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This Duke is Mine

He is a duke in search of a perfect bride.

She is a lady—but a long way from perfect.

Tarquin, the powerful Duke of Sconce, knows perfectly well that the decorous and fashionably slender Georgiana Lytton will make him a proper duchess. So why can't he stop thinking about her twin sister, the curvy, headstrong, and altogether unconventional Olivia? Not only is Olivia betrothed to another man, but their improper, albeit intoxicating, flirtation makes her unsuitability all the more clear.

Determined to make a perfect match, he methodically cuts Olivia from his thoughts, allowing logic and duty to triumph over passion…Until, in his darkest hour, Quin begins to question whether perfection has anything to do with love.

To win Olivia's hand he would have to give up all the beliefs he holds most dear, and surrender heart, body and soul…

Unless it's already too late.

Don't miss a new version of The Princess & the Pea, asking an age-old question: What is a perfect princess?

Topics: Regency Era, England, Steamy, Twins, Scandal, Royalty, and Retellings

Published: HarperCollins on
ISBN: 9780062096364
List price: $6.99
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:) The story is okay...a bit long-winded at times, but overall okay. more
Very sweet, with interesting relationships, but a bit sillier than I prefer. Also, at the end I completely missed how encountering French soldiers went from "dire" to "one duke can do whatever he wants, even in France".more
Another humorous retelling of a classic fairy-tale. This time the story is 'Princess and the pea'. All of the elements are here: the test for the perfect bride conducted by prince's mother and of course big pile of mattresses. Although, Eloisa James gave a lot of unique twists to the story.
I love the little details, especially allusions to the modern times. Like Justin Fievbre, cute young french noble with a beautiful singing voice that all the girl loves. :Dmore
It was fun. I enjoyed the heroine's love of limericks. Who doesn't like a good limerick?more
Definitely my favorite of James's Fairy Tales books so far...maybe because the relationship between Olivia and Georgie reminds me at times of Elinor and Marianne in Sense and Sensibility? The way the mattresses were worked into the story was really clever and cute. My only complaint--and it's not much of one, as it's not the story's fault--is that the cover model is not at all what I would call overly "curvy". I have a hard time believing that people would publicly tell that girl that she needed to lose weight....more
The Duke is Mine
4 Stars

Warning: This review contains spoilers as it is impossible to express my appreciation for the romance and characters without them

As with the other books in this series, it is necessary in The Duke is Mine to see beyond surface appearances.

Olivia initially comes across as spoiled and hateful, and many reviewers despise and condemn her treatment of the mentally disabled Rupert. This is ultimately revealed to be a harsh and incorrect assessment of her character. Once Olivia learns of the reasons for Rupert's disability, she becomes his most ardent supporter and by the end of the book is is obvious that she is one of the few characters who actually appreciates his gifts, and is a true and loyal friend to him.

These same reviewers revere Georgie for her intelligence and grace forgetting that she actively participates in ridiculing Rupert and is shown as being preoccupied with appearances and unable to accept people for who they really are.

Tarquin also appears at first to be cold and calculating but he has suffered a terrible betrayal and a crippling loss that makes him afraid to love again. The complaints that he leads Georgie on while lusting after her sister are woefully inaccurate. He is never betrothed to Georgie and makes it clear that he has no intentions of marrying her - it is Olivia who feels guilty about betraying her sister and is willing to give up the love of her life for her sister's happiness. It is to Georgie's credit that she reassures Olivia and convinces her to take a chance at love.

There are, however, a couple of problems with the book. First and foremost is the scene in the library between Olivia and Rupert, which almost made me throw the book against the wall and DNF it. Thankfully, it did not progress in they way I feared and the story turned into an engaging romance.

Second is the unnecessary excursion to France, which is a contrived and idiotic subplot with farcical characters.

