Romancing the Duke by Tessa Dare

Romancing the Duke - Tessa Dare

This did have some pretty funny moments, but it often felt like it was at the cost of historical accuracy. 

 

"The threat is coming from inside the house"

 

"Was she planning to skip through the woodlands and meadows, plucking mushroom caps for parasols and letting friendly woodland animals guide her way?"

 

These contemporary references, while funny, pulled me out of the period and made the story less authentic, and therefore less meaningful, for me.


That said, at times the writing could be poetic...

 

"Little potbellied drunkards, those summer raindrops, chortling on their way to earth and crashing open."

 

And at other times heartbreakingly romantic...

 

"You did't kiss me like that was your first kiss.'

'Of course not." she turned and resumed walking. "I kissed you like it would be my last."'

 

"And then, in the space of a second, he understood it. He understood the reason he'd walked this castle every night in the dark. Learning the length and breadth of every room, arch, corridor and stair. It wasn't about regaining his strength...He'd done it all for one purpose: So he could get to her."

 

Unfortunately authenticity is a requirement for me in my historical fiction and in addition to the earlier references, the behavior of the characters didn't feel period appropriate either. Even the whole plot line around the fandom for Ophelia's father's books. Fandom behavior, like it's portrayed in this book, is a very modern concept. I don't think it has any place in the 19th century. 

 

All this being said, at the end of the day the book was entertaining. So for that alone, putting many of my hangups aside, I thought it deserved a 3.5. Just don't go into thinking expecting a realistic portrayal of the time period.