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A Breath of Scandal (The Reckless Brides #2)

3.74  ·  Rating Details ·  364 Ratings  ·  57 Reviews
Forced by her family into an engagement with a man she can never abide, Antigone Preston knows only a scandal will save her from a loveless marriage. But knocking a man down to the ballroom floor with her fists brings dangerous consequences. She may have ruined her reputation, but now she’s endangered her heart…

The son of an earl and a career navy man, Captain William Jell
ebook, 352 pages
Published December 24th 2012 by St. Martin's Paperbacks
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Tucked up into bed at 8pm, read through until well past midnight. Nearly cried when I realized I'd finished it. Nuff said.

Absolutely brilliant book. One of my absolute faves of all-time, for ever. The heroine and hero are both really wonderful, unique, fully-formed and balanced characters. The writing is witty, fresh and littered with wonderful historical insights.

WHY CAN'T MORE HISTORICAL ROMANCE BE LIKE THIS? Instead of the usual tripe????

5 stars. Onto my all-time-favorites list.
Feb 05, 2013 Jackie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Essex just keeps getting better and better. No gimmicks, no "high concept," just a lovely falling-in-love story with two appealing, memorable protagonists, written in prose as charming as her hero. A feisty heroine whose "feist" isn't directed as the hero is also a welcome accomplishment. The only fault: the heroine's mother's lack of motivation for her actions.
Sandi *~The Pirate Wench~*
Setting: Regency England

Unwilling to agree to the engagement her family desires,Antigone Preston decides only a scandal will do. But punching a nobleman on the dance floor maybe going to far! Her reputation in ruins,Antigone's only champion is the stranger whose eyes meet hers in the ballroom that day.
Career Navy man and earl's son Captain William Jellicoe finds the fiery-tempered Antigone a delight. He has never met a woman as bold and adventurous as he is. There is no holding them back from ta
Sandy Williams
I loved this! Antigone is exactly the type of heroine I want in my historical romances. She's brave and witty and can take care of herself, yet she still feels genuine to the time period.

I also completely loved Will. The best part, though, was Antigone and Will together. Their banter was fantastic, and I found myself grinning at just how appalling they were together. ;-)

My only criticism is that I wanted more out of the epilogue. (view spoiler)
I really enjoyed this one, largely for the chemistry between the H/h, namely how much fun they have together and how gosh darn much they just like each other. Surrounding and intermeshing with what would have been a simple like-turns-to-love story between two characters out of synch with the world around them (she a boyish, book-reading hoyden and he a career navy man adrift in his post-war return to his place as aristocratic second son) is some serious and somewhat convoluted dramarama.
Book Binge
Antigone Preston has just returned from her father’s funeral when her she walks into her house and is told by her mother that she is to marry a man by the name of Lord Aldridge, who is old enough to be her father. She immediately says no, several times, but her mother finally insists that they just have “an agreement” until the family is out of mourning and then all will be decided. The mother informs Antigone that she MUST do this for her sister Cassandra so that she can meet better marriage pr ...more
Justine Gauckler
When I first picked up this book at the library I fell in love with the book cover. It's purple and that's enough for me. The book while not the best was great. This story of love, lose and inner strength was just what I needed. From Antigone and her follies to Will and his honor, it was spectacular. She blended people, places and things so well together that I fell in love just as Antigone did. And I'm not even sure how to pronounce Antigone. The one this book lacked to be the best was that Ms. ...more
My Book Addiction and More MBA
A BREATH OF SCANDAL by Elizabeth Essex is an interesting Regency historical romance. #2 in "A Reckless Brides novel" series,but can be read as a stand alone. See, "Almost a Scandal". Set in 1814 Sussex,England. Follow, Antigone Preston and Captain William Jellicoe on a journey of forbidden passion,love and secrets. Antigone, is forced in an engagement by her mother, to a much older gentleman,she intends to get out of one way or another. Captain Jellicoe has no desire to marry but must enter soci ...more
May Mostly Romance
อาจจะเพราะชอบเรือง Almost a Scandal ของคนแตงคนนีมาก กเลยตังความหวังไวกับเลมนีมาก จึงเปนเรืองปกตินะคะทีจะผิดหวัง ทังทีจริงเรืองนีกมีหลายฉากหลายตอนทีนาสนใจ แตในภาพรวมของทังเรืองแลว เรายังรูสึกวา มีหลายอยางขาดเกิดไป

แอนติโกเนสูญเสียบิดาไปอยางกระทันหัน และชีวิตของเธอกเปลียนแปลงไปโดยสินเชิง เริมตนเธอถูกมารดาจับหมันหมายกับชายทีนารังเกียจ คนทีเมือหญิงสาวบอกปฏิเสธ กถูกมารดาขอรองใหเสแสรงเลนละครตอไปกอน เพือใหพีสาวของเธอมีโอกาสไดออกงาน และหาสามีรวย ๆ มาเลียงครอบครัว

วิล พระเอกของเรืองเปนคาแรคเตอรในเรือง Alm
May 30, 2015 Karin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 5-star-reads
Book Two in the Reckless Brides series.