In sum, The Duke is Mine is a lovely romance with some intensely emotional and poignant moments. One must approach the story with an open mind and read to the end in order to fully appreciate its message.more
Eh, so I’m not sure what happened to Eloisa James with this book. She says in the dedication that she had to scrap 175 pages of the story and had to re-plot. It makes me shudder to think what she had originally written. To be fair, writing wise this book is pretty good for a romance. I read the ebook and didn’t have a problem with sentence structure, grammar or even formatting. My issues were with the story itself. The heroine was meant to be witty and funny, but most times I thought she was obnoxious, selfish and when dealing with her mentally challenged fiancée- a complete bitch.

We are first introduced to Olivia Lytton in the novella Winning the Wallflowers where she appears as Lucy Towerton’s friend. Olivia had some funny lines so I looked forward to her book. Rupert, her fiancée, was also introduced in Winning the Wallflowers. He had some lines and there was an insinuation that he was a bit slow. It was clear that Olivia did not want to marry Rupert and there were some Mean Girl lines thrown in, but nothing really that set off my alarm bells. It wasn’t until a few chapters into The Duke is Mine that it is explained Rupert’s oxygen was cut off at birth, which led to brain damage thus explaining Olivia’s description of his appearance and behavior. Olivia’s perspective was not flattering and for the most part, was down right mean.

Okay, so I get defenders of this book will probably say we should be sympathetic to Olivia because she’s being forced into a loveless marriage with a younger mentally challenged man. Yes, I get that. It’s a bleak future and I don’t blame her for being bitter about it. But many women of her time entered loveless marriages. They dealt with it and cheated on the side. Plus, it was not Rupert’s fault for being the way he is, so nicknaming him the FF (foolish fiancée), the HH (half-wit husband), the BB (brainless betrothed) or MM (mindless mari or marito) was beyond fucked up and uncalled for. This is just not my brand of humor and should not be condoned even in books. I felt sorry for Rupert because he was stuck marrying the OFG (obnoxious fat girl), had a dick for a father and was looked down upon by society.

Defenders will also say that Olivia’s perspective changes in the end. Mmmm, yeah but I felt like her sympathy came more out of the situation changing in her favor. She never apologized for thinking of him in acronyms and it didn’t seem like there was any real regret in how she treated him all those years. I had a hard time buying that she changed. Anyway, by the end I didn’t have much sympathy nor was I any closer to really liking her.

Apart from Olivia’s treatment of Rupert, I just didn’t like her. She was described as being purposely brash with a taste for naughty limericks as a way to combat her overbearing mom. Mom basically trained both daughters to become wives of Dukes in order to uplift the family status. Mom came off as obsessive and constantly quoted from “The Mirror of Compliments: A Complete Academy for the Attaining unto the Art of Being a Lady” written by the Dowager Duchess of Sconce. The Duchess of Sconce happens to be the hero’s, Quin’s, mother. The scenes where Olivia goes toe to toe with the Duchess and quotes her own book at her were amusing. But that’s where it ended. While at the Duchess’ home Olivia still acted obnoxious even without mom present. It was to the point where her sister had to ask her to tame it down so she could have a chance at marriage. Olivia, being the diva she is, excused her behavior as “only funning.” How selfish is that?

Then as if this story couldn’t get any worse James has Quin fall in love lust with Olivia. Georgie, Olivia’s sister, is supposed to be his marriage prospect, but one look at Olivia and Georgie is thrown to the side…as usual. Quin wasn’t much of a likeable hero either. He was a recluse because of a tragedy he suffered, but there wasn’t much to him besides this tragedy. The romance was more physical than anything because they didn’t have any interests in common. Olivia’s biggest hang up was her body, which she described as fat but was actually full figured. Quin loved to reassure that she was perfect. That seemed to be their only commonality.

What struck me was that Olivia didn’t exactly put a stop to the flirtation. Both Quin and Olivia brought up not wanting to hurt either Georgie or Rupert, but that didn’t stop them from flirting or eventually sleeping with each other. Granted, Georgie realizes that Quin is not for her and gives her consent, but Rupert got played…badly. They both try to make amends by trying to save him in the end, but really it was just too late on all levels.

