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3.9  ·  Rating Details ·  973 Ratings  ·  62 Reviews
A love as sweet and seductive as the magnolias and peachtrees of Georgia

Atlanta in 1900 was a city of contrasts: a bustling place where commerce and high society flourished amid the languid rhythms of the sultry South. Claire Lang loved her life there, but one man's presence unsettled her very soul. John Hawthorn's dark eyes and lean, handsome face captivated Claire more t
Mass Market Paperback, 312 pages
Published November 27th 1996 by Ivy Books
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Aayesha Khatri
4.5 stars.

Be careful what you wish for.

So yes, I've always wanted an asshole hero who is forced to marry the heroine while he is in love with someone else. In fact, I've dreamed about this trope for months. It came to me in a dream once, this type of marriage. And I loved it, been fantasising for it since, like, forever. Guy in love with someone else is forced by circumstances to marry girl. And even after marriage and sex (with heroine), said fantasy guy is stubborn and blind and still believ
Dec 22, 2016 Zoe rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I had high hopes for my first Diana Palmer because I have heard a lot of good things about her books. But she mostly writes contemporary romances and I almost never read anything contemporary. But I wanted to give her a try and this is one of her few historicals. So I started with my heart in the throat, hoping that I'd hit the jackpot.

For most of the book I was feeling kind of blah about it. But it isn't poorly written so I didn't mind reading on. I thought John's obsession over another woman
Oct 01, 2008 jenjn79 rated it really liked it
Recommended to jenjn79 by: favorite author
I expected this book to be pretty much typical Diana Palmer, and it was in most ways, but at the same time, it wasn't quite a forumalaic as most of her books.

The story focuses on Claire and John. Claire's uncle had done business with John, who was a banker, and she'd known him for quite a while. Eventually she fell in love with him, but he was completely hooked on another woman who left him and married someone else. When Claire's only family, her uncle, dies, leaving her with nothing and noone,
This book started off really good but couldn’t keep the pace. It was interesting to see the love triangle byplay, but it also put the hero in a bad light because he looked like an idiot for being in love with the un-worthy other woman for most of the book. She seriously made him look like a fool. I see that some of my friends have this book on their cheating and rake shelves, but there were no cheating in this book and the hero was definitely not portrayed as a rake. The kiss that took place bet ...more
Aug 13, 2013 Jenny rated it really liked it
Shelves: made-me-swoon
This historical fiction book was my first in ages. John and Claire were a great couple. I love marriage of convenience stories and this one had it all! Sweetheart heroine, jealous hero, evil OW and even a few sensual love scenes.

There was no cheating, only a blind in denial hero who had idolized OW. Still he was extremely sexy, honorable and I thought heroine was unreasonably mean to him sometimes (after their lovemaking) but I guess I could see where her bitterness came from. Unrequited love i
This book was conflicting for me cause it had me hooked from first page to the last but there are certain things that were hard for me to digest
plot was good,characters were well developed unfortunately i never felt that John loved Claire even after his declarations n all and i wanted extreme grovelling from John cause he was very cruel to Claire but the first time he says sorry Claire forgives him i was disappointed

Claire accepted John Hawthorn's proposal of marriage, she thought they would bot
Rating: 5 stars.
Updated Rating (August 20, 2015): 5 stars.

I absolutely love Diana Palmer!! Gosh I love Diana Palmer. I absolutely love the fact that her books are being republished with better covers! The cover for Magnolia is absolutely stunning, I couldn't stop staring at it. I wish more of Diana's book covers are similar to the style of Magnolia's- it's absolutely stunning. I plan on purchasing more of DP's books. I want to support her, she's such an amazing author. She doesn't write promiscu
Aug 22, 2015 Poonam rated it really liked it
Shelves: romance, historical
This is one of the best Diana Palmer books I have read. I really enjoyed this one and I can say it was hard to put down to do any other work. A very strong and likeable heroine. She is one of the best heroines I have read. She is innocent, frank, independent, fiesty and the best part is she does not take anything lying down and gives good comeback to the OW. It was fun to see the OW feeling akward, embarrassed because of the h's reply.
To be frank, I was not very enthusiastic to read a book wher
Jewels ♥ My Devastating Reads
Feb 15, 2012 Jewels ♥ My Devastating Reads rated it it was amazing
Shelves: romance
All right, so I gave this book 5 stars despite some glaring issues with the novel.

