Sunday, July 28, 2013
WHAT THE DUKE DESIRES BY SABRINA JEFFRIES
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
What the Duke Desires is a Pocket Books publication. This is a June 2013 release. Many thanks to the publisher and Edelweiss for the ARC copy of this book. Maximilian Cale, The Duke of Lyons, received a note from Tristan Bonnaud explaining that he may have evidence that the Duke's older brother, Peter, is still alive. When the Duke arrives to meet Tristan, Tristan never shows up. Infuriated, The Duke sets out to find Tristan. This leads him to Tristan's sister, Lisette. When the Duke makes demands on Lisette, insisting she reveal to him where her brother might be, she stands her ground. She agrees to help the Duke on the condition she be able to travel with him to France. So, they pretend to be husband and wife and set off for Paris. On the way to France, the Duke and Lisette have many disagreements, but also find they can't keep from kissing each other every chance they get. As they arrive in France and locate Tristan, they find he is working as an investigator and he does indeed have information about Peter. Intrigue sets in when they seek to discover if the man Tristan located is really Max's long lost brother. To make it even more interesting, Lisette and Tristan's evil half brother is hot on their trail, trying to have Tristan arrested for thievery. The differences in classes would normally prevent Lisette and Max from being married. Lisette is the daughter of a Viscount, but her mother was a French actress and they never married. For Max though, he doesn't want to marry anyone he is really in love with due to a family trait he fears he may be afflicted with. The agency that Tristan works for and his boss, Eugene Vidocq, was a real detective agency and a real detective, and he was well ahead of his time when he actually did hire female agents. I really enjoyed this novel. I always like to read historical romances that go off the beaten path of Regency Period rules and society strictures, seasons and so on. This one featured two adults that were willing to put the other first over their own wants and desires. Sure, they have misunderstandings and hurt each other before they are able to resolve the issues that might be keeping them from having the HEA they deserve, but they each have the sense to see past it and forgive each other. This one was a real pleasure to read. I was in a really good mood by the time I turned the last page. Overall a solid A.
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