As for this being a Princess and The Pea spinoff…it’s really just barely a spinoff. The mom is choosing a wife for her son and some mattresses are thrown in for good measure…you know, in case you forget this was supposed to be a spinoff. *rolls eyes* Anyway, this review is way longer than anything I intended to write because there was so much wrong with it. I will say that I liked some of the side characters like The Duchess of Sconce and Lucy, but they weren’t enough to hold this story up. The treatment of Rupert for giggles puts this one on the 1 star list and “needs to be burned” shelf.
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I think this was my first Eloisa James and I was very impressed. I particularly liked that the obstacles thrown in their way weren't silly misunderstandings, but actual full-on obstacles. Improbable romance novel type obstacles, but ones that make sense if you're willing to suspend your disbelief. Looking forward to reading more!more
Loosely--very, very loosely--based on The Princess and the Pea. Olivia and her twin sister Georgiana have been raised to be perfect duchesses. Their father, although merely a gentleman, was boyhood friends with a duke, and their firstborns were promised to each other. Unfortunately, Olivia's prospective husband is an idiot, starved of oxygen at birth. He's a very genial fellow, who wants more than anything to be a hero, but he's hardly the stuff of girlish daydreams. Georgie, meanwhile, is being considered as the bride of another duke, one much more to Olivia's taste. Georgie's duke, meanwhile, falls madly in love with Olivia, who is much too loyal to her sister and her betrothed to even think of betraying either of them.What a tangle!The last bit is waaaaaay too implausible, but it's enjoyable all the same.more
The Duke is Mine is an extremely witty and entertaining novel. I loved it. I enjoyed Olivia's plays with speech, her puns, her sense of humor and the fact that she was not celery thin. Quin I simply fell in love with. Eloisa James, you have done it again and I will say even surpassed what I have come to expect when reading one of your novels. Thank you for sharing your gift with me, anxiously awaiting The Ugly Duchess.more
Received egalley from Net GalleyThe Duke is Mine is a book with many facets. Loosely based on the Princess and the Pea, the heroine, Olivia, has been engaged for years to the intellectually challenged Rupert. Olivia’s mother, who is constantly quoting the Duchess of Scone, would marry Olivia to a warthog if it were a Duke. Olivia’s sister, Georgina, is in the mix to become engaged to Tarquin, the Duke of Scone and son of the know- it- all Duchess. Olivia accompanies her sister on a visit to the Scone estate and when Olivia and Tarquin meet the sparks fly. There are several interesting aspects to this book. I was impressed with how Ms. James handled Rupert’s condition. His portrayal was sympathetic, even when we knew Olivia’s betrothal was not what she wanted. Rupert’s father was also done very well. He and Olivia’s mother were schemers but the Duke was all concern for his son and the future of the family and one felt sorry for him and his suffering over the son who would never measure up.This is a romance novel so it is never a surprise how it will end, but what is in doubt is how the eventual resolution will be handled. The story was masterfully played out in this case. I would have felt bad if anyone was left with a broken heart but that didn’t happen. All of the protagonists were treated with dignity and it made the story so much more enjoyable. This book has it all-romance, pathos, snarky dialogue, steamy love scenes, action sequences, and all of it is wrapped up in a great story. I haven't read the earlier ones in this series but I plan to do so now after reaading this one.more
One of the most freshly characterized romances that I have read in a long time, "The Duke is Mine" is a treat of a read for those who enjoy love stories with a different spin. First, let me say: Brava for the bodacious and curvy heroine! Olivia Lytton has real intelligence and real curves. No wonder "The Duke", Tarquin Brook-Chatfield, finds himself bewitched, bothered, and bewildered--and he wouldn't have it any other way! A widower who all too well serves the family duties his title entails, Quin is taken aback, and taken by storm, when he meets Olivia, the sister of the woman whom his mother has chosen as his perfect second wife. Olivia also is a dutiful daughter to her own family demands, and she places the happiness of her sister above her own needs and desires. However, Quin cannot resist Olivia's lively, lush beauty, and soon they are hopelessly involved and engaged in a reckless passion. Olivia has been promised since childhood to another titled heir, albeit a much younger and weaker man than Quin. How will these two lovers overcome family obligations and societal strictures and reach out to grab all the happiness life can offer? Olivia's combination of wit, warmth, and womanliness melt the frost with which Quin has guarded his heart, and his deep admiration and desire for her makes her feel truly beautiful and appreciated. No one in this story is exactly perfect or perfect-looking--they each have some distinct characteristics which make them appealingly flawed. Even the little dog in the story, Lucy, is no raving beauty, but she has the soul and loving heart of an angel--and she doesn't know how small she really is! "The Duke is Mine" should be yours--you deserve a wonderfully enjoyable romantic read. Review Copy Gratis Amazon Vinemore
Olivia Lytton and all of society know that she is destined to wed the Duke of Canterwick. How is it that she is falling for Duke of Sconce, her sister’s suitor? Even stranger is that the Duke of Sconce, who swore never to fall in love after a disastrous first marriage, returns those feelings. Complicating the issue Olivia’s intended has gone to war to bring Glory to the family name. The story is good, but it is really the secondary characters that carry the tale. The appeal of Olivia and Sconce are dimmed somewhat by her disregard for others and his smugness. It is the Duke of Canterwick and Georgiana, Olivia’s sister, that are really interesting and make you appreciate how there is often more to people than appearances.more
Eloisa James once again explores the world of fairy tales in ‘This Duke Is Mine,’ her version of the princess and the pea.Unfortunately the romance is rather like the fairy tale and encounters a bump or two along the way.Briefly, Olivia Lytton, who has been reared by her parents to be a fitting duchess for the future Duke of Canterwick, leads a far from ideal life. She has been forced to fit an uncomfortable mold in order to marry a man incapable of an adult relationship. The initial chapters setting up this situation made uncomfortable reading. Great suspension of disbelief is required of the reader and, unfortunately, most of the supporting characters are more parodies than viable characters.The author seems to be combining both parody and romance, and it proves an unwieldy mix. Olivia finds a man worthy of her love and lust (this is, after all, a romance), but then he seems to have a mild form of Asperger’s and he’s grieving the loss of his family, and he has an unpleasant domineering mama, and, to be honest, there’s just too many elements here and not enough fun.Then once the lovers have discovered their love and enjoyed their lust, there’s a lengthy digression as our show hits the road to encounter yet more unbelievable characters.James says in her afterward that she had problems writing this novel; I agree. Perhaps the lesson to be learned is that when it’s not working, it’s not working.I wanted this novel to be as light and enjoyable as James is at her best; I’m sure she wanted the same thing. My guess is that we’re both disappointed, but I hope that neither one of us gives up. When she writes another romance, I’ll be on hand.(publisher's review copy)more
Read all 16 reviews

