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4.04  ·  Rating details ·  1,488 Ratings  ·  69 Reviews
Adora's mahogany hair and violet eyes captivated young Prince Murad the moment he saw her in a convent garden, and their love flowered like the peach blossoms surrounding them. But Orkahm, Grand Turk of an empire, claimed Adora for his bride, tearing her from her young love as she wept bitter tears. Destiny might carry them to other lands and other loves, but Murad and Ado ...more
Mass Market Paperback, 40 pages
Published April 12th 1980 by Ballantine Books (first published 1980)
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Nenia *The Flagrant Liberal* Campbell

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Bertrice Small is the Regina George of historical romance; even if you hate her, you have to admit that she's inexplicably popular & her unapologetic in-your-face personality makes her hard to ignore. I find it amazing that I managed to avoid her books after all these years, despite reading so many historical romance books. I'd been told by many people that I should avoid her work because she was bad, but "bad" is highly subjective. Doe
Theodora Cantacuzene is a Princess of Byzantium (and she'll remind you of it plenty of times) and is married off to the old Sultan Orkhan in a political move. Her odyssey takes her through multiple husbands, murderous plotting, wars, and personal tragedies. It's another early Bertrice Small book where the story goes cradle-to-grave with a focus on the heroine. Her life is the point of the story, not one isolated span of time with a binary romance.

I liked this one better than The Kadin because th
I’ve decided to revise my review of Adora. I think I was too nitpicky before. One of the things that drives me crazy about bodice rippers are the stereotypical, shallow characters that sometimes seem to be shoved down my throat as being the ‘good guys’. I’ve been told Beatrice Small has a way of writing annoying, breathtakingly lovely, amazing dynamo heroines who can do no wrong, and then pairs them up with douchebag heroes that you’d actually like to see get offed by the enemy. And this book is ...more
Sandi *~The Pirate Wench~*
Well..not sure just how I feel about Adora and her story. I was looking forward to reading this book as it was set in the Byzantine Empire,one of which I didnt know too much about. Being the "detailed" person that I am, I was looking forward to some historical background in this book.
I forgot for a moment this is after all a Bodice-Ripper,OTT Bertice Small fan fare.But the author did give me enough to keep me into the story,(while not exactly historicaly correct)I decided to just "go with it" an
This is possibly the worst book I've ever read in my entire life. I have a very long novel length review coming about why this is disgusting, problematic and to be avoided. Do yourself a favor and don't read it.

This cover is literally one of the ugliest things I have ever seen in my entire life. It is so fugly, and part of me dies whenever I look at it. But I'm going to read this, even though I'm cringing read the description. I'm ready to roast this, and hate it.

Rating: ★ | .5
Jill Myles
Jul 25, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is absolutely crazypants, and I mean that with all the love in my heart. It was written back in 1985, when bodices were still being ripped (I hate that term, but it's appropriate for back then). I read this first back as a teenager and fell in love with it, and have re-read it every few years since.

Small is known for her wildly reaching storylines, and this one does not disappoint. There's an old man husband, a man she cannot have, seductive pirates, court intrigues, a hero that rapes
Much like her debut novel The Kadin, Bertrice Small's epic historical fiction Adora takes place mostly in the harem of the powerful ruler of the Ottoman Empire, about a century prior to The Kadin's setting.

Adora is the affectionate nickname given by the Sultan Murad to his favorite princess Theodora, a Byzantine Princess who, in the fashion of Small heroines, is far better educated, spirited and of course beautiful than the average woman of her time, even one coming from royalty.

That's the thi
Dec 16, 2010 marked it as will-never-read
ROFLMAO. A reviewer after my own heart (and Zosia's)
Jan 30, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This book is disgusting.

If it's possible to give this 0 star, i would.

Dear Ms. Small, this is the last time i visit your world of men or pigs or whatever they are. Thank you very much.