Will Jellicoe, previously a midshipman from the Audacious, earned his Command in the Navy just before the war with France ended. Now he is back on land waiting for a ship to come along. Meanwhile, Antigone Preston's father has passed away and her mother has engaged her to a vile older man, so that her sister Cassie can be well wed. When the two meet at a ball, mischief and mayhem commence.

If you're looking for a story of love, betrayal, scandal and fun, thi
Jul 01, 2013 Molly rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm not sure if this book is really four stars, or if I just really enjoyed Antigone's right cross.

How can you not root for a girl willing to punch a guy in the face in the middle of the dance floor for groping her?!

Antigone is a plucky girl in a time when that was not an attribute to be admired. She is devastated by the loss of her father and her mother using her to further her older sisters marital prospects.

After she clocks the jerk at the dance she is banished to another room where she meets
Dec 18, 2014 Michelle rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I had accidently picked up The Reckless Brides series out of order but I enjoyed it so much I raced to my TBR pile to pick up A Breath of Scandal. Antigone is being forced to marry a man she cannot stand and she knows the only way she can escape is by causing a scandal. Except she may have gone a little farther than she meant to. Captain Jellicoe is impressed by the young miss who stands up for herself on the dance floor and can’t wait to get to know her a little bit better. But they both have d ...more
Mar 01, 2015 Thenia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A satisfying romance between Antigone Preston, a very competent, unladylike heroine and Will Jellicoe, the second son of an Earl and Commander of the navy who has just returned from the war.

Antigone is having a really bad time, since right after her beloved father's funeral, her scheming, miserable excuse of a mother arranges for her marriage to a deplorable man three times her age, sacrificing her for her own and her elder daughter's welfare. Loving her shy sister and feeling protective of her,
Heather Ashby
Aug 03, 2013 Heather Ashby rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Another awesome novel by my new, favorite romance author. I have never been much of an Historical Romance reader - but Elizabeth Essex's language is so rich, her humor so dry, and there is always something to learn in her books. Besides, who could resist the brazen and unconventional heroine in A BREATH OF SCANDAL? My kind of girl! Both the heroine and the author. Elizabeth Essex has become one of those rare "Grocery List Authors to me." I would read anything she wrote - including her grocery li ...more
Jan 10, 2014 Amanda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Sometimes you're just in the mood for a fluff book, and A Breath of Scandal fits that mood perfectly. And I doubt the Reckless Brides series is very historically accurate (if at all), but I enjoy it. Even if it is a little weighty and historically inaccurate. But you know what? If I wanted historically accurate, I'd read a history textbook.

But I was excited to meet up with William Jellicoe, who's now all grown up and back on dry land. Even though we know him from Almost a Scandal, his book stan
Monty Cupcake ☠ Queen of Bloodshed ☠
2.5 stars.

I liked the premise of this book - and quite a cheeky opening with Antigone KO-ing a guy on the dance floor. However, this book dragged in a lot of places. It felt very start-stop to me. There also should've been a lot more carousing by Antigone & Will. It was really only one night of adventure & the rest was just slightly out of proper boundaries, not true misbehaving.

I appreciated that the book switched POV's from Antigone to Will. They were fun together. I liked the very l
Feb 15, 2014 Mudpie rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
it's a drag reading this bk. I could nvr bring myself to leave a bk unfinished so I did the next best thing--skim read. but the language or writing style is not quite what I'm used to and I find myself re-reading certain paragraphs before I understood what was happening. Anyway Antigone's mother was a real nasty one...initially I just thought her a useless widow who in a moment of panic SOLD Antigone to the perverted old lord...but to have her actually schemed and dangled Antigone's youth for a ...more
Patty McKenna Van Hulle
A Breath of Scandal (The Reckless Brides, #2) by Elizabeth Essex Elizabeth Essex

I liked this book. Antigone, Preston to me, was a cool chick. She loved to live her life like how she rode her horse, Velocity. Wild, free, fast but in control. On the day of her father's funeral, she selfish mom sales Preston to the evil and old Lord Aldridge in marriage. Her mom tells her that a fake engagement will put her more beautiful daughter, Cassandra, in the upper ton and help her catch a perfect husband. Preston loves her shy sister very much and agrees but she learns
Shan ~ A ~
Apr 15, 2014 Shan ~ A ~ rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I started reading parts of this story at where they are posting parts of the story every Wednesday and Sunday, but I got too impatient to wait for the rest of the story to be posted and went out and picked it up.

Miss Antigone Preston is a strong-willed, adventurous young lady who at the beginning of the story is attending her fathers funeral, on to come home and find an old geezer offering for her hand while she is still very much in mourning.

Her mother tal
Mar 06, 2016 EB rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I don't know. A book makes me cry and makes me love love love love love love love both protagonists and I'm willing to forgive any minor quibbles.
May 15, 2014 Linda rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I really like Elizabeth Essex's style of writing. Sucked me into the story straight away with a hero & heroine that I instantly loved. Antigone is such a feisty heroine. I loved it when she socked a lecherous guy who groped her on the dance floor when he ignores her initial warning. I liked how protective she is of her delicate, beautiful older sister. Will is absolutely yummy! I loved their chemistry & their wonderful connection.

