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I love most of Eloisa James’ books. She has a gift for creating believable characters, not only the main hero and heroine, but also the supporting characters as well. This is the sixth in the Wilde’s of Lindow Castle series, and is a prequel filling in the story of how Hugo, Duke of Lindow found happiness with his third wife. It is quite a short story, and I think it was a mistake to pad out the book with a glimpse of chapter 1 from the first of the series and with a short story from Eloisa’s Fairy Tales. I think I would have preferred, as other reviewers have said, for it to have been released as a novella, and maybe not charged £5.99 for it? However, I am giving it five stars because I loved Ophelia as a character, and I loved Hugo. Maybe because as an older reader, the idea of a sexy, handsome older man is more appealing now than it would have been in my twenties. Could it have been longer? Well, when I love a book, I don’t want it to end, so I wish there had been more, but I don’t think Eloisa pads out her plots just to do this unlike a lot of other authors do. The Frost Fair chapters were good, and taught me something about our own history that I hadn’t known. The story drew me in immediately, there was plenty of humour (of course), vignettes of the younger Wilde’s as children and teenagers and poignant glimpses of Horatius as a teenager. I am already missing reading about the family, and have pre-ordered the next in the series. Hopefully by March next year, Covid will be an unhappy memory, and reading that book will be a different experience than in this tier three lockdown. I do recommend this, but read the other books in the series first, otherwise a reader will find this puzzling, like coming into a film halfway through and driving your family mad by asking who that is? Or why are they doing that?
I’ve really enjoyed most of Eloisa James’ novels to date; I think she’s in the top 3 of current writers who specialise in Regency or Georgian romances. I have noticed that there’s a trend of her books getting shorter - however the heft of a novel obviously does not dictate it’s quality or reader experience.
However - The Last Duchess was sold and advertised as a novel not a novella. The details online on Amazon stipulate it is 432 pages. It most assuredly is not. The kindle version doesn’t have pages - which given its exceedingly short length feels purposeful - but I think the books circa 100 pages or so. In fact shorter than many novellas I’ve read.
I’ll be writing to Piakatus the publisher to complain about misrepresentation / incorrect description of the book. It’s priced as a novel, not a novella - with wholly inaccurate page length.
I think that Eloisa James probably has a very committed group of readers - who admire and very much enjoy her usually funny, intelligent and beautifully crafted books. I think releasing The Last Duchess in is current form is a mistake; and almost disrespectful to those who’ve purchased it. It’s been represented disingenuously and the characterisation, plot and overall quality is really weak. Not sure what the author or publisher were thinking - a blot on her previously pretty unmarried copy book.
Never done this before - going to be asking for my money back; and not sure if I’ll be bothered to buy the author’s work in the future.
The story takes up only 62% of the book, and is allowed by an extract from the first episode in the series, which most people who buy this will already own, and one of the fairy tales, which is also likely to have been read already. For this to be sold as full-length novel is unfair. The story itself is a bit thin. It would obviously be predictable in that it is a prequel, but the author could perhaps have made the route to the happy ending a bit more convoluted. The initial choice for a bride made by a grown and experienced man - an obvious plot-device is ridiculous and out of character.
Barely 50% through a somewhat flaccid read and the story ends. I don’t care about the bonus short story in the back, I feel cheated. I thought this book stuffing shenanigans at an end. Sadly, it would appear not. At the very least, it should be made clear by the publisher and Amazon that My Last Duchess is not a full novel!
To charge the price they have for a flimsy, clumsily written story with a plot as thin as the 'book' it so clearly isn't, is outrageous! Author, publisher and Amazon Kindle should be thoroughly ashamed of this misrepresentation. I usually read the reviews before purchasing but didn't in this instance, believing in the reputation of both author and publisher, neither of whom, I'm convinced, must be down to their last farthing to pull such a shabby stunt. Shame.
I gave this a 3 as a lot of The book is filled out with other stories. Call this a novella and charge less? Good story, could be filled with how relationships altered until epilogue. I was left really disappointed. OR say it contains other stories and refund others who had already purchased Storming the Castle.
Dieses Geschichte umfasst gerade mal 148 Seiten!! Dafür diesen Preis zu verlangen ist eine Frechheit! Auch wird er nicht gerechtfertigt, durch die anschließende 2. Geschichte - eine Geschichte, die sicher, die meisten bereits einzeln gekauft haben! Ich bin maßlos enttäuscht - es hätte sich bestimmt gelohnt zu warten auf die nächste KURZGESCHICHTE , um diese dann als Beigabe hinter der ersten veröffentlich zu bekommen!!!! Das war nichts! Auch der Inhalt eher dürftig- aber wie sollte er auch bei nur 148 Seiten sich interessant aufbauen können??!!