The Duke Who Loved Me (The Duke’s Estates, 1)
This is the first in a new series of Regency romances, The Duke’s Estates, by Jane Ashford. It is a sparkling example of Regency-era romance and courtship rituals that is impossible to put down, a humorous tale of a love story that was not supposed to happen. The dialogue is witty and the characters engaging. It is a battle of the sexes between the new Duke of Tereford, James Cantrell, and Cecelia Vainsmede, longtime business liaison for his family’s affairs.
James is tired of ambitious mothers pushing their daughters at him and resolves that a sensible marriage arrangement with Cecelia would help him sort out his father’s estate. But Cecelia, who has long admired James, refuses to be part of an “arrangement.” What follows is James’s attempt to convince Cecelia of the suitability of their marriage. Only when a German prince arrives in London, and begins wooing Cecelia, is James forced to confront his true feelings of love for her.
The story crackles with clever dialogue and humorous scenes that leave the reader eagerly awaiting the next book.