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Sweet Release (Blakewell/Kenleigh Family Trilogy Book 1) by [Clare, Pamela]
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Sweet Release (Blakewell/Kenleigh Family Trilogy Book 1) Kindle Edition

5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Length: 392 pages Word Wise: Enabled Language: English
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Product Description

CARNAL GIFT, Book 2 in the Kenleigh-Blakewell series, is available for $2.99!

For five pounds sterling, the convict was hers. Though Cassie hated the slave trade, her Virginia plantation demanded the labor, and she knew this fevered man would surely die if she left him. But as his wounds healed, and as his muscled chest bronzed from the sun, Cassie realized Cole Braden was far more dangerous than his papers had indicated—for he could steal her breath with a glance, or lay siege to her senses with a touch.

Abducted, beaten, and given a new name, Alec Kenleigh went from master of an English shipbuilding empire to fourteen years of indentured servitude in the American colonies. There, he was known as Cole Braden, a convicted ravisher and defiler of women. While he longed to ravish the auburn-haired beauty who owned him, he knew his one hope of earning her love—and his freedom—was to prove his true identity. Only then could he turn the tables and obtain his ... Sweet Release.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 5561 KB
  • Print Length: 392 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0983875952
  • Publisher: Pamela Clare (9 August 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Australia Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B005GRF49E
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #188,668 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)

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By Erin TOP 500 REVIEWER on 24 November 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
Sweet Release is a wonderful evocative read. Draws those who travel the pages further and further into an emotionally charged engaging story. In fact, somewhere in those pages I became an opinionated critic of both the story and the writer; too much relationship reinforcement; disconnect with historical reality. Lots of little things and yet I kept absorbing the story with gusto.

Eventually, I realized Pamela Clare had drawn me into her journey I had become part of a powerful experience and needed to know what would come next. I also realized Pamela Clare's story, and story telling, is probably perfect.

As Sagas go Sweet Release is up there. It's an example of women's fiction at it's very best. Five stars. (Thank you, Pamela Clare.)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program) 4.3 out of 5 stars 158 reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars SWEET RELEASE - An Excellent Historical Romance Debut 3 May 2017
By Angie Mike - Published on
Verified Purchase
SWEET RELEASE is Pamela Clare's debut novel and was an absolute delight to read. There was never a dull moment in the entire story and I was enthralled from the very first chapter. The writing was compelling and thoroughly captivating. Although Alec did not endear himself to me in the beginning, by the halfway mark I thought he was wonderful. I loved Cassie from the very start and thought she was a beautiful, intelligent, and compassionate woman.

The chemistry and love between these two was extremely sexy but also really touching. Cassie and Alec's romance was full of passion, and the things they say and do for each other moved me emotionally. Their's was no easy road without obstacles but they endure, and protect, and love each other throughout the entire ordeal. I caught myself with tears in my eyes a couple of times for the heartbreak they go through and the faith they have in each other.

There were many characters in this book most of whom were great except of course for the villain, Geoffrey, and one of Cassie's bondswomen, Elly, who I couldn't stand. This is book 1 in the Blakewell/Kenleigh Family Trilogy, and I'm so looking forward to "Carnal Gift" next. Just a beautiful and heartfelt love story with a well thought out and engaging plot. I was extremely impressed with Ms. Clare's writing and would recommend this book to one and all =)
5.0 out of 5 stars No Christian Grey types here! 2 June 2012
By Inspiring Insomnia - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The last few romance books I've read have had less than desirable male characters. Christian Grey, anyone??? So, when I began to read "Sweet Release," I was very pleasantly surprised. That pleasant surprise turned into a genuine feeling of compassion for Cassie and Alec as the book progressed. Alec, a wealthy shipbuilder in 18th century London, was beaten to unconsciousness and sold into indentured servitude in Virginia. Cassie, a young woman running her family's plantation in the absence of her ill father, takes pity on the badly injured man and purchases him, both to protect him from further harm and to put him to work. Cassie was told that Alec is a convicted rapist named Cole Braden, but as the pair get to know each other amid increasing attraction, she begins to believe that Alec is telling her the truth. Alec is desperate to return to England even as he's falling in love with Cassie, but he needs to prove to the authorities in Virginia that he is not Cole Braden.

Both Cassie's and Alec's lives are threatened during the book, and I felt nervous for them, wanting their predicaments resolved. Cassie is a wonderful character - smart and resourceful, while doing the "man's work" of running the plantation. Alec is simply one of the best romantic heroes I've read in a long time. Strong, kind, incredibly masculine, and realistically written with an attitude towards women that was appropriate for the time. Similarly, I appreciated the way slavery was addressed in the book. It's not an issue that can or should be glossed over, and it would be unrealistic to expect every romance novel taking place in the slavery era to feature characters who are crusaders for freedom. Cassie's family owns slaves, and she justifies it by saying that she treats them well and that she protects them from worse treatment they may suffer outside of her protection. Alec challenges her on this, but he eventually realizes that his shipbuilding business makes him complicit in the slave trade.

There's no graceful segue here, but I have to mention the HOT sex scenes. There are only a few of them, but they are very erotic.

I will be reading more from Pamela Clare!
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect! 14 June 2012
By Book lover - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The circumstances in Cassie's life have forced her to deal with the family plantation in Virginia, look after her sick father and bring up her younger brother, hence basically leading a "male" life, which isn't at all tolerated by society at that time. To be able to protect the tobacco farm from "hostile takeover" through her neighbors and any other repercussions that might have on her, her family and the enslaved she fiercely protects , she and her devoted slaves have come up with a little trick that will surely backfire if ever found out. Being in need of another pair of working hands, Cassie visits a slave trader, where she feels sorry for an enslaved man who seems to be deadly sick. Against her better knowledge and she spontaneously buys the sick slave and starts nursing him back to health. However, as soon as the slave feels better he insists to be the victim of a conspiracy and that he's not Cole Braden, a convicted ravisher and defiler of women but Alec Kenleigh, master of an English shipbuilding empire.

Nice story line that kept me riveted from cover to cover. Great character development for the hero and the heroin, nice sub characters who supported the plot perfectly. The villain as detestable as he should be with shallow and mean motive . The romance between the lead characters as intense as usual by Pamela Clare and the sex between them sizzling and hot.

What can I say?! Absolutely recommendable!
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting story expertly narrated 13 May 2015
By Jonetta (Ejaygirl) - Published on
Verified Purchase
Originally posted onThe Book Nympho</a>

Mistaken identity with devastating results!

Quick summary
Alec Kenleigh is assaulted on the streets of London and his next conscious thought is in the colonies. He's now a "bonded convict," purchased by Catherine (Cassie) Blakewell for her Virginia plantation near Williamsburg. Her purchase was more a sentimental rescue as Alec was near death. As he begins his recovery, no one believes his story that he's not the convicted rapist, Cole Braden. Meanwhile, Alec's family believes he's been murdered as his brother, Philip, has identified a body as being Alec.

About the setting
My most favorite historical romances are those set in America as they allow for more expansive storylines. This story starts in the year 1730 so while it's in the colonies, they are still under British rule with many of the societal restrictions and customs though the ownership of slaves is unique to America. Even Alec comments on how abhorrent a practice it is, an affront to English gentry. Cassie's family owns slaves and it's honestly acknowledged that their plantation couldn't afford to run without unpaid labor. Life at Blakewell Neck is honestly portrayed with all the boils of the period, though Cassie's father had very liberal ideals that created a somewhat better lifestyle than most.

What I enjoyed
Alec's dilemma was interesting and believable, making for some challenging situations as it's no easy matter to verify his identity when it's tied to another continent. Cassie's situation was also intriguing given that women had no rights in that era. There's a strong cast of secondary characters that add flavor to the story, including an irritating but evil fop out to win Cassie's heart (and her property). There's lots of tension, duplicity and romance that kept me in the story and things progress rather rapidly. I especially liked Alec and Cassie's steamy romance.

If you're interested in reading this book, do yourself a favor and get the audio version just to indulge in the delightful performance of Kaleo Griffith. I fell for his voice when listening to Clare's Surrender and he's just as skilled here. He handles a huge cast expertly, though Cassie sounds a little raspy at times but Alec was a huge hit.

The bottom line
This is an extremely interesting story that is expertly narrated. If you're a fan of American historical romance, this should be part of your collection. There are so few set in the pre-civil war era and that historical context adds even more value to the reading experience. The romance works (there are several of them in play) and I'm definitely continuing the series.

(I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review)
4.0 out of 5 stars Another Great Read By Pamela Clare 30 December 2014
By Jennifer Lane - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I've read almost every novel by romance author Pamela Clare but I finally had the pleasure of delving into the one series I haven't read: Kenleigh/Blackwell Family Saga. And it's another winner!

In 1730, Alec Kenleigh owns a shipbuilding company in London. His ne'er-do-well younger brother Philip is an alcoholic up to all sorts of mischief. When Alec decides to withhold money until Philip gets his act together, Philip threatens that he'll regret it.

Months later, Cassie Blackwell lives in eighteenth century Virginia but has a modern sensibility about the role of women. She's feisty and strong, and secretly runs a huge tobacco plantation because her father is incapacitated by dementia. When it's time to buy slaves off the boat, her heart goes out to a badly beaten Englishman convict, and she decides to buy him (basically saving his life). His reported crime? Ravishment of women, aka rape.

Turns out the suspected convict is Alec Kenleigh. Someone wanted him out of the picture and swapped his identity with a dead prisoner. But nobody in America believes his story. He will have to serve 14 years as an indentured servant unless he can prove his real identity.

Cassie starts to question his reported crimes when she witnesses Alec's strong work ethic and kindness toward her young brother. She's under great pressure to hide her father's infirmity -- no way a woman could be CEO of the estate back then -- and her pressure only builds with the growing attraction she feels toward Alec. As an unmarried woman, she would risk everything by having sex with him.

Alec, unfortunately, can't get Cassie out of his head. He doesn't want to ruin her reputation but all he can think about is bedding her. The Virginia summer isn't the only part of the story that's steamy!

Pamela Clare is masterful at creating strong heroines and honorable heroes, and Cassie and Alec definitely fit the bill. Alec is slightly pompous but quite lovable. I enjoyed learning about the tobacco farms and the morays of that time. I felt sickened reading about slaves, particularly how the villainous Crichton family treated them. Geoffrey Crichthon is an odious man who lusts for Cassie but will never deserve her sweet attention, and he vows to make Alec pay for that.

There are elements of suspense and imprisonment (yay!) and interesting characters like the Native American healer Takotah. At times I had trouble keeping the bondsmen, bondswomen, and slaves apart, and there are some plot elements that were a little clunky (like the identity of Alec's betrayer and Alec's slowness in appreciating Cassie's wishes about where to live). But this was a page turner that I devoured, and I can't wait for Carnal Gift, book two in the series.

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