Cover image for Scandalous again
Scandalous again
Dodd, Christina.
Personal Author:
[Large print edition].
Publication Information:
[Waterville, Me.] : Wheeler Pub., [2003]

Physical Description:
397 pages ; 24 cm
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X Adult Large Print - Floating collection Floating Collection - Large Print

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Madeline de Lacy, the duchess of Magnus, prides herself on being one of the most sensible young women in England, which is why she can't believe that, in a turn of the cards, her noble father has lost his entire estate - and her! - to a stranger. On a mission to salvage her family fortune, she changes places with her cousin and companion, sending the meeker Eleanor to confront the man who had won Madeline's hand. Now, Madeline is free to enter the home of a notorious gambler, and pretends to be meek, humble, and competent with an iron. She is, of course, none of those things: she simply is resolved to win her family's fortune back. Just when she thinks matters can't get worse, she meets Gabriel Ansell, the earl of Campion, and they do - horribly worse.

Reviews 2

Publisher's Weekly Review

Dodd, author of the bestselling Governess Brides series (My Favorite Bride, etc.), is back with the first Regency-era romance in her two-part Changing Places series. Lady Madeline de Lacy, one of the most powerful women in England, is struggling to hold her family together following her gambler father's catastrophic loss at cards. When she learns that he has gambled away her hand in marriage and is planning to stake her most precious heirloom in the Game of the Century, she takes drastic action. She switches places with her cousin and companion, Eleanor, and heads to The Game disguised as a companion herself. Eleanor, in turn, agrees to see Madeline's new fiance and break the engagement. Madeline is accustomed to running her life and the lives of those around her, so posing as a lady's maid proves to be a challenge, especially when she discovers her former fiance, Lord Gabriel, at the party. Now she must maintain her ruse even as she's drawn to the man she jilted four years earlier. Dodd is known for crafting spicy romances with a touch of humor, and this book is no exception. Less appealing, however, is her alpha-male hero, who spends most of the book punishing Madeline for her past behavior. Still, the story moves along at a bright clip and will likely please Dodd's fans despite a hasty denouement. (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved All rights reserved.

Library Journal Review

When her noble but irresponsible father carelessly loses her to a wealthy American in a game of piquet, Lady Madeline de Lacy and her gentle, lookalike cousin Eleanor set out for London to meet her "intended" and set things straight. But when she learns that her father plans to rectify the situation by wagering the family's heirloom tiara at the exclusive Game of the Century, Madeline convinces the reluctant Eleanor to go to London in her stead while she tries to stop her father. In a bizarre turn of events, Madeline arrives at the game dressed as a lady's maid and encounters the ruthless man she jilted four years earlier and has never forgotten. Despite the clichd "trading places/hidden identity" device, readers will enjoy the lively pace, sassy humor, and fascinating characters. The first in a two-part Regency series titled "Changing Places," this book will be followed in November by Eleanor's story, One Kiss from You. Fans of Dodd's earlier "Victorian Governess Brides" series will be waiting for this one. Dodd, a popular writer of sensual historicals, lives in Texas. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.



