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Alec Mackenzie's Art of Seduction (Mackenzies & McBrides, #9)
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message 1: by Mariana (last edited Oct 16, 2018 08:56PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Mariana | 2251 comments Alec Mackenzie's Art of Seduction (MacKenzies & McBrides, #9) by Jennifer Ashley Alec Mackenzie's Art of Seduction by Jennifer Ashley
Alec Mackenzie earns a living in exile as an art instructor, a cover for his search of several countries for his missing brother. Lady Celia, an Englishwoman who refuses to marry gentlemen her martinet mother chooses for her, is sent to Alec, the mysterious Scottish recluse, for drawing lessons–her family commands her to learn a skill if she’s put herself off the marriage mart. Alec decides that the courageous Celia needs to expand her talents in painting the human figure, especially that of the male...

Celia is intrigued by the man who pretends his name is Mr. Finn. He’s a Scotsman, she deduces, but he can’t be one of the Highlanders who rose against the king, else she’d be allowed nowhere near him, and he’d be under arrest or already dead.

But as Celia lets her curiosity guide her, she uncovers more about Alec, including his name, his title, and the fact that he was indeed one of the Highlanders at Culloden. She sees the loneliness in Alec, his terrible sense of loss, his tenderness toward his daughter, and realizes he’s a complex man trying to survive now that his home has been destroyed. She also wonders why he’s left the safety of France to come to England, and the learns that he believes she’s the key to finding his missing brother.

But Celia unravels too many secrets, which put not only her life and Alec’s but also her heart in grave danger.

Note: Alec Mackenzie is the brother of Malcolm from The Stolen Mackenzie Bride. He is an ancestor of the Mackenzie family whose story begins with The Madness of Lord Ian Mackenzie.

The Stolen Mackenzie Bride (MacKenzies & McBrides, #8) by Jennifer Ashley The Stolen Mackenzie Bride by Jennifer Ashley (Mackenzies & McBrides #8)

1745, Scotland: The youngest son of the scandalous Mackenzie family, Malcolm is considered too wild to tame…until he meets a woman who is too unattainable to resist.

Lady Mary Lennox is English, her father highly loyal to the king, and promised to another Englishman. But despite it being forbidden to speak to Malcolm, Lady Mary is fascinated by the Scotsman, and stolen moments together lead to a passion greater than she’d ever dreamed of finding.

When fighting breaks out between the Highlanders and the King's army, their plans to elope are thwarted, and it will take all of Malcolm’s daring as a Scottish warrior to survive the battle and steal a wife out from under the noses of the English.

Used to be the discussion for...

Rules for a Proper Governess (MacKenzies & McBrides, #7) by Jennifer Ashley Rules for a Proper Governess by Jennifer Ashley (Mackenzies & McBrides #7)

To Kiss A Thief...

Scottish barrister Sinclair McBride can face the most sinister criminals in London - but the widower’s two unruly children are a different matter. Little Caitlin and Andrew go through a governess a week, sending the ladies fleeing in tears.

Roberta “Bertie” Frasier enters Sinclair’s life by stealing his watch - and then stealing a kiss. Intrigued by the handsome highlander, Bertie winds up saving his children from a dangerous situation and returns them to their father. Impressed with how they listen to her, Sinclair asks the lively beauty to be their governess, never guessing that the unconventional lady will teach him a lesson or two in love.

Used to be the discussion for...

The Wicked Deeds of Daniel Mackenzie (MacKenzies & McBrides, #6) by Jennifer Ashley The Wicked Deeds of Daniel Mackenzie by Jennifer Ashley (Mackenzies & McBrides #6)

SECOND SIGHT AND SEDUCTION…

Daniel Mackenzie lives up to the reputation of the scandalous Mackenzie family—he has wealth, looks, and talent, and women love him. When he meets Violet Bastien—one of the most famous spiritual mediums in England—he immediately knows two things: that Miss Bastien is a fraud, and that he’s wildly attracted to her.

Violet knows she can’t really contact the other side, but she’s excellent at reading people. She discerns quickly that Daniel is intelligent and dangerous to her reputation, but she also finds him generous, handsome, and outrageously wicked. But spectres from Violet’s past threaten to destroy her, and she flees England, adopting yet another identity.

