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BOOK REVIEW – Any Duchess Will Do (Spindle Cove #4) by Tessa Dare

BOOK REVIEW – Any Duchess Will Do (Spindle Cove #4) by Tessa DareAny Duchess Will Do (Spindle Cove #4)
by Tessa Dare
Purchase on: AmazoniBooks
Book Depository
Add to: Goodreads

Synopsis:

What’s a duke to do, when the girl who’s perfectly wrong becomes the woman he can’t live without?

Griffin York, the Duke of Halford, has no desire to wed this season--or any season--but his diabolical mother abducts him to “Spinster Cove” and insists he select a bride from the ladies in residence. Griff decides to teach her a lesson that will end the marriage debate forever. He chooses the serving girl.

Overworked and struggling, Pauline Simms doesn’t dream about dukes. All she wants is to hang up her barmaid apron and open a bookshop. That dream becomes a possibility when an arrogant, sinfully attractive duke offers her a small fortune for a week’s employment. Her duties are simple: submit to his mother’s “duchess training"...and fail miserably.

But in London, Pauline isn’t a miserable failure. She’s a brave, quick-witted, beguiling failure--a woman who ignites Griff’s desire and soothes the darkness in his soul. Keeping Pauline by his side won’t be easy. Even if Society could accept a serving girl duchess--can a roguish duke convince a serving girl to trust him with her heart?

Once upon a time I read a book from Tessa Dare and rated it 2.5 stars…

Although it started so good …

The beginning was freaking hilarious : During the first 30%, I was ready to crown Tessa Dare as the most awesome HR author of the world. Just have a peek at the text I sent Chelsea :

Oh, LL = Lauren Layne, of course!

Let’s meet our strong heroine : To be frank, Pauline won me from the very beginning, at this point exactly :

“It was hers now, wasn’t it? She’d paid for the contents. “For example, everyone knows I’m incurably clumsy.”
“Pauline,” Sally warned. “Please don’t”
Too late. With an angry heave, she launched the bin’s contents into the air.”

Impulsive and proud? That’s my girl.

Give me some broody male-lead : I’m going to repeat myself (I might be a parrot after all), but during the first 30%, I fell in love with this lonely duke and his interactions with Pauline. That was funny, snarky, inappropriate, deliciously adorable.

“It was nothing.”
The only manly reply, naturally. In truth, he suspected he’d pulled a muscle somewhere between vaulting the sofa and playing Jack Be Nimble with the ottoman …”

… So bad it didn’t last …

✘ I’m sorry, but I was kind of bored at some point. Yeah. When I start eyeing the percentages on my reader every five minutes, that’s generally not a good sign. Sigh.

The romance didn’t work so much for me : Now, here’s my main complain. Let’s face it, that’s an historical romance, that is to say, the whole point is … the romance. Overall, except from the first 30%,
again
, I didn’t feel the spark I loved between Colin and Minerva in A Week to be Wicked.

Unconvincing twists plot spoilt my read : I can deal with unbelievable twists, I mean, hey, I loved A Week to be Wicked and we deal with a ridiculous kidnapping attempt there, but here I found myself strangely careless of the explanations given to explain Griff’s behavior. I wasn’t convinced.

✘✔ Why, hello, strangely tolerant Duchess : Now, here, I don’t know if I’m supposed to be thankful for her open-mindedness or be annoyed by the fact that it’s utterly unbelievable for a Regency Duchess. Let’s call it even, okay?

“Oh. I see. So your grace never curses.”
“I do not.”
“Words like cor … bollocks … damn … devil … blast … bloody hell …” She pronounced the words with relish, warming to her task. “They don’t cross a duchess’s lips?”
“No.”
“Never?”
“Never.”

Overall, I can’t deny my disappointment and that’s what decided me to rate it only 2.5 stars. Indeed I enjoyed it far less than Colin and Minerva’s story. However, I have trusted Tessa Dare to offer me historical romance both steamy and hilarious – what I found in Romancing the Duke and A Week to be Wicked – and I still do.

