02 June 2014

Romancing the Duke (Castles Ever After #1)

“I know. I know. You’re a dangerous ravisher, with brothel bills as long as my arm. Really, I can’t imagine you have any remaining ways to communicate the message, short of stitching ‘A WARNING TO WOMEN’ on your breeches placket. I’m not a ninny. It’s understood. I have not cast you in any chivalric fantasy.”


(Castles Ever After #1)
by Tessa Dare
Published January 2014 by Avon
Adult Romance - Kindle edition, 384p.


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? This one.


ROMANCING THE DUKE is Beauty and the Beast, with a touch of Cinderella, and features two fantastic leads. Izzy grew up on fairytales, and when she unexpectedly inherits a castle, she finds herself in one of her own. After her father's death, she was left without a home or money, so the castle, even if it's not in the best shape, is a welcome bit of luck. Ransom is the duke who has locked himself away in the crumbling estate after an injury, and a lifetime of a lack of love.

Izzy is determined, caring, and she refuses to take no for an answer. She's smart, funny, and you'll root for her right from the start. Ransom, the Duke of Rothbury, is hiding away in his castle after a duel gone wrong. He's grumpy, scarred, and tries to get rid of Izzy as soon as she shows up. He's also handsome and just the right kind of guy for Izzy.

I loved reading along as their relationship developed, and as Izzy fixed up the castle along with her new friend, Abigail. The rest of the characters that pop in and out of the story are entertaining, and do a good job at keeping the story from relying only on whatever's happening between Izzy and Ransom.

ROMANCING THE DUKE is full of sweet moments, features a satisfying twist, and a couple you'll root for throughout the story. I found myself laughing and swooning throughout the book in equal measure. I'm officially in love with this series. (My only regret is that the second book won't be out for months!)

GET THE BOOK: Goodreads | Amazon | IndieBound

"Then she sighed. Just the faintest, softest release of breath. The sound swept through his chest like a hurricane, with the force to topple trees."