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Claiming the Courtesan (Avon Romantic…
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Claiming the Courtesan (Avon Romantic Treasures) (edition 2007)

by Anna Campbell

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2571365,009 (3.56)14
Member:sthudson
Title:Claiming the Courtesan (Avon Romantic Treasures)
Authors:Anna Campbell
Info:Avon (2007), Mass Market Paperback, 384 pages
Collections:Your library
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Claiming the Courtesan by Anna Campbell

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» See also 14 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 13 (next | show all)
no me molestan los heroes posesivos , pero si hay algo que cruza el límite y me produce profundo desagrado e indignación es que quieran romantizar la violación . No es NO , compañeras y lo que hace este protagonista (además del secuestro ) no es más que eso , una cobarde y asquerosa violación a una mujer que jura amar . Así no . ESTO NO ES UN ROMANCE . ( )
  LaMala | Jun 7, 2015 |
I decided that I might as well see what all the fuss is about and discovered that I really liked this book. The story of this rake and his mistress falling in love is beautifully presented. Yes, he does force himself on her, so if that bothers you, don't read the book. ( )
  LadyWesley | Sep 25, 2013 |
*** 3 stars ***

Courtesan? CHECK.
Stuffy duke who always has to have his way? CHECK.
So what did go wrong? I thought this was a perfect formula for a historical romance book. I guess I was wrong.
Don't get me wrong, the book was not bad. I gave it 3 stars - it means I liked it. But that was it. The characters behavior was a little bit weird and inconsistent with big mood swings and radical decisions. I just did not buy some of it, it did not seem natural. But I see that this is a first book that [a:Anna Campbell|296477|Anna Campbell|http://photo.goodreads.com/authors/1268676831p2/296477.jpg] wrote, and I hope that the next ones will be better. I will give her at least one more chance... ( )
  bookwormdreams | Apr 10, 2013 |
The kidnapping and rape scenes in this book literally made me feel nauseous. All I wanted was the heroine to get away from him. He was a revolting character and absolutely repelling. In my opinion, he had zero redeeming qualities.

I have read "bodice rippers" before and I have enjoyed them. I recently re-read Lindsey's Fires of Winter which features kidpnapping, slavery and rape and I enjoyed it. Yet, somehow, this book is more disturbing to me for one basic reason.

In my opnion, most of these "old style" bodice rippers were entertaining and fun because the characters are stylized stereotypes and don't have a lot of nuance to them. We don't get too much into the psychological undercurrents of what is happening and therefore, we can release ourselves into a story where a Viking barbarian enslaves and "conquers" his woman and we can be entertained by it in the same that one can accept the the lack of logic and realism in a fairytale and just go with it.

Newer romance novels delve into the nuances of the relationship more and the psychological undercurrents of the relationship dynamic. Newer heros/heroines seem closer to "real people" and are no longer two dimensional steretypes neccesarily. This makes it much more raw and disturbing when there is a hero who would hurt the main character, take away her agency, rape her and "force her." Honestly, I couldn't stop thinking about what a scum bag he was.

