Never Desire A Duke by Lily Dalton (One Scandalous Season #1)

17333845Available: Now Amazon/B&N

Type: Historical Romance

Publisher: Forever Romance

My Copy: Sent

Reviewer: Pam

A Marriage Beyond Hope

Lady Sophia has long been estranged from her husband, Lord Vane Barwick, the Marquess of Claxton, whose rumored list of amorous conquests includes almost every beautiful woman of the ton. Yet a shocking encounter with him in a crowded ballroom—and a single touch—are all it takes to reawaken her furious passion for him. But how can she trust the man who crushed her dreams and took away the one thing she wanted most?

A Love Beyond Reason

Lord Claxton has never forgiven himself for the youthful mistake that ruined his marriage to Lady Sophia. Now, after nearly a year abroad, the reformed rogue vows to win back the only woman he’s ever truly loved. He’ll do whatever it takes to prove he can be the honorable husband she deserves—and the passionate lover she desires. As the snowdrifts deepen outside their ancestral home, can they rekindle the flame that burned so bright and find a new path to forever?

This is an emotional story full of regrets, humor and romance as a couple with a marriage in turmoil must make some decisions about their future in an age where many do not have options. I really enjoy the journey Ms. Dalton takes us on with engaging characters and an emotional story set at Christmas time to put you in the holiday spirit.

Several months ago Sophia read a letter addressed to her husband, she was so distraught that she fell and lost her baby. Vane, the Duke of Claxton left soon after as he was incapable of dealing with his wife’s grief. He took a foreign appointment away from his home and their infrequent correspondence did not say when he would return. Sophia was spending Christmas in London because her grandfather was ill and could not travel long distances. Much to her dismay at her grandfather’s birthday party her husband decides to return home. Although now she can at least go on with her plans and ask him for a legal separation, as soon as she has another child.

Vane has no plans to give her a separation, he knows that even though he walked away from her once, he will never walk away again. He wants their marriage back and will do anything to make it work. When Sophia and Vane get stranded in a nearby village and his brother is along causing trouble, the story turns humorous and we cheer for the couple to find love again, yet life is never that easy.

I really enjoyed this story, the first in a new series by a new author and I will definitely be looking for the next book. The beginning is heartbreaking as we get to know Sophia and feel her pain with losing the child and her husband leaving. I like Sophia, she is a strong woman with limits as to what she can do with her life, she wants to move on but would also love another child. I did find her stubbornness to be a bit trying at times, she would not back down and in the end it got her in trouble, and there was that damn list. Vane had his own demons, he had a terrible upbringing and found it very hard to share grief and speak of love. I felt the author does a great job of showing the type of person he is, strong yet emotionally blocked, you could tell how sorry he is, still pride can get in the way. The chemistry between the two works well and there are some steamy scenes and fun romantic times shared.

I absolutely loved when they were in at Camellia House, their place in the country. The game they played called lookabout was wonderful, you could see them falling in love all over again as they found clues and worked with the villagers. The antics with his brother and Lord and Lady Meltenbourne are entertaining and I laughed at several scenes. I love the Christmas setting and enjoy the holiday feeling throughout the story. I recommend this heartbreaking, heartwarming historical and look forward to the next one which I believe is about one of Sophia’s sisters.

I give Never Desire a Duke by Lily Dalton 4 stars!

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