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How to Capture a Countess

(The Duchess Diaries #1)

3.91  ·  Rating details ·  2,397 ratings  ·  238 reviews
Urged by her favorite nephew, the intimidating Duchess of Roxburghe agrees to transform a thorny Scottish rose into a lovely bloom. But even she isn’t prepared for fiery Rose Balfour.

At seventeen, Rose fell wildly in love with Lord Alton Sinclair, known as Lord Sin for his wicked ways. Stung by his indifference, the starry-eyed girl tried to win an illicit kiss, but then p
Mass Market Paperback, 357 pages
Published September 18th 2012 by Pocket Books
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Average rating 3.91  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,397 ratings  ·  238 reviews

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Joanna Loves Reading
This was a cute, fun book to listen to, narrated by Allison Larkin. It was a comedy of errors that was entertaining with a believable connection.
Elis Madison
He's a young rake wannabe. She's an ingénue pretending to be worldly in order to attract him. They connect in a quiet spot in a garden, near a fountain. They kiss. He gropes. She panics—and shoves.

Lord Sinclair, once known as "Lord Sin," surfaces to the laughter of his peers, and goes on with the moniker, "Lord Fin" (thanks to the fish that hopped out of his pocket as he swiped the lotus leaf off his leaky powdered wig). He's convinced that the vixen did it on purpose, and he wants to punish her
I thought this was such a great book. It was just so much fun and I absolutely adored Rose. I got around to liking Sinclair's aunt, Margaret, Duchess Roxburghe, and I thought Sinclair, himself, was okay but the book was really all about Rose. She managed to shine through every one of their wagers.

I loved the Prologue of the book and thought it was so delightful. I absolutely sympathized with Rose and her insecurities and how she unknowingly and innocently seemed like she was seducing Sinclair. W
This is my second book by Karen Hawkins it was amusing, made better by Alison Larkin's narration. However, this author must enjoy writing Heroes who are real jerks. That was the case both with this book and the prior one I read. I would consider listening to more if they were available with my library, but I will not necessarily be continuing this series are looking for more by the author.
3.5 stars

A pleasant story, light-hearted & fun. Predictable, maybe - but good-humoured, and increasingly I find that a rare & desirable quality in a HR. Too many HRs depend on an unnecessarily aggressive stance between the H&h to generate conflict, or disproportionate viciousness in a villain/ess.

HTCAC starts with an innocent misunderstanding blown into a scandal, and to be sure, when H & h meet a few years later, neither has forgiven or entirely forgotten. But quickly, each grows to appreciate
Oct 08, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Loved it! After their first meeting ended up with Lord Sinclair being an object of ridicule, he wanted nothing more than to get revenge. Six years later he got his chance when Rose was at a house party given by her godmother who is also his great aunt. He corners her and states his intent to seduce her because of what she had done. She apologizes because she had no idea of the results of that evening, but he doesn't care. She tells him that he is welcome to try but she is no longer a young girl ...more
May 16, 2012 rated it really liked it
This was my first time reading Karen Hawkins and it will not be my last! This was a fun, sexy battle of wills between Rose and Lord Sinclair, aptly nicknamed Sin. Six years ago, the alluring Rose seduced Sin with her plain appearance but sparkling eyes and just as they are enjoying a very heated kiss, she pushes him into the fountain and the whole party quickly sees everything. And instead of properly apologizing, Rose's nerves get the best of her and she laughs....and everyone else quickly foll ...more
Sha Mslvoe
Sep 19, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Sha Mslvoe by: Sheryl C. Nash
Such a sweet romance! My 1st read from Karen Hawkins and she blew me away with her romance story.
Loved Lord Sin Photobucket
This is truly a delightful read
Alexandria Jane
Jul 19, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: regency-romance

