When two childhood sweethearts find themselves together after years apart, does their romance have a chance to be rekindled now that he’s a duke and she’s a governess? Olivia Drake’s new Unlikely Duchesses series begins with The Duke I Once Knew, where first love is always the sweetest...
For years, Abigail Linton devoted herself to caring for her parents and her siblings’ children. Now, eager to create a life of her own, Abby seizes upon a position as a governess on a neighboring estate. Unfortunately, her absentee employer is Maxwell Bryce, the Duke of Rothwell, the notorious rake who once broke her youthful heart. But since he hasn’t set foot on his estate for fifteen years, Abby assumes she’ll never have to lay eyes on him ever again. Then, from out of nowhere, Max appears. He is stunned to come face to face with the girl next door he fell for years ago—before he went away, and she stopped writing to him. . .even though Abby swears that he is the one who left her without a word. Could it be that this spirited, witty spinster has won Max’s heart all over again—and that they may have a second chance at love?
Olivia Drake’s novels are:
“Compelling…filled with intrigue.”—Affaire de Coeur
“Skillful…readers will rejoice.”—RT Book Reviews
Drake (The Scandalous Flirt) delights with this scintillating historical romance series launch. Abby is no longer considered a young gentlewoman; she's approaching her 30th birthday, still unwed. Rather than become a helpmeet for her siblings and their families, she strikes out on her own and takes a post as a governess at Rothwell Court, the ducal estate belonging to her childhood love. Max, Duke of Rothwell, has stayed away from the estate for 15 years, avoiding memories of his mother's death and the ending of his love for Abby. Now an infamous rake, he returns home unexpectedly only to find that she's the new governess for his young sister, Gwendolyn. What follows is an intricate dance with mischievous mistresses, troublesome socialites, and a pair of scorned lovers who both believe themselves to be the injured party. By equal measures endearing and sumptuous, with only a few overly tangled plot threads to its detriment, the novel immerses readers in a beautifully developed world.
Second chance romance, where both main characters have resigned themselves to a life alone on their terms.
Fifteen years ago Maxwell the Duke of Rothwell and Abigail Linton had what they thought was a romance that would last a lifetime. When Max’s father took he and his sister to London after his wife died, their romance ended even with promises of love letters and marriage.
Abby cared for her parents for fifteen years until their death, now with her older siblings fighting for who she must help with next she has decided to apply as governess to Lady Gwendolyn Rothwell.
Max has strived to stay away from his boyhood home, but a case of the Measles at his friends home has sent he and is traveling companions to Rothwell Court. This throws him directly in the path of the one person he has no desire to see, Abby. Max did not know his Aunt hires Abby as Gwen’s governess and will see that she is relieved of her post immediately. Max agrees to let Abby stay on until he and his companions leave and to stay out of his way.
The more time spent in the company of each other the more they realize they just might of wasted fifteen years and what a lonely life they have lead. And just maybe there’s a fine line between love and hate.
Not great, but not terrible
Lots of fill, over explaining, and repetitive information, but the characters and the story weren’t terrible.
4.5 Stars!!! Great book! I loved this book. Max & Abby were cute together. I felt bad for how Abby was basically an unpaid servant to her family! I did roll my eyes at how easily the rift between Max & Abby could have been avoided. It was still a great book! I do wish there was a longer ending & an epilogue. I feel like the story just ended with a lot left to tell. Other than those few things, it was a very entertaining story & I would recommend it to anyone who likes romance, especially historical romance!
*I received this book at no charge from the publisher.*