The Day of the Duchess: Scandal & Scoundrel #3 by Sarah MacLean

The Day of the Duchess: Scandal & Scoundrel #3 by Sarah MacLean

Sarah MacLean returns to the blog today with the latest installment in her Scandal & Scoundrel series, a second chance at love between a Duke who behaved as Dukes do (officious, thoughtless and arrogant) and the scandalous woman who has returned to finally put an end to their marriage. Read on for my review and excerpt, check out the tour stops to see what other readers thought, and don’t forget to enter the tour wide giveaway where you could win print copies of THE ROGUE NOT TAKEN and A SCOT IN THE DARK, books 1 & 2 in the Scandal and Scoundrel Series (US Only)

The Day of the Duchess

A few things to know before diving into this book (or any book by Sarah MacLean). You have to enjoy drama: from full blown productions with characters who won’t let go to little moments of temper-fueled outbursts, usually brought on by one of the characters acting to type, or diverting from it. Appreciating female characters that are a bit more modern than one would expect: no shrinking violets these, they have thoughts, dreams, and desires and are not afraid to take a chance to grab that joy. Men who aren’t ever quite sure what hit them, especially after they find themselves unable to forget her, and even those who are aware enough to recognize their own missteps. And when that is boxed together with a family that wasn’t born to society and gives even less credence to the expectations of same – you get this. Grab a chair and prepare yourself for a ride!

Malcolm, Duke of Haven has retreated from society – he’s ashamed of his behavior and the scenes he caused in a very ‘un-duke-like’ manner. Now, the decisions and his bad behavior have come to a head: he needs an heir, thus he needs a willing wife. Problem is – he has one, and she doesn’t want him. Left him without a trace nearly three years back, and with her unforeseen return comes yet another blow: she wants a divorce and to never see him again.

Seraphina spent the early years of her marriage being denigrated and feeling “less than” her husband. A stickler for propriety, he was shamed by her family and the scandal that surrounds them. What she doesn’t know is that during the time, Malcolm had searched for her, reviewed every moment of their marriage, revisited every interaction and knows now that he was more than harsh, and she is the woman he wants above all others. But, he’s got to convince her, and to convince her that he has changed he comes up with a plan. Sophie knows that Malcolm needs an heir, but she’s not volunteering for that job. So, when she’s faced with a marriage she doesn’t want, or her freedom in exchange for finding a ‘suitable’ replacement for Malcolm. What she doesn’t realize is that Malcolm has decided that he will use every moment he can to convince her to come home. Permanently.

Oh poor Sophie: she really did love Malcolm, and his behavior cut her to the quick. Now, she’s determined that he won’t get another chance to hurt her again….but he’s so…..

Together these two are everything: adorable together with a wonderful banter: but this was no simple connection. Too much history and Malcolm’s inability to ask the questions he so desperately needs answers for kept them in the back and forth: him trying to show he’s changed his perspective and Sophie desperately trying to guard her heart – the one he shattered into little pieces with his cutting words and behavior. I didn’t actually think that they would actually hit that point of honest emotion where they could trust in one another to share openly, but slowly the cracks in the façade broke, and they both are struggling with the missteps of the past, as Sophie finally finds her own voice and makes her own choices without first considering her family’s or her husband’s wishes. Oh her growth was wonderful – and Malcolm: a good grovel never hurts and he is truly feeling it – something that the very fair-minded (and just a little in love) Sophie can’t help but see. With a wonderful reunion and informative epilogue – their story comes with bows, smiles, tears and big hearts.

The Day of the Duchess: Scandal & Scoundrel #3 by Sarah MacLean

Title: The Day of the Duchess
Author: Sarah MacLean
Series: Scandal & Scoundrel #3
Also in this series: The Rogue Not Taken
Genre: Historical Romance, Setting: Britain
Published by: Avon
ISBN: 0062379437
Published on: 27 June, 2017
Format:eARC
Source: Publisher Via Edelweiss
Pages: 384
Audio Length: 10 Hours: 39 minutes
Rated: four-stars
Heat: One FlameOne FlameOne Flame

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The one woman he will never forget…Malcolm Bevingstoke, Duke of Haven, has lived the last three years in self-imposed solitude, paying the price for a mistake he can never reverse and a love he lost forever. The dukedom does not wait, however, and Haven requires an heir, which means he must find himself a wife by summer’s end. There is only one problem—he already has one.

