Desperately Seeking Seduction by Heather Boyd

Desperately Seeking SeductionDesperately Seeking Seduction by Heather Boyd

Tracy’s rating: 4.5 of 5 stars

Series: Scandalous Brides, #2

Release Date: April 18, 2023

After the death of his father, the Duke of Ravenswood, Lord Stratford Sweet is on his way home to Ravensworth Palace to meet with his brothers and figure out the state of the dukedom. He is already running late (as usual) when his valet is injured and he is forced to take on a replacement, Dane Winston. A man who seems oddly familiar, but for the life of him, Stratford cannot figure out why. When they finally arrive at Ravensworth Palace, he leaves Winston to settle in and finds his brothers, Algernon, the new duke, Lord Nash, the spare, and Lord Jasper, the rake and only a year older than Stratford. It is then that he learns that the dukedom is mired in debt and that his brothers have promised Algernon their personal fortunes to help bail him out. While giving up his newly inherited estate is hard, he will gladly give it up to help his eldest brother, it is the shock of learning about his father’s mismanagement that is harder to accept and something the brothers want to keep under wraps as long as possible, especially from the family. But even this information pales in comparison to learning that his new valet is not the man he assumed he was because she is not a man at all!

Dane Winston has spent her life living a lie, first to protect her mother and then to protect herself. Her mother lied to her father, telling him she gave birth to a boy and forced Dane to play the part of their son but when her lie is exposed her mother takes Dane and they run for their lives, sadly her mother is killed when their coach goes off a bridge, but Dane swims to safety and never looks back. She works in an inn and is thrilled to be given the temporary position of valet to Lord Stratford Sweet, but all too soon he sees through her disguise and opens a whole new world to her. Dane plans to enjoy the short time they have, knowing it can’t last, but when her past catches up with her, will she run or trust Stratford, the man she has fallen in love with to keep her safe? And even if he can, is there any way they can share a future that won’t ruin them?

This is actually the second book I have read recently that used this unusual plot device and surprisingly, the two books couldn’t have been more different! And while they were both enjoyable reads, I felt that this one was a bit easier to believe the ruse because she wasn’t living with her family, she keeps to herself and lives a very small, lonely life – that is until she meets Stratford. The story is filled with lies, secrets, wonderful characters, steamy love scenes, surprising revelations, shocking twists, and finally a very interesting and satisfying HEA! This is the second book in the series, but I believe each title can be read as a standalone title with no problems at all. I enjoyed this story and will be looking forward to 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.*

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Avid reader (and reviewer) of historical romance.

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