When girl meets Duke, their marriage breaks all the rules…
Since his return from war, the Duke of Ashbury’s to-do list has been short and anything but sweet: brooding, glowering, menacing London ne’er-do-wells by night. Now there’s a new item on the list. He needs an heir—which means he needs a wife. When Emma Gladstone, a vicar’s daughter turned seamstress, appears in his library wearing a wedding gown, he decides on the spot that she’ll do.
His terms are simple:
- They will be husband and wife by night only.
- No lights, no kissing.
- No questions about his battle scars.
- Last, and most importantly… Once she’s pregnant with his heir, they need never share a bed again.
But Emma is no pushover. She has a few rules of her own:
- They will have dinner together every evening.
- With conversation.
- And unlimited teasing.
- Last, and most importantly… Once she’s seen the man beneath the scars, he can’t stop her from falling in love…
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
Tessa Dare melds Cinderella with Beauty and the Beast in this breathtaking historical fairy tale. Seamstress Emma Gladstone is rescued from poverty by the badly scarred, misanthropic Duke of Ashbury. Their arrangement? She can be his duchess as long as she expects no affection from him—and gives him an heir. The Duchess Deal isn’t a gothic romance, though. Frothy and lighthearted, this novel is brimming with madcap humor and intense passion. We loved how Emma's impetuous nature and gentle teasing slowly draw the "beastly" Ash out from his sullen funk.
Dare's delightful Girl Meets Duke series commencement unites two wounded souls in Regency England, as a duke meets his match in a seamstress. The Duke of Ashbury desperately needs an heir, and he decides to ask seamstress Emma Gladstone to be his wife after she demands payment for his former fianc 's wedding gown. Ashbury admires Emma's pluck and beauty, and hopes that his very businesslike offer of marriage and property will help Emma overlook his scars (which he feels are hideous) long enough to provide him with an heir. But Ashbury doesn't anticipate Emma's ability to stand up to him and insist that they have dinner together and converse. Emma refuses to be intimidated by Ashbury, displaying the confidence and intellectual ability to engage him in lighthearted banter. Their love scenes are both sensuous and alluring. Emma isn't fearful of her own desires and often leaves the duke flummoxed by her willingness to show her love for him. Dare (Do You Want to Start a Scandal) perfectly crafts an ever-present romantic tension that propels the novel swiftly forward to its breathless conclusion.
THis was such a fun and touching romance. You are guaranteed to laugh and even cry through out the book!
Funny, sweet, & sexy
The characters are so likable but still vulnerable and real. The Duke's dry and sarcastic humor is so well balanced while Emma is a strong but kind making them a likable pair with dynamic interactions right from the start. Well written and very enjoyable read.
Charming, funny and touching.
Five full stars, people. I do not do that very often. This is Cinderella and Beauty and the Beast rolled into one entertaining read.
Ash is a scarred, insecure man with a heart of gold, but he's surrounded his heart with hardness to protect himself.
Emma is equally scarred except emotionally and she's strong for surviving it. I loved Emma's determination to overcome every adversity.
There are some truly lol moments of dialogue between the two main characters. There are touching, heartbreaking ones as well. Even the dedication made me chuckle. I truly love this author's sense of humor.
Sex scenes are tasteful and sexy all at once.
Best Tessa Dare book ever, in my opinion.