Review: The Heiress Gets a Duke by Harper St. George

SYNOPSIS (via Goodreads):

“American heiress August Crenshaw has aspirations. But unlike her peers, it isn’t some stuffy British Lord she wants wrapped around her finger–it’s Crenshaw Iron Works, the family business. When it’s clear that August’s outrageously progressive ways render her unsuitable for a respectable match, her parents offer up her younger sister to the highest entitled bidder instead. This simply will not do. August refuses to leave her sister to the mercy of a loveless marriage.

Evan Sterling, the Duke of Rothschild, has no intention of walking away from the marriage. He’s recently inherited the title only to find his coffers empty, and with countless lives depending on him, he can’t walk away from the fortune a Crenshaw heiress would bring him. But after meeting her fiery sister, he realizes Violet isn’t the heiress he wants. He wants August, and he always gets what he wants.

But August won’t go peacefully to her fate. She decides to show Rothschild that she’s no typical London wallflower. Little does she realize that every stunt she pulls to make him call off the wedding only makes him like her even more.”

REVIEW:

I love a historical romance so when this was an option for an add-on for Book of the Month, I knew I needed to check it out. If you are looking to fill the Bridgerton hole in your heart, this fits nicely.

August is our lead, she is an independent woman who actually takes part in the family business, and has always had a gift for numbers. She has watched her other friends seemingly sold off into marriages with the British aristocracy. When it seems like a similar fate will befall her sister, she feels she must do something to stop it. Except August has caught the eye of that very Duke, and he is very different than any other Duke she has met.

The Heiress Gets a Duke really checks off all of my boxes for a historical romance. August is an incredible heroine, and Evan is swoon-worthy. Their chemistry is off the charts, and their banter is incredible. While it follows the traditional formula of most historical romances there are some touches that really make it stand out. Evan’s relationship with his mother is something that often isn’t found in these novels. While yes of course the Duke has Daddy issues which is a given, he has a wonderful and supportive mother that I really enjoyed reading about. August coming to terms with the fact that her father didn’t actually see her differently, just as an oddity, was hard to read at times. The steam level was great as well.

Overall, I just really loved this book. I couldn’t put it down once I picked it up. If you are in search of a great historical romance, definitely pick up The Heiress Gets a Duke.

RATING: 5/5

Book Hopefuls for June

I am a mood reader. Making a solid TBR is incredibly hard for me. It depends what mood the last book left me in that really decides what I read next. So here’s some books I would love to try and read this month.

The Charm Offensive by Alison Cochrun

This is an ARC that I received recently, and I actually have already started it. It is so good so far, and exactly what I need after a lot of heavy fantasy books. It also is a great book to start off Pride month.

A Vow So Bold & Deadly by Brigid Kemmerer

Hoping to close out this series! I was pretty disappointed by A Heart So Fierce & Broken, but I want to see how Harper’s story ends. This happened to be at my library when I was picking up some holds, so I just had to grab it.

Lore by Alexandra Bracken

This one has been sitting on my TBR for awhile but my library finally had it. I will always check out a book that incorporates mythology in the modern world. I’ve been seeing some mixed reviews for this book, so hopefully I enjoy it.

Hello Girls by Brittany Cavallaro and Emily Henry

I saw this when I was scrolling through Instagram, and I had to check it out. I love Emily Henry, and really enjoyed Muse by Brittany Cavallaro when I read it earlier this year. With a Thelma & Louise type plot, this seemed like a no brainer. It also feels like it would be a great summer read.

The Duke Undone by Joanna Lowell

I’m a sucker for historical romance, so when I saw this sitting in the brand new section of my library I had to grab it. The summary sucked me, and it sounds like it is going to be a quick fun read.

Like always, there will probably be more books added to this as the month goes on. Who knows what I will pick up next? What are you excited to read this month?

Review: To Love & To Loathe by Martha Waters

SYNOPSIS (via Goodreads):

“The widowed Diana, Lady Templeton and Jeremy, Marquess of Willingham are infamous among English high society as much for their sharp-tongued bickering as their flirtation. One evening, an argument at a ball turns into a serious wager: Jeremy will marry within the year or Diana will forfeit one hundred pounds. So shortly after, just before a fortnight-long house party at Elderwild, Jeremy’s country estate, Diana is shocked when Jeremy appears at her home with a very different kind of proposition.

After his latest mistress unfavorably criticized his skills in the bedroom, Jeremy is looking for reassurance, so he has gone to the only woman he trusts to be totally truthful. He suggests that they embark on a brief affair while at the house party—Jeremy can receive an honest critique of his bedroom skills and widowed Diana can use the gossip to signal to other gentlemen that she is interested in taking a lover.

Diana thinks taking him up on his counter-proposal can only help her win her wager. With her in the bedroom and Jeremy’s marriage-minded grandmother, the formidable Dowager Marchioness of Willingham, helping to find suitable matches among the eligible ladies at Elderwild, Diana is confident her victory is assured. But while they’re focused on winning wagers, they stand to lose their own hearts.”

REVIEW:

First off, I would like to thank NetGalley and Atria for the advanced reader copy. All thoughts are my own, and I was given this copy for an honest review.

I was sucked into To Love & To Loathe from the synopsis alone. I honestly love a book where two people don’t realize that they’ve been in love with each other for a while, and they are the last to figure it out. So I was very excited to get to read this early.

This was my first Martha Waters book actually, I haven’t read To Have & To Hoax (but now I might have to go back and do that). I really loved her writing style. This book is easy, breezy, and very binge-able. Jeremy and Diana are obviously the heart of this book and their banter and chemistry are incredible. I also loved the awareness of the misogynistic laws and the ridiculous patriarchal standards by the characters. This is often something that can be forgotten or swept aside in historical romances. This novel is also very sex-positive. Sure it is scandalous in society that Diana might take a lover, but none of her friends or acquaintances hold anything against her. Also, the bedroom conversations that Diana and Jeremy have about how important it is to listen to your partner were incredible and definitely unique to what I normally read.

I did have one big problem with this book, and that problem is a bit spoilery but I will try to be vague. One of the characters is revealed to be gay. When Diana has a conversation and this bit of information is revealed to her, the character asks for secrecy (understandably). Diana, in the next scene, tells her two friends and then later tells another person. She swears them to secrecy as well, but this is not Diana’s information to tell, even if this bit of information helps Diana come to terms with her feelings for Jeremy and thoughts on marrying again. This was one of my only problems with this book, but it did bring down my rating.

Overall, I did really enjoy this book and it definitely makes me interested in Martha Waters’s other novel. If you are looking for a well-written historical romance then you should definitely check out To Love & To Loathe.

RATING: 3/5

Publisher: Atria Books
Publication Date (US): April 6th, 2021
Series: The Regency Vows #2
Format: Paperback
Page Count: 384
Genre: Historical Romance/Romantic Comedy