Rose Balfour is:
- stubborn
- adventurous
- a great archer and horse rider
- amusing
- loyal
- sometimes somewhat responsible.
She is not:
- a great beauty
- a heiress
- a Lady
So when she finds herself flirting with Lord Alton Sinclair (otherwise known as Lord Sin…the man really likes to drink and sleep around) at a ball, she seizes her opportunity to steal her very first kiss. When the kiss gets a little too hot to handle, she freaks out and pushes Lord Sin into a fountain (which, by the way, is totall
Brilliant book and very funny. Not only were the dialogue and fiery interactions between the two leads explosive and hilarious at the same time, but the secondary characters were fleshy and in particular, Dunn the valet, had some laugh-out-loud one liners. Rose was intelligent, impulsive and a lady of action even at 16. She took one look at Sinclair (aka Lord Sin), liked what she saw and wasted no time in dragging him, not entirely unwilling, into the garden for a stolen kiss. In her innocence, ...more
Oct 11, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This is a very pleasant light read. I enjoyed it till the very end. There’s always something about two people who pretended that they hated each other while in a matter of fact it’s obviously the opposite. Well in this case it’s actually Lord Sinclair who wanted to mete out revenge on Rose for humiliating him six years ago. You clearly see that they are attracted to each other but won’t be honest about it. It’s like watching a boy bullying the person he likes. I find that it’s very cute.

This boo
This was a double-first for me. It was my first time listening to (or reading) this author, and the first time listening to this narrator and I’m pleased to report that How to Capture a Countess was a truly delightful piece of audio fluff.

The story opens with a rather tipsy, seventeen-year-old Rose Balfour flirting quite outrageously with Alton, Earl of Sinclair to the point that he believes she is eager for more than a mild flirtation or a kiss. Even though Rose has been infatuated with Sinclai
3.75 Stars

Read for the 2015 TBR Challenge--September--Historical Romance. The challenge is hosted by Wendy the Super Librarian.

How to Capture a Countess is the start of the Duchess Diaries series which focuses on three sisters who are aided by their godmother, the Duchess of Roxburghe. The oldest of the girls, Rose, is the first heroine and her romance is complicated. She fell in love with the rakish Lord Sinclair (obviously known as Lord Sin), but her pursuit of him was waylaid when she panicke
Fira Rosli
Apr 15, 2013 rated it it was ok
I can't help it. This book was such a disappointment and Karen Hawkins is one of my go-to-authors. Admittedly, it was well-written and the storyline was all right. But it just didn't "click" with me.

Reading this book reminds me of her another book called 'The Laird Who Loved Me' from her Maclean Curse series. This book somehow has a similar storyline which includes both the hero and heroines having at odds with each other, challenging and wagering against one another on who will finally win. An
Aly is so frigging bored
Jan 16, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: historical
Main characters:
Rose Balfour
Lord Alton "Sin" Sinclair

What I Liked: Rose and Sin's interactions were hilarious, they just couldn't stop challenging each other. They had an archery challenge, a riding one... I think they could have challenged each other to whom eats more teacakes if they could get away with it! It was a great book and I laughed like crazy while reading it.