Reviews

>.
:) The story is okay...a bit long-winded at times, but overall okay. more
Very sweet, with interesting relationships, but a bit sillier than I prefer. Also, at the end I completely missed how encountering French soldiers went from "dire" to "one duke can do whatever he wants, even in France".more
Another humorous retelling of a classic fairy-tale. This time the story is 'Princess and the pea'. All of the elements are here: the test for the perfect bride conducted by prince's mother and of course big pile of mattresses. Although, Eloisa James gave a lot of unique twists to the story.
I love the little details, especially allusions to the modern times. Like Justin Fievbre, cute young french noble with a beautiful singing voice that all the girl loves. :Dmore
It was fun. I enjoyed the heroine's love of limericks. Who doesn't like a good limerick?more
Definitely my favorite of James's Fairy Tales books so far...maybe because the relationship between Olivia and Georgie reminds me at times of Elinor and Marianne in Sense and Sensibility? The way the mattresses were worked into the story was really clever and cute. My only complaint--and it's not much of one, as it's not the story's fault--is that the cover model is not at all what I would call overly "curvy". I have a hard time believing that people would publicly tell that girl that she needed to lose weight....more
The Duke is Mine
4 Stars

Warning: This review contains spoilers as it is impossible to express my appreciation for the romance and characters without them

As with the other books in this series, it is necessary in The Duke is Mine to see beyond surface appearances.