A keeper for sure!
Jun 16, 2015 Cherie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A Breath of Scandal was a refreshing breath of satisfying romance. Antigone (poor girl) Preston is affectionately called "Annie" by her beloved older sister and "Preston" in the way of men by William "Will" Jellicoe. They become "appalling acquaintances" after he witnesses her flooring a man who groped her bottom while dancing with an efficient right hook.

Antigone is a cleverly written character who is not the ordinary heroine but should be. Her mother is selfish to say the least and extremely m
May 25, 2015 Lisa rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed the story very much, and the hero being a carryover from the previous book was nice. I would have given this a solid 4 stars, but the language was inappropriate. The hero was aware of how to behave around a lady yet was constantly swearing. Had it just been the period appropriate expletives (which I understand was God's teeth or God's blood, not God's b*lls) it wouldn't have been SO bad, but using the F-word was unnecessary, inappropriate and jarring to the otherwise delightful storyli ...more
This was bad. Not much of a review, but its about the best I can do with this one. I went with 2 stars rather than 1 because I liked the 2 main characters a good deal and the story was well-framed. I bet it was a hell of an outline. The problem was that the writing was SO BAD I found it painful to read. I ended up skimming the last 100 pages. I read a lot of historic romance, so the problem is not that I am not accustomed to the overly-flowery. This book has, however, prose not just purple, but ...more
3.5 stars

Even though the plot took a trip to crazy town three quarters of the way through, I still really enjoyed A Breath of Scandal and there's two reasons why: Antigone Preston and William Jellicoe.

Antigone (or just Preston, and later Pres, as Will affectionately referred to her by) was the kind of rebellious heroine I always love to root for. Her situation was abominable, made doubly worse by a sociopathic mother who (view spoiler)
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Barbara Rose
Mar 07, 2016 Barbara Rose rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed a lot of this book -- I loved Will Jellicoe and I loved Antigone Preston, and I loved how he called her Preston and they had adventures and adored each other. On the other hand, I really disliked her mother, both as a character and a plot device, and there were a couple of times when Antigone did things that were either kind of dumb, or felt odd for her character. If she's the freest spirit in all of England, then agreeing to be pretend-engaged to someone for so long was a little odd, ...more
Mar 27, 2016 Mischa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016
I wasn't really taken by the first book in the series, but this one seriously grabbed me and didn't let me go. I loved the dialogue between the main characters, hell, I loved the main characters (and I especially felt for Preston because of her bitch of a mother. I don't like that word, but honestly, no other word to call her).
I also loved the story, it really allowed for the main heroes to spend some time together, get to know each other, get to like each other (nab nab at the first book).
So a
Tammi Menendez
I wanted to like this more. I think my main complaint about this was that it was kind of all over the place, and for whatever reason I just never connected with Antigone that well. Also, it was kind of weird that Will always called her Preston, especially since she has such a kickass name. Oh well.

My main complaint, though? (view spoiler)
I am loving this series. The females are all reckless, just like the series claims, but they aren't stupid. They just don't fit in to a nicely ordered Regency life, and it takes a special man to be able to appreciate and honor them for who they are. And the hero here, Captain Will Jellicoe, may be one of my favorite romantic heroes.

I've put the next book on hold at the library.
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Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 3 Mar 12, 2015 11:08AM  
  • I Adored a Lord (The Prince Catchers, #2)
  • The Wicked Wedding of Miss Ellie Vyne (Sydney Dovedale, #2)
  • How to Entice an Earl (Ugly Ducklings, #3)
  • Captive Heart (The Warrior Maids of Rivenloch #2)
  • A Season to Be Sinful (Grantham, #1)
  • Forever a Lord (The Rumor, #3)
  • Must Love Kilts (Must Love Time Travel, #3)
  • The Way to a Duke's Heart (The Truth About the Duke, #3)
  • Lady Be Good (Rules for the Reckless, #3)
  • Untamed
  • Twelfth Night Secrets
  • Lady Louisa's Christmas Knight (The Duke's Daughters, #3; Windham, #6)
  • When You Give a Duke a Diamond (Jewels of the Ton, #1)
  • Winter's Heat (Nemesis, Unlimited, #1.5)
  • Lady Anne’s Lover
  • Wicked Nights With a Proper Lady (Dangerous Rogues, #1)
  • The Wicked Wallflower (Bad Boys & Wallflowers, #1)
  • Waltz with a Stranger
When not re-reading Jane Austen, sipping tea or mucking about her garden, Elizabeth Essex can be found at her computer, making up wonderful stories about people who live far more interesting lives than she.
Elizabeth Essex

It wasn’t always so. Elizabeth graduated from Hollins College with a BA in Classical Studies and Art History, and then earned her MA from Texas A&M University in Nautical Arch
More about Elizabeth Essex...

Other Books in the Series

The Reckless Brides (5 books)
  • Almost a Scandal (The Reckless Brides, #1)
  • Scandal in the Night (The Reckless Brides, #3)
  • After the Scandal (The Reckless Brides, #4)
  • A Scandal to Remember (The Reckless Brides, #5)

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