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Potent Pleasures (Pleasures, #1)
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Potent Pleasures (Pleasures #1)

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3.72 of 5 stars 3.72  ·  rating details  ·  2,968 ratings  ·  207 reviews
Eloisa James breathes new life into one of the most popular fiction genres with her highly original debut novel Potent Pleasures, a charming, vividly peopled Regency romance. With an uncanny wit and an eye for the whimsical, she unravels a complex--and often hilarious--chain of events inadvertently set in motion by a young woman's first taste of forbidden pleasure.

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ebook, 348 pages
Published November 18th 2009 by Island Books (first published 1999)
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Dangermousie
Oh, I am so torn. On one hand, I like Ms. James' writing style, the secondary characters are wonderful (I wanted more of Will and Chloe - I wished the book was about them instead of having their romance be secondary) and the heroine is beyond adorable - I'd love to have her in the family.

On the other hand, the hero is an utter fucking temper-driven idiot with trust issues, living with whom would be uncomfortable to the extreme. The main emotion he evoked in me for half the book was sheer rage, e
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Fani
Nice writing and interesting plot in this deeply emotional romance. However, the hero tops my list of worst heroes ever, since he distrusts and browbeats the heroine repeatedly and she is stupid enough to stay by his side despite the way he treats her. The fact that after hating both protagonists I ended up liking the book despite myself, says a lot about Mrs James writing skills. With heavy editing this could become a keeper, but with a hero like that it is barely finishable.
Jacob Proffitt
It's unfortunate that this is the first novel by Eloisa James that I picked up. I'm kind of glad that I had already bought a few eBooks before reading this one because if I hadn't, I may not have come back.

The thing is, the story works out most of the time. Both Alex and Charlotte are charming and I enjoyed their relationship ... until James started manipulating things against them. Indeed, my biggest problem with the novel is that James manipulates so much stupid just to provide problems for Ch
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Suri
My first attempt to read a book by Eloisa James and what bad luck I had to choose this story. I liked the beginning of this... a mistaken identity, unforgettable first for them. Liked it up to that point at the ball of her first come-out. Then everything went downhill for me.

I had thought he would be pining for Charlotte until they met again. But no, he got married and had a child.
My second dislike is there's a child involved. I always stay away from romances involving widows/ers with kids. Aar
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Lori McD
OK, from the date and comments I've read about this book, I'm going to assume this was one of Eloisa James' first attempts at a romance novel. So I can almost forgive her... but not quite.

If you're new to romance novels, please take my advice and DON'T BOTHER WITH THIS SERIES. It will put you off Regency romances forever, unless you like stories where men can act like complete and total jerks, expecting wives to be madonnas while secretly wanting them to be whores in the bedroom, but not able to
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Meg
May 25, 2014 Meg rated it 1 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: no one
Recommended to Meg by: amazon
I love Eloisa James. She's an intelligent, sensuous, witty romance author and her Desperate Duchesses series is up there on my read-and-read-again shelf. So it was with no fear or trepidation that I picked up Potent Pleasures. How wrong I was.

This novel is like a time warp back to the bad old days of Domestic Abuse-Means-Love 1970s romances. It commits more deadly sins of romance writing than most. For example:

1. the novel centres around a conflict that could be solved with a 30 second conversa
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Lita Bouquard
Wow, How many times can you be called a ho and accept it? There were several things that bothered me about this historical romance and that was the corker of them all. I also disliked:
A LOT of time spent detailing the friendship of Charlette and Josie(?) I forgot the BF's name already because after the initial mundane preferences of both characters, ex: one liked dancing the other didn't, one sat straight , the other lounged, she is dropped like a hot rock.
Whyyyyyyyyy? I want best friends to be
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Katherine St. Vincent 黄爱芬
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Farrah
Eloisa James does a wonderful job on Potent Pleasures. Can you imagine being so “touched” from a “one night stand”(using today’s terms) that no future matches could really compare? Then imagine “falling” into them three years later and being just as enchanted. James writes about this very thing in the first book of her Pleasures trilogy (Potent Pleasures, Midnight Pleasures, Enchanting Pleasures) yet only one remembers the other even though both remember the moment. The Earl is a devestatingly h ...more
Teresa
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Giedre
This book made me so damn angry, specifically the asshat hero. Oh yes. And the heroine, who starts out as someone who could be called interesting and on her road to independency, but then is turned into this human-shaped doormat. She calls the hero a "madman", yet tells him that she loves him and will keep forgiving him. I just can't. I felt so angry throughout the book. I kept hoping for some kind of a payoff, but it just didn't happen. Just lots of anger. And once I finished it, I felt tired a ...more
Patricia Burroughs
I could point out some specific issues with this book, but bottom line, I think the biggest issue is the omnipotent point of view. I felt removed from the characters and didn't really experience the cracktastic angst-fest this could have been.
Camille Azarcon
I really enjoyed this book! I started reading this novel with high hopes since there's a review by booklist that says this novel brings to mind the best of Judith McNaught (who is my fave author). And yes, it did remind me of JM's works. :) Alex and Patrick Foakes reminded me of Clayton and Stephen Westmoreland. Also, I felt like I was the one hurting when Alex misjudged Charlotte, which usually just happens when I read a JM novel. I'm so happy this book didn't disappoint me and I'm looking forw ...more
Susanne
I borrowed a brand new MP3CD of this from my library to pass the time on my commute, then found myself scratching my head over its looooong, painfully contorted and improbable plot. I'd read Eloisa James' regency romances before and generally found them witty and well constructed. What a relief to discover this is a re-issue of her FIRST book, originally released in 1999. Why don't book jackets/audio covers ADMIT this? I might not write the author off entirely now . . .

