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The Harlow Hoyden

A Regency Romance (Love Takes Root, Book 1)
Narrated by: Lucy Rayner
Series: Love Takes Root Series, Book 1
Length: 10 hrs and 36 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (4 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Miss Emma Harlow hasn't earned the reputation as a hoyden for nothing, so when the duke of Trent discovers her in his conservatory stealing one of his orchids, he isn't surprised - charmed, delighted and puzzled, yes, but not surprised. It is Emma who is amazed. She has naturally concluded that the man reading in the conservatory must be the country cousin (who else in London would actually read?) and is quite vexed to discover that he is the duke of Trent himself - imagine, stealing the duke's prize Rhyncholaelia digbyana under his very nose!   

But her vexation doesn't last long. For Emma is a practical young lady with a mission: to end her dear sister Lavinia's engagement to the villainous (and dreadfully dull!) Sir Waldo Windbourne, and she thinks that the famous libertine is just the man for the job. If he would only seduce her sister away from Sir Waldo...well, not seduce exactly, but flirt mercilessly and engage her interest. Perhaps then Lavinia would jilt the baron. 

The duke of Trent is resistant, of course. Despite his reputation, he does not toy with the affections of innocents. And besides, it's not her sister he longs to seduce.

©2014 Lynn Messina (P)2019 Tantor
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Profile Image for Dee
  • Dee
  • 07-04-2019

Loved it!!!!

This book was special from start to finish! I loved the Harlow girls!!! "Hoyden" is now a word in my vocabulary. The romance between the sister and the Duke was a treat to hear. The overall story was unique and creative and suspenseful. I loved it!!

I loved the narration too! This is a Regency romance and narration is key. The gentility and savoir-faire (or the lack thereof in Emma's case) were expertly delivered.

This is a series so I hope the next book picks up right where this one leaves off.

11 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Lisa K
  • 17-06-2019

Decent, if predictable story, but unable to finish

I was looking for something cute and easy to listen to and thought I'd found it. Unfortunately, the narrator felt it necessary to use a very high pitched squeaky voice for the female protagonist which was incredibly grating. I lasted a little over an hour and have had to stop.

9 people found this helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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  • Ann Thackerq
  • 03-01-2020

But for the narrator

This might have been a good listen if not for the atrocious narrator and her ridiculously squeaky interpretation of the female characters. Nails on a chalkboard would be preferable.

3 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Patricia
  • 13-05-2019

Romantic, Entertaining, and Engaging

What a super story! The narrator was simply terrific! The characters were interesting, intelligent, and charming. I loved it!

6 people found this helpful

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  • Ci Mo Expressions
  • 20-06-2019

Okay, but

Too many "modern" cliches and innuendo. Good story would be even better without sexual content.

4 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Cate F.
  • 03-06-2019

Classic Regency with plenty of laughs

An enjoyable book with a marvelous reader. It had many of the elements of a classic Heyer romance with some extra spice added. I have a fondness for chase scenes and The Harlow Hoyden had obstacles and a horrid villain that were definitely satisfying. I also enjoyed how, at the moment an HEA appears about to close, another obstacle appears.

1 person found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Ijw
  • 04-09-2019

relaxing fluff

Very long and mostly light reading. The Regency Cosy series is much better. If you just want a slightly interesting, much detailed, and long romance with lots of "does he", "does she", endlessly then this is for you.


The plot doesn't get serious till about 6 hours when you think they're finally going to wrap things up. Then it's all rather implausible. The reader's voice for the 2 sisters is unbearably bubble-headed. Imagine a mousey voice screaming "don't move or I'll shoot". Should have left the victim laughing.


All together a Mary Sue named Emma.

1 person found this helpful