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Your Wicked Ways (Duchess Quartet #4)

3.77  ·  Rating Details ·  3,098 Ratings  ·  164 Reviews
Helene, the Countess Godwin, knows there is nothing more unbearably tedious than a virtuous woman. After all, she's been one for ten long years while her scoundrel of a husband lives with strumpets and causes scandal after scandal. So she decides it's time for a change -- she styles her hair in the newest, daring mode, puts on a shockingly transparent gown, and goes to a ...more
Paperback, 384 pages
Published March 30th 2004 by Avon
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Best Historical Romances - Married Couples
69th out of 371 books — 688 voters
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My Favourite Historical Romance
199th out of 1,386 books — 1,884 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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This book…ugh.


I do not think it would have been so horrible if the author made sense. But she did not. it felt like she made a lot of notes about the plot and then somebody else tried to patch it all together for a few bucks.
On the other hand when I think of Lina…maybe it would not have worked even if there was more of a back story.
Why? Well..I am a person who mostly hates eeeeevil mistresses. But this -good- mistress made me want to puke!
Her sweetness attacks and the way that the her
Stephanie D
Worst book I've ever read. Hello? It's supposed to come from Eloisa james, a rather safe book where you always expect to read a masterpiece. But no, this book is sooo bad. I stopped while reading it. Every time I turned a page, i'de scratch my head in pain. Hello?!?! Is anyone that desperate to live in a house with your husband's mistress?!?! And you just want to pay her off?? What kind of wife does that? She's supposed to fight for her right and kick the mistress's ass off the house. And to ...more
Sep 01, 2016 Daisy rated it did not like it
Shelves: abandoned

I made it through 40% before I decided I was kidding myself and just couldn’t read any further. Generally I’m quite patient with my books but this was just a frustrating read altogether and I feel the need to vent...

The plot was something that I’ve taken to reading recently – historical romances based on an estranged marriage where the two redeem themselves. But this, the basis around the estrangement (view spoiler)
Ahhh. I liked this, although I feel like I wanted a little MORE in some ways. I feel like I wasn't QUITE there with the couple, although I certainly believed they were on their way to a happy life together. I just don't think they had quite earned it yet.

It's also a book where I would've loved flashbooks. You see, they were passionately in love with each other, eloped, had bad sex and couldn't figure out how to get past that. No, really, that seemed to basically be the root of the problems. Then
Apr 06, 2014 Anisashraf rated it really liked it
Your Wicked Ways, Eloisa James another story makes me excited. Although this novel not so interesting like her other novel, but it still can make me stole my time read it.

Helene , the heroin. I like Helene, I like her character and everything about her. But sometimes, I can't understand why she still accept what her husband doing to her. It is love? Yes, to her, her husband is her love that can't be denied. After 10 years part from Rees, she comes back. To claim her right.

Rees , the hero. I d
Erica Chilson
Other than a few minor phrases of repetition, I loved the book (you see drove me insane)
I think Eloisa James will be a staple in my historical romance addiction. I found this book secondhand, not knowing it was the 4th in a series. I read it as a standalone without any issue, and will go back to book 1.
Many Historical Romance novels are too flowery, over descriptive, insta-love, and eye-roll worthy. They possess an excess of words that must be skimmed(like 3 pages to describe one action). I di
Lori McD
Last book in this particular series... I wasn't thinking about how these books interacted with the Essex sisters series. The names of some of the characters seemed familiar to me, and now I know why - duh!

The Earl of Mayne (Garret Langham) figures in this book; Lucius Felton in the novellette in this series. I'd forgotten that Mayne is half-French, and I was a bit thrown by his characterization as having a slight French accent for a bit. I had to re-read the 1st and last in the Essex sisters boo
Mar 22, 2009 Farrah rated it liked it
Shelves: library-book
Eloisa James brings us another sultry read about an estranged married couple who've been apart the past 10 years who end up reuniting and creating a spark when brought back together to produce an heir and a musical score. Helene, the countess of Godwin changes from the prudish woman to a more daring and beautiful woman who entices many men after her change including her rake of a husband, Reese, the Earl of Godwin. When she approaches him yet again for a child of her own. He agrees only if ...more
Rachel Rogers
May 20, 2011 Rachel Rogers rated it did not like it
Another couldn't finish book. I normally enjoy James's work but this left me cold. Even when I learned it was Mayne's backstory it didn't do anything for me. Rees was about as unappealing a hero as I could imagine and Helene was so inconsistent, not a normal trait for James heroines. At times it reminded me of An Affair Before Christmas; another one that didn't do much for me. Not a good intro to Eloisa James for anyone.
Melody Black
Mar 03, 2016 Melody Black rated it did not like it
I hated this book. After six chapters I went to put it aside to stop reading but I still wanted to know how it ended and all it did was piss me off at the end of the story. It always annoys me when the woman just forgives the man for the things he does so easily. Ya I liked that she had been the first person he had slept with but she certainly wasn't his last even though it was that way for her. He cheated during the entire marriage and he was a complete asshole. I know she wasn't great either, ...more
Dec 04, 2010 Ilze rated it really liked it
Shelves: eloisa-james
Lovely! A story of forgiveness and reconciliation set within a lighter-than-air comedy of Regency manners. Very refreshing too to read a romance of a couple who had a really, really lousy sex life initially, due to their own ignorance and inexperience, which led to their living apart, and who were willing to let go of their preconceptions about each other and about sex and fall in love again.