This particular version is
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Rennie
mau kasih 5* tapi cowoknya bego sangat jadi 4* ajalah
steph
2.5 - 3 stars. (Sorry Gabriela, don't kill me!)

One of my friends lent me her copy of this book as she knows I enjoy reading romance novels and this was the first romance novel she ever read and it holds a soft place in her heart so she lent it to me to try.

Likes.
+ I liked the characters -especially Charlotte and her mother who *gasp* actually cared about her daughter and her happiness
+ The 1 year-old daughter (Pippa?) was adorable.
+ Paintings! I loved that Charlotte painted people including her
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Heather Petty
This was my first romance novel.

And, to be honest, I probably never would have looked twice at this book, if it weren't for my agent. She and I were talking about something in my manuscript, and she said I should read Eloisa James to see what I could learn from her.

It was like my nightmare, being assigned a romance novel and then told to read an author who only writes REGENCY ROMANCE. *headdesk* The worst, possible scenario. I walked by her books a few times in the book store, wincing away fro
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Deedee
The hero was such an idiot!!! Ugh like the story was a good one but the hero I repeat is an idiot! I am not going to write proper review for this because some parts annoyed the hell out of me. The fact that the story had a good plot and amazingly written characters is probably the reason why I finished it and rated a solid three stars.
The heroine to me was your typical wishy washy type. One moment a strong and stubborn resolve. The next no back bone. Cause if some man would of said the things t
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Nicole
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Tich18
Oh okay, well this book was amazing.
I don't remember crying while reading since a long time ago, It was so emotional, especially when the baby came out. I also cried to that true love meaning when she forgave it all, just because she loves him. And Alex? He was a real, classic idiot. I mean, if he promised that he will believe her, why didn't he let her speak? I felt so mad, reading the scenes where he didn't want to believe that she was girl form the mask ball, or when he believed to the others
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Abby
*May contain spoilers*
This book was on a list of books that were suggested to me as being similar to those of some of my favorite authors. There were no similarities that I could find.

My first problem were the colons that seemed to appear in every sentence. They eventually dwindled, but it was bad enough to remember for this review. Second, the POV would change so frequently that I couldn't keep up with who was thinking what. Sometimes it changed within a paragraph which screams of bad writing/e
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Gwyneth
Nov 02, 2014 Gwyneth is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: dropped
Dropped this one like a hot potato the moment I found out (view spoiler) I did read up to the first fifty pages or so, though, and I almost thought Alex would grow on me... I did like his name so. Charlotte wasn't too bad either - for one, she's not "plain" like heroines in some other books are constantly described, ...more
Aviva
While I liked parts of this book, I hate that it seems to suggest that if a man is properly apologetic or has an emotional trauma in his past, a woman should forgive his verbal abuse and other humiliations. I can see perhaps forgiving a solitary incident, but a second? No way. I read trashy novels like this as an entertaining diversion from real life.
Janice Karr
This book, like all of Eloisa James's books, is better than the average romance novel. I like how, instead of being written from only the male and female MC POVs, it flits around from one character to the next. It was charming to see how all the randy young people thought about each other. This might prove irritating to another reader, but I thought it worked well for the story overall. Toward the middle/end I was rolling my eyes at the character's behavior, though. Do you sometimes get the feel ...more
Huong
Started off interesting. Story definitely unfolded very differently from what I expected. Charlotte is good heroine. Strong minded. Alex, on the other hand, was despicable. It was lust lust lust, "WHORE!" followed by more lust lust lust and then branding his wife a whore again. He basically ruined the whole book for me.
Heidi
I'm shamelessly counting this book because I've challenged myself to read more than 50 books this year. This trite romance set in the Regency era wasn't historical enough, nor were either of the main characters very believable-- especially the Duke! If I were Lady Charlotte I would have gone for the twin!!
annisa belikov casillas
bagus banget nih..suka dech,,tapi cowoknya goblok banget sih..pengen gw ketokin aja nih palanya...kasian charlottenya...sedih pas dia mo lahiran...huhuhuhu...untung aja ada temennya yang nemenin si sophie...

recomended dech nih buku..^^

Gebby agatha
sejauh ini bagus asalkan ga ada cerita esme nya, yg ini semua tokoh ce nya lebih baik-baik. alex merupakan hero yang agak lemot dan charlotte ce yang terlalu sabar dan pemaaf. agak greget juga yah ce nya terlalu pemaaf bgt pas mau lahiran.
Germaine
At around 80% I was so mad at the H that I almost didn't finish the book, but I was so close to the end, I powered through and finished the book. I can't say that it was really worth it. The situation that enraged the H so that he made a real jackass of himself was contrived beyond belief as was the resolution that have the book its HEA.

Evidently, this was Eloisa James' debut novel. I believe it. There are too many characters, too many points of view, too many contrived misunderstandings, and to
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Jessie Mihalik
There was not nearly enough groveling on Alex's part to make up for the horrible things he said, not once, but twice. Charlotte forgave him way, way too easily. Kind of killed the book for me.
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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

Pleasures (3 books)
  • Midnight Pleasures (Pleasures, #2)
  • Enchanting Pleasures (Pleasures, #3)
When Beauty Tamed the Beast (Fairy Tales, #2) A Kiss at Midnight (Fairy Tales, #1) Paris in Love The Ugly Duchess (Fairy Tales, #4) A Duke of Her Own (Desperate Duchesses, #6)

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