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Proof by Seduction (Carhart #1)

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3.82  ·  Rating Details  ·  3,100 Ratings  ·  377 Reviews
She was his last chance for a future of happiness...

A gifted fortune-teller from a humble background, Jenny can make even the most sophisticated skeptic believe her predictions simply by batting her smoky eyelashes. Until she meets her match in Gareth Carhart, the Marquess of Blakely, a sworn bachelor and scientist.

He just didn't know it yet

Broodingly handsome, Gareth is s
...more
Mass Market Paperback, 352 pages
Published January 1st 2010 by HQN Books (first published December 15th 2009)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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UniquelyMoi ~ BlithelyBookish

There are so few authors who can make me wish that I could hurry and reach the end of their novel so I can find out what happens, and yet at the same time make me wish that the novel would never end, because that would mean I would have to close the book once and for all. Courtney Milan is one such author. Another rarity among authors is the ability to write emotionally complex characters and not sound “clinical” while doing it. Again, Courtney Milan met that challenge head on and came out victo
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Ingela
Written February 17, 2015

3 1/2 Stars - Delightful but not overwhelming this time

It was once again time for another Courtney Milan HR to buddyread with my friends Sofia and Irina. ~ I choosed to listen to the 11:30 hrs audiobbok narrated by Priscilla Carson.
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Not Milan's best but absolutely a good one.
Proof by Seduction was for me a well written m/f historical with many thought-provoking truths. As always, Ms. Milan's heroes are interesting men that usually stand out from the most common romanc
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Rane
Jan 26, 2010 Rane rated it it was amazing
Gareth Carhart, Marquess of Blakely is anger and appalled when he finds out his cousin is getting taken advantage a “Madame Esmerelda” and is out to prove she’s a fraud to free his cousin from her gasp, only he didn’t count he- himself would fall under the spell of not Madame Esmerelda but the true woman behind the costume- Jenny Keeble
Jenny has made a living as a fortune teller, but instead of telling the future to her clients, she only tells them what they want or need to hear, but when she
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Beanbag Love
May 30, 2010 Beanbag Love rated it really liked it
Many of my friends have reviewed this book and they've loved it, so I don't think I'll go into too much detail. Of course, every time I say that I follow up with about six paragraphs, so we'll just have to see what happens.

Courtney Milan is a very good writer. Her premise was very nicely laid out right from the first pages. We got action, tension, and a pretty good introduction to the characters in short order.

I thought Gareth's "problem" was both fascinating and heart-breaking. Who hasn't been
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Nisha
This book rocked. The main characters are Jenny Keeble, an educated woman who masquerades as Madame Esmeralda, a fortuneteller, and Gareth Carhart, the Marquess of Blakely, a scientifically driven, cold, awkward man. Gareth tries to unveil Jenny of her fake identity since his cousin, Ned seems to take her word as law. And so begins the battle.

I loved both of the characters. Jenny was very real and essentially a modern independent woman, who carries her share of scars. She's exceedingly smart and
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Ally72
Jan 24, 2010 Ally72 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Katie(babs)
Dec 14, 2009 Katie(babs) rated it really liked it
When I began reading Proof by Seduction I wasn’t sure what to make of it. We have our heroine, Jenny Keeble who is a fraud by playing the role of a fortune teller named Madame Esmerelda. She lives in near poverty but because she is skilled at deceit and believes she isn’t a good person and hasn’t been since she turned nine years old, she does what she has to do to survive. Jenny is not some virginal, innocent British miss but a mature woman of thirty. The only respect she gets is from her client ...more
Sofia
Feb 17, 2015 Sofia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: historical

This book came along at the right moment for me, ready to lift up my spirits which it did admirably.

This was Milan first publication back in 2009. I could recognise Milan’s signature in it and compared to her recent work I could easily see her beginning with this one. We got the unconventional heroine, Jenny, whom I liked because of her can do attitude and her positivity against adversity. There are holes in her story which I am sure that had Milan been writing now, would have been well filled.
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Elizabeth
With a tender, passionate romance, a touch of sly humor, and a gruff and incredibly sexy hero, Courtney Milan’s PROOF BY SEDUCTION is a delicious read from the first page all the way to the very satisfying ending. If you love historical romance you must read this book!
KatLynne
Gareth Carhart– Marquess of Blakely – scientist.
Jenny Keeble – Madame Esmerelda – seer and predictor of the future
Ned Carhart – Young cousin of Gareth and client of Madame Esmerelda

Surprisingly, I loved this book. I didn’t think I would. Reading the cover, it was hard for me to imagine I would like, much less love, a hero who was so “rigidly logical, a scientist who retreated behind scientific proof”. But you soon fall in love with this broodingly handsome, complex, intense man.

I loved Jenny,
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Amy
Feb 23, 2010 Amy rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2read2, favorites
If you knew me personally, you would know I have not read HR in years! You would also know that I would be the last person to pick up a book with the main character being a fortune teller! But this year, thanks to authors like Charlotte Featherstone and Courtney Milan I have found a new love for going back in time with some very beautifully real, flawed and engaging characters.