The one man she will never forgive…After years in exile, Seraphina, Duchess of Haven, returns to London with a single goal—to reclaim the life she left and find happiness, unencumbered by the man who broke her heart. Haven offers her a deal; Sera can have her freedom, just as soon as she finds her replacement…which requires her to spend the summer in close quarters with the husband she does not want, but somehow cannot resist.

A love that neither can deny…The duke has a single summer to woo his wife and convince her that, despite their broken past, he can give her forever, making every day The Day of the Duchess.

See the Scandal & Scoundrel series on Goodreads

A copy of this title was provided via Publisher Via Edelweiss for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.

 

 

 

Chapter 1

DESERTED DUKE DISAVOWED!

August 19, 1836
House of Lords, Parliament

 

She’d left him two years, seven months ago, exactly.

Malcolm Marcus Bevingstoke, Duke of Haven looked to the tiny wooden calendar wheels inlaid into the blotter on his desk in his private office above the House of Lords.

August the nineteenth, 1836. The last day of the parliamentary session, filled with pomp and idle. And lingering memory. He spun the wheel with the six embossed upon it. Five. Four. He took a deep breath.

Get out. He heard his own words, cold and angry with betrayal, echoing with quiet menace. Don’t ever return.

He touched the wheel again. August became July. May. March.

January the nineteenth, 1834. The day she left.

His fingers moved without thought, finding comfort in the familiar click of the wheels.

April the seventeenth, 1833.

The way I feel about you . . . Her words now—soft and full of temptation. I’ve never felt anything like this.

He hadn’t, either. As though light and breath and hope had flooded the room, filling all the dark spaces. Filling his lungs and heart. And all because of her.

Until he’d discovered the truth. The truth, which had mattered so much until it hadn’t mattered at all.

Where had she gone?

The clock in the corner of the room ticked and tocked, counting the seconds until Haven was due in his seat in the hallowed main chamber of the House of Lords, where men of higher purpose and passion had sat before him for generations. His fingers played the little calendar like a virtuoso, as though they’d done this dance a hundred times before. A thousand.

And they had.

March the first, 1833. The day they met.

So, they let simply anyone become a duke, do they? No deference. Teasing and charm and pure, unadulterated beauty.

If you think dukes are bad, imagine what they accept from duchesses?

That smile. As though she’d never met another man. As though she’d never wanted to. He’d been hers the moment he’d seen that smile. Before that. Imagine, indeed.

And then it had fallen apart. He’d lost everything, and then lost her. Or perhaps it had been the reverse. Or perhaps it was all the same.

Would there ever be a time when he stopped thinking of her? Ever a date that did not remind him of her? Of the time that had stretched like an eternity since she’d left?

Where had she gone?

The clock struck eleven, heavy chimes sounding in the room, echoed by a dozen others sounding down the long, oaken corridor beyond, summoning men of longstanding name to the duty that had been theirs before they drew breath.

Haven spun the calendar wheels with force, leaving them as they lay. November the thirty-seventh, 3842. A fine date—one on which he had absolutely no chance of thinking of her.

 

About Sarah MacLean

New York Times, Washington Post & USA Today bestseller Sarah MacLean is the author of historical romance novels that have been translated into more than twenty languages, and winner of back-to-back RITA Awards for best historical romance from the Romance Writers of America.

Sarah is a leading advocate for the romance genre, speaking widely on its place at the nexus of gender and cultural studies. She is the author of a monthly column celebrating the best of the genre for the Washington Post. Her work in support of romance and the women who read it earned her a place on Jezebel.com's Sheroes list of 2014 and led Entertainment Weekly to call her "gracefully furious." Sarah lives in New York City with her husband and daughter.

 

 

 

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