I only bought this one because I was interested in Mayne, one of the main characters in the Essex sisters
Kagama-the Literaturevixen
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Classic Eloisa James!

Funny names? Check. (Miss Prunella Forbes-Shacklett, Mrs. Fishpole)

Shakespeare references? Check. (Othello, A Midsummer Night's Dream, and a line of Edmund Spenser's poetry is misattributed to the Bard)

Multiple love stories? Check. (Helene and Rees, Lina and Tom)

Adorable plot moppet? Check. (Meggin)

Fabulous female friendships? Checkity-check-check! (Infamous Esme and Gina the Duchess are featured prominently, and help devise the scheme to get Helene out of a scandal)

Most re
Jun 11, 2011 Lelyana rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Okelah kalau perzinahan di halal kan di negara entah dimana...tapi tetap aja ngilu membaca kisah yang dimana sahabat terdekat mu menganjurkan perzinahan di luar pernikahan.
What the f***ing friends were you ladies???
Rumah tangga berantakan ala Helene dan Rees Holland sungguh luar biasa mempesona saya sejak awal.
Dengan alasan ingin mempunyai keturunan dan demi tercipta nya harmoni opera yang menakjubkan , Helene rela berbagi atap dengan Rees dan gundik nya....OMG !
Bukan alasan untuk pembenaran wa
"Aww. As much as I enjoy novels about new love, it's sometimes nice to read about a couple with more miles on the clock. Rees and Helene's estrangement has been a thread running through the series, and this is their book. It didn't completely knock my socks off but I enjoyed their gradual rapprochement, particularly because it required both of them to recognise their own culpability in the breakdown of their marriage. Rees was a beast, yes, but Helene caused some damage too. [return][return]I ...more
Aug 20, 2008 BookMaven rated it did not like it
Griselda is saying to her brother, Lord Mayne, and describing the main character of this book, Helene, Countess Godwin: ". . . Though I must say, darling, that I begin to wonder at your taste. All this enthusiasm for Helene Godwin? I remember her in school as being just too, too tedious." Well, this just about sums it up for me, too. These characters are flat, cardboard people. No depth. Depravity has never been so boring!!! I cannot believe I finished it. This series is being replicated by Ms. ...more
Feb 25, 2010 Meggie rated it it was ok
(Actually, 2.5 stars.) After finishing Your Wicked Ways, I feel conflicted. There were so many elements in the book that I usually like--reconciled lovers, uncomfortable marriages, noblemen who actually work for a living--but once I closed the book, I wasn't satisfied.

I think it all boils down to Rees and Helene. I couldn't forgive his past behavior, and I didn't understand how she would ever agree to move back into that sort of situation. Plus, endless parading of happy couples from previous bo
Aug 06, 2016 Shasha rated it it was ok
Shelves: hea
The secondary romance was sweet (after I got over the ick factor). The main relationship was a mess and I didn't feel it was properly sorted out by the end.
While it was nice that they have a HEA, so many things happen that I don't like to read in romance, including adultery.
There are some painful truths about human behavior (especially how negative words said in temper can hurt for years but be forgotten by the speaker) but overall the the story was so miserable that the happy ending felt like
Brenda (b)
This book wraps up the Duchess Quartet series. I liked it. Rees was so immersed in his music that he failed to pay attention to the feelings and emotions of those around him. Helene was quite naive concerning marital relations. They both like past hurts prevail and turned a blind eye to their true feeling for each other.

On a side note: I'm noticed that the Earl of Mayne, who plays a minor yet important role here, gets his own story in Pleasure for Pleasure .
Dec 06, 2011 Sababa rated it it was ok
I was contemplating if I should give this novel a 4 star or a 2 star. It is the kind of novel which you either like or dislike.