Gareth, The Lord Blakley, is a stone cold realist. His past shows a stern upbringing and he is taught early on that a "m
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Kat Desi
Jul 13, 2015 Kat Desi rated it it was amazing
I've read Brothers Sinister but even having finished that I still haven't decided then if I liked Courtney Milan or not. After Proof by Seduction, I am now convinced that I DO like her! I didn't expect to be so affected by this book but I was. Both Gareth and Jenny were quite compelling characters and while they were going through some hard ships, my heart literally hurt. Yes, I was THAT involved with the story.

Gareth or Lord Blakely is not your average dreamy alpha Hero but he has his moments.
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Susanne
May 03, 2015 Susanne rated it it was amazing
4.5 Hilarious Stars!
Kathleen
Feb 01, 2010 Kathleen rated it liked it
I had a hard time reading this book. It was not because I did not like the character's, I did. The story to me was just not that good. While I was reading it, I liked it but when I'd put it down, I had a hard time wanting to pick the book back up. I kept waiting for it to grab me and it did the last part of the book was very good.

If you are thinking about reading this book and read my review, please do not not read this book because of my review. Most of the woman who read this book really like
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Katrina Passick Lumsden
I like Courtney Milan's writing. I do. But I think it says something that my favorite pieces of her work have been her short stories. Her characters are phenomenal, her plots are interesting, sex scenes are hot without crossing the line into trashy, and I enjoy the fact that her stories aren't just a bunch of superficial fluff. Real people with real issues, not all of them pretty or petty. That being said, sometimes the characters allow their issues to run roughshod over their own existences, an ...more
Mandi Schreiner
Dec 30, 2009 Mandi Schreiner rated it really liked it
Prior to getting Proof By Seduction, I heard a lot of buzz about this book and debut author Courtney Milan. I was eager to get my hands on a copy, and I was just as eager to see how this book would hold up to all the talk. I am happy to say it held up well, more than well. Courtney Milan writes a very smart, funny and romantic book.

Lord Gareth Blakely is a broken man, a cold, tortured soul. He was raised to take over his title, and it left little room for fun. He knows nothing of showing his emo
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Penny Watson
Feb 26, 2010 Penny Watson rated it it was amazing
Proof by Seduction by Courtney Milan

This book is delicious.

It is the equivalent of a multi course meal at a fine dining establishment. I'm thinking, luscious creamy bowl of soup as an appetizer, filet mignon and baby vegetables for entree, and lemon tart with fresh berries for dessert. Don't forget an incredible bottle of red wine.

It is decadent, satisfying, surprising, lush and beautiful.

I put off reading this book because the blurb did not sound appealing to me. The whole Madame Esmerelda thin
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Catherine
3.5 Stars.

Great banter between the characters
lots of angsty love drama
steamy sex scenes
arrogant male lead
feisty, low-station female lead
lies, denials, hidden desires

Overall a good entry from Courtney Milan.

(view spoiler)
Lady Heather
Sep 26, 2010 Lady Heather rated it really liked it
It took me a few chapters to get into this story, but once there I was hooked. The story is about a women who has posed as a fortune teller for 12 years as a means to support herself, rather than being a governess or a mistress. Jenny wants independence and self worth. Gareth is a Marquess, and a scientist who is bent on proving Jenny a fraud, when He discovers the hold she has on his dependent cousin Ned. Jenny has come to genuinely like Ned, and what started out as a means of support when Ned ...more
Keri
Nov 26, 2010 Keri rated it liked it
3 1/2 stars. This is Ms. Milan's first book, as well as being a NTM author and I have to say I was impressed.

This is the story of two very lonely people finally finding the warmth of one another after years of being out in the cold of human touch.

Gareth our hero is about as emotionless as a human being as you can be, but with his background you understand it, eventually. He can't connect with his sister or his cousin, Ned. But now that he has found out that Ned has been giving his money to Mad
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Jennifer
Aug 31, 2012 Jennifer rated it it was amazing
Shelves: romance
This is my third Milan book and the one I've enjoyed the most so far.

The novel immersed me into the characters such that, when I was reading in their POV, I felt I could truly understand what and why they were acting. I felt why they needed each other and the love they felt for each other.

Strangely, my example for how well Milan does this involves the secondary (tertiary?)character of White, Gareth's man of business. In the beginning of the novel, White is a faceless man in a suit scribbling awa
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Pamela(AllHoney)
The first book in the Carhart series by Courtney Milan. Jenny Keeble AKA Madame Esmerelda makes her living at telling fortunes and making people feel good. Enter Lord Blakely who knows that Madame Esmerelda is a fraud and is determine to expose her.

