Say Yes to the Duke: The Wildes of Lindow Castle

Written by Eloisa James
Review by Ray Thompson

1781. As stepdaughter to the Duke of Lindow, Violet Astley does not consider herself a ‘real’ Wilde, despite the fact that the rest of the family most emphatically do. The trouble is that they are tall and brimming with courage and self-confidence, whereas she sees herself as ‘timid, tongue-tied, and fairly useless.’ And short. It is to her, however, rather than her beautiful stepsister, that the Duke of Wynter is drawn. Since she does not take his interest seriously, she relaxes in Devin’s company, revealing her wry sense of humor. And then there are the kisses.

Caught in a passionate embrace, they come under pressure to marry to avoid disgrace. Devin is very willing, but Violet feels inadequate to meet the daunting social challenge of being a duchess. Can he change her mind?

The Wilde family are idealized figures, loving, staunchly supportive of each other, and blithely content to disregard convention. They are, furthermore, an interesting and entertaining brood, especially the redoubtable Lady Knowe, the duke’s twin sister and matriarch of the family. Add Devin’s scapegrace cousin Ottis, and you have a lively cast of characters to balance the presence of a pair of self-righteously disapproving ladies.

Definitely recommended.