For What It's Worth

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Review: A Duke to Remember (Season for scandal #2) by Kelly bowen




27416037Love takes the stage...

Elise deVries is not what she seems. By night, the actress captivates London theatergoers with her chameleon-like ability to slip inside her characters. By day, she uses her mastery of disguise to work undercover for Chegarre & Associates, an elite agency known for its discreet handling of indelicate scandals. But when Elise is tasked with locating the missing Duke of Ashland, she finds herself center stage in a real-life drama.

Noah Ellery left the glamour of the London aristocracy to pursue a simpler life in the country. He's managed to avoid any complications or entanglements—that is, until he lays eyes on Elise and realizes there's more to this beautiful woman than meets the eye. But when Elise reveals her real identity—and her true feelings for him—the runaway duke must confront the past he left behind . . . to keep the woman he loves forever. ~
Goodreads

Source: ARC provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review

Review:

Scandal, intrigue, romance! What’s not to love with this series?

Elise deVries is a partner with her brother Alexander and  Ivory Moore (the heroine of book #1, Duke of My Heart) in Chegarre & Associates. A master of disguise, it’s Elise’s job is to discreetly help the elite disentangle from their various scandals. One day she could be a ravishing French socialite – the next a bumbling male Doctor. Her latest assignment is on behalf of Lady Abigail Ellery. Her brother Noah has been missing, and presumed dead, for over 20 years. After their father dies, a cousin tries to take over the family estate, committing Abigail’s mother to Bedlam subjecting her to horrific abuse. To save the family, Elise needs to prove that Noah is alive and bring him home to claim his rightful spot as the Duke of Ashland.

Noah, has no intention of going back home to save anyone – least of all his mother – after their treatment of him as a child. His willpower is shaken after he meets Elise and starts to see that facing his demons might help make him whole again.

I loved how the romance between Elise and Noah played out. This isn’t one of those stories where you *think* the parents were awful but it was some weird misunderstanding and everyone reunites, happily ever after, the end. Noah’s parents were awful and Elise respects Noah’s pain. She does want Noah to go home and free his mother because she thinks the conditions are cruel and because she thinks it will give Noah closure but she never forces him to do anything or diminish his feelings about his past.

This was a really lovely story about two forthright and mature people who struggle to do the right thing vs. what feels safe for their hearts.

The ending was perfect. Elise and Noah get their HEA but not everything with Noah’s family is wrapped up in a tidy bow. And that’s how it should be. Things were very bleak for him – and his story actually gives insight to another recurring character in the series – that I hope gets his own book soon.

I highly recommend any of Bowen’s novels if you’re looking for mature, complex character’s (especially her heroines!) and stories that pack a punch beyond even the romance.

24 comments:

  1. I like that it's not all wrapped up..makes me wonder what is wrong with the family

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  2. This sounds like a fun concept. I could use a good romance book about now!
    Jen @ YA Romantics

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    1. I likes the mature characters in this one. I feel like I could believe in their romance more. It wasn't just lust.

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  3. I used to devour this sub genre in high school..haven't read many lately but this sounds good :)

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    1. I dabble. I can't read a lot of them but they're a nice palette cleanser for me.

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  4. I liked this one, but didn't love it.

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    1. That's too bad. Did you love the first one?

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  5. Still haven't tried my hand at historical romance. I picked up an Amanda Quick one this past weekend, though. Looking forward to reading something in this genre, finally!

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    1. I don't read a lot of the genre and I tend to like the ones with feisty heroines who go against the rules and lots of humor.

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  6. There's one aspect you can always rely on, bodice rippers never fail to deliver that happily ever after. I actually buy these for my dear old mum, who's an avid Mills & Boon reader but have browsed through a few and they're a little bit saucy too. I'll be adding this to the shopping list for the next lot I buy her. Wonderful review Karen and hopefully they extend the series and explore more characters <3

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    1. Yeah the romance is solid HEA. The family aspect for Noah is resolved - just not neatly. But I think that's right for this situation.

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  7. Can I just please say how much I ALWAYS adore your pictures?? (The ones on your sidebar) Legit, EVERY TIME I visit your lovely blog, I immediately look and see if you have anything new posted, AND YOU DO. JUST. AMAZEBALLS! And as far as the book, all of the scandal and romance definitely has me intruiged! <3 Because, what the heck more can you ask for??

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    1. Ha! Thank you. A silly mix of food, flowers and pets lol

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  8. Good to read that the characters were mature individuals, that the stories pack a punch.

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    1. I really like her books. The characters are complex and the heroines are kind of going against the grain.

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  9. oh I just loved your review on this. I do want to read this but a couple of her books I have read felt too contemporary and not historical. Did this one have that? or was it more HR?

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    1. Oooh I'm probably the wrong person to ask about that. I don't read much HR and the ones I do like tend to NOT involve society rules and all that.

      I'll say that this is more contemp?? Mostly because the majority takes place away from society and the ton etc.

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  10. I need to read more Historical Romance, will have to check out this author :D

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    1. She has a few fun novellas. That's how I was introduced to her.

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  11. You know that you shouldn't have puppy pics on the sidebar that make me go to instagram and look at all the sweetness there. :) *woof*

    Now the book also captures my attention and I can deal with a messy ending as long as it IS and HEA. I'm good with that. :) I do love the sound of the characters here.

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  12. I'm in a slump, but maybe histrom will bring me back to life. I need some good lovin' in my life right now even if it's fiction! lol

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  13. The mature and complex characters sounds like a win to me

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  14. Ahhh and now I'm really bummed I had my reader ADD moments and got behind and had to skip this one. Gah!

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