Olivia initially comes across as spoiled and hateful, and many reviewers despise and condemn her treatment of the mentally disabled Rupert. This is ultimately revealed to be a harsh and incorrect assessment of her character. Once Olivia learns of the reasons for Rupert's disability, she becomes his most ardent supporter and by the end of the book is is obvious that she is one of the few characters who actually appreciates his gifts, and is a true and loyal friend to him.

These same reviewers revere Georgie for her intelligence and grace forgetting that she actively participates in ridiculing Rupert and is shown as being preoccupied with appearances and unable to accept people for who they really are.

Tarquin also appears at first to be cold and calculating but he has suffered a terrible betrayal and a crippling loss that makes him afraid to love again. The complaints that he leads Georgie on while lusting after her sister are woefully inaccurate. He is never betrothed to Georgie and makes it clear that he has no intentions of marrying her - it is Olivia who feels guilty about betraying her sister and is willing to give up the love of her life for her sister's happiness. It is to Georgie's credit that she reassures Olivia and convinces her to take a chance at love.

There are, however, a couple of problems with the book. First and foremost is the scene in the library between Olivia and Rupert, which almost made me throw the book against the wall and DNF it. Thankfully, it did not progress in they way I feared and the story turned into an engaging romance.

Second is the unnecessary excursion to France, which is a contrived and idiotic subplot with farcical characters.

In sum, The Duke is Mine is a lovely romance with some intensely emotional and poignant moments. One must approach the story with an open mind and read to the end in order to fully appreciate its message.more
Eh, so I’m not sure what happened to Eloisa James with this book. She says in the dedication that she had to scrap 175 pages of the story and had to re-plot. It makes me shudder to think what she had originally written. To be fair, writing wise this book is pretty good for a romance. I read the ebook and didn’t have a problem with sentence structure, grammar or even formatting. My issues were with the story itself. The heroine was meant to be witty and funny, but most times I thought she was obnoxious, selfish and when dealing with her mentally challenged fiancée- a complete bitch.

We are first introduced to Olivia Lytton in the novella Winning the Wallflowers where she appears as Lucy Towerton’s friend. Olivia had some funny lines so I looked forward to her book. Rupert, her fiancée, was also introduced in Winning the Wallflowers. He had some lines and there was an insinuation that he was a bit slow. It was clear that Olivia did not want to marry Rupert and there were some Mean Girl lines thrown in, but nothing really that set off my alarm bells. It wasn’t until a few chapters into The Duke is Mine that it is explained Rupert’s oxygen was cut off at birth, which led to brain damage thus explaining Olivia’s description of his appearance and behavior. Olivia’s perspective was not flattering and for the most part, was down right mean.

Okay, so I get defenders of this book will probably say we should be sympathetic to Olivia because she’s being forced into a loveless marriage with a younger mentally challenged man. Yes, I get that. It’s a bleak future and I don’t blame her for being bitter about it. But many women of her time entered loveless marriages. They dealt with it and cheated on the side. Plus, it was not Rupert’s fault for being the way he is, so nicknaming him the FF (foolish fiancée), the HH (half-wit husband), the BB (brainless betrothed) or MM (mindless mari or marito) was beyond fucked up and uncalled for. This is just not my brand of humor and should not be condoned even in books. I felt sorry for Rupert because he was stuck marrying the OFG (obnoxious fat girl), had a dick for a father and was looked down upon by society.

Defenders will also say that Olivia’s perspective changes in the end. Mmmm, yeah but I felt like her sympathy came more out of the situation changing in her favor. She never apologized for thinking of him in acronyms and it didn’t seem like there was any real regret in how she treated him all those years. I had a hard time buying that she changed. Anyway, by the end I didn’t have much sympathy nor was I any closer to really liking her.

Apart from Olivia’s treatment of Rupert, I just didn’t like her. She was described as being purposely brash with a taste for naughty limericks as a way to combat her overbearing mom. Mom basically trained both daughters to become wives of Dukes in order to uplift the family status. Mom came off as obsessive and constantly quoted from “The Mirror of Compliments: A Complete Academy for the Attaining unto the Art of Being a Lady” written by the Dowager Duchess of Sconce. The Duchess of Sconce happens to be the hero’s, Quin’s, mother. The scenes where Olivia goes toe to toe with the Duchess and quotes her own book at her were amusing. But that’s where it ended. While at the Duchess’ home Olivia still acted obnoxious even without mom present. It was to the point where her sister had to ask her to tame it down so she could have a chance at marriage. Olivia, being the diva she is, excused her behavior as “only funning.” How selfish is that?

