Tuesday, March 22, 2011

A DUKE’S TEMPTATION by Jillian Hunter

The Bridal Pleasures Series
Publisher: Penguin Signature Select
Date published: November 2010
ISBN: 978-0451413000
Historical Romance
Mass Market Paper
Reviewed by Pam
Obtained by publisher

Samuel Aubrey the fourth Duke of Gravenhurst, and ninth Baronet has become known as a rake and a champion of unpopular causes. Everyone agrees he is a very entertaining man, but very few know the real man. With what seems to be eternal youth, the looks of a beautiful dark angel and elusive, he comes and goes as he pleases. A very private man he spends most of the time at his estate on Dartmoor.

Miss Lily Boscastle has her eye on Samuel, as he flirts and smiles while she waits in a queue. After she is almost seduced while walking in the gardens, she wonders why she has allowed him even the smallest of liberties. Lily is betrothed to another man, but scandal and even more problems leave her name in disrepute.

Forced to seek employment outside of London, when her family disowns her, she finds herself unknowingly, a housekeeper in Samuel’s home. Unknown to her he has a tender spot for Lily as her sharp wit and sensuality appeal to him. He feels she’s his perfect match. But when danger lurks can they save themselves and those who have been sheltered at Gravenhurst? While ghosts from their pasts and dangerous felon’s try to take advantage of them, can they find a way to live in peace?

A DUKE'S TEMPTATION begins at a masquerade ball and Samuel does his best to be entertaining. He usually leaves early after becoming bored, so of course flirts whenever anyone catches his eye. This tale has a slightly different introduction from the usual Historical stories. The main and secondary characters are very different from the usual expectations readers have in 1818. Lily and Samuel are drawn to each other, especially after Lily learns more about him and what appears to be his very odd behavior. Lily has also been told about his string of women, not knowing why. The more he can boast of, the less likelihood of his secret activities becoming known.

The staff are a wonderful mixed group of characters, but all stand behind their Duke and make this unusual story far more interesting to read than many set in this period.

The writing is strong with a lot of interesting happenings going on. The rogues were also a bit different and very unexpected, as they try to tempt the Duke into a duel they think will finish him off. If you like a mix of comedy, chivalry and many laughs, I recommend Ms. Hunter’s, A DUKE’S TEMPTATION.

Many writers fall in love with their heroes, but in this instance, the reviewer has grown enamored by this noble man who has such a wonderful sense of humor and honor.

This is an objective review and not an endorsement of this book.

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