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Dying to Please

3.93  ·  Rating details ·  12,380 ratings  ·  380 reviews
Loyal. Beautiful. Professional. Impeccably organized. Potentially lethal. Sarah Stevens is a woman with many distinct qualities. First and foremost a butler par excellence, skilled at running large households smoothly and efficiently, she is also a trained bodyguard and expert marksman–indispensable to her elderly employer, a courtly gentleman whom Sarah has come to ...more
Paperback, 410 pages
Published August 8th 2007 by Ballantine (first published 2002)
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Average rating 3.93  · 
Rating details
 ·  12,380 ratings  ·  380 reviews

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3 Stars

The hero was meh. The heroine was okay, I guess.

Their romance was meh.

The suspense wasn't that suspenseful and the mystery was predictable.

But it's still an okay read and I can’t rate it lower than 3 stars. When I compare it to my other 3-star reads on my shelves, this one is much better.

Audio book.

This one stands out for the female butler and the nude wrestling aka foreplay scene between the H and the h.

The h has a stalker who is an OTT condescending inner monologuing serial killer who drones on about how unworthy everyone but him is for the h. Dead bodies pile up, and the Alabama detectives don't come off looking too good as they ignore a couple of blaring pieces of evidence.

The h starts out this kick-ass heroine, and she and the H have a hot affair. The H is a little
Lisa Kay
Okay, I finished the book late this morning. I have a hard time rating it, because a three-star LH is much better than a three-star book written by someone else.

The hero, Tom Cahill, thinking the heroine, Sarah Stevens, (view spoiler)
CD {Boulder Blvd}
This was classic Linda Howard and I started reading and didn't want to put down. I liked the plot, the characters and the pace. Our H, Sarah, annoyed me a little with the keeping her cell phone in her SUV versus with her at night. It just seemed weird and out of character - which all means it seemed a little contrived for plot purposes. I went with the flow and the story was good.
Why hire someone to do the dirty work…

Sarah Stevens had been hired by the insistance of retired federal judge, Lowell Roberts. A kind man who’d received threats a few years back, the family, especially the daughter, didn’t want the judge living alone. Sarah is a female butler, hired to watch and guard him. Sarah takes care of everything, from the mundane daily living to the higher stuff like parties. She also guards him; drives him wherever he needs to go, watches his back. When two men break
Jun 02, 2008 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Eastofoz by: Auntee
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
What do you get when an Alpha male gets together with an Alpha female? Naked wrestling, of course! These two, a cop (the guy) and a bodyguard (the girl) were a hoot even if I did not relate to them at all. Their idea of foreplay was practicing at a shooting range, making love to the background noise of Fox News TV channel, and using their very real handcuffs on each other. I enjoyed reading about them until the story took a typically Linda Howard path that she has written before numerous times.


Wow. This book gave me so many feels!

I really loved the relationship between the heroine and her boss-the former Judge. I almost cried when he died. I really felt the h's emotions.

Then the asshole hero entered the pic. I was chuckling at his unromantic, blunt wooing. Their banter was funny. The hero had ups and downs. I loved him and didn't like him very much at the same time. Let's just say he didn't always make the right choices.
I really liked the heroine. She was a butler who knew
Aug 28, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: romance, mystery
I would have liked it much more if I hadn't felt it disravel a bit at the end. Both main characters disappointed me a tad, she's written off as such a great kick ass lady, but at the end she's unable to defend herself. And I'm not talking about the villain either (or not only). The last hotel scene with the hero was a big let down to me. She's incredibly weak, and he behaves horribly. You do not "force" sex as a way to establish a connection, above all to such a distressed woman.
I might have
Jacqueline J
Jun 23, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: romantic suspence readers
Very good book even on second reading. I was reading a hard copy of this and I kept wanting to press the bookmark button to reference lovely bits of romantic dialog that the hero said to the heroine but dang it, I wasn't reading on my Kindle. I couldn't bring myself to dog ear my book. Maybe I should buy some of those flag tapes. ;-)

I liked the strong competent heroine and the cop who seems at first to be humorless and cold but when he warms up, wow what a sweetie.

If you like well done romantic
Audio. Narrated by Susan Erickson. She's very good, but the story turned me off. Cahill really let me down. Some hero. Simply not enough trust, dialogue, or relationship development. I didn't laugh or even smile, either. Too much raunchy sex -- and it follows soon after the murder of loved ones. Repeated mention of blood and brain matter. Lest we forget?

But my biggest problem?? I could NOT believe Sarah slept with Cahill after his big betrayal, at the police station. What a crock! He needed to
Jul 31, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
This book is so GOOD!!! It has easily become one of my favorite by Howard and I can't believe I missed it before.

The male and female leads have helluva chemistry and the countdown to the finale of the book is filled with excitement. I only wish that it would have been prolonged a little more to really get to savor the antagonist and get to know to speak. But all in all it was very enjoyable.
3.25 stars
Sep 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Even better the 2nd time around :)
Grade A-/B+

Narrated by Susan Ericksen

As a professional butler, Sarah Stevens is trained to manage large household down to the smallest details. She’s also skilled as a bodyguard, which comes in handy in her present position as butler to a retired Federal judge. When an obsessed admirer sets out to secure Sarah’s services by any means possible, Detective Thomas Cahill is brought in to lead the investigation. As the mystery deepens, Sarah finds herself drawn into the investigation. Complicating
Actually 3.5 stars.

Dying to Please was a great example of a solid, entertaining, and somewhat gritty romantic suspense novel. Although I had a bit of trouble with the villain (Linda Howard didn't quite sell me on his motivations, but more on that below), the actions, dialog, and thought patterns of the main characters felt real and believable. I was so grateful that Howard didn't break the tone of the rest of the novel by trying to "make it all better" in the epilogue (or venture into the realm
Girl butler and professional bodyguard, Sarah Stevens, meets speculating boy detective, Thomas Cahill, after a botched burglary in her employer's home.

Sarah and Cahill cross paths again when her employer, a retired judge, is found murdered in his home. An investigation commences. Sarah learns that someone is stalking her.

Eventually a romance unfolds and all sorts of naughty shenanigans take place. (Sarah is trained in martial arts and Cahill has no qualms about challenging her to a game of
Miss Kim
Jun 04, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: romantic supense fans
I loved this book! I really enjoyed the realtionship between Cahill and Sarah. Sarah is a butler and bodyguard to an elderly judge. A series of murders makes Sarah look like the top suspect. Cahill is the dectetive brought in on the case.
Laura (Kyahgirl)
3.5/5; 4 stars; B+

I listened to this yesterday and, as I remembered from my first read several years ago, this is a solid romantic suspense. I thought that Susan Erikson did an excellent job narrating the story.

I liked the premise of a female butler/bodyguard and she was portrayed as competent and capable, without crossing into hard edged.

I remember reading this story and being dismayed at how easily Cahill lost faith in Sarah and this aspect of the story came across even stronger when
I was in the mood for something a little on the angsty side, so I decided to do a reread of this. I remember being devastated while reading it the first time. Though it didn't pack the same emotional punch this time around, I did enjoy it. Sarah and Cahill are a good match. I like the build up of their relationship. The mystery is rather weak, but I like the romance.
Eva • All Books Considered
My favorite Linda Howard novel and, yes, I've read them all!
Aly is so frigging bored
This was good! I really enjoyed the female butler thing :)
Paige  Bookdragon
A female Butler! *gasp* I gotta change profession!
This book drove me crazy. It wasn't terrible, but multiple things throughout the narrative really pissed me off. Something would happen to drive me up a wall, but then after a while I'd settle back in and get on board with the new direction of the story only to then have something else make me want to throw the book across the room.

(view spoiler)
Nov 09, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: books
It was too predictable to the point where it got really annoying. The book had zero surprises , like really not a single surprise NOT ONE !! The identity of the villain was too obvious and even the book didn't try to surprise us .. we were told who the villain was before he made his last few moves , even if we weren't told we would have known , talk about a guy appearing with the word villain written on his forehead in BOLD. The author didn't even try to surprise us or confuse us , we were ...more
My 5-Facts Review ('Cuz I'm lazy busy reading):

(3 stars)

Linda Howard's writing comes alive on the pages! The story and characters suck you in right at the beginning. This author's books should be a genre on their own. Sometimes I don't have a crawing for contemporary or paranormal book, but specifically for a Linda Howard book, and every time I do, my eyes better prepare for the lack of sleep until I finish the book. They are
Apr 10, 2013 rated it really liked it
Dying to Please by Linda Howard
Romantic Suspence / Contemporary Romance

Sarah Stevens is a trained butler but she's also a bodyguard. When she prevent an attempted robbery at the home of her employer judge Roberts, she is thrust into the limelight for her 15 minutes of fame. Someone sinister sees her on the screen and forms obsessive attachment to her. (view spoiler)
Jul 07, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: romantic-supense
Dying to Please is another great romantic-suspense book by Linda Howard. There are few authors that can deliver as consistently good a product as her. When I pick up a Linda Howard book, I know I will be enthralled and entertained.

Sarah Stevens is a butler/bodyguard to elderly retired Judge Roberts. She gets to use her bodyguard training during a robbery at the Judge's house and is spotlighted on the local morning TV show - as a butler, not as a bodyguard. This set off a chain of events that is
Jan 05, 2012 rated it liked it
There are things about this book I like a lot. I find the idea of the female protagonist being a butler / bodyguard quite intriguing, I really enjoyed the interplay between her and her employers. I didn't much like the antagonist, he was almost a caricature of what a villain should be. From the few Linda Howard books I've read, I've come to the conclusion that she doesn't write her villains very well. I was also a little disappointed in Sarah's love interest, Det. Cahill. He was very much a ...more
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Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the GoodReads database with this name.

Linda S. Howington is an American best-selling romance author writing under the pseudonym Linda Howard. After 21 years of penning stories for her own enjoyment, she submitted a novel for publication which was very successful. Her first work was published by Silhouette in 1982. She is a charter member of Romance
“What good is having a friend who's a cop if he won't give me inside information?"
"So you can ask him to look at a piece of shit pistol after you've already bought it, and pronounce it a piece of shit.”
“Before you know it, you'll be smiling at her across the breakfast table."

"I don't smile," Cahill said, though he was having to fight his amusement.

"So you'll be scowling at her across the breakfast table. That isn't my point.”
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