Daniel is determined to find the elusive Violet and pursue the passion he feels for her. And though Violet knows that her scandalous past will keep her from proper marriage, her attraction to Daniel is irresistible. It’s not until Daniel is the only one she can turn to that he proves he believes in something more than cold facts. He believes in love.

Used to be the discussion for...

The Seduction Of Elliot McBride (MacKenzies & McBrides, #5) by Jennifer Ashley The Seduction Of Elliot McBride by Jennifer Ashley (Mackenzies & McBrides #5)

PROPERLY IMPROPER…AND DARING TO LOVE…

Juliana St. John was raised to be very proper. After a long engagement, her wedding day dawns—only for Juliana to find herself jilted at the altar.

Fleeing the mocking crowd, she stumbles upon Elliot McBride, the tall, passionate Scot who was her first love. His teasing manner gives her an idea, and she asks Elliot to save her from an uncertain future—by marrying her…

After escaping brutal imprisonment, Elliot has returned to Scotland a vastly wealthy yet tormented man. Now Juliana has her hands full restoring his half-ruined manor in the Scottish Highlands and trying to repair the broken heart of the man some call irredeemably mad. Though beautiful and spirited, Juliana wonders if that will be enough to win a second chance at love.

Used to be the discussion for...

The Duke's Perfect Wife (MacKenzies & McBrides, #4) by Jennifer Ashley The Duke's Perfect Wife by Jennifer Ashley (Mackenzies & McBrides #4)

Lady Eleanor Ramsay is the only one who knows the truth about Hart Mackenzie. Once his fiancee, she is the sole woman to whom he could ever pour out his heart.

Hart has it all—a dukedom, wealth, power, influence, whatever he desires. Every woman wants him—his seductive skills are legendary. But Hart has sacrificed much to keep his brothers safe, first from their brutal father, and then from the world. He's also suffered loss—his wife, his infant son, and the woman he loved with all his heart though he realized it too late.

Now, Eleanor has reappeared on Hart's doorstep, with scandalous nude photographs of Hart taken long ago. Intrigued by the challenge in her blue eyes—and aroused by her charming, no-nonsense determination—Hart wonders if his young love has come to ruin him... or save him.

Joanna and I plan to start reading 3/18/2018. Anyone else interested welcome to join.


Mariana | 2251 comments I read the first two chapters this morning.

Hart has never been a likeable character, but he has gone down in my estimation already.

I like Eleanor's pluck. Her father is like a selfish and irresponsible child that she has to take care of. I feel bad for how things have turned out for her.


message 3: by Joanna Loves Reading, Bluestocking of HR novels (new) - rated it 4 stars

Joanna Loves Reading (joannalovesreading) | 3796 comments Mod
Hart is difficult to like, but Eleanor is great. She’s not had it easy.

I will start this evening.


message 4: by Joanna Loves Reading, Bluestocking of HR novels (new) - rated it 4 stars

Joanna Loves Reading (joannalovesreading) | 3796 comments Mod
I listened to the first two chapters. I will just try to keep pace with you.

Hart is one of the most overbearing and domineering characters I have ever read about. I do recall disliking this one the most of the series, but I know that Ashley goes to great lengths to humble him as much as possible. I hope that’s not too spoilery.


Mariana | 2251 comments Joanna Loves Reading wrote: "I listened to the first two chapters. I will just try to keep pace with you.

Hart is one of the most overbearing and domineering characters I have ever read about. I do recall disliking this one ..."


Actually that is encouraging. I am through chapter 5, and he continues to simply demonstrate himself as more and more domineering.


message 6: by Joanna Loves Reading, Bluestocking of HR novels (new) - rated it 4 stars

Joanna Loves Reading (joannalovesreading) | 3796 comments Mod
Yep, insufferable. I am not sure if the attempts are enough, but they are there.

I think the photo shops are interesting. And I do enjoy the family dynamics.


message 7: by Mariana (last edited Mar 20, 2018 09:03PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Mariana | 2251 comments I am through chapter 17.

I don't understand why they "love" each other.

