Review: What I Did For a Duke by Julie Anne Long

Friday, June 10

Author:  Julie Anne Long
Genre:   Historical Romance  
Publisher:  Avon Romance
Format:  E-Book, Mass Market Paperback
Date/Year:   March 2011
Reviewed by:  DD

*This book was purchased by the reviewer for her own reading enjoyment.

Summary from the publisher:

For years, he's been an object of fear, fascination . . . and fantasy. But of all the wicked rumors that shadow the formidable Alexander Moncrieffe, Duke of Falconbridge, the ton knows one thing for certain: only fools dare cross him. And when Ian Eversea does just that, Moncrieffe knows the perfect revenge: he'll seduce Ian's innocent sister, Genevieve—the only Eversea as yet untouched by scandal. First he'll capture her heart . . . and then he'll break it.

But everything about Genevieve is unexpected: the passion simmering beneath her cool control, the sharp wit tempered by gentleness . . . And though Genevieve has heard the whispers about the duke's dark past, and knows she trifles with him at her peril, one incendiary kiss tempts her deeper into a world of extraordinary sensuality. Until Genevieve is faced with a fateful choice . . . is there anything she won't do for a duke?

My Musings:

First of all, let me share that I am not a fan of historical romances. I find them to be highly annoying. Everyone cares about the ton, social hierarchy, Dukes, Duchesses, the ruining of women, ripping bodices, scandals (that aren’t really scandals in today’s world), matriarchs whom have appeared to suck lemons since the beginning of time, high tea, ridiculous book covers, blah blah blah ad nauseum. It just seems all so silly to me, so it’s hard to put myself in that time frame and imagine what it was really like.

That being said, for the very few (3 actually) historicals I have read, this is an excellent book. And yes, it’s even very good compared to the hundreds of contemporaries I’ve read as well. 

I thoroughly enjoyed Alexander Moncrieffe from the first page.  He is a Duke (aren’t they all?) kind of a rogue and pseudo-deviant (which I love in any time period) and quite cute and witty even within his own thoughts. He appears very hoity-toity, but from his inner dialogue we know that he isn’t. Lucky for us, since he is a character in a book, we are privy to his thoughts.  Don’t you just love books? Anyhoo, he catches his fiancé in a compromising position (she is busy ruining) with a complete moron named Ian Eversea.

Moncrieffe is hell bent on revenge when this happens.  Not because he feels as though his true love betrayed him, but because he was betrayed at all.  Oh how he hates for anyone to get over on him. His fierce sense of pride takes over and he comes up with a plan. To seduce Eversea’s innocent, plain, and pure sister; Genevieve Eversea. So basically, he calls upon the Everseas and they invite him to their house party. Whether they want him there or not, No one, even the richer-than-sin Everseas will turn him down, well, because he is a Duke. It is apparently a privilege to entertain him.  Ian is of course beside himself, thinking he is going to get a sneak attack from Moncreiffe. He is constantly looking over his shoulder. It’s hilarious, because he deserves it.

Little does the Duke know that Miss Genevieve is in luuurrrrvvveeee with an even bigger idiot than her brother. Mr. Tall Dark and Duke Thinks he’s got her in the bag before he even begins, but it’s not going to be that easy. Genevieve is a lot smarter than her environment and her blasé attitude let on. She has been in love with the dimwitted Harry for as long as she can remember, and she feels as though she is about to embark on an idyllic life with the man of her dreams. After all, signs seem to be pointing to a grand proposal. 

When Harry tells Genevieve he is going to propose to their best friend Lady Millicent, her world shifts and falls apart in a matter of moments. Genny is devastated, and although she can barely breathe, she forces herself to stand straight and not fall apart. Fortunately or Unfortunately, this makes her more vulnerable and open to Moncrieffe’s advances. He gets a dose of humility when he realizes slowly that Genevieve’s strength and fortitude may be what he was looking for all along.

I actually love the Genevieve character in this book. It is pretty rare for me to like a heroine. Usually, I tolerate them, as the story for me is almost always about the hero. Genevieve is super intelligent, humorous, and doesn’t let the Duke treat her like a doormat.  She pointedly jabs at him and his intellect and his elitist personality multiple times, and it’s quite funny when his understandings of her thinly veiled insults are delayed. She foists her contemporary ladies upon him and eavesdrops to his ridiculous pick-up lines as a way to entertain herself out of her depression.  She also is aware of the Duke’s reputation, and enjoys the fear and attraction in their eyes while conversing with him. All the while, she is still trying to decide if she thinks he is even good looking or not. It is a fresh take on the old “you’ve met your match” storyline, and the fact that it is in a historical setting doesn’t really affect their banter to me. If anything, it’s more refined and mature sounding, which is new after reading so many contemporaries. In addition the dialect and language is not overdone, which is great for me. The last thing I want is to drown in period setting mumbo jumbo.

The wonderful thing about this novel is that Moncrieffe at first thinks Genevieve to be rather plain and unremarkable. However, when she smiles, he thinks her beautiful and sees her whole aura change instantly. This keeps happening throughout the book, and every time the Duke is surprised at his own reaction and emotions.  It’s classic romance.

The Love Scenes are fairly warm, and the book would not be the same without them.  It’s an integral part of the story, not just added for effect.  This is a beautiful story and the growing emotions between the two combine seamlessly with the story. Cliché, yes, but the love scenes feel like an expression of Genevieve and Moncrieffe’s feelings for one another. I seem to have read so many books lately that are not novels, but sex scenes with a weak plot thrown in. This is getting way too common in my opinion.