(The next morning)

I am in the process of filling my Calibre with BS's books. Then i stumble upon Adore, such a name with a lovely sypnosis abt a at-the-first-sight love. A hopeless romantic and sucker for love at first sight as I am, I jump right at the assumption of a sweet romance. The
Dec 04, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
It's comforting that some things will never change. I mean...ever. This author's specialty is old-school bodice-rippers. We're talking arranged marriages with tall, dark, brooding stranger. Dare I say it, we're talking pirate captains. Her books might as well just have the cover blurb: "Don't! Stop! Don't...stop. Don't stop!" No. Really.

But she also is known for packing in a lot of historical detail. Basically, NC-17 history buff brain candy. But as I was reading this on my Kindle (no, I can't
Isabel Roa
Jul 10, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
It would have been 5 stars but the over description killed it for me .
Jan 24, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
No....just hard NO! I only read a sample but that was enough. The girl is only what?13-14 years old and been groomed for sex and touched and all. I know this happens all the time ,I know it's Arabic historical novel and it was (still is) a norm in some cultures but I don't want to read about it in ROMANCE novels ! As a mother of a little girl ,this shit is more like a horror story for me.
Oct 22, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I'm not much into romances but this book came to me in a free box of books and was on someone's wish list when I entered it on my TBR pile so I decided to read it.

This is a historical romance and therefore, in my mind, raises it slightly above a simple modern romance. The history lessons were, for the most part interesting, although tedious at times. I get the impression that the title character is a real person from history who's life the author took artistic license in embellishing and fleshi
Grace Sophia
Feb 19, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: romance
I archived this on my kindle so I never have to see it again... The first quarter was perfect for a Small novel, (having loved 'Rosamund' and 'Lara') but the wtf-inducing cherry popping freaked me the fk out. Some nasty sht. I stopped right then and pushed it as far away as possible... Before continuing (and being freaked out by more wtf inducing stuff) until my mum found out and barred me from it.
Dec 03, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: adults
Of all of Ms Small's books, I think this one is my favorite. I have read and re-read this book so many times that I have lost count.

The rich flavor of the exotic world of harems in the 12th century is reveled to us. The lusts, loves, and lost loves laid out for all to absorb like rich Turkish coffee. An amazing read.
I would only give a 2 star for this but added 1 more for the historic content. I did not find many books on Byzantine Empire and picked this up for that but found this more erotic than historic.
Aug 15, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Since I was BS binging for the past days, I was expecting that the plot would be... girl-wife-mistress (her sexuality's explored by other men lelels)-mother-etc-etc-etc. Personally, I liked Adora to end up with Alexander but oh well, (view spoiler). I like the epilogue :-)
LOVEtoRead Romance
Adora makes lemons from lemons. Still sour.

I love a romance story. This was romance without the HEA.. I so wanted Adora to have true love from a man forever. 3 husbands, and only one who loved and adored her monogamously. She perceiver's. The story of her life depressed me. Always having to give up her own happiness for the greater good of an ungrateful family. I understand it represents historically how women were treated but it still grieves me. I read this as suggested to be like "Golden Dyna
Canan  ^^
Aug 21, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: wid
Tek kelimeyle söylemeliyim ki bu kitap beni şoka uğrattı.
Yorumumu yapmadan önce bazı karakterleri tanıyalım...
Adora:Kitabın kadın kahramanı.Asıl ismi Thedora, bir bizans prensesi...
Helen: Adora'nın ablası, bizans prensesi ve sonrasında kraliçesi...
Ioannes Kantakuzen: Adora ve Helen'in babası ve bazı siyasi olaylar sonucu kısa süreliğine bizans imparatoru..
Orhan: Osmanlı Hükümdarı olan Sultan Orhan Gazi.Adoranın ilk eşi...
İskender:Büyük İskender.Adora'nın 2. eşi...
Murat:Bence ve kesinlikle kitabı
Jan 06, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Minirth Roland
I haven't read this since I was a teenager, and time has been somewhat less than kind.

