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The Romantic (The Seducers #5)

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3.96  ·  Rating Details  ·  947 Ratings  ·  42 Reviews
A passionate new historical romance in Madeline Hunter's nationally bestselling Seducer series. This one features a fifth member of the London Dueling Society, the reserved, enigmatic lawyer to the Laclere family: Julian Hampton. All his life, it seemed, Julian had been in love with Penelope, now Countess of Glasbury. And when he learned the horrors she had endured at the ...more
Mass Market Paperback, 416 pages
Published October 26th 2004 by Bantam (first published 2004)
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"I've Loved You for Years."
90th out of 799 books — 958 voters
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Best Romantic Beta Heroes
71st out of 554 books — 491 voters


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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,767)
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Readdiction
Aug 27, 2008 Readdiction rated it it was amazing
God, oh GOD! One of the most romantic stories on unrequited love. Its rare for me to re-read passages over and over again even before I've finished the novel, but the prose and poetry is so delicious and lovely. It gives me such shivers reading the declarations of love and reminds me of fairy tales with knights in shining armor.
*sigh*
Crystal S
This wasn't my favorite in this series, but it was still pretty darn good. Julian was a super romantic hero (thus the title, obviously ;-) ), having been secretly in love with Penelope since they were teenagers, writing love stories and poems and never-sent-letters to her over the years. The book didn't seem to adequately explain why he didn't let her know before she was married, or if it did, I missed it. Which brings me to a certain point, the heroine was married for the vast majority of the b ...more
Junipaurora
May 11, 2014 Junipaurora rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Romance fans who are looking for something deeper
Visit here to read this review with spoilers.

I wanted to put it off, to take it up at another time when I wouldn’t be as busy as I am now. To no avail. Rereading the love scenes and my favorite passages didn’t help. The book basically sang to me, caught my eye even with that dull purple cover no matter where I hid it in my room, as if it was luring me to lose myself in it again. I couldn’t have been more glad that I did.

Dear readers, it is my great pleasure to present you my review of my absolut
...more
Linds
Sep 14, 2010 Linds rated it really liked it
Recommended to Linds by: fans of When he was Wicked by Julia Quinn
What a great hero. I just loved this book.

Julian has been in love with Penelope since he was a teenager. He's tried to forget her and move on time and time again but he just can't. He never told her because she married very young and it seemed a moot point. Penelope married an evil man because she was young and impressed by a title. She also had no idea about Julian.

In a time when divorce in unthinkable Penelope turns to Julian for help after being terrorized by her husband. (He's a lawyer) and
...more
Christine
Jun 01, 2014 Christine rated it liked it
I love Madeline Hunter, and have been trying to make time to read some of her older books. And "The Seducers" series has some great ones!

It's a interesting story, and highlights the horror of women trapped by a male-dominated society in abusive marriages from which they could not legally escape.

Julian...(sigh)...everyone should have a Julian in their life! He's been steadfast in his love for Penelope since childhood, and is devoted to ensuring her happiness. Unaware of Julian's love, she's turn
...more
Matilda BGR
Jul 15, 2016 Matilda BGR rated it liked it
It's more like 2.75? something like that.

It's hard to talk about this book without discussing the big twist in the last quarter. More on that later.

First, I found it hard to believe that Pen never picked up on Julian's love for her. He must have been quite austere or something. Pen veered pretty close to TSTL in several instances; her inability to figure out that Julian was in love with her made her seem awfully stupid.

So now, the spoiler: (view spoiler)
...more
Jennifer
Nov 17, 2007 Jennifer rated it it was amazing
Shelves: romance
I like Madeline Hunter quite a bit and this is one of my favorite of her books. Julian has loved Penelope since he was a child, but she was always out of his reach. Now she needs his help and he will do anything he can to get her safe. This was a very sensitive novel and Hunter does a fabulous job with the deep passion a very quiet and private man can feel.
Virginia
Sep 18, 2011 Virginia rated it really liked it
Gripping and beautiful. I have always found Julian Hampton intriguing in the other novels of this series so I am more than pleased to read his story (as well as Penelope's). In many ways, this story was hard to read as some details were unpleasant, but in others, it definitely lived up to its title. Truly a romantic and sweeping love story. Lovely.
Jen
Jun 21, 2015 Jen rated it it was ok
Shelves: romance
Is it just me or did anyone else notice that Julian either didn't realize or wasn't concerned that rather than seducing him (view spoiler).
Alice Ali
May 20, 2015 Alice Ali rated it it was amazing
This may be the second book I read but Miss Hunter, and I'm telling you. She writes like an angel. Every moment of the book, flipping the pages had me holding my breath. First off, I have read many, many, great sexy heroes, but I think Julian tops them all (just kidding), but seriously, the dude literally went through hell for her. And that jackass husband of hers. I swear I was rather glad that he died in the end. This book really did have the feels of where justice stands. Why in the Regency m ...more
Susy
May 13, 2016 Susy rated it liked it
3 stars- enjoyable and plausible