I don't know what Eleanor did to gain Hart's interest. It was clear that he chose her for some particular reason and created an entire campaign on how to win her with his Mistress' help. I just don't understand those reasons. I can see why he began caring for her. She was unique, had backbone, passionate, loving, and most importantly empathetic. Hart needed someone who could feel his pain with him. However, he never loved her thus far, not really. Even after their marriage and nearly losing her shortly thereafter, he still primarily takes.

I can only guess Eleanor wanted someone filled with pain so that she would feel needed. She must have been so used to taking care of her father that she needed to find a husband she could take care of in some way. Other than that, she seems only superficially attracted to him. She mainly talks about wanting him for his looks, not his companionship; hence the nude photo session. For a good portion of the time she acts more like an obsessive fan stalker than a lover.


message 8: by Joanna Loves Reading, Bluestocking of HR novels (new) - rated it 4 stars

Joanna Loves Reading (joannalovesreading) | 3796 comments Mod
Ok, I will have to catch up tomorrow! I only got a little bit in today.


Mariana | 2251 comments I haven't read any today. I might read a chapter or two right before I go to sleep.


message 10: by Joanna Loves Reading, Bluestocking of HR novels (new) - rated it 4 stars

Joanna Loves Reading (joannalovesreading) | 3796 comments Mod
I am over halfway through.

I agree that it’s not clear on the initial draw Eleanor brought for Hart. I think he may have seen her as an ideal political match because she knows and gets along with every one.

Hart is a hard character. I don’t particularly like him, but I do think his characterization is consistent well done. Eleanor is a little harder to pin down. I agree she does seem to need someone to take care of. She also seems to be accepting of people as they are. She does not blame her father for his eccentricities or Hart for his hardness. I see theirs as a more co-dependent relationship.

I like the atmosphere, the settings. The laundry room scene was one I liked for some reason. I like how their teasing doesn’t feel generic, but authentic to them. The bond between Hart and Ian is further explored here and well done. I think this book’s problem is that the MCs are not particularly likable or relatable.


Mariana | 2251 comments I read through chapter 20 today.

I agree with everything you wrote.

The laundry room scene was well done. It was memorable and will be one of the few I remember from the book I am sure.

Ian's story is my favorite in the series that I have read thus far. He is also my favorite recurring character. To me, he is the one who binds the family together. Without him, I cannot imagine what the other three brothers would have been like in relationship to each other. He seems to be each of the three other brother's right hand man.

I also enjoyed the brief scene between Lloyd Fellows and Lady Louisa Scranton, Isabelle's younger sister, while they took down the garlands. I look forward to how their romance develops.


message 12: by Joanna Loves Reading, Bluestocking of HR novels (new) - rated it 4 stars

Joanna Loves Reading (joannalovesreading) | 3796 comments Mod
I have not had much time to listen the last two days. I have about 4 hours left.

I have not made it to the scene with Louisa and Fellows, but I do recall it (vaguely). I think theirs is in the novella following this.

This narrator drives me nuts. I am listening at 1.5 speed.

I agree on Ian. He is the lynchpin for the brothers. My favorite story has been Cameron’s though, but I really like Ian’s also. Mac and Hart’s are not as good.

I am just past the wedding. What an awful event to have happen on your wedding.


Mariana | 2251 comments Joanna Loves Reading wrote: "I have not had much time to listen the last two days. I have about 4 hours left.

I have not made it to the scene with Louisa and Fellows, but I do recall it (vaguely). I think theirs is in the nov..."


I finished the story. I had forgotten that the Louisa and Fellows story is in the Christmas novella. I previously read the Mackenzie's Christmas around Christmas 2016. I am listening to it this time. I am not sure if the narrator is the same, but I do not care for her this far.


message 14: by Joanna Loves Reading, Bluestocking of HR novels (new) - rated it 4 stars

Joanna Loves Reading (joannalovesreading) | 3796 comments Mod
Yes, I believe it’s the same narrator for the series.

Where did you end up with this one?

I am listening as I do other things. Might finish today.


Mariana | 2251 comments I really did not understand why Hart felt he had to stay away as long as he did without communicating that he was alive. I would have a very difficult time forgiving my husband if he did that to me, even if it was to keep me safe in his mind. However, for Hart in particular, I suppose it was necessary for him to live through those experiences and stay away long enough to get his priorities straight. I did appreciate the reuniting scene in the rented room.

