The Duchess Deal: Girl Meets Duke
By Tessa Dare
Emma Gladstone has gone to the Duke of Ashbury’s home for one reason – to collect payment on a debt she feels she is owed. The Duke can settle the debt, but he wants more out of the deal: Emma will marry him, produce an heir, and ride off into the sunset. Or at least to a small cottage in a nearby village.
Emma is intrigued by the idea that this handsome, wealthy and enticing man would want anything to do with her, the down on her luck daughter of a vicar. Ashbury’s persistence wins Emma over, but it’s not that much of a challenge as Ashbury has already captured Emma’s heart, whether he knows it or not. Ashbury himself is a much tougher nut to crack, however, and his battle scars are deeper than the grievous physical scars he sees in the mirror. Emma is up for the challenge, but Ashbury is unyielding, determined to not let this enchanting woman slip through the slight fissures that are weakening the shell he wears like armor. Emma will have her way, but it won’t be easy!
The Duchess Deal is the inaugural offering in Tessa Dare’s new “Girl Meets Duke” series, and it’s going to be a tough act to follow! The dialogue between Emma and Ashbury is witty and razor sharp, and the pages of the story just melt away as the plot progresses. This couple is interesting, and even better, their relationship is believable. Emma wears away Ashbury’s resistance through being herself; there’s no pretention, and Ashbury’s facade is a false front created out of self-preservation. Dare’s characters have a realness to them, and the bumps along the road to the ending bring out even more of that authenticity. This book is a binge-worthy read, a “don’t bother me, I’m reading” type of romance novel that doesn’t come along often enough. Don’t miss it!
Joyce Greenfield, ReaderToReader.com