Then as if this story couldn’t get any worse James has Quin fall in love lust with Olivia. Georgie, Olivia’s sister, is supposed to be his marriage prospect, but one look at Olivia and Georgie is thrown to the side…as usual. Quin wasn’t much of a likeable hero either. He was a recluse because of a tragedy he suffered, but there wasn’t much to him besides this tragedy. The romance was more physical than anything because they didn’t have any interests in common. Olivia’s biggest hang up was her body, which she described as fat but was actually full figured. Quin loved to reassure that she was perfect. That seemed to be their only commonality.

What struck me was that Olivia didn’t exactly put a stop to the flirtation. Both Quin and Olivia brought up not wanting to hurt either Georgie or Rupert, but that didn’t stop them from flirting or eventually sleeping with each other. Granted, Georgie realizes that Quin is not for her and gives her consent, but Rupert got played…badly. They both try to make amends by trying to save him in the end, but really it was just too late on all levels.

As for this being a Princess and The Pea spinoff…it’s really just barely a spinoff. The mom is choosing a wife for her son and some mattresses are thrown in for good measure…you know, in case you forget this was supposed to be a spinoff. *rolls eyes* Anyway, this review is way longer than anything I intended to write because there was so much wrong with it. I will say that I liked some of the side characters like The Duchess of Sconce and Lucy, but they weren’t enough to hold this story up. The treatment of Rupert for giggles puts this one on the 1 star list and “needs to be burned” shelf.
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I think this was my first Eloisa James and I was very impressed. I particularly liked that the obstacles thrown in their way weren't silly misunderstandings, but actual full-on obstacles. Improbable romance novel type obstacles, but ones that make sense if you're willing to suspend your disbelief. Looking forward to reading more!more
Loosely--very, very loosely--based on The Princess and the Pea. Olivia and her twin sister Georgiana have been raised to be perfect duchesses. Their father, although merely a gentleman, was boyhood friends with a duke, and their firstborns were promised to each other. Unfortunately, Olivia's prospective husband is an idiot, starved of oxygen at birth. He's a very genial fellow, who wants more than anything to be a hero, but he's hardly the stuff of girlish daydreams. Georgie, meanwhile, is being considered as the bride of another duke, one much more to Olivia's taste. Georgie's duke, meanwhile, falls madly in love with Olivia, who is much too loyal to her sister and her betrothed to even think of betraying either of them.What a tangle!The last bit is waaaaaay too implausible, but it's enjoyable all the same.more
The Duke is Mine is an extremely witty and entertaining novel. I loved it. I enjoyed Olivia's plays with speech, her puns, her sense of humor and the fact that she was not celery thin. Quin I simply fell in love with. Eloisa James, you have done it again and I will say even surpassed what I have come to expect when reading one of your novels. Thank you for sharing your gift with me, anxiously awaiting The Ugly Duchess.more
Received egalley from Net GalleyThe Duke is Mine is a book with many facets. Loosely based on the Princess and the Pea, the heroine, Olivia, has been engaged for years to the intellectually challenged Rupert. Olivia’s mother, who is constantly quoting the Duchess of Scone, would marry Olivia to a warthog if it were a Duke. Olivia’s sister, Georgina, is in the mix to become engaged to Tarquin, the Duke of Scone and son of the know- it- all Duchess. Olivia accompanies her sister on a visit to the Scone estate and when Olivia and Tarquin meet the sparks fly. There are several interesting aspects to this book. I was impressed with how Ms. James handled Rupert’s condition. His portrayal was sympathetic, even when we knew Olivia’s betrothal was not what she wanted. Rupert’s father was also done very well. He and Olivia’s mother were schemers but the Duke was all concern for his son and the future of the family and one felt sorry for him and his suffering over the son who would never measure up.This is a romance novel so it is never a surprise how it will end, but what is in doubt is how the eventual resolution will be handled. The story was masterfully played out in this case. I would have felt bad if anyone was left with a broken heart but that didn’t happen. All of the protagonists were treated with dignity and it made the story so much more enjoyable. This book has it all-romance, pathos, snarky dialogue, steamy love scenes, action sequences, and all of it is wrapped up in a great story. I haven't read the earlier ones in this series but I plan to do so now after reaading this one.more