I had this on my TBR shelves for a while and since it looked like a quick read I decided to grab it and see how it was. I was pleasantly surprised that I liked it as much as I do. I found myself enjoying the characters and rooting for them. I did find
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Cheryl
Feb 05, 2010 Cheryl rated it really liked it
Excellent debut novel by newcomer Courtney Milan! There are several very good reviews already written about this book so I'll keep mine very short!

This is one of those books that you have no idea where the author is going to take the story. The situations between the hero, Gareth the Marquess of Blakely, and the heroine, Jenny or Madame Esmerelda the fortune teller, are such that honestly you can't figure out how the two of them will ever end up together with their HEA. It will have you turning
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Kathleen
Oct 25, 2012 Kathleen rated it liked it
Shelves: romance-historic
The story line is novel, the narrative and dialogue flows, but the characters didn't have much impact on me, emotionally. Not sure why ... too cerebral? Anyway, this is one of Milan's first books. She keeps improving.

I liked her Turner series better, and am now enjoying her Brothers Sinister series.
Charlotte Featherstone
Mar 09, 2010 Charlotte Featherstone rated it it was amazing
Wonderful! Sexy, and Gareth...YUM! This book was recommended by Amy, and the girl knows what she's talking about! Thanks so much!
Wollstonecrafthomegirl
Aug 27, 2015 Wollstonecrafthomegirl rated it really liked it
I think (?) this was CM's first book, and it's so bloody good. The first 20% or so is easily the weakest part. It's a bit jarring in relation to the suddenness with which everything happens and the descriptions and characterisations are a little on the nose - less would've been more. But Milan finds her stride as the book goes on and it gets better and better. The h/H are simply wonderful. Blakely is nicely done, at the start his straight scientist, no emotion, blunt talking schtick felt, as I'v ...more
rameau
When an uptight scientist meets an alluring fortune-teller, a clash is unavoidable. Rich and dutiful Lord Blakely is ready to fight the conniving liar Madame Esmerelda for the soul of his cousin Ned Carhart. Who could have guessed that they'd end up fighting for something else instead?

Who indeed?

It's the basic set up for a historical romance novel. A powerful aristocratic man meets a poor but somehow exceptional woman who changes him irreversibly. Naturally he does the same for her. They meet, t
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Joy
Nov 26, 2009 Joy rated it it was amazing
I'm one of the fortunate few who got a free copy of this ebook at LivingSocial through Facebook, and I'm glad to be one of the first few who had the chance to read and enjoy this before its official release.

I'm a big fan of historical romances, especially those set in the Regency era and this promising author exceeded my expectations. I loved both the hero (Gareth, Lord Blakely) and the heroine (Jenny, Madame Esmeralda). There was no case of lust at first sight, but they were clearly meant for e
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Jane Stewart
Interesting characters, but I was unhappy with the talented & intelligent heroine doing stupid things for the sake of the plot.

STORY BRIEF:
Jenny was abandoned at four years old. An anonymous person paid for her to attend a school for ladies until she was eighteen. She was unable to get a job as a governess, so she became Madame Esmerelda, a fortune teller. She has great insight into people and is able to successfully support herself and save for the future. One of her clients Ned has depress
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BR Proof of Seduction Ingela, Irina Sofia 15 Feb 15 57 9 Feb 17, 2015 09:27AM  
  • Bound by Your Touch
  • Indiscreet
  • A Gentleman Undone (Blackshear Family, #2)
  • Like No Other Lover (Pennyroyal Green, #2)
  • Follow My Lead (The Blue Raven, #3)
  • Twice Tempted by a Rogue  (Stud Club, #2)
  • One Week As Lovers (Somerhart, #3)
  • Delicious
  • Song of Seduction (Seduction, #1)
  • Sleeping Beauty
  • Last Night's Scandal (Carsington Brothers #5)
  • The Price Of Desire
2906892
Courtney Milan lives in the Pacific Northwest with her husband, a marginally-trained dog, and an attack cat. Courtney wishes she could say she has lived in numerous fabulous places. But aside from her husband, there is a distinct lack of fabulousness in her life. Instead, she is happy when standards in the Milan household hover above mediocrity. Her husband attempts not to kill people for a living ...more
More about Courtney Milan...

Other Books in the Series

Carhart (2 books)
  • Trial by Desire (Carhart, #2)

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“Jenny: But surely Lord Blakely could not abandon his estates for so long.
Gareth: No. Lord Blakely could not. Not unless he had someone he could trust to run his estates in his absence. And Lord Blakely...Well, Lord Blakely did not trust anyone.
Jenny: Lord Blakely is talking about himself in the third person, past tense. Its disturbing.”
10 likes
“Miss Edmonton: I don't even know where to start. It's too horrifying to even speak of.
Jenny: Nonsense. Let's start with the basics. What did your aunt tell you?
Miss Edmonton: My aunt said that my husband will come into my room and pull my skirt up. And then he'll put himself inside of me. She said it hurts. She suggested I hold my tongue and pretend I am somewhere else until he is done.
Jenny: Yes. I should think it would hurt if you did it that way. Good heavens.”
9 likes
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