The Duke Diaries by Sophia Nash (Royal Entourage #3)

bookAvailable: Now Amazon/B&N

Type: Historical Romance

Publisher: Avon

My Copy: Edelweiss

Reviewer: Pam

Six Regency heroes—One royal hangover

After a royal bachelor party of the century, Lady Verity Fitzroy wakes up to find her brother’s archenemy, Rory Lennox, the Duke of Abshire, in her bed. While Rory has always fascinated her, nothing can convince her to marry this rake even though her reputation is in peril. Indeed, there are far graver worries that plague her. If she is unmasked as the author of the infamous Duke Diaries, no one can save her . . . not even the man of her dreams.

Though he has known Verity since she was still in the schoolroom, Rory never imagined her to be such a spitfire! Which only makes the challenge of winning her hand more intriguing. Never mind that he has no interest in a wife. But when this secret war hero discovers the root of Verity’s horrendous troubles, he realizes he must face down his greatest fears not only to save her . . . but to win her hand and her heart.

Lady Verity Fitzroy began writing about life in her journals at thirteen; she would write about her thoughts and what was going on around her. The day she started The Duke Diaries was the day she witnessed the one man she loved, Rory, the Earl of Rutledge with another neighbor girl. Over the next few years she became very good at eavesdropping and writing down some telling tales, especially after her brother’s circle of friends became known as the Royal Entourage and caused havoc around London with Prinny, The Prince Regent.

The most recent chaos the Royal Entourage caused was making headlines all over England. The evening before Verity’s brother, James; the Duke of Candover was to marry Lady Margaret, the group started drinking Absinthe and the entourage got a little crazy. The wedding party was so out of control that the citizens of London have called it outrageous and are not taking it well. So Prinny has called them all together to start damage control, he has told the Dukes they must find brides and gain respectability and has already sent one away.

The morning of “the wedding of the century”, Rory, the Duke of Abshire wakes up to pounding on the door and his former friend James yelling at him because it seems Rory is in bed with his sister, Verity. Rory does not remember last night much less going to her room and the fact that James is pounding on the door and not at his own wedding is a troubling sign. Lady Margaret, her family and half of London waited at St George’s for ninety minutes before the Spencer’s whisked her away; there is no hope for making amends.

James is furious and expects Rory to ask for Verity’s hand in marriage; however Verity has a mind of her own and says NO. James is so mad that he tells her that until she says yes she is banished to Boxwood, their country estate to think about it. She is certain that she will never marry someone who could not love her as she does him, and since she has always loved Rory and feels he will never love her back she decides to never marry.

Fourteen years ago Rory and James were best friends however when James’ intended, Catharine falls and dies Rory feels responsible and he knew that James would never forgive him and they have not spoken much since. So even though James knows Rory must marry Verity, he does not like it and may still call him out.

Rory follows her to Derbyshire to persuade her to accept the proposal, a place he has not been back to in fourteen years, he has since been named a Duke and the village is excited to have him return. He is uncertain about staying, as his memories are not happy ones. After many tries Verity finally accepts Rory’s proposal, she will wait until the furor dies down and will end it at the end of the summer and move to a quiet place to live out her life.

Verity is bored at Boxwood and wants something to do to keep her mind off the fact that Rory is here and it also seems that she is missing her diaries and she does not want to think of what could happen if they get into the wrong hands. So when the local teacher has to leave for a while, she takes over teaching the village children. In the meantime her worst fears happen, The Fashionable World, a newspaper out of London starts publishing a weekly excerpt of The Duke Diaries from an anonymous source, and they are very detailed accounts of the exploits of the Royal Entourage. Verity realizes she must go to London to right the wrong and get the diaries back.

This is the third in the Royal Entourage series and although I have really enjoyed them, this was my least favorite. I felt it drag a bit and I never felt the connection between Rory and Verity. I was also confused about the timing and when things happened, I had to backtrack several times to re-read. I love the premise of the series and enjoy the characters so I will definitely continue reading this series and look forward to the next book as I can’t wait to see what Prinny will ask of his royal buddies to make amends toward their behavior.

I give The Duke Diaries by Sophia Nash 3.5 stars!


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