I also enjoyed the epilogue. It was sweet and reinforced the importance of the Mackenzie family to each other. It was quite a bit in the future, after the Christmas story I am listening to now.


message 16: by Joanna Loves Reading, Bluestocking of HR novels (new) - rated it 4 stars

Joanna Loves Reading (joannalovesreading) | 3796 comments Mod
I recall Hart being away for so long as being something that bothered me and that it was a major part of the book. Considering that, I am very surprised that I have not made it to that part yet.


message 17: by Joanna Loves Reading, Bluestocking of HR novels (new) - rated it 4 stars

Joanna Loves Reading (joannalovesreading) | 3796 comments Mod
I finished. I can't quite decide how to rate it. I am at about 3.5 stars. Down or up is the question?

I like the epilogue also. I think they have generally been strong in this series, but I can say, while there was much I had forgotten of this book, the epilogue is a part of the book that definitely stood out.

I am thinking down because of the narration, which I just do NOT enjoy!

I really enjoy the parts about the Irish Home Rule discussion. I think that is very interesting.


Mariana | 2251 comments I agree. I also thought 3.5 and rounded down. I definitely do not like the narrator and plan to return to reading after A Mackenzie Family Christmas: The Perfect Gift.


message 19: by Joanna Loves Reading, Bluestocking of HR novels (new) - rated it 4 stars

Joanna Loves Reading (joannalovesreading) | 3796 comments Mod
I think more wanted in on Elliot’s Book. When do you think would be a good time for it?


Mariana | 2251 comments Joanna Loves Reading wrote: "I think more wanted in on Elliot’s Book. When do you think would be a good time for it?"

I'd be ready to read it anytime in April. I do not plan to re-read the group BOTM.


Missy | 898 comments I'm ready when you gals are!


Mariana | 2251 comments I actually just finished both of my books, so I am ready too. Want to start tomorrow or Monday?


message 23: by Joanna Loves Reading, Bluestocking of HR novels (new) - rated it 4 stars

Joanna Loves Reading (joannalovesreading) | 3796 comments Mod
Start whenever works best for you all. I will join in if I can. Unfortunately this one is not available in audio to me, so it may be harder for me to work it in. I don’t like the narrator for this series anyways so no big loss there.


Mariana | 2251 comments Discussion updated to start reading tomorrow!


Missy | 898 comments Awesome!


Mariana | 2251 comments How many chapters do you plan to read today?


Missy | 898 comments My lap top is currently not working, so I haven't had a chance to read any chapters yet. I hope to get it repaired this weekend. I will try to read using my iphone tonight. Maybe three chapters?


Mariana | 2251 comments Laptop troubles are no fun! I hope you are able to get it worked out quickly and easily.

I am through chapter 6.
I was only able to read half a chapter yesterday, but I had a hard time putting the book down today. Wow! What an adventure in only the first two chapters.

Is this the first time you're reading it?


Missy | 898 comments I am through Ch. 10. Yes, this is my first time reading this book. I like how fast paced the first couple of chapters are. It’s beginning to slow down now. So far, it doesn’t appear that there will be any villains compared to the preceding books.


Mariana | 2251 comments I am through chapter 9. This is my first time reading as well.

I agree. The story jumps right in, fast paced. The only villian seems to be Elliot's internal demon.

Starting off, I really enjoyed the story for three reasons:
1) I enjoy JA's writing style.
2) I like stories where the H/h comsummate their relationship and really get to know each other after the wedding.
3) I have a thing for scarred/tormented heroes.

Then, things took a hard left turn at the end of chapter 7 when Juliana found out that (view spoiler)


Missy | 898 comments I'm not really a fan of tortured heroes, especially if it's PTSD from going to war. (view spoiler) When the food was described, I was starting to crave Indian food. lol


Mariana | 2251 comments Missy wrote: "I'm not really a fan of tortured heroes, especially if it's PTSD from going to war. [spoilers removed] When the food was described, I was starting to crave Indian food. lol"

Oh, yes, me too! I told my husband today we need to make reservations at a new Indian place I've been wanting to try.


message 33: by Joanna Loves Reading, Bluestocking of HR novels (new) - rated it 4 stars

Joanna Loves Reading (joannalovesreading) | 3796 comments Mod
So I hope this works for you two. I tend to like PTSD heroes and second-chance stories.

