STORY: Though raised as a gentleman’s daughter, Lorna Gordon is obliged to take a position as an upstairs maid at Blackhall Castle when her father dies. Alex Russell, the Duke of Kinross, is the most tempting man she’s ever seen—and completely unattainable—until, at a fancy dress ball, Lorna disguises herself as Marie Antoinette and pursues an illicit tryst…with scandalous consequences.
Months after his mysterious seductress disappears, Alex encounters her again. Far from the schemer the distrustful duke assumed her to be, Lorna is fiercely independent and resourceful. She’s the one woman capable of piercing his defenses. But when danger threatens Lorna, Alex must prove himself not just the lover of her fantasies, but the man who will fight to protect her.
REVIEW: I am so behind in reading one of my favorite authors. This is a first story in the Duke Trilogy series and I loved it a lot. I really enjoy when the characters, plot and pace align so well that I just hate to leave the world in which my heroes and heroines reside. That’s exactly what happened as I neared the end of this story.
As luck would have it, and because I am way behind in my reviewing duties, I happened to have all three books in this series on my Kindle and I will read and review them in order. I also got the first two in audio, but the third one hasn’t shown up in audio yet, and if it does, I’ll be ready for it.
Karen Ranney is an author I respect greatly (although there are a couple of books she should not have written at all) and out of all the books I’ve read, 95% of them I loved to no end. The remaining 5% I’ll tell you about some other time 😉
Besides the wonderful, well written and rounded main characters, I enjoyed the prose as well as the undeniable chemistry between the two.
She loved a storm. She loved being out in it, regardless of the danger. She would sometimes tilt her head back to feel the rain baptizing her face. In those moments, she was as elemental as the first woman. Yet she’d never felt like she did right now.
*** *** ***
Need could be regulated. Cravings could be mastered. Except this one.
He craved seeing Lorna like he sometimes wanted a few of cook’s raisin scones or the peat smokiness of a good whiskey. No, more than that. She was a lungful of fresh air, a glass of sparkling water. She was sunshine and growing flowers, laughter and hope. She was all those things necessary to his life and important in it.
When had that happened?
The force of what he felt was petrifying.
He might as well surrender now. Fighting it any longer was futile.
*** *** ***
She reminded him that he was a man first, then a man of science, duke, property holder, and all the other attendant roles of his position. She taught him that being a father was not passing on lessons as much as accepting and giving love.
The thought struck him with the force of a blow: she was going to make him feel.
The secondary characters were just as fun to read and even though the villain is predictable, I enjoyed when the comeuppance was doled out.
The narration ofwas superb! He nailed every accent and character. I’ll be looking for more books with his narration.
I’m looking forward to the next two stories in this series and hope all are as good as this one was.
Melanie for b2b
*Gift ARC provided by the publisher
*Personal Audible copy