Glaring Problem One:
The ending was wrapped up way too neat and quick. But it was still nicely done, so I'll let it go especially since that "problem" wasn't the real problem that needed to be solved in the story anyway, but a mechanism to get the couple together.

Glaring Problem Two:
John. I know a lot of readers will have issues with this character. He marries Claire to save his own reputation--sure it helps Cla
Oct 06, 2013 Onu rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Onu by: Aayesha Khatri
There is nothing better than a good book that warms your heart. And this one certainly warmed my heart and filled it with gladness. Though when I started reading, I hated the hero John. He wasted his time mooning over a married woman who was not worth his love. And in the process he did and said many cruel things to the heroine. The heroine, Claire, is a woman you can admire. She is feisty, unconventional and honest. I think honesty is one of her traits that I really admired in her.

Now the hero
like usuall.

an innocent young girl. a chauvinist arrogant older man.

but as long as Diana Palmer wrote it, i will always love it!
Mandy Menasco
Oct 27, 2016 Mandy Menasco rated it it was amazing
Great book
Oct 05, 2016 Maureen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Steamy and fun historical. The details of everyday life at the beginning of the 20th century added some nice depth to the story.
Jun 25, 2011 Dwayne rated it liked it
Shelves: e-book-copy
Reviewed @ Girls Without a Bookshelf.

I've been gorging on historical romances as of late, and this one had many recommendations so I jumped right in the midst of it. It's supposedly a tender romance, but the warm flutters it gives the readers, if any, stem not from tenderness but from insane jealousy from both bride and groom! This should be renamed 'Jealousy' because the theme runs through out the book.

This book has every element of romance one would expect of a romance novel, and it makes it s
Christie P.
May 08, 2015 Christie P. rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Everyone, Historical
Turn of the century Atlanta was a place of many changes and contrasts. Claire Lang is a woman with a car and a mind for more than sitting around looking pretty. She wants more out of life and to be treated with more respect than most woman demand.

John Hawthorn is a war veteran who is at odds with his family and in love with a married woman that was once his sweetheart. He is friends with Claire's uncle and her only living relative.

When tragedy strikes the Lang family John is there to help and pr
Jan 07, 2015 HK rated it liked it
In Japanese, Anata ga mienakute. Savanna & Atlanta, Georgia in 1900. John (31), a banker and Clair (20), lost her parents at age 10, was living with her uncle (the only family) who died suddenly. John was in love with and was engaged with his Dian, ex-fiance who married Eli Calverson, the head of the bank, John's boss. When John did not agree to get his inheritance in advance from his family, his ex-fiance married a rich old guy.

John proposed marriage to Clair to save her from her situation
Sabrina (Soter) Sally
La trama è un classico "alla Palmer", c'è il matrimonio di convenienza, la fanciulla innamorata cotta che fa un pò da tappetino, un affascinante lui un pò bastardo (e in questo caso pure innamorato di un'oca senza pari XD)... quello che mi è piaciuto di più è stata l'ambientazione, l'america del 1900, un periodo che ho incontrato raramente nelle mie letture e che trovo molto affascinante con il suo miscuglio di antico e moderno: c'era il telegrafo e il telefono, il movimento delle suffragette pe ...more
Sep 06, 2011 Elaine rated it liked it
Shelves: diana-palmer
I am torn between a 3 and a 4 for this book. It took foever to really get into this book. I usually finish a book in a day. This one took four days! The story was interesting but it took a while to get there. I agree with "booklover" John was terribly cruel to his wife. He was so busy lusting after his ex-fiancee that he didn't have time for his wife. He didn't like men flirting with his wife so he left her at home while he attended social functions by himself. He invited his boss (who had marri ...more
Nov 29, 2014 RebeccaL rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2014-read
I loved how the heroine is kind and strong. She knew what she is going into when she married the hero. She didn't self pity and she was able to give it back to the hero as much as he gave her. I can understand why people say things they don't mean to say when their pride is hurt and it is exactly why the hero can sometimes be seen cruel to the heroine. But the author also let you see the hero's mind and that's why I fully enjoyed their relationship throughout the book because I can see how they ...more
Tammy Foster
Oct 25, 2011 Tammy Foster rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2011-books-read
A good heartwarming romance. I hadn't read one in awhile. This was set in 1900 Atlanta and I enjoyed the historical setting more than I usually do. I did feel as if the getting to the romance part was a bit on the long winded side and began to be slightly unbelievable that it would take so long to realize they were in love but it only made me downgrade from 5 stars, not dislike the book. And I actually would've like to read more about the after part of the happily ever after - but that is a gene ...more
Feb 22, 2016 Tayyibah rated it really liked it
Claire Lang is a women that could do a man's job, a woman which would not be found in 1900s. once tragedy struck, Claire holds onto her uncle's motorcar, at that era is was a new technology to the people and motorcars were not viewed as a blessing to have.
losing her home, a young banker, John Hawthorn comes to her rescue, suggesting marriage, to give her safety and to protect his reputation, he is in love with a woman, who married his boss, while he was serving at war.
once they marry, John kee
Marie Lamkey
Nov 10, 2014 Marie Lamkey rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Love conquers all

