Type: Historical Romance
My Copy: Edelweiss
As the daughter of a famed author, Isolde Ophelia Goodnight grew up on tales of brave knights and fair maidens. She never doubted romance would be in her future, too. The storybooks offered endless possibilities.
And as she grew older, Izzy crossed them off. One by one by one.
Ugly duckling turned swan?
Abducted by handsome highwayman?
Rescued from drudgery by charming prince?
No, no, and… Heh.
Now Izzy’s given up yearning for romance. She’ll settle for a roof over her head. What fairy tales are left over for an impoverished twenty-six year-old woman who’s never even been kissed?
I have never read a Tessa Dare book I did not thoroughly enjoy and Romancing the Duke is no exception. I found myself engrossed in this book not wanting to put it down. I love how Ms. Dare writes heroes and heroines that are both strong and intelligent yet vulnerable, and we can’t forget the humor, all to create engaging characters.
Isolde Ophelia Goodnight (Izzy) is alone and broke in the world, and although her lot in life seems hopeless she still believes in the goodness of life, and when she receives a letter about a bequest she is excited to see what the future holds. When she arrives at Gostley Castle, a crumbling heap, the only person to greet her is Ranson, the Duke of Rothbury, a gruff man that wants nothing to do with her. Much to Ranson’s dismay he seems to be stuck with her, as it turns out the castle has been given to her by her godfather, the Earl of Lynsforth who is gifting castles to all his goddaughters.
Ranson has been wallowing in his pity with only Duncan his man servant and his dog Magnus since he was injured several months ago. The last thing he needs in his life is a woman with more problems than he has, or maybe it could be the best thing that ever happened to him. They strike a bargain; they will both stay in the castle and try to find the answers as to who has been trying to ruin Ranson’s life.
Izzy is well known throughout the country, her father wrote a popular series of stories called The Goodnight Tales featuring her on many adventures. Some of the most hilarious parts of the story are when her fans find out she is living in the castle, they come from all over to meet her, and Ranson is astounded yet realizes that those that love Izzy may be helpful as they must defend Ranson from his detractors.
I absolutely adore this book and I am so glad Ms. Dare is creating a new series for all to look forward to. As usual I was captivated from the beginning, she swoons in front of Ranson and he has to carry her in to his huge wreck of a castle and the fun starts. Izzy is so likeable, she has nothing to her name except a fairy tale dream that many people love, yet she is optimistic and happy and I love how she just meets every challenge with her head held high and shoulders back. Oh those Moranglians, your typical fan club that she accepts with open arms even with all their quirkiness; and I had to laugh at the description of their armor and costumes.
What to say about Ranson, what a hero. He did everything to push her away yet you know that he really did not want her to go. He suffers in his darkness but when Izzy comes into his life, he starts to believe again. They are perfectly matched and I love how they banter back and forth with dialog that is interesting and entertaining. The romance between them is so sweet and I love how he treats her, as no else has ever treated her, a woman instead of a little girl and I enjoy when he gains a lot of insight about her when he hears The Goodnight Tales.
The plot is fast paced and kept me interested until the end as Ranson and Izzy unearth who is trying to thwart him and I like that there were several surprises that I did not see coming. The writing is humorous, witty and entertaining and I am looking forward to learning more about the Castles Ever After sequels. I recommend this delightful book for anyone who enjoys romance with humor, witty dialog and an original storyline.
I give Romancing The Duke by Tessa Dare 4.5 stars!