Monday, November 21, 2016

Early Review of The Scottish Duke (Duke Trilogy #1) by Karen Ranney

Title: The Scottish Duke
Classification: Adult Fiction
Genre: Historical Romance
Format: Paperback: 384 pages
Publisher: Avon (November 29, 2016)
ISBN-10: 0062466879
ISBN-13: 978-0062466877
Author's Website:
Notes: I received an eARC loan from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. I am also an Avon Addict which means I love the books that Avon publishes enough to volunteer to read as many ARCs and books as they can send my way. So you'll be seeing a lot of books reviewed by me from this publisher. Please note, however, that if I don't like a book, it will be truthfully reflected by a low rating.
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Lorna Gordon just wanted to have a little fun. To go to the ball like Cinderella. She already had her Prince Charming picked out, and when she found a beautiful old dress and wig in a trunk in her employer's attic she took it as a sign. So with costume on, she slipped in unnoticed with all the other guests. The problem was she didn't really go unnoticed. The gentleman of the ton noticed her quite well, or rather her nicely displayed decolletage, but, thankfully, no one realized she was just a lowly house maid. Two years before when her father was still alive, she might have ended up at such a party as this, but those days were gone.

What Lorna was doing was improper. What Lorna was doing was forbidden. What Lorna was doing could get her fired, but the head strong chit did it anyway. She'd had a tendre for the handsome young nobleman for some time. So when the ninth Duke of Kinross joined her on the terrace and later led her away by the hand she went with willingly....

Much to her regret she soon learned real life is not a fairy tale. Confound it.
This was a fun read where the main male character started off being more of a cad than a hero. It took quite some time for him to redeem himself in my eyes, but he was a man who had some major issues. Dukes are notoriously sought after by conniving young misses and their families trying to better their positions. He's already been a victim of one such liaison and refuses to be one of another. The experience left him bitter, so much so that his mother fears he'll never remarry. Described as being devastatingly handsome, aloof, and unapproachable he was somewhat of a mystery to the household staff. 

Lorna is an independent, bold, proud, strong, and intelligent young woman who finds herself in a precariously dangerous position, After her night with the Duke, she finds herself with child. Instead of approaching the Duke for help, she leaves and tries to make her own way in the world. Unfortunately or perhaps fortunately, depending on your perspective, a close friend of Lorna's reveals all to the Duke's mother who then confronts her son. What ensues makes for an extremely delightful read. There is a depth to this story that I truly loved. 

Overall, I gave this one 4 out of 5 roses. There is mystery and suspense associated with an attempt on Lorna's life. There is plenty of drama associated with the predicament Lorna and the Duke find themselves in. Although this one didn't follow the traditional order of love, marriage, and a baby in a baby carriage, it did have a happy ending. As we begin to find out more about the main characters and their stories, I realized these two were just what the other needed. On the Lisarenee Romance Rating Scale, this one earned a  STEAM rating--too hot for a fan, but you still have a handle on things. You should use extreme caution when reading a book with this rating in public. People may inquire as to why you looked flustered and flushed. I definitely enjoyed this one, and loved the Duke's mother.

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