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Publisher's Summary

Smite Turner is renowned for his single-minded devotion to his duty as a magistrate. But behind his relentless focus lies not only a determination to do what is right, but the haunting secrets of his past - secrets that he is determined to hide, even if it means keeping everyone else at arm's length. Until the day an irresistible woman shows up as a witness in his courtroom.
Miranda Darling isn't in trouble - yet. But she's close enough that when Turner threatens her with imprisonment if she puts one foot wrong, she knows she should run in the other direction. And yet no matter how forbidding the man seems on the outside, she can't bring herself to leave. Instead, when he tries to push her away, she pushes right back - straight through his famous self-control, and into the heart of the passion that he has long hidden away.
©2011 Courtney Milan (P)2012 Courtney Milan
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
1 out of 5 stars
By Hope on 06-21-14

Impossible to listen to

This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

No one; the narrator is terrible. She croaks, she mispronounces words; her accents are all wrong. Courtney Milan writes fun and interesting romances, but this one is impossible to get through as a recording. I've seen all of the other negative Audible reviews about the narrator; I wish I'd seen them before I bought this audiobook, but it's too late to return it. I am adding my own very negative review not to dump on Courtney Milan but to try to get other people to boycott this particular production and maybe help to force publishing houses to take the readers/actors of their audiobooks more seriously. It is really an issue for those of us dependent on audio versions to miss out on good books because of the narration. We put up with some mediocre narrators when we really want to read something, but this one is too, too awful. I wish there was some more direct way to say to publishers how very much it matters who the reader is. I know there are books which get worse audible reviews than they otherwise would because of the narrator. I think that often the listener is put off by narration that just isn't good enough and end up panning a book they would otherwise like.
My pet peeves are readers who can't do a full range of voices (male/female/child/old), narrators who are young and ignorant and have no idea what they're reading, so they mistake words as they read them. "Burying the lead; and old newspaper term that is read burying the leed, as in the lead paragraph of a newspaper story, mispronounced 'burying the led" which is meaningless. I could go on, but other listeners will know what I mean. And this reader does pronounce the British version of jail (gaol) which should be pronounced just like jail as 'gah-ol'. (This was mentioned before, but it is particulalry egregious in a reader who is pretending to be British.)

What did you like best about this story?

Smite Turner, but I'm going to have to read his story rather than listen to it.

Would you be willing to try another one of Nicole Quinn’s performances?

Never, ever, ever. I went and listened to the samples of the 9 books she's read available on Audible, and she is terrible in every single one.

Any additional comments?

Audible; please pay attention to the actors/readers that are being complained about. I know there must be some issues about how much the publishing houses are willing to put into a book they're not sure will sell on Audible, but the books will certainly get ignored or panned if the narrator is no good. I do wish there was some more direct way to black ball certain readers, and to communicate more directly with Audible and with the publishers. We all do have our own taste in what we like; there are some books that have been read by one or more readers and it's very interesting to see how different a book can affect one when the reader is different, but there are too many readers who should never be hired again.

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6 of 6 people found this review helpful

3 out of 5 stars
By 🔹🔹🔹CAROLYN 🔹🔹🔹 on 06-29-12


I enjoyed the building romance between Smite who is a cold, emotionally challenged Judge and Miranda a penniless, down on her luck woman who has to impersonate witness's at his court but he finds her out with dire consequences. Thoroughly enjoyable romance with a good plot that has many twists and turns.

I have enjoyed all CM's books but this one was painful to listen to - I suggest the Publishing House NEVER EVER EVER uses this narrator again and re-records it otherwise I can't see it being downloaded by many people.

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24 of 27 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
3 out of 5 stars
By D. Mark on 11-25-16

Fantastic story, terrible narration!

Any additional comments?

I am returning this book less than halfway through, and buying the paperback instead. Courtney Milan is a fantastic writer and I am enjoying this story so far. I have a particular fondness for Milan's books that involve real (poor) people, rather than the aristocracy and their satellites. I lived in Bristol for a few years, and I am delighted to find that she has set this book there, and is not just another historical set in London (I am a Londoner but really, even I get bored with the same old clichés).

Milan's attention to detail is impeccable, and I am always surprised that for an American, she somehow manages to convey the tone and irony of English humour, as well as the understated grit and resilience. Milan's books are intelligent, and a cut above the average of this genre.As to this book, I am in love with Smite and Miranda already. They both have difficult backgrounds, Smite's particularly traumatic, but are very straightforward, non-manipulative people who really say what they mean.

I am switching over to reading rather than listening to the rest of this book, as I cannot bear for such a lovely piece of writing to be wrecked any further. I'm even going to leave it for a few weeks so that I can hopefully forget the awful narration. Nicole Quinn is an American who can do a passable English accent. One English accent. She has clearly never heard a gentle west country accent, because these characters sound nothing like Bristolian. The main two characters are ok (generic English accent), but everyone else sounds the same, with a bizarre harsh voice that sounds like they've been smoking ten packs a day for the last 40 years! There are some mispronunciations too, which wouldn't be so bad if one of those words wasn't GAOL. Instead of "jail" she reads this phonetically, and considering the storyline is a legal one involving the disappearance of a prisoner from the gaol, the word comes up ALL THE TIME! After the first 30 or 40 times, I just couldn't do it anymore. I am a huge audiobook listener, with somewhere between 400 and 500 books under my belt. I sometimes even listen to terrible books or terribly-read books all the way through because I don't like abandoning a book unfinished. I feel this book, however, is just too special to be ruined for me like this!

I have a particular dislike of books not being read by native readers. It seems to me a real waste of a book, especially one by somebody like Courtney Milan, who goes to so much effort to make her books accurate and authentic. I also think that when you have an intriguing well developed male lead, it is wonderful to use a male reader. Most writers of this genre really focus on the character development of the female character, and the male can end up a bit wooden. Off the top of my head, authors who write great males include Grace Burrowes, Lisa Kleypas and Elizabeth Hoyt. Fantastic male readers such as Alex Wyndham and James Langton bring such a wonderful depth to male leads, and they are a real pleasure to listen to. Smite is such an interesting creation, I can only imagine how amazing this audiobook could have been.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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