How can she dare to imagine he loves her . . . when all London calls her The Ugly Duchess?
Theodora Saxby is the last woman anyone expects the gorgeous James Ryburn, heir to the Duchy of Ashbrook, to marry. But after a romantic proposal before the prince himself, even practical Theo finds herself convinced of her soon-to-be duke's passion.
Still, the tabloids give the marriage six months.
Theo would have given it a lifetime . . . until she discovers that James desired not her heart, and certainly not her countenance, but her dowry.
Society was shocked by their wedding . . . and is scandalized by their separation.
Now James faces the battle of his life, convincing Theo that he loves the duckling who blossomed into the swan.
And Theo will quickly find that, for a man with the soul of a pirate, All's Fair in Love—and War.
James's fourth fairy tale inspired Regency romance (after The Duke Is Mine) puts an enchanting twist on Hans Christian Andersen's "The Ugly Duckling." James Ryburn, earl of Islay, is forced by his father, the duke of Ashbrook, to marry his best friend, the sweet but notoriously unattractive Theodora Saxby, so her dowry can cover Ashbrook's gambling debts. When Theo overhears her new husband arguing with his father and realizes all they wanted was her money, she demands that Islay leave her and leave England. For almost seven years, Theo doesn't know whether her husband is dead or alive, and she runs her life to suit herself. When Islay returns to England, he is a very different man, and Theo must decide whether to let him into her heart and disrupt her carefully ordered solitary existence. James's patented clever dialogue and complex characters make the unusual situation completely believable from setup to denouement.
This was a great summer read. I read it in a few hours. Great story and easy to get into.
The ugly duchess
I really love this book.
Lovely and reaffirming.