First of all, there is ENTIRELY too much rape. Every one of the three men Adora loves rapes her. Was that really necessary? First the old sultan, then Alexander (drugging and having sex with someone who has categorically refused to have sex with you is rape), then her "true love" Murad. What's worse, after Murad's brutal rape, she "realizes" that she pushed him to it and buries the hatchet (unfortunately, not
Majdoline Jayoushe
FINALLY found this book after endless searches on google about Byzantine princesses!! Even though I read it ages ago when I was about 13 or 14 the plot still vividly stuck in my brain but unfortunately the title had escaped me. But I remember every detail from Adora's beauty, the Ottoman sultan's unyielding cruelty and how he popped her cherry (wtf?) and Prince Murad's chivalry. I'll admit it was a bit too graphic for a 13 year old to read but I was so fascinated by the explicitness I didn't min ...more
I dont know what to say about this book...
Holy crap.
It was an experience to be had but I hope I never read another like it. It was tragic and sensual and infuriating and yet I couldn't stop reading it and I cried for the characters that angered me. I am speechless.

There was an erotic allure to the story and love and injustice and intrigue and God, frustration!!! It is a book that you really have to read or you will miss out on something...something I cannot name...

its the Doctor Zhivago of semi
Rachel  Bracker
Nov 02, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
What did I just read?

I was very excited to read a romance novel that wasn't set in Great Britain or the American West... unfortunately this book is basically a bunch of rapes surrounding by relatively interesting historical events. The characters have less depth than they do memory, and the whole book has a bizarrely meandering plot. It could be attributed to historical accuracy, but it's mostly sex scenes with no emotional build-up or pay-off, sprinkled with occasional historical elements. Also
Oct 12, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
it was actually a very nice 1 n i liked it very much up2 the point where alexander was killed n murad claimed andora as his slave. der, it went downhill 4me. it's not the author's fault. she actually narrated it as it was in reality back in those days..dat is murad kept a harem of women n fucked them at the same time as andora. he had all women he lusted after in his harem. frankly, it disgusted me. i can't like this kind of hero. it repulsed me too much. also, by the end, the story was focused ...more
Jul 03, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ripper, smut
Beatrice Small's harem of wives, concubines, kadins. The baths (insert jealous favorites and not so favorites), being prepared for the sultan -- full body shave & the oils & scents, exotic clothing ...) The decor, the food the food the food, dance of the veils, rigid uh um, men in power, threats on everyones lives through poisoning. Sex rituals, rights and rules. Punishments. Escape? You will know you've read this before. But still, enjoy.
I am a fan of old fashioned bodice rippers, but this just takes it to a whole other level, not for the weak hearted. Besides the raping that I expected it has got some incest and pedophilia in there as well that I was not expecting.

The writing was a bit like: "and then they, and then she, and then he, and then they" etc. etc. that bothered me a little. Still an interesting story though.

2,5 stars.
Mar 14, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
It's obvious that Small puts a lot into her books. She does extensive research into the times she writes about, and it shows. This novel took us to the Ottoman empire with all its intrigues and political narratives. While I don't approve of how the heroine is treated, particularly the rape scene, I can appreciate that this may be how women were dealt with in this age and time.
Raevyn Smith
This book had ALL the feels - made me angry, happy and sad, but for some reason i just couldn't put it down. This is the kind of smut I've been looking for. Honestly, I didnt think I would enjoy the Harem theme but it was alright. And the whole Manroot thing....get over it! I doubt they said penis back then!
The book was interesting enough until about halfway through the idiot heroine took leave of her senses and her self-respect. Love, bah! I didn't buy her lusty feelings for the creepy sultan for one second. If Adora had reason to love anyone at all, it was poor Alexander. He was a good, loyal and engaging man, while Murad is nothing but an oriental fantasy rapist.
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Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 1 Aug 22, 2015 04:34PM  
Has anyone read "Adora" by Bertrice Small? 4 32 May 04, 2014 03:11AM  
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Bertrice Williams was born on December 9, 1937 in Manhattan, New York City, New York, USA, the daughter of Doris S. and David R. Williams, both broadcasters. She studied at Attended Western College for Women and Katharine Gibbs Secretarial School. On October 5, 1963, she married George Sumner Small, a photographer and designer with a History Major at Princeton. They had a son Thomas David. She liv ...more
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