The beginning of the novel was very good. I was willing to forgive Rees and and I was hoping Helene to transform his life and the usual things that usually happens when estranged couples meet again. But the more I read the more annoyoed I became at Rees. It had such a strong foundation but I felt Eloisa James couldn't make the entire thing work. I couldn't forgive Rees f
Jul 11, 2016 Linda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook
Helene was shown the door by her own husband years ago, and hes taken residence with one scandalous partner after the other, with no regard to Helene.
Now Helene has one wish, a child of her own, and shes willing to do whatever it takes.
Will she agree to Rees demands of living in his den of sin?
Historical romance, smutty fluff and feelings in a great combo. Didnt like Rees, so not as great rating as I usually give. He didnt grovel enough, IMHO =)
Listened to the audio version, and the narrator
Sep 06, 2016 Bookabulary rated it liked it
I cannot believe that I actually finished this book. Prolly because I was desperate to like Eloisa James' works. Remember that July was becoming a very bad reading month save for a few old fave rereads and, of course, THE book of the century (check previous post for details). Nevertheless, I plowed on page after page because I was hoping there might be a surprise somewhere that would save my opinion of the book. Unfortunately for me, there wasn't any.

Read full review on Bookabulary.
Jun 18, 2013 Elena rated it did not like it
You want a baby so bad that you are willing to go back to your brute of a husband. Your husband who threw you out of your own house, made fun of your body the night of your wedding and brought his mistress to reside with him. No bloody likely any normal woman would agree to such a bribe but that's what Helene did. So what if Helene cut her hair or wore daring dresses? None of it meant anything if at the end Helene bowed down to a man not worthy of her. Ms. James disappointed me.
Kath S
Me gustó el principio pero después empezó a ir en picada para mí. Me salté un montón de páginas y no me arrepiento porque fue una historia pesada y cero llamativa.

Sigo intentando encontrarle el lado bueno a esta mujer por culpa de Julia Quinn, pero hasta ahora no me he encontrado con nada inolvidable. Una lástima.
Dec 22, 2011 Kim_bab rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Hadeh .... Ceritanya ga jelas... Jd kl ga dipinjemi novelnya sama temen, mending ga usah d baca deh =_='..intinya ga usah ngeluarin dana sepeserpun buat baca nih buku(gabungan antara miskin dan pelit :-D)-sumpah jelek bgt
Jun 09, 2011 Win rated it it was ok
Shelves: historical
bener2 suatu penderitaan buat baca buku ini...*mnrt saya*

gak bisa aja nerima pemikiran istri, suami dan simpanan tinggal satu rumah...n tambahin seorang pendeta yg jatuh cinta sama wanita simpanan abang ny...bener2 plot yg kacau bgt...
Oct 23, 2011 Thenia rated it really liked it
Not what I expected but fun to read nonetheless.

Helene decides to change and let her hair down, Rees faces his problems after a long time and they both realize their past mistakes and manage to move on.

Mayne seems like an interesting character - I'm wondering if he's got his own book later on.
Being Human
Nov 12, 2011 Being Human rated it did not like it
Oh this book is so annoying!!! Dialogues were repetitive and pointless and immature. The story itself was absurd. All in all a poorly written book!!
Nov 27, 2015 Angela marked it as deals  ·  review of another edition
27 November 2015: $5.99 on Kindle
Asrina Maharani
note to self:
Do NOT ever again read EJ's book terutama yang terjemahan [^^]
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New York Times bestselling author Eloisa James writes historical romances for HarperCollins Publishers. Her novels have been published to great acclaim. A reviewer from USA Today wrote of Eloisa's very first book that she "found herself devouring the book like a dieter with a Hershey bar"; later People Magazine raved that "romance writing does not get much better than this." Her novels have repeat ...more
More about Eloisa James...

Other Books in the Series

Duchess Quartet (4 books)
  • Duchess in Love (Duchess Quartet, #1)
  • Fool for Love (Duchess Quartet, #2)
  • A Wild Pursuit (Duchess Quartet, #3)

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“The Earl of Mayne's kisses would never be called objectionable. They were so sophisticated and sleek, persuasive and delicate, that Helene didn't mind them - much. It was just that she really wanted to get back to Rees. She had a thought about the score he had given her.
"I must go," she said, pulling back. And then added, "alas.”
“There was some rustling as the gown was cast over the soprano's shoulders, or so Lina assumed, and then the alto and Madame Rocque started cooing.
But the soprano cut through it decisively. 'I look like an orange without its rind,' she said firmly.”
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