THE DAY OF THE DUCHESS – Sarah MacLean
Scandal and Scoundrel, Book 3
England, 1833 to 1836
THE DAY OF THE DUCHESS begins near the end of the story, so you must pay attention to the chapter headings that tell you the dates as the tale moves back and forth several times between the present and the past and from place to place. Don't let this warning turn you off, however, because it's most enthralling. The characters are unique, complex individuals. If you have read THE ROGUE NOT TAKEN, you have met the hero who shouldn't be judged solely on the scene portrayed in that book; he's suffered aplenty because of it. You would also have met the five “Dangerous Daughters” of the coal magnate who bought himself a title. Why the Dangerous Daughters sobriquet? Because society judges them to be out to trap themselves titled husbands. In fact, that is more or less what the heroine does in this new book. But here again, do not judge too harshly.
So, what is this story all about? To follow true to the alliterative name calling, our hero is the “Deserted Duke” i.e. Malcolm Bevingstoke, Duke of Haven, while our heroine is the “Disappeared Duchess” or Seraphina, Duchess of Haven. Not long after their hasty marriage, Sera vanished from England. Now, two years and seven months later, she is back and wanting a divorce. He's not keen on granting her one, but he needs an heir. If she will help him find a bride, he will give her the divorce. Ah, but that is not going to be as simple as it may sound.
The fun of this novel is in the back and forth between the two central characters as well as the quirky interactions of others. And romance? There is more than enough of love and love-making to satisfy any reader.
THE DAY OF THE DUCHESS is not a quick or fast read; plan plenty of time for it.