The only non-medieval Hunter I have read, and the worst. But that is a comparative measure and as I loved every Medieval Hunter novel I have read, this one is still pretty good, even if not as good as the others.

This novel is part of the Seducer series and I randomly picked it from my To Read piles. (Not so randomly tbh. I put back some others and then spied a Madeline Hunter title and knew I would spend a couple days in good company.) plenty of characters from th
...more
Neko
Apr 27, 2013 Neko rated it it was ok
Shelves: not-a-fan
I liked the idea of the hero as a lawyer helping the heroine work around the awful, restrictive marriage laws of the time. It seems like a potentially rich subject area to me - yes, we like to read about perfect, happy-ever-after marriages, but what about women who were trapped in bad marriages? They didn't have much recourse at the time. So I was curious to see how that played out.

Unfortunately, this was just OK for me. Julian and Penelope never really grew on me. I didn't find them romantic.
...more
Elis Madison
This might be my favorite in The Seducers series, only because throughout the series we've seen hints at mysteries surrounding Penelope, the scandalous countess separated from her really creepy husband.



And hints regarding Julian Hampton, the solicitor who seems to know all the family's secrets, and seems to have an almost magical ability to get the creep to back off.



Julian is a secret-keeper, and the biggest secrets he keeps are his own. Like the fact that he's loved Pen since they were childr
...more
Keri
Jan 19, 2016 Keri rated it really liked it
*sigh* What a great book. Julian has been in love with Penelope since he was her knight in shining armor as kids. When they grew up and whenever Pen had an issue she went to her good friend Julian and he always kept her safe. But her horrible husband, that she has been separated from these last 10 years, is now demanding that she come home and give him an heir.

Of course Pen runs to Julian and the countdown starts as they race across England to find the clues that will protect Pen from her husba
...more
Monica
Aug 14, 2015 Monica rated it it was amazing
This is my first Madeline Hunter book. Almost similar to Julia Quinn 's When He Was Wicked. The hero is soooooo romantic but sometimes I felt like he is just too good to be true. Because I feel like Julian was just too perfect, too "not real" if you get I mean. It is a good story and a good book.
Kashii
May 28, 2016 Kashii rated it really liked it
I liked this one a lot. the hero with his internal monologs in the form of letters was hilarious. the heroine was easily the most likable of all five books and like all the other books I enjipyed the dark undercurrents and how they neatly tied the book together
Elizabeth
Dec 08, 2015 Elizabeth rated it really liked it
I'm a sucker for yearning and there is a TON of that in this book. It's a little more serious than I thought it would be though. Also, the villain is horrible.
Foggygirl
Mar 22, 2016 Foggygirl rated it liked it
An entertaining romance, although the hero is a bit of mcbroody pants and the heroine is a bit of a ninny at times.
Sondra Boykin
Feb 23, 2016 Sondra Boykin rated it it was amazing
Wonderful! As always!
Missy Jane
Jul 29, 2013 Missy Jane rated it it was amazing
I'd been wanting to read Pen's story since after meeting her in the first book of this series. Imagine my surprise when she finds her hero in the one character who has been pushed into the background the most. I absolutely love Julian and was so happy they found each other. Here's another setting where all of the odds are stacked so high against them there seems no possibility of a HEA. However, MH is wonderful at finding the crack in the walls for her characters to make everything turn out all ...more
Ilze
Apr 16, 2011 Ilze rated it it was amazing
Shelves: madeline-hunter
Oh Julian (sigh) - what a fabulous romantic hero. Very well-written book, great story (with some very dark undertones), a beautiful romance. I read this book because the heroine Penelope was almost the only one of the characters in "The Seducer" who interested me and I wanted to read her story. Well worth it!

