Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘Worthy Hero’

Image
(Wicked Widows, #1)

Genre: Historical Romance (Regency)

Cover Blurb

Even in London society—where everyone knows what you did last season—you never know who’s next in line to walk down the aisle, in Why Dukes Say I Do

TRUE LOVE IS OFTEN FOUND

With her whirlwind social life in London, Lady Isabella Wharton has little interest in the customs of the country. But when her godmother asks her to pay a visit to her bachelor grandson in Yorkshire, Isabella can’t refuse. It behooves her to please the old dowager, since she harbors one of Isabella’s most scandalous secrets. So off she goes to see the newly-titled—and notoriously rustic—Duke of Ormond…

WHERE YOU LEAST EXPECT IT

Trevor Carey doesn’t care about what goes on behind ballroom doors. He is content with the simple life—and isn’t ashamed to admit it to a society flirt like Lady Isabella. But the country air brings out a different side of Isabella—one full of longing and passion. Can her sophistication be hiding a desire for love? When a blackmailer from the city arrives to threaten Isabella, Trevor will shield her from harm—even travel to London. Can the duke tackle the ton on Isabella’s behalf …and manage to keep her all to himself?

♥♥♥♥♥♥

I enjoyed this book with its intriguing story (inspired by the movie I Know What You Did Last Summer), engaging characters, passion and romance.

WHY DUKES SAY I DO is the first book in Manda Collins’s new series, Wicked Widows, which centres around sisters, Isabella and Perdita and their friend, Georgina… all widows of abusive husbands. They share a terrible secret concerning the death of Perdita’s husband, the Duke of Ormonde, but find themselves blackmailed and threatened by someone who obviously knows that secret.

Trevor reminds me of Alec, the hero of Ms Collins’s How to Romance a Rake. He is honourable, a gentleman and treats everyone with kindness and civility. As one of his tenant’s remarks to Isabella – “a kinder, more dedicated master we could not have asked for.”  His care and concern for others is also seen in the importance he attaches to his duties as magistrate and how protective he is towards Isabella when he finds out about the threatening letters.

I understand his determination not to take up his role as the Duke of Ormonde. He holds no love for the Ormonde family who turned their back on his father who chose to marry for love rather than wealth.

He clearly loves his sisters but tends to be overprotective… a trait which I am sure is shared by a lot of older brothers. It is hard for him to accept that the seventeen year old Eleanor is now a young lady as Isabella points out.

“She isn’t so much older than Belinda,” he said defensively.
“There is a vast ocean of difference between thirteen and seventeen,” Isabella said. “And well you know it. You simply wish there were not. It won’t be long before she has beaux. I wouldn’t be surprised if she weren’t already smitten with some country swain.” He gulped down his brandy at the thought.
“You don’t think…” He glanced warily at Isabella.

I thought it was amusing that he was horrified by the fact that Eleanor may have a beau.

I admire Isabella…her strength, resilience and courage. She went through a soul-destroying, abusive marriage but has lost none of that indomitable spirit. Her selfless love for her sister and her need to ensure Perdita’s future happiness, above all else, made me like her even more.

Her interactions with Trevor’s sisters, Eleanor and Belinda, show the genuine affection she has for them. She also recognises how ill-equipped they are to take their place in society as the sisters of a duke and desperately need her guidance.

…there was something familiar about these two sisters, something that made Isabella want to shield them from the hurts and embarrassments that awaited them in the world outside their little village.

I particularly love the scene where Isabella loans Eleanor a gown …… Eleanor’s reactions and excitement are contagious.

I found the romance between Isabella and Trevor perfectly paced. They both start out with preconceived ideas about each other. Isabella has been preconditioned by the Dowager Duchess to expect some kind of stuffy, country yokel living a rustic existence while Trevor initially believes Isabella to be nothing more than a frivolous society lady. It is both amusing and delightful watching their preconceived notions slowly shattered allowing them to move from physical attraction to falling in love.

He’d expected Isabella to be incapable of conversing about anything but the latest on-dit, but she had proved knowledgeable on a variety of topics, including, to his great surprise, the glamorous world of crop rotation. She’d explained it away, saying that her father had been fond of agricultural talk despite making his home in London. She had, she said, absorbed the information over the course of many years listening to him drone on about it.

…to her surprise and admiration, Ormonde not only knew everyone’s names, but he also was able to ask after their siblings and parents and children and grandchildren and in some cases great-grandchildren, with an easy manner that indicated he had been doing so for years. He clearly cared for their welfare beyond just ensuring that they were able to produce a good crop yield. He cared about them as people.

The secondary characters add depth to the story. I was charmed by Trevor’s sisters, Eleanor and Belinda with their delightful banter and I love the humour Trevor’s friend and neighbour, Sir Lucien Blakemore, brings to the story:

“I took Lady Wharton and my sisters into York yesterday to go dress shopping.”
Blakemore blanched. 
“Ye gods, no wonder you’re livid. A shopping trip could make any man go mad.”

I like how Ms Collins intersperses social comments throughout the story and highlights the often harsh realities of being a woman during this era.

It wasn’t hard to figure out the identity of the person sending Isabella the threatening letters, but the action was still dramatic enough to keep me turning the pages. There is a cliff-hanger because the villainous mastermind behind the threats is still at large and the mystery surrounding his identity is set to continue throughout the series.

Overall this was an enjoyable start to Ms Collin’s new series with just the right amount of romance and mystery. I will definitely be reading the next book, Why Earls Fall in Love, which is Georgina’s story.

REVIEW  RATING: 4.5/5 STARS

SENSUALITY RATING: HOT

Read February 2014

The Wicked Widows series (click on covers for more details):

Why Dukes Say I Do (Wicked Widows, #1) Why Earls Fall in Love (Wicked Widows, #2) Why Lords Lose Their Hearts (Wicked Widows, #3)– 29 July 2014

Advertisements

Read Full Post »

Rakes And Rascals

Historical and Contemporary Romance Reviews

Rose is Reading

Reading, Reviews & Reflection

Chicks,Rogues and Scandals

We Love, We Live and We Read. . . .

Mimi Matthews

Romance · Literature · History

The Reading Wench

Historical and Contemporary Romance Reviews

Sonya's Stuff

Mostly Books

La Deetda Reads

Book Reviews, Thoughts and Recipes

Booktalk with Eileen: Journaling a Journey -- Learning the Art of Crafting a Novel

Sharing the experience of living a thousand lives and creating new ones

Every Woman Dreams...

Regina Jeffers, Author

%d bloggers like this: