The Duke’s Guide to Correct Behavior: Dukes Behaving Badly #1 by Megan Frampton

Welcome to my stop with a review and excerpt of The Duke’s Guide to Correct Behavior from Megan Frampton. Please be sure to check out the other tour stops, and don’t forget to enter the tour-wide giveaway where you could win a $25 gift card to eBook seller of choice to celebrate this release.

Book Review:

Historical romance is my go-to for fun and transportation read, and Megan Frampton has penned a fun early-Victorian era story that is very modern in feel.  Writing historical romances today often has authors in a quandary: adhering to the rigidity of social norms and behaviors, using language and dialog to ‘fatten’ the plot, or to use the historical references as guideposts and major touchstones in the story, giving readers a ‘sense’ of the differences but reacting in a wholly modern way. This story seems to play a bit fast and loose with convention that serves the interactions well, but leaves a sense of unreality in setting and conclusion when the last page is turned.

That in no way makes this a bad read – this is a fun, dialogue driven read that while slow to grow soon picks up pace and gives readers plenty of laughs, moments to ‘oooh’, and some serious steam between the rather hapless Duke and his newly hired governess.

Lily is a wonderful character, prone to shocking (for the time) plain speech and an iron-willed determination to do the best for her charge.  Her interactions with the Duke, Marcus are cleverly phrased and wholly upending for Marcus: he’s entirely too caught up in the mad scramble to ‘make something’ of a life that was dedicated to drinking, carousing and gambling.

These are two characters that are easy to like and invest in, with their frequent (and sadly sometimes all too frequent) insets of interior monologue that just felt immature contrasting sharply with their own senses of duty, propriety and their conversations.  A slowly building romance between Marcus and Lily is often the sidenote to the growth and determination that Marcus shows for taking charge of his life, and his forgotten child, all with Lily’s help to become the best man he can be.  Frampton does make the effort to ‘explain away’ the behavioral inconsistencies that are far from the acceptable norm, and does so with reasonable belief, and uses language appropriate to the time, even as the behavior is often far out of convention.

I enjoyed this story, even with the rather puzzling ending: Frampton has a deft hand with dialogue and moving the story forward via conversations and description, keeping the reader engaged and entertained.

 

 

The Duke’s Guide to Correct Behavior: Dukes Behaving Badly #1 by Megan Frampton

Title: The Duke's Guide to Correct Behavior
Author: Megan Frampton
Series: Dukes Behaving Badly #1
Also in this series: When Good Earls Go Bad: A Victorian Valentine’s Day Novella, Put Up Your Duke, No Groom at the Inn, One-Eyed Dukes are Wild, My Fair Duchess
Genre: Historical Romance
Published by: Avon
Format:eARC
Source: Publisher Via Edelweiss
Pages: 384
Rated: four-stars
Heat: One FlameOne Flame

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See this Title on Goodreads

All of London knows the Duke of Rutherford has position and wealth. They also whisper that he’s dissolute, devilish, and determinedly unwed. So why, everyone is asking, has he hired a governess?

When Miss Lily Russell crosses the threshold of the Duke of Rutherford’s stylish townhouse, she knows she has come face to face with sensual danger. For this is no doting papa. Rather, his behavior is scandalous, and his reputation rightly earned. And his pursuit of her is nearly irresistible—but resist she must for the sake of her pupil.

As for the duke himself, it was bad enough when his unknown child landed on his doorstep. Now Lily, with her unassuming beauty, has aroused his most wicked fantasies—and, shockingly, his desire to change his wanton ways. He’s determined to become worthy of her, and so he asks for her help in correcting his behavior.

But Lily has a secret, one that, if it becomes known, could change everything . . .

 

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.

Tasty Excerpt

The Quality Employment Agency wishes to announce it has opened its office at 135 Plum Lane, and welcomes all clients into its establishment.

The Agency will match reputable servants of any type with employers who have immediate need for assistance. We specialize in ladies’ maids, butlers, housekeepers, and governesses. The Quality Employment Agency is owned and managed by a group of well-bred ladies who understand what the Quality desires.

Quality is our company name, and our commitment to the public.

Chapter 2

     The bell on the door jangled, letting Lily know that someone had entered the anteroom outside of the small office where she’d been working on the ledgers. She stood, feeling her back complain about her having sat for the past few hours. Each of the three proprietors of the Quality Employment Agency took turns at organizing the invoices, and this was her week.        

            The Agency had done well since its inception just a few months ago, providing work (and the occasional falsified reference) for women with unfortunate pasts. They’d placed no fewer than six young women, all of whom had had their reputations sullied for one reason or another. Lily and her partners were well-aware of what an unfortunate past could do to a person’s livelihood, since each of them had unfortunate pasts themselves.

            She walked out of the office to see a young man, garbed in a footman’s clothing, holding a piece of paper and a snooty expression.

            “Got this for whoever sends out ladies for governessing.”

            She unfolded the paper, feeling her eyes widen as she read its contents.

            Need governess immediately. Send applicants to Duke of Rutherford, Mayfair.

            She took a moment to read it, then read it again, just to be sure. And felt her mouth drop open in shock. A duke! An actual duke was turning to the Agency for help. So far the Agency’s most prestigious client had been the cousin of a baron. He might as well have been a ratcatcher compared to a duke.

            This was what they needed to take the fledgling Agency into a respectable business.

 
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About Megan Frampton

Megan Frampton writes historical romance under her own name and romantic women’s fiction as Megan Caldwell. She likes the color black, gin, dark-haired British men, and huge earrings, not in that order. She lives in Brooklyn, NY, with her husband and son.

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