I love mainstream regency romances and was curious as to what this new author could do with two men in love instead. I wasn’t disappointed!
Title: The Duke in Denial
Author: Alexandra Ainsworth
Publisher: Sanguinity Press
My Rating: 4.25 of 5 stars
From the Publisher:
Sebastian Lewis never expected to become a duke. But with the sudden deaths of his cousin and uncle, Sebastian’s position changes. He is determined to fulfill his new responsibilities with grace, even if it means remarrying, and even if the attractions of women, so often lauded by poets, fail to interest him.
Captain William Carlisle, newly returned from India, is elated when he meets Sebastian. Nobody knows of his inclinations, but his harrowing experiences in battle have prompted him to reach for the type of companionship he longs for. He thinks Sebastian might feel an attraction as well, but to his dismay, he discovers that Sebastian is courting his sister Dorothea.
After a semi-arranged engagement and a disconcerting romantic tangle with William, Sebastian escapes London to look after his manor, only to face mysterious thefts, a headless ghost, and the arrival of his fiancée, her brother, and his family. Sebastian’s new estate sits on the south coast, England’s most vulnerable location, and Napoleon has set his sights on conquering the area. Amid this growing turmoil, Sebastian must sort out his feelings for his fiancée’s brother and keep his home safe . . . and determine if he has the courage to reach for his own happiness in the process.
The Duke in Denial was everything I could ask for in a regency romance. A few balls, good banter, some illicit sex and a bit of a mystery. What made this different was that we weren’t rooting for the Lord and his Lady, but for the Lord and his Captain.
I loved that both men were strong and acted like men with out being promiscuous rake-hells. Though there is nothing wrong with a rake-hell or two on occasion, it becomes a bore when all men are portrayed that way. I adored Sebastian! His confusion and desire to do right by Dorthea, even though it hurt him, was endearing. I felt for William and his circumstances, and was glad at how everything played out.
Homosexuality was not accepted at this point in history and I appreciated how Ms. Ainsworth dealt with this issue. It felt real and plausible.
The few faults: the women were not as strong as I would have liked, but did seem typical for the period; and the mystery was a little odd and contrived but was resolved satisfactorily.
Overall, a great debut novel!
I would like to thank Sanguinity Press for providing me with the eARC of this title in exchange for my honest opinion.
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.
Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,
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