What I didn't like: I didn't like Rose at the start, she was too... naive and impulsive. I know she was very young but that go
Mar 10, 2017 rated it really liked it
3.5 stars rounded up. At times it can feel a bit silly, but overall this is a lighthearted, easy read. If you're looking for a regency HR sans villans, kidnappings, murder, unnecessary drama, and the like, this'll do.
Sep 08, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This is the first book that I have read by Karen Hawkins and I loved it. Rose wanted Sin from the beginning, but he let his pride get in the way of admitting how he really felt about Rose.
Sophie ♥
I really can't get through this. SO BORING.
Christine Seybolt
Sep 27, 2012 rated it really liked it
REVIEW: Whenever I read a book by New York Times and USA Today’s bestselling author Karen Hawkins I always find myself in a slight dilemma. I know you are dying to know, so I will share. I have the most difficult time of letting Ms. Hawkins's characters go. The same thing happened when I picked up her latest HOW TO CAPTURE A COUNTESS. This intoxicating and thrilling first installment in Hawkins’s new Duchess Diaries series delivers everything a romance reader demands: engaging characters, witty ...more
Nov 04, 2012 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Historical Romance Lovers! And Fans of Romantic Comedy!
Lord Alton Sinclair, Earl of Sinclair, aka "Lord Sin," has escaped the machinations of all the matchmaking mamas and, even, the attempts of his own grandmother and great aunt, the Duchess of
Roxburghe. He's done this mainly by making himself scarce within the society "doings" of the ton. That, and when attendance is absolutely necessary, holding an inscrutable air of superiority and boredom and barely controlled irritation. All this, just to ensure that he could drive off the most avaricious ma
Sep 19, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: romance
This is one of the best romances that I have read in a long time. It has it all: meddling secondary characters, a competitive hero and heroine, and a dunk in a fountain at a ball. Hawkins is at her best with this story. There is cracking wit, what I would call "true angst," that of balancing family obligations with a personal life, but most of all, it is funny. The scenes are original, yet are believable for the time period. The characters seem like people one would want to meet in every day lif ...more
Barbara ★
Due to a misunderstanding (a virgin over-reacting to little fondling), Rose Balfour accidentally knocks Lord Sin into a fountain. Unfortunately it's at a ball and everyone sees and assumes he was doing something inappropriate. Rose flees town, rumors fly and Sin is determined to get his revenge on this teasing, forward girl. Years later, they meet again at a party and the game is on.

This is a really sweet romance and I thoroughly enjoyed it.
Dec 21, 2015 rated it really liked it
Very promising beginning to a new series. Karen Hawkins is quickly becoming one of my favorite authors and this one did not disappoint. This was a light and funny read. I really enjoyed the push/pull between Sin and Rose. The chemistry between them was fantastic. I loved the humor and Lord Sin's meddling Great-Aunt. I do love happy endings and cute little dogs. I will defenitely read the next one in the series.
Sheryl C. Nash
Well that was bloody fantastic, i was literally SWOONING the whole time over Lord Sin... :) Can't wait for the next book in this series!!
Nov 28, 2016 rated it did not like it
Shelves: dropped
felt like i was reading something i'd already read a hundred times before, except this was a much poorer version of the same. time is precious, why waste it on something so tedious?
Feb 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: audiobook
Delightful. Cute. Humorous. Sin and Rose remind me of the characters in a Spencer Tracy/Katherine Hepburn movie - always sparring and trying to outdo the other. I laughed out loud more than once. I admit it was predictable but that doesn't matter; it was an enjoyable story as only Karen Hawkins can write. I look forward to more of this series.

The narration was pleasant and matched the story.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Erika ♥OwlwaysReading♥
(Library: Eaudio via Hoopla)
Was looking for funny. Wasn't really funny. Will try again. Maybe 😅

No witty dialogue to be found, just awkward/embarrassing situations.
Aug 19, 2017 rated it liked it
There are truths . . . and then there are untruths.

Jen (The Starry-Eyed Revue)
My second Karen Hawkins' novel proves without a doubt that I'm a fan. I don't think I've seen this vengeance plot played out before -- though I am still relatively new to historical romance -- but I quite enjoyed the flirtations and challenges and the scheming on the part of Sin's aunt. It was good, calculated fun. It's a shame my library doesn't have any more of Hawkins' novels on audio. :*(
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Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 1 Mar 05, 2015 11:44AM  
which series does this go with? 5 28 Jan 27, 2015 09:28AM  

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New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Karen Hawkins writes novels that have been praised as touching, witty, charming, and heartwarming. A native Southerner who grew up in the mountains of East Tennessee where storytelling is a way of life, Karen recently moved to frosty New England with her beloved husband and multiple foster dogs. The Dove Pond books are a nod to the thousands of books ...more

Other books in the series

The Duchess Diaries (3 books)
  • How to Pursue a Princess (The Duchess Diaries, #2)
  • How to Entice an Enchantress (The Duchess Diaries, #3)

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