannah benefit. Of course she says yes! Who wouldn't? Leo is perfectly rakish and misunderstood all in one handsome package!

The sex scenes are
Apr 14, 2012 Alessia rated it really liked it
Shelves: letti-nel-2012
L’anno è il 1858, il luogo è il Dorset, una contea inglese. Hannah è una vedova che lavora come aiutante/cameriera/dama di compagnia di una vecchia donna tanto ricca quanto antipatica. Un giorno, mentre se ne sta nella biblioteca della casa in cui presta servizio, assiste al momento di accesa passione fra Leo, nipote della sua padrona, e una delle cameriere. Hannah rimane sconvolta e turbata dalla visione: la vita sessuale con suo marito era inesistente, e dopo la sua morte Hannah non ha più pen ...more
This is a story about Hannah, a widow, who lived with her cousin by married coz she doesn’t have places to go. She is treated more like a servant than family

One day, when she’s in her refuges in the library, she saw Leo the second son of the family having sex with one of the house maid. The way the housemaid enjoy the activity shock her. She always thought sex as a duty, not a plesure that can be enjoyed betwen man and woman.

So, when Leo offer her an affair, she said yes. This is the time where
Apr 15, 2012 Farrah rated it it was amazing
Improper Relations is a very HOT novella with tons of smutty scenes for those who enjoy some doing the dirty. There actually is a story to it, so it's not just two people getting it on.

Hannah and Leo are actually and adorable couple. Despite how their relationship started, they do grow to love each other. When Leo's mother comes between them, Leo goes after Hannah, regardless of any consequences. He truly is a with naughty tendencies ;)

The short story is both steamy and cute. If
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Juliana Ross has an abiding interest in British history that first took root during her graduate studies in England. She now lives in Canada with her husband and young children. In her spare time she cooks for family and friends, makes slow inroads into her weed patch of a garden, and reads romance novels (the steamier the better) on her eReader.
More about Juliana Ross...

Other Books in the Series

Improper (3 books)
  • Improper Arrangements (Improper, #2)
  • Improper Proposals (Improper, #3)

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