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The Taming of the Duke

The Taming of the Duke, April 2006
Essex Sisters Quartet
by Eloisa James

Avon
Featuring: Rafe, The Duke of Holbrook; Lady Imogen Maitland; Gabriel Spenser
400 pages
ISBN: 0060781580
EAN: 9780060781583
Kindle: B000MAH7EA
Paperback / e-Book
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"Unusual characters and a variety of subplots adds to the richness of this latest sister's tale."

Fresh Fiction Review

The Taming of the Duke
Eloisa James

Reviewed by Suan Wilson
Posted March 10, 2006

Romance Historical

Finally, time is easing the grief and rage within Imogene Maitland at the abrupt tragedy that killed her husband of two weeks. After rusticating in Scotland with her sister until boredom sets in, Imogene returns to her ex-guardian's home determined to take a lover and spice up her dismal life. Already rejected by one rake, Imogene sets her sights on another one. But undermining her efforts is her former guardian, Rafe, the Duke of Holbrook. Imogene cares nothing about her reputation and can't understand Rafe's determination to protect it.

Rafe prefers living in an alcoholic haze since the death of his oldest brother. He's not a mean drunk, but a generous one and generally harms no one. It's not until his long- lost brother Gabe appears that he grapples with his drunkenness. Reviewing the emptiness of his life, Rafe takes the decisive action to stop cold-turkey. After years of inebriation, his withdrawal from alcohol is brutal. Imogene, his former ward and a sharp-tongued shrew, mops his brow while he suffers the symptoms of withdrawal. Afterward, with a clearer head, Rafe aids Gabe in the subterfuge of opening the family theatre.

Rafe's invitation brings an interesting mix of people to his home. Imogene continues to confound him and for the first time in years, desire reenters his life. Unexpectedly, Imogene is the one who stirs his desires. Rafe has his hands full as he courts Imogene in a most unusual fashion while attempting, with Gabe's aid, to maneuver a delicate matter.

Ms. James shines while weaving a touching tale of two people who expertly hide their vulnerability. Adding to the richness of the story is its cast of unusual characters and the various subplots involved. THE TAMING OF THE DUKE gives readers an atypical love story and a tantalizing glimpse into the last sister's story.

Learn more about The Taming of the Duke

SUMMARY

Imogen, Lady Maitland, has decided to dance on the wild side. After all, she's in the delicious position of being able to take a lover. A discreet male who knows just when to leave in the morning.

But Lady Maitland is still under the watchful eye of her former guardian, the wildly untamed Rafe, the Duke of Holbrook. He believes she is still in need of a "watchdog." She laughs at the idea that someone so insufferably lazy and devoted to drink can demand that she behave with propriety.

It's Rafe's long-lost brother, a man who looks precisely like the duke but with none of his degenerate edge, who interests Imogen. To Imogen, he's the shadow duke...the man who really should hold the title.

But when Imogen agrees to accompany Gabe to a masquerade... whose masked eyes watch her with that intense look of desire? Who exactly is she dancing with? The duke or the shadow duke?

Rafe...or Gabe?


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