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A fast fun, too short read of how the patriarch of the Wilde family meets, woos and marries his third and last duchess. The book also includes the novella Storming the Castle, which I've reviewed separately. Included in the publication My Last Duchess. Philippa has been expected to marry the baronet's son, Rodney, since she was seven. Both of there now deceased mothers expected it, both of their fathers expected it and their entire village expected it. And now that she's given him her virginity, she is absolutely sure that is not what she wants, too bad she hadn't made that decision 24 hours previously. So, Philippa decides that running away is the solution. Having heard that the baby at the nearby castle cries all the time requires a nursemaid, Philippa decides to apply for the job. The castle's occupants are a foreign prince, his wife and child and his entourage. Among the entourage is the prince's majordomo, his bastard half-brother, Jonas Berwick (Wick). Philippa diagnoses the baby's problem as extreme colic and over the next month or so, she spends her time walking the floor with a very unhappy baby. Wick spends the late nights walking with her, and they fall in love. Wick realizes her background and decides that he isn't good enough for her. So, when the baby is well, Philippa returns home. The expectation is she'll still marry Rodney, her hope, that Wick realizes his mistake and rescues her from other people's expectations.
This was another wonderfully written story of the Wildes of Lindow Castle series, but this time a prequel about the Wilde children’s parents, Hugo the Duke of Lindow, and Lady Ophelia Astley.
Hugo has loved and lost twice, his first wife was a love match but his second was a disaster. He's now divorced and left with eight children. He's convinced by his sister that he needs a new Duchess. As soon as he sees Ophelia he knows she's the only one for him, she just takes a little more convincing to become his Duchess.
Ophelia and Hugo had great chemistry, passion and lots of witty banter. This was a delight to read.
I liked the brisk pace of this story. The H’s love at first sight required some suspension of disbelief, but since it was fun and easy I went along. I did not give 5 stars due to some editing misses. There are about 5 times in the book where something is said that is incorrect. Including one at the end where the H tells the h “I love you” and then a few pages later saying it again and the response indicates that he has never said that before.
Ordered this for my wife and she enjoyed it. It was a quick easy read and well written. It is a good prequel to this series and fills in a lot of the background story. just wish it was a bit longer. Would have rated it 4.5 stars but rating doesn’t allow for half stars.
I usually love James's work, but this wasn't my cup of tea. I found the hero to be lacking - he's already had a bad marriage, but jumps into declaring love for a lady to whom he hasn't spoken more than a few words? It was just not probable. The whole set up left me cold.
I enjoyed this book. Loved Hugo and Ophelia's story but it was way shorter than I thought considering the size of the book. Most of this story was in the other books in the series. The short story "Storming the Castle" was good and I enjoyed it as well.
The story of My Last Duchess is charming, with amusing characters and a sweetly passionate love story. I’ve enjoyed all the Wilde works and this may be my favorite. I was disappointed when it ended so quickly. My fault, I’m sure, for not reading the fine print.
This was a fantastic story as Eloisa James is a great storyteller. However, the whole book was 150 pages. Pages 150 to 260 were a preview of a previously published book which I already read. That made me sad, hence the 4 stars.