Sparks fly in the later part of the book between Penelope's sister Charlotte and the barrister who defends Julian in the trial. Hmmm ... might be another good one (Lady of Sin).
BookwormWithGoggles
This is an amazing series especially loved Dante's book. Julian Hampton seemed such an enigmatic character in the glimpses one got of him in each book of the seducer series. I was itching to read his book but at the same time put it off for ages. I felt that maybe it would be a let down and the book wouldn't do his character justice. I was wrong.
It is a gorgeous romantic story and Julian has to be the best hero of all.
Melissa
Jul 24, 2014 Melissa rated it it was amazing
I love the romance in this book. It is a little steamier than the previous books in the series, but it flows nicely. The friendship between Pen and Julian speaks to the heart, and you feel everything they feel. This another great book by Madeline Hunter.
Gennielc
Jun 16, 2011 Gennielc rated it it was amazing
Heavens almighty, this was a fun book. I LOVE that the man is the one hopelessly in love, and has been since childhood. Great twists and turns - and man was it spicy!!! It was fun watching the minor characters from previous books get their own story.
Kim
Mar 13, 2014 Kim rated it really liked it
One of the best Beta heroes I've read. Julian's quiet love from afar is potently felt throughout the story, building up to a foreshadowed, powerfully *ahem* romantic moment near the end. Love it!
Karen Larson
Dec 22, 2013 Karen Larson rated it liked it
Shelves: romance
I really loved this book and I am not really sure I can say why I gave it a three instead of a four, except that I am not compelled to read it again and that usually drives my fours and fives.
Loudice
The last of the Seducer Series and I read it first...which led me to buy the previous ones...

I love the unique characters and the beautiful dialogue...
Julian Hampton has killer lines!!
Mary Jo
May 20, 2011 Mary Jo rated it really liked it
Julian Hampton & Penelope (Countess of Glasbury)

Not the typical storyline, unrequited love by hero and an older heroine.
I enjoyed all of the previous books characters showing up.
Susan
Apr 17, 2014 Susan rated it really liked it
Shelves: regency
Solicitor & Duelg Clb mbr Julian's unrequitd lv 4 Pen finlly flflld whn sh decds 2 forc sadstc hsbnd 2 dvrc hr by flntg affr, thn sacrfics hmslf whn Earl mrdrd & shs arrstd
Kit
Jun 22, 2009 Kit rated it it was amazing
A beautifully crafted love story and a fitting ending to a series with great characters. Jullian and Pen's story was unique and facinating.
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Madeline Hunter is a nationally bestselling author of historical romances who lives in Pennsylvania with her husband and two sons. Her books have won two RITA awards and seven nominations, and have had three starred reviews in Publishers Weekly. In a parallel existence to the one she enjoys as a novelist, Madeline has a Ph.D. in art history and teaches at an East Coast university.
More about Madeline Hunter...

Other Books in the Series

The Seducers (7 books)
  • The Seducer (Seducers #1)
  • The Saint (Seducers #2)
  • The Charmer (Seducers #3)
  • The Sinner (Seducers #4)
  • Lord of Sin (Seducers spin-off, #1)
  • Lady of Sin (Seducers spin-off #2)

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“I never hated you. My anger was never with you, but with the little hell my heart had put me in. The anger always passed. I never regretted loving you. If I had gone to my grave never kissing you or touching you, I still would not have thought it a wasted love.” 57 likes
“My incomparable beloved,

Seven months you have been gone, and I fear you will never return. I await your brief, infrequent letters like a boy, desperate for any small indication that you remember I exist, hoping for evidence that you tire of that foreign land where you now live. I read your missives a hundred times for the slightest intimation that you will be coming home. The part of my mind that does nothing but wait grows daily, and soon nothing will be left to attend to life's duties. One word, my love, just one; that is all I seek. One word to let me know that you will not stay away forever, and that I will at least have your presence and friendship in my life, even if I can never have your passion and your love."

--Julian Hampton to Penelope, Countess of Glasbury”
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