Dominick Manton, the disinherited younger son of a viscount, refuses to let his lot in life ruin his future success. Instead, he opens Manton Investigations, specializing in finding missing persons, and employs his illegitimate half-sister, Lisette Bonnaud.
When they take on the Duke of Lyons’ case involving their other illegitimate sibling, Tristan Bonnaud, neither realizes that they’re beginning something extraordinary.
Because the secrets they uncover will rock the dukedom and alter their own futures until the agency becomes, by popular acclaim… The Duke’s Men.
‘What the Duke Desires’
BOOK BLURB: Maximilian Cale, the Duke of Lyons, accepted long ago that his kidnapped brother was dead. When a cryptic note from investigator Tristan Bonnaud claims otherwise, Max seeks out Tristan’s sister, Lisette—and is infuriated to learn that Tristan has also mysteriously vanished. Have the siblings perpetrated an elaborate hoax? Or is the fiercely protective beauty as innocent as she claims them to be?
Fearful that the powerful duke will destroy Tristan’s career in his zeal for the truth, the clever Lisette convinces Max to accompany her to Paris in a joint search for their loved ones. But their journey takes a seductive twist when they pose as an ordinary husband and wife—not an English duke with a tarnished family name and the illegitimate daughter of a viscount—and discover an exhilarating passion free from the damning secrets of the past. With the line between danger and desire enticingly blurred, they discover that some mysteries, like those of the heart, are answered tenfold in the bliss of a true and trusting love.
MINI REVIEW: This is one of those stories that needed all my attention in order for me to follow who’s who and what’s what.
The story was highly complex, for me at least, and I had a hard time following it for at least first 20-30 pages, but eventually I got into it and enjoyed the rest of it.
Ms. Jeffries did a good job in fleshing out the characters fully and the plot was well put together, but the pace was a bit too slow for my liking. In the end, I must admit that I got into the story fully and am looking forward to the series.
‘When the Rogue Returns’
BOOK BLURB: Victor Cale never imagined his sweet, shy wife, Isabella, would use her talent for creating exquisite imitation jewels for criminal pursuits. But there’s no denying it was Isa’s handiwork that turned up in the brazen heist of the Dutch royal family’s diamonds after she disappeared into the night.
Ten years later, still reeling from her betrayal and enraged that her duplicitous side was so undetectable, the sexy investigator heads to Edinburgh, where his cousin Maximilian has landed him a job tailing a wealthy baron’s bride-to-be. Simple enough—until the “fiancée” in question proves to be Isa, masquerading as an alluringly eligible young widow.
No longer the meek and mild girl he once knew, the bold woman vehemently asserts that it was Victor who abandoned her. Piecing together the past to prove Isa’s innocence reawakens a volatile passion, hotter than ever. With a decade of secrets between them, Victor and Isa must trust each other in order to bring the scheming thieves to justice–without getting burned themselves.
MINI REVIEW: This is a story of second chance at love and even though I found the romance predictable, the rest of the story was not.
As was the case with the first book in this series, this is another complex story featuring even more complex characters. Once more I had to concentrate very hard in order to follow the story and in the end I liked it.
I’m actually glad that this series is turning out to be this complex in nature.
‘How the Scoundrel Seduces’
BOOK BLURB: Lady Zoe Keane’s father is pressing her to marry a cousin she’s never met. As Lord and Lady Olivier’s only child, spirited Zoe will one day inherit the title of countess and their Yorkshire estate, the land she adores—but she wants to marry for love. Then an unsolved family mystery shatters her world: is it possible Zoe’s birth mother was actually a Romany named Drina? Desperate to know her true lineage, Zoe hires the Duke’s Men to search for the woman who will determine her destiny.
Tristan Bonnaud is the man for the job, and not because the roguish investigator cares about a spoiled aristocrat and her inheritance “problem.” To protect himself from his villainous half-brother, Tristan needs to track down his Romany horse trader friend who has information about a decade-old scandal—and this young beauty’s far-fetched case is just the excuse he needs.
