Narrator: Mary Jane Wells
Series: Girl Meets Duke #1
Published by Harper Audio on August 22, 2017
Genres: Adult, Historical Romance
Length: 7 hours, 56 minutes
Source: Audible Purchase
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…
I was giggle-snorting in the first few minutes of The Duchess Deal. Between Emma’s antics and Ashbury’s reactions to them, I knew I was in for an entertaining romp. Mary Jane Wells once again impressed me with her narrating skill. All in all, this was an aural delight!
Emma Gladstone, a seamstress, has darkened the doorstep of the Duke of Ashbury in order to demand payment for the wedding gown of his former fiancee. Emma is rather in dire straits, as her rent is due and her cupboards are bare. She happens upon the Duke at a serendipitous moment as he’s just determined he’s in need of a wife with a few qualifications. All of which Emma meets – most especially that she’s desperate.
See, the Duke of Ashbury was gravely injured at Waterloo. He was left with severe scarring and he believes no one will willingly become his spouse and he needs a spouse to obtain an heir. He’s made Emma a deal. Become his Duchess, provide an heir, and then their acquaintance can end. However, Ashbury didn’t count on Emma being the one woman who could see him, not his scars. Or that she could win his heart.
Both Emma and Ash have scars. Ash’s are visible while Emma’s are not. Emma was forced to make a life on her own because her father, a vicar, couldn’t forgive her a youthful mistake. Emma is feisty and challenges Ash constantly. Ash loves every moment. Their repartee was so much fun. That they helped mend each other while simultaneously making the other want to be a better person? It was heartwarming. And Ash’s staff – conspiring to have these two fall in love – provided even more entertainment. Emma’s new found friends – unconventional ladies of the ton – only added to my enjoyment.
The Duchess Deal was the perfect listen at the perfect time. Mary Jane Wells breathed life into these characters and delivered the story with aplomb. I so thoroughly delighted in it and can’t wait to read/listen to the next installment of this series.
Reading this book contributed to these challenges: