No Other Duke Will Do by Grace Burrowes
Series: Windham Brides #3
Publication Date: November 7th 2017
Genres: Historical Romance
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Julian St. David, Duke of Haverford, is barely keeping his head above water in a sea of inherited debts. Though he has a long-term plan to restore the family finances, his sister has a much faster solution: host a house party for London's single young ladies and find Julian a wealthy bride.
Elizabeth Windham has no interest in marriage, but a recent scandal has forced her hand. As much as she'd rather be reading Shakespeare than husband-hunting, she has to admit she's impressed by Julian's protective instincts, broad shoulders, and, of course, his vast library.
As the two spend more time together, their attraction is overwhelming, unexpected... and absolutely impossible. With meddling siblings, the threat of financial ruin, and gossips lurking behind every potted palm, will they find true love or true disaster?
Julian is a duke but poor as a church mouse. His father, grand-father and great-grandfather had spent the family fortunes on books. Books! He finds himself hating books and all the many libraries in his home! He just wishes they would have invested in something that would have brought in an income instead of throwing them into possible poverty. He is barely hanging on financially and has been cutting costs whenever possible. His sister, not realizing how much a house party costs, nor how dire the family’s financial problem are, plans one and invites a ton of eligible ladies and their chaperones. Of course Julian doesn’t want the house party but if his sister’s going to invite eligible ladies then Julian is going to invite eligible bachelors for his sister. In the end the amount of people who show up at Julian’s is astounding. Not only that but the party is three weeks long!
Elizabeth is a spinster who is there for her sister. She never imagines that she’ll meet the duke and actually like him. She does, though, and loves his incredibly stocked libraries as well. Elizabeth has a bit of money in her dowry, but nothing like what Julian needs to save his family. While Julian becomes more entranced by Elizabeth every day, and they soon begin a physical relationship, they both know that Julian must marry for money. It breaks their hearts but those are the facts. They decide to enjoy the time they have together and try to ignore their breaking hearts.
This was a wonderful story. I very much enjoyed reading about Elizabeth and Julian and their relationship. How they got together, where it went, the ease of their friendship – it was lovely. I also thought that the whole book situation with Julian was quite novel (snort) and I enjoyed the premise of the book.
The secondary characters were almost as intriguing as the H/h. The villain, Radnor, was a bit of a bastard and needed someone to teach him some honor. Elizabeth’s sister, Glenys, was a crack up and made me laugh. And then there was Julian’s brother, Griffin, who almost stole the show. He was developmentally delayed but his interactions with Elizabeth as well as those in his household warmed my heart. He was such a good person. Burrowes did a great job writing him.
Overall this was a great book and one I’d recommend. I haven’t read the first two books in this series but this one stands alone so don’t feel you need to read those in order to pick this one up.
Rating: 4 out of 5