Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Review: A Devil of a Duke by Madeline Hunter

Title: A Devil of a Duke
Author: Madeline Hunter
Genre/Age: Historical Romance/Adult
Series: Decadent Dukes Society (Book Two)
Publisher: Zebra
Format: ebook via NetGalley
Rating: ✺✺✺.5
LinksGoodreads
SynopsisFrom New York Times bestselling author Madeline Hunter comes the latest sexy tale of three untamable dukes and the women who ignite their decadent desires . . .

HE MAY BE A DEVIL

He's infamous, debaucherous, and known all over town for his complete disregard for scandal, and positively irresistible seductions. Gabriel St. James, Duke of Langford, is obscenely wealthy, jaw-droppingly handsome, and used to getting exactly what he wants. Until his attention is utterly captured by a woman who refuses to tell him her name, but can't help surrendering to his touch . . .

BUT SHE'S NO ANGEL EITHER . . .

Amanda Waverly is living two lives—one respectable existence as secretary to an upstanding lady, and one far more dangerous battle of wits—and willpower—with the devilish Duke. Langford may be the most tempting man she's ever met, but Amanda's got her hands full trying to escape the world of high-society crime into which she was born. And if he figures out who she really is, their sizzling passion will suddenly boil over into a much higher stakes affair . . .


**Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of this book.**

A woman accidentally 'steals' the heart of a duke.

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When Amanda set her sights on a shy gentleman at a ball, it wasn't in hopes of seducing him. Okay, maybe it was. But only so she could sneak into the home next door to steal a trinket. So when the man's older brother steps between them, Amanda has to go with Plan B. Seduce the duke instead. Yet, her time with Gabriel quickly turns into much more than just a one-night stand. And her mission suddenly becomes muddled by love. If only their relationship wasn't scorned by all of upper society...

I liked it, but I didn't love it. And here is why. The difference between our couple's position in society is pretty large. One is of the highest class and the other is a working woman, even lower on the scale since ladies were not encouraged to work in this time period. This class difference is a cause for conflict for pretty much the entire book and the reason our couple supposedly cannot be together. 

I thought this problem was wrapped up too easily in the last chapter. If it was such an issue for so long, why suddenly is it not? I would have believed it more if our hero had made his decision earlier in the book and maybe the heroine needed some convincing. I was on the edge of my seat for most of the story, trying to understand how this pair could possibly get past this obstacle and then to have it swept away so easily was a bit of a letdown.

As for the rest of the book, there were things to like. I enjoyed our heroine, who had a feisty side to her. The banter between the couple was fun to read. The romance built steadily and the love scenes were entertaining and plentiful. The stealing-baubles-to-save-her-mother plot was interesting enough, though I was suspicious of the mother for most of the book. The pacing does slow down quite a bit toward the end, but it never bored me. 

In closing...
A solid historical romance with a side of thievery. 3.5 suns!