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Heroine is devastated when her childhood love falls in love and marries someone else She ends up finding comfort in the arms of James Carlton the groom s older brother One night stand gets complicated when she gets pregnant and James proposes marriage Good love story U could tell right from the start that hero was crazy for Poppy and her blind devotion to Chris drove me crazy But if u like a smitten hero read this Poor James had it b a a d for Poppy I felt bad for him because Poppy made no attempt to hide her love for Chris, his married younger brother At one point, she even tells James in a moment of panic and self defense that she d used him as a substitute for Chris in bed Ouch James might have been a little short with Poppy at times, but I totally understood his frustration Poppy s immaturity made it difficult for her to see how James was clearly the superior catch In a way, I think it s a blessing Chris drew Poppy s attention first She really needed time to mature and, therefore, appreciate the hard to handle James.It would be an understatement to say that these two had high levels of emotional fireworks and sexual tension between them I just wish they had not been first cousins, but marriage between close cousins is apparently widely accepted in England Oh well, Poppy finally sees the light and the two have their HEA This book was the best in this series The hero has been in love faithfully with the heroine since they are young She was very confusing to understand with her love for his now married brother I loved the way he was with her You could tell how much he loved her and was hurt by her words and behaviour I just wanted to hit her He was a great guy and was doing his best not to get hurt but it was hard when he finally getting a chance with her He took his chance and did it pay off Read it and see Very enjoyable book I have reread this book over 5 times. This is quite possibly the most torturous HP I have ever read.I almost DNFed at 60% but I stuck with it just to see what happened.The dialogue was basically this for than half the bookPoppy But I can tI can tJames You begged ME Over and over and over again.Also, the hero was a complete asshole until almost the final page of the book I need a much earlier turn around on the asshole to grovel to hero issue Waiting until the last page doesn t cut it.Here is the order of my hatred1 James2 Poppy3 Chris4 SallyChris and Sally were really just irritating, but I included them anyway.So, in conclusionIf you want to torture yourself, go for it I think I ll avoid Penny Jordan books from now on whimper I can almost always count on a good old Harlequin novel to take me on an emotional rollercoaster ride from which I wouldn t want to get off Penny Jordan is a favorite Harlequin author of mine and I am sure many fans of the Harlequin line are bound to feel the same Though I have done most of my Harlequin crazed phase of reading prior to the start of my review site, this is one novel by Penny Jordan that I seemed to have missed, a fact I am glad that I have rectified when I started on this one on a whim today.22 year old Poppy Carlton has had her dreams crushed when her cousin Chris Carlton who has been the man of her dreams since she had turned 12 years of age marries another Forced to grow up and get her head out of the clouds, Poppy is horrified when her virginal body responds in an appalling manner to James Carlton s caresses James is her beloved Chris s elder brother, the forbidding and formidable version to the sunny and easy going nature of Chris who occupies her thoughts night and day or so Poppy tries telling herself.8 years older than Poppy, James is a man who keeps his emotions close to himself apart from tearing into Poppy s infatuation when it comes to his younger brother When consequences of their nights of passion together forces Poppy to acknowledge her feelings towards the brother who is a match for her in everyway, Poppy fears that she might be just a little bit too late in accepting that James is the one and only for her.I love stories where the hero has always being in love with the heroine but somehow was overshadowed by the heroine s infatuation with another man presumably a relative of the hero s James is a mouthwateringly alluring hero and Poppy though at first grated on my nerves with her self pitying nature made up for it beautifully when she freely expresses her need for James bringing the poor guy to his knees.And this one certainly managed to be an emotion wrenching read and I loved the effect the story had on my emotions as I read along Though this might not be a feminist s idea of how a romance should be, this is romance in its most old fashioned form, the reason why I fell in love with the world of romance in the first place Recommended for fans of the Harlequin genre and fans of Penny Jordan Rating 4 5 Original review posted at MBR s Realm of Romance I m going to have to read this again, because as you can see from the bookshelves, there is so much going on This is classic Penny Jordan a heroine that doesn t know her own mind and has a traitorous body and a hero that is alpha to the max I can t decide between 3 and 4 stars because he s just so mean to her but then she s a drip half the time Honestly, these people Read it You won t be bored. It s been a while since I read this, but the hero, and I use that term very lightly, was just mean Cruel No fun. 3,5 stars Is he unbuttoning her dress or pinching her nipple You decide. ^Free Book ↛ Best Man to Wed? ☠ SUBSTITUTE LOVER Poppy Carlton Cousin To The Groom She Is Devastated When Chris Falls In Love And Marries Someone Else She Will Never Love AgainJames Carlton The Groom S Older Brother And Best Man Mocking And Cynical, He Is The Exact Opposite Of Fun Loving ChrisJames Taunts Poppy That She Should Find Herself A Real Man And Leave Her Adolescent Fantasies Behind He Is Not Averse To Showing Her Just What Real Passion Is About But How Can He Be Sure That Her Response Is For Him Perhaps She S Just Using Him As A Substitute For His Brother