Duke Gone Rogue by Christy Carlyle
Tracy’s rating: 5 of 5 stars
Series: Love on Holiday, #1
Release Date: December 28, 2021
Madeline Ravenwood and William Hart, the Duke of Ashmore met quite by chance in Lady Trenmere’s conservatory, when she witnessed his fiancée jilting him. The woman was angry at Will and threw her betrothal ring at him while telling him how heartless he is. Madeline tried to escape unseen, but Will stopped her. In just a few moments, Madeline came to the realization that the jilted man was not only the most handsome man she had ever met, and he is definitely not heartless. Too bad she is returning to Cornwall in the morning and would most likely never see him again.
Months later, Will’s sisters convince him to take a holiday to Carnwyth, one of the properties his father purchased and was known for wild parties. Will has spent every moment since his father’s death trying to uncover his father’s misdeeds and set them to right, it has given him a reputation as heartless and glum, not to mention has caused more than one noble to worry about what sins Will uncover and reveal about them. It was that digging that caused his fiancée to dump him. At first, he resists, not wanting to miss his youngest sister’s engagement ball, but when his sister Cora reveals that several of his former fiancée’s family and friends will be that it would be best if he was not around, he grudgingly agrees to leave. He arrives in Haven Cove and learns almost immediately that his sister didn’t tell him everything he need to know, such as Princess Beatrice was scheduled to visit the town and the arrival of a duke would not go unnoticed!
Madeline has been running her family’s nursery business ever since her father died, and she has all but given up on romance. She keeps herself busy with projects and committees, but her heart isn’t really in it, which makes her feel guilty like she is betraying her father. She has often thought of the man she met in London, so when she realizes that the Duke is that man, it sets her heart aflutter and the Princess’s visit gives her the perfect excuse to see him – his house has been neglected and is an eyesore, she needs him to tidy it up before the Princess arrives. But to her surprise, Will is not really willing to fix up the house, that is unless Maddie is willing to help.
This was a well-written, nicely-paced story with wonderful characters. The book doesn’t really have any angst and nothing is keeping our lovers apart, save themselves and their desire to see the other happy. For me, it was a delightfully light, uncomplicated read filled with great characters, instant attraction, kitten infestations, carousel rides, flowers, royal visits, well-meaning siblings, bunting, steamyish love scenes, and finally a very sweet ending complete with a HEA and an epilogue. This is the first book in a new series which I am happy to recommend and will impatiently await the next installment!.
*I am voluntarily leaving a review for an eARC that I requested and was provided to me by the publisher. All opinions in this review are my own.*