I think I may start in on this today.


Mariana | 2251 comments Joanna Loves Reading wrote: "So I hope this works for you two. I tend to like PTSD heroes and second-chance stories.

I think I may start in on this today."


Glad you can join in. Is this a reread for you?


message 35: by Joanna Loves Reading, Bluestocking of HR novels (new) - rated it 4 stars

Joanna Loves Reading (joannalovesreading) | 3796 comments Mod
Yes, it is a re-read. I haven't ready the 6th in the series yet, so when we get there, it will be a first time for me.

I remember loving this one the first time around.


Mariana | 2251 comments I am through chapter 12. A villain has been introduced.


Mariana | 2251 comments I am now through chapter 14. Where are you two at?


message 38: by Joanna Loves Reading, Bluestocking of HR novels (new) - rated it 4 stars

Joanna Loves Reading (joannalovesreading) | 3796 comments Mod
I am through 10. I may read more tonight.


message 39: by Joanna Loves Reading, Bluestocking of HR novels (last edited Apr 17, 2018 06:32PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Joanna Loves Reading (joannalovesreading) | 3796 comments Mod
In response to Priti, I am glad that the reveal that she is Elliot’s daughter was early on. Right now, it is all about Elliot and his suffering, and I am hopeful that there will be a shift to a shared burden in their relationship. His actions, thoughts and their shared history are not adding up yet, but again, I do hope that resolves well. I don’t remember specifics from my previous read.


Mariana | 2251 comments Joanna Loves Reading wrote: "In response to Priti, I am glad that the reveal that she is Elliot’s daughter was early on. Right now, it is all about Elliot and his suffering, and I am hopeful that there will be a shift to a sha..."

I am also glad that the reveal was early on. I had a hard enough time as it is. If it would have been later, I would have a much more difficult time forgiving him.


Missy | 898 comments I haven't been able to read any more since the last time I commented (still at the end of Ch.10), but I will be able to read more tonight.


Mariana | 2251 comments Since both of you are at chapter 10, I am going to pause and read something else tonight. I will resume tomorrow.


Mariana | 2251 comments I am now through chapter 18.


Missy | 898 comments Darn! I was hoping to read more the other night but didn’t get a chance to. If I had this on audio, I wouldn’t be this far behind.

On another note, it looks like there might be a growing attraction between Old McGregor and Komal and eventually one between Hamish and Nandita.


message 45: by Joanna Loves Reading, Bluestocking of HR novels (new) - rated it 4 stars

Joanna Loves Reading (joannalovesreading) | 3796 comments Mod
I am on 12 now, so haven't gotten much further either. I am balancing between a few reads right now, but I am very close to finishing on a couple of them.

I agree on the secondary romances. Komal is not old and Hamish is quite interested in Nandita.


message 46: by Missy (last edited Apr 19, 2018 10:39AM) (new) - rated it 2 stars

Missy | 898 comments I've read up to the end of chapter 15! I might not have a chance to read for a while because my sister is getting married this weekend and there's lots of things to do before the wedding.


Mariana | 2251 comments Missy wrote: "Darn! I was hoping to read more the other night but didn’t get a chance to. If I had this on audio, I wouldn’t be this far behind.

On another note, it looks like there might be a growing attracti..."


I agree. I sent some level of attraction between each of these pairings, but I have seen no additional growth. I have no idea how it will pan out. We will see.


Mariana | 2251 comments Missy wrote: "I've read up to the end of chapter 15! I might not have a chance to read for a while because my sister is getting married this weekend and there's lots of things to do before the wedding."

Oh, have fun! I am not going to read anymore today, so I am still at chapter 18. I will read on a couple of my other books and resume later.


Mariana | 2251 comments Joanna Loves Reading wrote: "I am on 12 now, so haven't gotten much further either. I am balancing between a few reads right now, but I am very close to finishing on a couple of them.

I agree on the secondary romances. Komal ..."


My chapter 12 villain been introduced comment was a false positive.


message 50: by Mariana (last edited Apr 20, 2018 06:19PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Mariana | 2251 comments I decided to resume reading today. I read chapters 19 and 20.

(view spoiler)


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