a woman in love with a man and he not return it became almost unbearable to Claire and watching another woman flaunt herself in front of almost everyone almost drove her away I enjoyed this romance novel with all its turns and mystery of theft of money and a chase to find the truth. thanks to many good friends all ended well. this book was easy to follow and well written with a plot that held my interest and in as blue to put it down. PrAise to Diana Palmer for another good read
I did not want to like this as much as I did. From reviews I've read on various boards, the H was supposed to be some jerk that mistreated the h. And sure, from the h's perspective, he kinda was. But his actions and situation are understandable. He was actually an honorable man stuck in a situation where he tries to save everyone, but instead ends up hurting both himself and the h. I wish Goodreads would allow us to give half stars, because although this wasn't a four star book, it was better th ...more
Patricia Solla
Apr 18, 2011 Patricia Solla rated it really liked it
Shelves: library-books
This historical romance is quite interesting. It shows how a woman was treated in the early 1900's. The female character goes against the norm doing things that were normally done by the male. The male character is a stand up guy who ,after tragedy strikes involving the female, tries to help the woman the only way he knows how. Once again we see that communication is of the essence in a relationship.
Oct 30, 2011 Mary rated it liked it
I checked this out from our city library, thinking it would be a quick read, which it was. I didn't expect a trashy novel, which it is. I only needed a box of chocolate bonbons to make the experience complete. Super easy entertainment, soap-drama and a little heavy breathing thrown in. Nice break from absolutely everything. Like a quick vacation. Palmer won't go on my list of "read everything they wrote" authors...but it was fun.
Apr 22, 2011 Paula rated it really liked it
This historical fiction book was my first in a VERY LONG TIME. I enjoyed it because it was a story about Claire who was young and lost everything. Then there is John who asked her to marry him so that she would be able to live in home and keep her uncles "car". She loves John and he loved another woman.
Caitlin Wyatt
LOVED it like seriously I am saying her books are different & they sometimes are people! If you just read her LTT series they can get similar but this was different. It took place in Georgia not Texas & the heroine was headstrong and disobedient. Plus there was a crime to solve it was great.
Oct 19, 2015 Dra rated it really liked it
Como review global, le doy 4 estrellas, porque en su primera parte es de 5 estrellas pero en el tercio final para mi gusto todo queda finiquitado con un happy end un poco demasiado edulcorado. Pero se lee muy bien, está documentada y los personajes son atractivos, aunque a veces les darías un par de sopapos.
Sep 12, 2011 Adrienne rated it liked it
Fine for what it is. Bought it for $1 in the A and R sale. Would not have bought it otherwise. I would have given it a 2 as it is really only step up from a Mills and Boon but as I actually enjoyed it, I had to give it a 3. Not exactly a literary gem but an easy read.
Nov 21, 2014 Captmashpea rated it it was ok
Not my favorite Diana Palmer book, the characters seemed forced, but it was an interesting story. Really didn't like the guy - he seemed like such a tool. Also the heroine was a bumpy combination of naivety and spit-fire, it just didn't work.
(hard copy).
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Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the GoodReads database with this name.

Diana Palmer is a pseudonym for author Susan Kyle.

(1)romance author
Susan Eloise Spaeth was born on 11 December 1946 in Cuthbert, Georgia, USA. She was the eldest daughter of Maggie Eloise Cliatt, a nurse and also journalist, and William Olin Spaeth, a college professor. Her mother was part of the women's libera
More about Diana Palmer...

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