All in all this was a lovely novel. Thanks so much to our Master of Seductive Musings for suggesting it. It is a perfect book to start with if you are not normally into historicals.

Ratings:

Overall:  4.95 Stars.  (It’s not a 5.00 stars because I have a serious problem with the word "arse". It may be period-appropriate but I still think it’s stupid)

Sensuality level: 3.00 (Love Scenes are beautiful and right for the novel, but not scorching.)

For a complete understanding and definition of the ratings at Seductive Musings, click here


Other Reviews:





*I am an Amazon affiliate and receive a small (and I mean very small) referral fee for purchases made using a link on this blog. I don't use Amazon to earn money, I use it because the widgets are cool, easy to use, and serve my purposes to showcase books & such with minimal effort, but most importantly they have great prices and offer both new and used items. As a book addict I love that I can find just about anything I want in one place. If you are going to purchase a featured book anyway, and you know you won't pay more by using the links on this blog than you would by visiting Amazon on your own, I will be eternally grateful for supporting this blog by using the links, and don't forget that the referral fees from your purchases will sponsor the "Reader Rewards" giveaways :)

3 Comments:

Artemis June 10, 2011 at 7:47 AM  

Thank you for such a wonderful review. I enjoy reading historicals and can do without most of today's contemporaries. So your take on this book was very welcome. This has been on the TBB for a while.

Barbara June 10, 2011 at 8:37 AM  

I'm with Artemis, I adore historicals. I can live perfectly fine without ever reading a contemporary. This one was definitely one of my all time favorites.

librarypat June 10, 2011 at 5:07 PM  

As with other genre, there are some really good ones out there. Even if it isn't what you usually read, a good book is a good book. I have been sampling a little of everything lately and finding good and bad in all genre. I happen to like historicals, but read contemporaries, suspense, and paranormal also. There are many good historical romance authors out there. You might try a few more of them, especially if you like their writing in other genres.

I find your comment about sex scenes interesting. I have felt they were getting a bit out of hand and not really adding to the stories. I don't mind them if they are appropriate and add to the story, but lately I have been feeling like a voyeur rather than a reader. You are so right, many books have become "sex scenes with a weak plot thrown in." That is true of books in all genre.

Post a Comment

Related Posts with Thumbnails

Post Archives

Labels

1 star 2 stars 3 stars 4 stars 5 stars Andrea Angels Anthology Aphrodisia Author's Angels Avon Awards Ballantine BDSM Berkley Billionaire Blaze Blog Hop Blue Book Trailers Booklover BookTrib Brava Candlelight Promotions Carina Character Interview Charity Chick Lit Christmas Cleis Press Conference Contemporary Contests Coupons Cover Reveal Cowboy DD Delacorte Demons Disappointments Disclosures DNF Domestic Violence Dorchester Dreamspinner Press ElaineReads ELF Ellora's Cave Entangled Publishing Erotic Romance Erotica Event Everything Else F/F Romance Fantasy Romance Favorites of 2009 Favorites of 2010 Favorites of 2011 Favorites of 2012 Favorites of 2014 Feature Feel the Heat Firemen Flipbook Forced Seduction Forever Romance Freebies Fun Friday Futuristic Gallery Ghosts Giveaway Goddess Fish Grand Central Guest Harlequin Hidden Gems Highland Romance Historical Fiction Historical Romance Holiday Theme HQN Humor Infidelity Intermix Interracial Romance Interview Irish Romance Julia Just Jinny Kensington Lendle Giveaway Librarian Links LitConnect Loose Id Loveswept M/M Romance Medieval Romance Melissa Meme Menage Menagerie Michele Military Romance MIRA Mira. Month in Review Movie Star Movies Muse Pictures Music Musician Mystery NAL New Adult Newsworthy Noble Romance Non-Fiction Novella Paranormal Romance Pierced Pirates Pocket Books Poem Poll Quickie Giveaway Quiz Random House Reading Challenges Reading Lists Recipes Reviews Riptide Publishing Rock Star Romance Hint Fiction Romantic Suspence Royal Romances Samhain Sci-Fi Scorpio M Seductive Museums Seductive Saturday Self Published Serial Novel Shapeshifters Share the Love Siren Small Town Sneak Peek Sourcebooks Spice Sports St. Martin's Steampunk Romance Summer Reads Sunday Brunch Surveys Susannah Tattoo TBR Thursday's Thoughts Time Travel Romance Tuesday Teasers Urban Fantasy Vampires Victorian Videos Vikings Virgin Western Winners

My FREE Kindle Quest

I've wanted a Kindle for what seems like forever, but haven't been able to afford it (and that's saying something since I can justify the cost of just about ANYTHING that I really want). I've tried winning one in one of the many giveaways that have taken place over the couple of years, but with no luck :( So I've decided to take matters in hand so to speak :) I've now decided that I am going to accumulate enough Swagbucks from my Swabucks searches to buy one...so in essence my new Kindle will be FREE...funded entirely by my internet searches done on Swagbucks. I'll keep you informed of the Great Kindle Quest below (in case you're interested....if not feel free to just skip over this part, but really who wouldn't be interested in a FREE Kindle?)
Goal: $119
Current Swagbucks Amazon Gift Card balance: $90.00
If you'd like to learn how you can earn Swagbucks and earn your own Amazon Gift Cards to buy books, a Kindle or other merchandise sold at Amazon contact me and I would be more than happy to tell you how I plan to go about it. (just so you know you can earn both Amazon.com and Amazon.ca gift cards on this rewards site)
Invesp landing page optimization

Book Blogs

  © Blogger template Foam by Ourblogtemplates.com 2009

Back to TOP