Scandalous Again Chapter One Suffolk, 1806 "Now, Madeline, I realize you've only just arrived home from your tour abroad, and you deserve to rest, but I'm afraid that's not possible." Madeline de Lacy, the Marchioness of Sheridan, the future duchess of Magnus, bit into the first good English beef she'd had in almost four years, chewed, swallowed and smiled beatifically across the sunny breakfast table at the bluff, red-cheeked bulldog of an Englishman. "Why is that, Papa?" "I wagered you in a game of piquet and I lost." She stared. Placing her knife and fork carefully beside her plate, she glanced at the dumbfounded footman, frozen in place as he bent to pour Magnus his morning coffee. "That will do, Heaton. Place the carafe on the sideboard. We'll call you if we need you." When Heaton had left, she gazed at her father and repeated -- for she wanted no misunderstanding -- "You wagered me in a game of chance and lost." He continued eating steadily, silverware clinking and flashing. "No use trying to soften the blow, I say. Not with you, m' dear. Sturdy girl. Sensible girl. Always said so. Glad of it." Drawing on that famed sensibility, she said, "Perhaps you could give me the details of this extraordinary bet." "Had the bad luck to play not knowing he had gained a pique, which reduced me to -- " Madeline took a fortifying breath. "No, Papa. I mean -- why would you put me in a game as ante?" "Well, he suggested it." "He being ...?" "Mr. Knight." "And you agreed because ... ?" "I'd just lost our fortune and all our estates. You were the only thing left." Amazing how rational he made his actions sound. "So in a run of bad luck, you wagered everything we have -- and your only child?" "Yes. At the time, it seemed a wise move." Her brows rose. After the death of her mother seventeen years ago, when Madeline was five, her life had changed from that of a sheltered daughter to one of a girl dealing with the frequent disasters orchestrated by her beloved papa. By the time she was twelve, she knew how to direct a household, to plan a party, to deal with every kind of social disaster. She was not prepared for this. Yet her heartbeat remained calm, her brow unwrinkled, her hands relaxed in her lap. She'd faced catastrophes of Olympian proportions before -- almost all the result of her father's careless disregard. Her composure would not be compromised now. "How so?" "At least if he won you, you'd be assured of having our estates under your control, or at least the control of your husband." Magnus chewed thoughtfully. "It's almost the same as offering the estates as your dowry." "Except if the estates had been offered as a dowry, I would have the advantage of knowing my husband and agreeing to the match." It seemed a point her father should concede, although she had little hope of that. "There is that, but really, what difference would it make if you know the chap? You were already engaged once. You loved him. And that proved a disaster! What was his name? Brown-haired fellow with those damned disturbing eyes." Gazing up at the gilded, cherub-decorated ceiling, Magnus stroked his chin. "He was a hundred times more suitable than this Mr. Knight, but you jilted him. Rendered London speechless for at least" -- he chuckled -- "eight seconds. Until then, didn't know you could lose your temper. What was his name?" A crack appeared in her tranquillity; her hands curled into fists. "Gabriel Ansell, the earl of Campion." "That's right. B' God, I'll never forget. Magnificent in your wrath! Reminded me of your mother on a rampage." Madeline didn't want to hear this. She didn't like to be reminded of her rage, or her loss of control, or that night and what followed. Afterward, for the first time in her life, she'd tossed decorum aside. She'd gone abroad to forget, and hadn't come back until she'd achieved forgetfulness. She never thought of Gabriel anymore. She scarcely remembered his name. "Your mother was just like you. Always level-headed except when she flew into the boughs, then the oceans quailed." Turning toward the closed door, Magnus shouted, "More kippers!" Picking up the bell at her elbow, Madeline rang it. The butler answered. Heaton had undoubtedly raced to the kitchen to share the extraordinary news with the household. She addressed Uppington in a composed manner. "His Grace would like more kippers." Anything to fill his mouth and stop him from talking about Gabriel. About Lord Campion. Uppington bowed. In his rush to handle yet another of Magnus's "situations," he had buttoned his tailed jacket askew. "Aye, my lady." He refilled their plates. Madeline bent her attention to her meal. A less formidable woman would have had her appetite destroyed by Magnus, but if Madeline allowed her father to destroy her appetite every time he scrambled their fortunes, she would be a wraith. She saw no wisdom in that. "Will there be anything else, my lady?" Uppington asked. "Not ... yet." Although, she reflected, perhaps she should ask for a cricket bat or any blunt object with which to beat sense into her parent. Actually, it was far too late. She knew that ... or she might have tried it. She was accounted to have a good swing. "Papa, did you lose the queen's tiara?" "No! Not mine to lose." Magnus actually looked alarmed. "It belongs to you, who will be a duchess in her own right. Your mother wore it in her wedding portrait. Elizabeth herself would come back and haunt me if I wagered the tiara." The queen's tiara had been given to one of Madeline's ancestors, a lady-in-waiting to Queen Elizabeth the First, for saving Elizabeth's life. Solid gold and encrusted with jewels, the tiara was worth a fortune in cash and sentiment, and the queen decreed that, regardless of their gender, the eldest child of the family would inherit the title ... Scandalous Again . Copyright © by Christina Dodd. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold. Excerpted from Scandalous Again by Christina Dodd All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.