I don't know if I can finish this book, because I don't believe in the hero or heroine and I don't know if I can care about what happens to them. ( )
  RubyA | Mar 30, 2013 |
I could definitely see why some people find this book controversial. In fact, there is more than one rape scene in Courtesan, perpetrated by the hero upon the heroine-- and yes, she does fall in love with the hero. That goes without saying; the whole book hinges on this. However, that is only the basic plot. The real bulk of the story deals with the characters' histories and emotional struggles. The hero, especially, suffers a lot of anguish, past and present, that motivates his actions. He is by no means a perfect Prince Charming. His flaws are certainly present and fit the kind of troubled man who would seize an object that obsessed him--and his behavior, particularly in the beginning of the book, definitely corresponds with all the textbook symptoms of a man obsessed. Whatever one thinks of the man, that's surprisingly brave for a romance writer (for whom the hero is supposed to be charming and dreamy, certainly never disturbing or troubled). Kylemore is particularly imperfect. This exploration of the thoughts of a kidnapper speaks to some research on her part, although Campbell does develop his character far beyond this aspect of his character; he is not simply the archetype of a kidnapper from Profiling 101. He is a person who makes mistakes and the author addresses them with some gravity, rather than have the heroine mooning over her abductor in an otherwise terrifying kidnapping; he has every power over her and he has made no secret that he will use it against her and against her will. Campbell doesn't romanticize the ordeal. In fact, while I was reading I really questioned the "romance" label. It certainly doesn't fit the bill of a traditional romance novel. It is bleak and rending and at times unbearable (defines angst), as close to Heathcliff re-imagined as I could picture. He could be a villain, but because we know him so well and, at least in Campbell's story, often see the events through his perspective, we have some sympathy for the hero. Courtesan's no bit of fluff, that's sure. The only "cheerful" (sort of) portions are near the end and no end of high emotion there. It's not light.I'll say this, it's leaps and bounds above a Johanna Lindsey novel. It's nothing like those bodice rippers where the heroine grumbles about a rape as she would about burnt toast and may I have some more, Sir Rapist? In Courtesan, both characters recognize the horror of the situation (the heroine arguably more so than the hero), and that's the crux of matter. What kind of relationship can they possibly have? Can they have a relationship after Kylemore's treatment of her? The author tries to address this question. Of course, the writer does place characters and events to help this along. The fact that the heroine has feelings for her kidnapper before the madness certainly plays a part in subsequent events, but readers can find this out for themselves.As to the courtesan, Verity maintains an inner core of dignity despite her career, and the lengths to which she goes to preserve this admirable dignity are at once weakness and her strength and a major struggle in the book. There are bedroom scenes. As another reviewer mentioned, a good portion of the book takes place there, but they are certainly not 1001 Nights. Far from it. They are as much a battle, filled with tension and angst, as the couple's verbal clashes, and each scene marks a different point in their relationship.Read this book if you want to read complex, heartrending, sometimes harsh emotion. Courtesan wouldn't be out of place on Brontë's bleak moors or in the middle of a gray storm. This is the kind of book that Catherine Coulter might write, except the writing is not mechanical or mediocre and the characters are actually fleshed out. This hero is no stupid brute. He is intelligent and tormented and knows the depravity of his actions, if you can imagine that. If all of the above sounds entirely too nerve wracking and you want something less so (I don't blame you), try her second book, Untouched. It's the man who's untouched *gasp*! It's lighter and more traditional romance. However, if you did enjoy this book, you may also like Brenda Joyce's The Game, which shares some themes with Courtesan (e.g. a strong hero who is also fixated on the heroine, though Joyce's hero is far less damaged). I hope that gives an adequate enough impression of this book to make a judgment. Enjoyment is not applicable here, but I can appreciate the skill of a writer who can conjure so much emotion and depth, even if it is sometimes uncomfortable or disturbing. So is life. Better this pseudo-realistic depiction (the heroine's romantic feelings aside) than the cheerful rape stories of the 80s, in my opinion. At any rate, I didn't feel that "there's a rape scene" did the book justice. Let's be fair, the author attempted considerably more than that. But I will warn anyone considering the book that this book is not really an escape. I think I've already mentioned it's not traditionally romantic or cheerful, etc. Consider yourself warned, LOL.
  new_user | Jun 17, 2011 |
Showing 1-5 of 13 (next | show all)
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Justin Kinmurrie, Duke of Kylemore, looked across the tumble of stained sheets to where his mistress lay in apparent exhaustion.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0061234915, Mass Market Paperback)

The Duke of Kylemore knows her as Soraya, London's most celebrated courtesan. Men fight duels to spend an hour in her company. And only he comes close to taming her. Flying in the face of society, he decides to make her his bride; then, she vanishes, seemingly into thin air.

Dire circumstances have forced Verity Ashton to barter her innocence and change her name for the sake of her family. But Kylemore destroys her plans for a respectable life when he discovers her safe haven. He kidnaps her, sweeping her away to his hunting lodge in Scotland, where he vows to bend her to his will.

There he seduces her anew. Verity spends night after night with him in his bed . . . and though she still dreams of escape and independence, she knows she can never flee the unexpected, unwelcome love for the proud, powerful lover who claims her both body and soul.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:08:50 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

A stormy, sensuous love story featuring two proud, passionate characters, each of whom is determined to use whatever means necessary to retain control.

(summary from another edition)

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