A woman accidentally kidnaps a duke in this fabulous Regency romp that Bridgerton author Julia Quinn hails as a "delight."
Chloe Wynchester is completely forgettable—a curse that gives her the ability to blend into any crowd. When the only father she's ever known makes a dying wish for his adopted family of orphans to recover a missing painting, she's the first one her siblings turn to for stealing it back. No one expects that in doing so, she'll also abduct a handsome duke.
Lawrence Gosling, the Duke of Faircliffe, is tortured by his father's mistakes. To repair his estate's ruined reputation, he must wed a highborn heiress. Yet when he finds himself in a carriage being driven hell-for-leather down the cobblestone streets of London by a beautiful woman who refuses to heed his commands, he fears his heart is hers. But how can he sacrifice his family's legacy to follow true love?
"Erica Ridley's love stories are warm, witty and irresistible. I want to be a Wynchester!" —Eloisa James
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
A long con turns to longing in this outrageously fun historical romance. We love an unconventional heroine—and Chloe Wynchester fits that bill to a tee. Adopted by an eccentric nobleman, Chloe and her siblings have developed a unique skill set that includes forgery, pickpocketing, and disguises, which lets them act as benevolent vigilantes protecting those who can’t help themselves. Chloe’s latest con tangles her up with the Duke of Faircliffe—a man struggling with his own role in polite society—and she quickly realizes that the sparks between her and her mark are very real. The Duke Heist reminds us of crime-caper movies like Ocean’s 8. The first book in a new series by Erica Ridley, it’s a refreshing change of pace for Regency fans who are sick of being stuck in ballrooms.
With this entrancing Regency, Ridley (Forever Your Duke) introduces the Wild Wynchesters series, named for a found family of six orphans each with a useful if disreputable talent who were long ago adopted by the late Baron Vanderbean and now live together as adult vigilantes on the fringes of London's polite society. Chloe Wynchester, an accomplished pickpocket able to blend into any setting, is determined to recover a painting stolen from her family by the late Duke of Faircliffe. When she learns that Lawrence Gosling the new duke, who hopes to marry into the money needed to restore his family's honor plans to give the painting to his intended, Chloe infiltrates the woman's social circle to steal it back. But things don't go to plan: the painting is a fake, and Chloe inadvertently abducts Lawrence, thinking his carriage is her getaway vehicle. Lawrence agrees to owe Chloe a favor if she promises not to tarnish his reputation by revealing that they were alone together, and Chloe uses his gratitude to continue hunting for the missing painting but soon learns that behind Lawrence's stuffy fa ade is a man just as intelligent, passionate, and delightfully silly as she is. Their affecting romance is grounded in push and pull, but the real star of the show is the love the Wynchesters have for one another. This lighthearted paean to shunning respectability is a knockout.
The Duke Heist by Erica Ridley
Wow❣️. This new series about the Winchester family consisting of 6 orphans adopted by Baron Vanderbean almost 20 years earlier is Erica Ridley’s latest historical novel. Bean died of smallpox 8 months ago & the family is determined to get their stolen painting back from the new Duke of Faircliffe after his father dies‼️ When the family tries to get the duke to return what is theirs, they are rebuffed. And so Chloe & her sister Tommy visit the Duke’s home with the help of all their siblings & do what they do best - use their skills to steal it back‼️. You have to read the book to find out if Chloe & the Duke develop feelings for each other, do they get the painting back? Ms Ridley is a superb storyteller of heartwarming & sometimes heartbreaking, wonderfully descriptive historical romance❣️ In the case of the Winchesters, the author has infused their antics with LOL abandon. Get your copy of The Duke Heist for a hot romance growing between two characters who find it hard to trust because of their pasts & for the utter joy the siblings find in one another & life in general! You’ll love it & see why I gave it my 5-star rating❣️👏.
Wild and Wonderful
I fell in love with the Wild Wynchesters when I read The Governess Gambit. The prequel set the stage for the series perfectly. We meet all the Wynchester siblings and learn how they came to be a family. When Bean (Baron Vanderbean), their adoptive father dies, the siblings are determined to retrieve a painting stolen from them by the Duke of Faircliffe. The old duke has died in an accident, and they must deal with Lawrence, the new duke. When Chloe accidentally kidnaps him, the adventure begins.
This is a wonderful story with a duke over-obsessed with propriety and the need to marry an heiress, and Chloe Wynchester, the defacto leader of the Wynchester family and a girl whose special gift is to be unnoticed and forgettable. Lawrence is brilliant and influential in Parliament, but completely adrift in social and romantic situations. Chloe uses this to her advantage, a way to get close enough to him to find the painting. Now of course they fall in love. Lawrence still can’t get past his obsession. Maybe a good smack in the back of his head would help. In addition to problems in the romance department, Lawrence discovers a horrible secret about his father.
Twists, turns, secrets, mistakes and misunderstandings, humor, romance, and most importantly acceptance make Chloe and Lawrence’s story engaging and entertaining. Along with our wonderful hero and heroine, the other characters are amazing. The members of the Ladies of Lusty Literature Book Coven are delightful. Great Aunt Wynchester (Tommy) is hilarious. This is a great beginning to what promises to be a fantastic series. I look forward to the next story. The Wynchesters are indeed wild, but more than that they are wonderful!
I received an ARC of this book from the publisher via NetGalley. My review is voluntary.
The con artist and the duke
The con artist and the duke.
Chloe Wynchester is on a mission to retrieve Puck, a painting that has meaning to her band of orphans made a family. She is a chameleon, who is invisible, plain and unseen.
Except, Lawrence, the duke whom she accidentally kidnaps, sees her. First he sees all the layers of her, then to the person underneath. I really enjoyed Lawrence, who is not as he seems.
Fun and a romp, Duke Heist was engaging and well conceived.