‘The Duke’s Accidental Wife’ by Erica Ridley

tdaw erSTORY: Miss Katherine Ross is a wealthy, eccentric socialite who knows precisely what she wants: No husband. No children. No candlelit tête-à-tête with the insufferably emotionless Duke of Ravenwood. She’s convinced his heart is ice — until she touches that chiseled chest for herself. One lapse in judgment is all it takes to turn both their lives topsy-turvy…

The Duke of Ravenwood isn’t cold and haughty, but a secret romantic who has always dreamt of marrying for love. Instead, he gets Miss Katherine Ross — a headstrong hoyden intent on unraveling his carefully ordered world. He doesn’t know whether to kiss her or throttle her. Can they survive each other’s company long enough to turn a compromise into love?

REVIEW: London – 1816

Lawrence Pembroke, the Duke of Ravenwood, age 28, does not care for parties, dancing, excessive drinking, and people who fritter life away. He also dislikes the way time gets wasted in The House of Lords when the discussions get side-tracked to gossip. He takes his responsibilities in Parliament quite seriously and gets frustrated with those who don’t.

Ravenwood’s sister, Lady Amelia, is married to Lord Sheffield. Ravenwood and Amelia’s parents passed away when they were children. For Ravenwood, inheriting the Dukedom at such an early age has meant total dedication to the position and has resulted in him not being allowed to fight Napoleon with his friends, such as Bartholomew Blackpool, who had fought in the war but returned injured.

So, when Amelia invites Ravenwood to a dinner which includes his friend, he is quite irritated to that she has also invited the infamous Miss Katherine Ross, age 20. A cousin to the Duke of Lambly, Katherine is rich young woman who lives life doing as she wishes, often thumbing her nose at society. Her elderly aunt lives with her and is her best friend. Katherine worries about her because she is beginning to show signs of dementia. When Katherine was young, through her parents, she learned of numerous mothers and their infants who died in childbirth. This has led Katherine to promise herself to never marry and have children because she doesn’t want that to happen to her.

During the dinner, Amelia is quite obvious that she is trying to match Ravenwood and Katherine up. Irritated at this, Ravenwood reluctantly agrees to attend an art auction for charity sponsored by Katherine, knowing that his very presence will ensure a large attendance. After that, he hopes to never see her again. But when at the auction a chance encounter between Katherine and Ravenwood in a back room is discovered as an assignation, Duke Lambley insists that Ravenwood and Katherine become betrothed.

What kind of marriage will they have? This staid man and lively woman seem destined to clash.

This is a completely delightful novel and I loved it. The characters are perfectly written and I know that readers will fall in love with Katherine and Ravenwood.

Complimentary copy provided by the publisher

Connie for b2b

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