The marriage game is afoot in this clever blend of My Fair Lady meets Pride and Prejudice with a twist!
Edward Stanhope, the icy Duke of Thornfield, likes his life in a certain order. Give him a strong drink, a good book, and his dog for company, and he’s content. But when he goes to his library and finds a woman sitting in his chair, petting his dog, what starts as a request for her to leave quickly turns to a fiery battle of wits, leading to a steamy kiss that could ruin them both if they were caught.
So of course, damn it all, that’s when Edward’s aunt walks in, and thereafter announces Miss Georgiana Bly is the future Duchess of Thornfield.
Georgiana was content to be a spinster, spending her days reading and working to keep her family out of debt. But now her days are spent locked away with a growly duke, learning how to be the perfect duchess, and her nights spent fighting the undeniable attraction to a man who was never meant for her.
As their wedding day approaches, the attraction between them burns hot and fierce, but is it enough to melt the duke’s chilly facade?
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Fly Girl’s Review
I’ve been reading a lot of historical romance lately and this one filled that hole in me just as well as many of the others I’ve recently read. This is the first book by Eva Devon I’ve read and it was a welcome surprise to find another great historical romance writer. Her characters stuck with propriety in society and didn’t stretch the constraints of accurate history portrayals of the time period and that always makes me happy. Nothing like reading something and thinking…but purple hair dye didn’t exist in medieval times. Ok, not something I really have read, but you get my drift. As of late many of my favorite historical authors are doing some rule breaking that isn’t sitting well with me. Eva does not do that and in my mind that is a huge win right now.
A normal historical romance goes like this, girl meets man, falls in love, some great misunderstanding keeps them apart, finally a great gesture…Happily Ever After. Ok, that is not how this one happens. Actually it goes like this. She has no idea what he looks like, he falls for her at first encounter in the dark, he sneaks into her bedchamber, she falls for him, he makes an error in judgement about her and her family, she risks it all…then Happily Ever After. Way more than that happens, but that is an accurate summation. Where the story really takes off is how the two characters try to use a scandal to prevent her marriage to an ogre, but not reveal their scandalous affair.
The scandalous affair is what makes her love him. He doesn’t tell her, “No,” but instead gives her freedom to be the headstrong, intelligent, determined woman she really is. There is a lot of growth that happens for her under his tutelage and the secure freedom he offers her. She is willing to go to extremes to stop her wedding to the ogre and he is willing to help her when he realizes who the ogre is. There are lots of shenanigans and some tears that ensue along the way to love, but both characters are strong enough to weather the storm.
While I’ve already extolled the characteristics of the heroine, let it be known there is a lot of dignity, determination, and loyalty in the hero that makes them a perfect match. Eventually all the drama works out and they find their HEA. This story will make you laugh and cry a little and wistfully wish for angsty nights with your hero crawling through the window. Well worth the read. I can’t wait until she has the next one in the series out.
4 of 5 Propellers
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