by Madeline Hunter

ISBN: 0-553-58589-4
Reviewer Graphic Button Bantam Books
Mass Market Paperback

Madeline Hunter is an author of immense skill, an author who knows how to ensnare her readers with a passion filled voice into a mesmerizing story. A mistress of her craft she has with The Seducer proven herself to be at home in regency times just as comfortable and knowledgeable as in medieval times.

In Ms Hunterís first regency historical, The Seducer, Diane wants to find her lost relatives, wants to find out who she is and how she became Daniel St. Johnís responsibility. Daniel St. John the Devil Man. He is also the only help she can expect in finding any clues. However, Daniel has other plans, he wants revenge, and the perfect pawn for his game is Diane. Renown for his ways with the ladies he now is in the position where he needs to guard a young womanís virtue. From himself, as he canít resist her innocence, her strength.

Dianeís innocence is a thing of true beauty. It doesnít come with ignorance but with the power to see the world with open eyes. Not blinded by jaded expectations and disappointments. Madeline Hunter stays true to her heroes of not so noble and rich birth. Giving them a voice of courage, strength and honor. Like with Diane whoís yearnings to be hold, to be cherished, to be loved are strong. Strong enough to have her boldly leave a world of secure monotony and enter a world of wonder, change and excitement.

Ms Hunterís characters leap of the pages, slicing through the boredom of the same old and predictable that Iíve come across far too often in recent romance releases, especially in the always-present period of the early 18th century. She portrays in Diane a heroine that uses the means available to her. Her most important asset that of her intelligence, her courage and her refusal to give up on her dreams. And in Daniel sheís got a hero overbearing and demanding, but beautiful when he becomes besotted with Diane, when he gives in to her demands.

Take note of the wonderful secondary characters, not only are they introduced as potential future hero and heroines of their own books, but also allow a familiarity with them that guarantees a substantial contribution to the current book as well as a welcome and anticipated return in upcoming releases.

Ms. Hunter is an author who cares about historical details. Not to lecture historical facts but to give the much needed substance to a story. Allowing the feeling of reality instead of the usual romantic fantasy that others prefer and perfect. Itís something I take for granted when picking one of Madeline Hunterís books to read. Her research is sound; her knowledge is present but never intruding in the enjoyment that comes from a well-paced and flowing writing style. Allowing easy and entertaining escapes into another time, another world.

Her language is strong, clear and then suddenly seductive in bringing forth the moments of desire, passion and beauty. In her regency historicals itís a different style but with the same ease, strength and mesmerizing pull I found and loved in her medieval set romances. Ms. Hunter seduces her readers with words just like Daniel seduces Diane with only his presence. Just like Diane seduces Daniel with her innocence, her warmth, her love. Itís exciting and rewarding!

Reviewed in August 2003 by Kris Alice.

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