Adult Historical Romance

For Love of the Duke (The Heart of a Duke #1) by Christi Caldwel

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Synopsis

After the tragic death of his wife, Jasper, the 8th Duke of Bainbridge buried himself away in the dark cold walls of his home, Castle Blackwood. When he’s coaxed out of his self-imposed exile to attend the amusements of the Frost Fair, his life is irrevocably changed by his fateful meeting with Lady Katherine Adamson. 

With her tight brown ringlets and silly white-ruffled gowns, Lady Katherine Adamson has found her dance card empty for two Seasons. After her father’s passing, Katherine learned the unreliability of men, and is determined to depend on no one, except herself. Until she meets Jasper… 

In a desperate bid to avoid a match arranged by her family, Katherine makes the Duke of Bainbridge a shocking proposition—one that he accepts. 

Only, as Katherine begins to love Jasper, she finds the arrangement agreed upon is not enough. And Jasper is left to decide if protecting his heart is more important than fighting for Katherine’s love.

Personal Thoughts 

This is a new take on the classic Beauty and the Beast. Our Beast, Jasper, the 8th Duke of Bainbridge is rude, callous, standoffish, and a brute. He is known through the ton as the Mad Duke. Even though he is handsome, his personality is a complete Beast. He is physically large in stature which makes him seem like a bear.

Lady Kathryn doesn’t like to rely on others because she knows she cannot count on most people, specifically men. One of her greatest fears is water, because at a young age she almost drowned. Now flash forward almost 10 years later and she is put into a similar predicament; but, thankful a gentlemen jumps to her rescue. Kathryn gratitude is snubbed by the gentleman and she is in utter shock to discover he is the Duke of Bainbridge.

These two run into one another a few times in span of a week, and by the end Kathryn gives the Duke a proposition to save herself and him from the ton and control of her family. Only after the agreement is carried out does she come to learn that the entire situation has back fired on her. How will she ever get herself out of her current quondam?

I wanted to like this story because it has a beauty and the beast vibe. Our two characters encounter one another on multiple occasions in the span of a week. They both have a fondness for Wordsworth’s writing. There were too many things within the story that were difficult for me to be okay with. One being Kathryn allowing the Duke to treat her in such a hostel manner. She is a fiety women, who stands her ground when need be, but she falters a few too many times with the Duke. Kathryn does slap him (which Jasper completely deserves), punch him, and pokes at him, but it just doesn’t seem fitting. Here is a question: How did she learn to defend herself in such a manner? I mean it isn’t like her governess taught her how to fight.

The Duke is tormented over the death of his wife and due to those circumstances he has acted in the manner that he does. I get the tormented soul and wanting to morn in his own self-pity; but, once he meets Kathryn and begins to forget about his deceased wife, the manner in which is all is laid out doesn’t make a great deal of since to me.

They do have great chemistry and their bickering is entertaining. The fact is she falls for the man that only is portrayed in small increments and that can be difficult for anyone.

Over all, the story wasn’t horrible, nor was it my favorite. I give it a 3 hearts. If you can get it for free or don’t care about the .99, then go for it. Otherwise I am not about to fork over a few more dollars for this one. 

Full often wished he that the winds might rage…
When they were silent: far more fondly now
Thank in his earlier season did he love
Tempestuous nights—the conflict and the sounds.
That live in darkness. From his intellect
And from the stillness of abstracted thoughts
He asked respose; and failing oft to win
The peace required, he scanned the laws of light
Amid the roar of torrents, where they send
From hollow cleft up to the clearer air
A cloud of mist that, smitten by the sun,
Varies its rainbow hues, But vainly thus,
And vainly by all other means, he strove
To mitigate the fever of his heart.”
~ Wordsworth

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