But if untangling the past isn’t risky enough, the sizzling attraction drawing the scoundrel to the lady is the most dangerously seductive surprise of all. . . .
MINI REVIEW: I just loved this story and for that I credit the characterization of Zoe, the heroine. She was everything I want a heroine to be, spunky, smart and capable of taking care of herself and business at hand.
As for the hero, I was impressed with him ever since he was introduced to us in the earlier book and couldn’t wait for his story. Pairing him with Zoe was wonderful!
If you love your romance to feature a mystery and plenty of secrets, you must get this book.
‘Dorinda and the Doctor’
BOOK BLURB: Dr. Percy Worth finds young widow Dorinda Nunley ravishing every time he sees her at her cousins’, the Duke and Duchess of Lyons. But he figures that a society hothouse flower would make a terrible doctor’s wife. Still, when she lets herself into his residence one morning to find him half-dressed, he’s as fascinated as he is surprised by the intrusion.
Though Dorinda’s angry when she realizes they’re victims of the duchess’s matchmaking, Percy suggests that they teach the duchess a lesson by pretending to court, then break off spectacularly at the duke’s dinner that night. But after a day together—and a very hot tumble in bed—they realize they suit each other far better than they ever dreamed. So do they go forward with their plan? Or embrace the pretense that has become all too real?
MINI REVIEW: This was one of those short stories that I wished with all my heart was a full sized novel. The hero and heroine were so well written that they deserved their story to be told in more detail, but alas it was not to be.
Regardless, I must say that I thoroughly enjoyed it as it is. Both characters tugged at my heartstrings throughout the story.
If you never read this author, this is a perfect story to sample her writing voice.
‘If the Viscount Falls’
BOOK BLURB: The heir presumptive to the Viscount Rathmoor, Dominick Manton once had his heart’s desire within reach—a bright future as a barrister and engagement to Jane Vernon, a wealthy baron’s daughter. Then a shattering betrayal by his vindictive brother George snatched away Dom’s inheritance and his hopes of offering Jane a secure future. Brokenhearted, and attempting to end their engagement without destroying Jane’s reputation, Dom staged a betrayal of his own to convince her that he’s not the husband-to-be that she thought.
Now George is gone and the viscountcy restored to Dom, since his brother’s widow, Nancy—Jane’s cousin and closest confidant—never bore an heir. But when Nancy goes missing, a panicked Jane calls on her former fiancé to track down her cousin. Dom knows the mistakes of the past may be unforgiveable—but now, entangled together in mystery and danger, will they rekindle a passionate longing that was never lost to begin with?
MINI REVIEW: I was looking forward to Dom’s story ever since I met him in the first book and Ms. Jeffries has done an excellent job in bringing Jane back into his life and giving them another chance at a life together.
Dom is one of those heroes that you’ll remember for a long time. He is a smart, sharp and capable Alpha Male, yet deep down, he’s vulnerable when it comes to people he loves and cares for. Just a perfect hero, even stubborn as he is!
Jane has gone through so much in the past twelve years, but she remained little changed. She’s still strong, smart and passionate. Being jilted years ago by a man she deeply loved left her heart in tatters, but by no means did that keep her down. Especially when she found out the truth. And now she has another chance at love, but when you put two stubborn people together, which one will blink first?
With this story Ms. Jeffries ends another great series and I hope you give it a go. You’ll find all the stories well written and plotted. The principles were complex, wonderful characters and their stories will touch your heart.
Melanie for b2b
Complimentary copies provided by the publisher
AUTHOR BIO: Raised amidst the rubber plantations in Thailand by missionary parents, Sabrina Jeffries has earned numerous placements on the New York Times and USA Today lists with Regency historicals that readers savor for her trademark sexy blend of witty dialogue and enterprising characters. It’s no accident she has been dubbed “The Queen of the Sexy Regency Romance.”
About that plantation business—living in the boonies of Thailand afforded Sabrina endless hours to read Jane Austen novels and other classics voraciously. Not surprisingly, back in the States, she went on to earn a doctorate in English literature from Tulane University—and a craving for Cajun food…. finish reading Sabrina’s biography here.