One of the most freshly characterized romances that I have read in a long time, "The Duke is Mine" is a treat of a read for those who enjoy love stories with a different spin. First, let me say: Brava for the bodacious and curvy heroine! Olivia Lytton has real intelligence and real curves. No wonder "The Duke", Tarquin Brook-Chatfield, finds himself bewitched, bothered, and bewildered--and he wouldn't have it any other way! A widower who all too well serves the family duties his title entails, Quin is taken aback, and taken by storm, when he meets Olivia, the sister of the woman whom his mother has chosen as his perfect second wife. Olivia also is a dutiful daughter to her own family demands, and she places the happiness of her sister above her own needs and desires. However, Quin cannot resist Olivia's lively, lush beauty, and soon they are hopelessly involved and engaged in a reckless passion. Olivia has been promised since childhood to another titled heir, albeit a much younger and weaker man than Quin. How will these two lovers overcome family obligations and societal strictures and reach out to grab all the happiness life can offer? Olivia's combination of wit, warmth, and womanliness melt the frost with which Quin has guarded his heart, and his deep admiration and desire for her makes her feel truly beautiful and appreciated. No one in this story is exactly perfect or perfect-looking--they each have some distinct characteristics which make them appealingly flawed. Even the little dog in the story, Lucy, is no raving beauty, but she has the soul and loving heart of an angel--and she doesn't know how small she really is! "The Duke is Mine" should be yours--you deserve a wonderfully enjoyable romantic read. Review Copy Gratis Amazon Vinemore
Olivia Lytton and all of society know that she is destined to wed the Duke of Canterwick. How is it that she is falling for Duke of Sconce, her sister’s suitor? Even stranger is that the Duke of Sconce, who swore never to fall in love after a disastrous first marriage, returns those feelings. Complicating the issue Olivia’s intended has gone to war to bring Glory to the family name. The story is good, but it is really the secondary characters that carry the tale. The appeal of Olivia and Sconce are dimmed somewhat by her disregard for others and his smugness. It is the Duke of Canterwick and Georgiana, Olivia’s sister, that are really interesting and make you appreciate how there is often more to people than appearances.more
Eloisa James once again explores the world of fairy tales in ‘This Duke Is Mine,’ her version of the princess and the pea.Unfortunately the romance is rather like the fairy tale and encounters a bump or two along the way.Briefly, Olivia Lytton, who has been reared by her parents to be a fitting duchess for the future Duke of Canterwick, leads a far from ideal life. She has been forced to fit an uncomfortable mold in order to marry a man incapable of an adult relationship. The initial chapters setting up this situation made uncomfortable reading. Great suspension of disbelief is required of the reader and, unfortunately, most of the supporting characters are more parodies than viable characters.The author seems to be combining both parody and romance, and it proves an unwieldy mix. Olivia finds a man worthy of her love and lust (this is, after all, a romance), but then he seems to have a mild form of Asperger’s and he’s grieving the loss of his family, and he has an unpleasant domineering mama, and, to be honest, there’s just too many elements here and not enough fun.Then once the lovers have discovered their love and enjoyed their lust, there’s a lengthy digression as our show hits the road to encounter yet more unbelievable characters.James says in her afterward that she had problems writing this novel; I agree. Perhaps the lesson to be learned is that when it’s not working, it’s not working.I wanted this novel to be as light and enjoyable as James is at her best; I’m sure she wanted the same thing. My guess is that we’re both disappointed, but I hope that neither one of us gives up. When she writes another romance, I’ll be on hand.(publisher's review copy)more
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