To Desire A Wicked Duke
Ballantine, Feb 22 2011, $7.99
In 1817 in Richmond, England Tess Blanchard has begun to move passed the death of her fiancé in combat two years ago. However when she and Patrick Hennessy, who has been assigned to keep her safe, kiss, she finds it insipid. Worse her long time adversary, the Duke of Rotham Ian Sutherland catches her and rips her up and down for her scandalous behavior.
Tess’ godmother Lady Wingate stuns her when she insists she marry Sutherland to avoid a scandal; failure to do so means Wingate will withdraw her support financially and titled. Tess reluctantly agrees, but vows their marriage will be in name only as she loathes the arrogant way Sutherland mocks her. However, Ian has other plans for his wife who he protects and mentors in the art of the bedroom. She begins to fall in love with her husband until she uncovers horrible secrets her spouse concealed. Despondent and irate, Tess flees to Sutherland’s Cornwall estate where something otherworldly haunts the castle. Ian follows her hoping his wife will forgive him as he loved her long before they married.
The latest Courtship Wars Regency romance (see To Pleasure A Lady, To Romance a Charming Rogue and To Seduce a Bride) is an enjoyable entry to a fun series. The dysfunctional yet loving lead couple’s behavior towards each other mirrors that of the stars of To Tame a Dangerous Lord. However, the entertaining story line is made fresh by a mutual third party and the haunting. Filled with secrets, misunderstandings and distrust, To Desire A Wicked Duke is an entertaining historical.