The duke gets even

Joanna Shupe

Book - 2023

To escape the shackles of marriage, Nellie Young purposely ruined her reputation a long time ago. Now she dedicates herself to hedonistic pleasures only, like kissing a handsome stranger in the ocean under the moonlight... To save his estate, the proper Duke of Lockwood must marry the perfect bride--wealthy, with an unblemished reputation. While in New York he's the perfect gentleman, and no one knows he's suppressing his darkest desires. The last thing he needs is another scandal. Except Nellie sees through Lockwood's charade, straight to the real man underneath. This uptight duke is far more than he lets on, and she can't resist him. Their secret affair turns scorching, far more than either expected. And when his bea...utiful rebel finds an unconventional cause, Lockwood has to decide if he's willing to sacrifice everything to keep her.

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Love stories
Romance fiction
Historical fiction
New York, NY : Avon Books, an imprint of HarperCollinsPublishers 2023.
Main Author
Joanna Shupe (author)
First edition
Physical Description
372 pages ; 17 cm
Contents unavailable.
Review by Library Journal Review

The long-suffering Duke of Lockwood finally gets his happily-ever-after in the stunning closer to the Gilded Age-set "Fifth Avenue Rebels" series. After being jilted throughout the series on his quest to find a proper heiress to marry so he can save his crumbling estate, Lockwood now finds himself falling in love with the scandalous Nellie Young. Her father is a rich railroad baron, but Nellie doesn't want to marry--especially not someone as stuffy as Lockwood. Except, the wild, pleasure-seeking Nellie soon finds that she and Lockwood are compatible, both in the bedroom (and the ocean, and the pool, and anywhere else they can find) and outside of it. A side plot about Nellie's fight for women's rights makes this historical romance feel even more relevant for modern readers. VERDICT Shupe (The Bride Goes Rogue) shines again, offering what may be the best entry as she ties up what was already an excellent series with a steamy story that showcases well-written characters readers have come to love.--Jenny Kobiela-Mondor

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Review by Kirkus Book Review

A jilted duke finally finds the heiress he needs but not where he expects. Anyone would feel bad for the Duke of Lockwood. Most broke English aristocrats who sail into New York, looking for an heiress who will trade her fortune to be made a duchess, end up with their pick of eligible debutantes. But by now Lockwood has been connected to and then dumped by not one, not two, but three women. (They all ended up engaged to their love matches instead, but still.) At this point, he can't help wondering if it's a coincidence that they're all close friends with Miss Nellie Young and if she's the cause of his misfortune, since they had an amorous midnight encounter by the ocean just before his third engagement fell through. The daughter of a railroad tycoon, her fortune could make her a potential match, but her reputation is checkered, to say the least. Not that she minds--Nellie prefers to be single, free to take lovers when she pleases and to spend her time getting around the Comstock laws to share information about family planning and contraception with other women. As Lockwood begins one last attempt to find a duchess to take home before it's too late to save his family's dukedom, somehow he keeps finding his way back to Nellie instead. Their shared appetite for risky intimacy isn't sated by repeated encounters, and Lockwood realizes that regardless of Nellie's reputation, she's the future duchess he needs--but Nellie isn't willing to give up her freedom. This is a satisfying conclusion to Shupe's Fifth Avenue Rebels series, especially as no reader could fail to feel sympathy for Lockwood by now. The chemistry between Lockwood and Nellie is sizzling; Shupe has outdone herself again in bringing to life the rough-and-ready attraction between her two main characters. The book is also notable for showing a different side of Manhattan, as Nellie's mother was an Irish maid and her family in Hell's Kitchen is central to the story. Historically accurate details, especially surrounding the battle for information about birth control in the 1890s, round out this resonant tale. A strong finish to a strong-willed Gilded Age series. Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.