BOOK REVIEW – A Week to be Wicked (Splindle Cove #2) by Tessa Dare

BOOK REVIEW – A Week to be Wicked (Splindle Cove #2) by Tessa DareA Week to be Wicked (Spindle Cove #2)
by Tessa Dare
Purchase on: AmazoniBooks
Book Depository
Add to: Goodreads

Synopsis:

When a devilish lord and a bluestocking set off on the road to ruin...time is not on their side.

Minerva Highwood, one of Spindle Cove's confirmed spinsters, needs to be in Scotland.

Colin Sandhurst, Lord Payne, a rake of the first order, needs to be...anywhere but Spindle Cove.

These unlikely partners have one week to

• fake an elopement
• convince family and friends they're in "love"
• outrun armed robbers
• survive their worst nightmares
• travel four hundred miles without killing each other

All while sharing a very small carriage by day and an even smaller bed by night.

What they don't have time for is their growing attraction. Much less wild passion. And heaven forbid they spend precious hours baring their hearts and souls.

Suddenly one week seems like exactly enough time to find a world of trouble. And maybe...just maybe...love.

“When a girl trudged through the rain at midnight to knock at the Devil’s door, the Devil should at least have the depravity – if not the decency – to answer.”

Guys. Guuuuuys. I think I may be a romantic.

Yes there are parts completely unbelievable and twists rather roll-eyes worthy – of course. But you know what? That’s okay, because what Min and Colin are offering us? That’s a tale – a show of deception, the triumph of the lies – and that’s hilarious.

Yes the plot is predictable and we run into some sentences very cliché sometimes. But you know what? There’s also several damn hot scenes and if Colin’s personality has been already seen in other novels, well, he’s fucking awesome in this role of the sarcastic, infuriating, devilish, and somehow delusional Lord. As for Minerva, well, she’s pretty amazing. Moreover, the scientific similes of Minerva and Colin completely cracked me up.

“I’ve always thought that word sounded splendidly naughty.” He let it roll off his tongue with ribald inflection. “Logarithm.” He gave an exaggerated shiver. “Ooh. Yes and thank you and may I have some more.”

Plus I have a theory about the clichés we find in this story. Yeah, I know, I’m not some investigator. Perhaps I’m delusional. But still. I’m almost sure that Tessa Dare plays consciously with the clichés she includes. Why? Because when a reaction or a sentence seems dripping with cheese, that’s always followed by something which makes fool of it.

Colin is being completely overdramatic?
→ Miranda hurries to call him on his shit.

Colin wants to offer Minerva his ring as a sign of love?
→ The ring stays stuck on his finger. A long time.

“You taste of ripe plums.”
She couldn’t help it. She laughed. “Now that’s just absurd.”
“Why?”
“Because it’s too early in the year for ripe plums.”

See? I could add some examples but then, I’d spoilt the story too much. Maybe I’m wrong, I’m just a random reader after all, but it pleases me to think that Tessa Dare is able to do that. I guess you’ll have to make your own opinion about it.

“My name is Minerva. I’m not your pet. And you’re deranged if you think I’d ever marry you.”
“But I thought you just said – ”
“Run away with you, yes. Marry you?” She made an incredulous noise in her throat.
“Please” .

Yes it awfully looks like instalove. Yep. Because there’s no denying that falling in love in a week is instalove. But then, I strangely didn’t care that much, as I saw this book as a fairy tale. A wicked and silly journey into the foolish heart of mine. And you know what? A day after finishing my read I can still feel the butterflies.

“But now that he was seized with lust for her, she ought to at least reciprocate with a grudging-yet-helpless infatuation. So much would only be polite.”

Yes the pacing is uneven and the story kind of drag towards the end. But you know what? I must confess that I wanted my HEA. I was shipping Colin and Minerva like crazy and despite the fact that Colin’s transformation can lead to awkward moments, well, I was smiling so big it hurts. Right. I think I may be a romantic after all. Don’t tell anyone.

In a nutshell : Here’s a somehow predictable romance book, where we find characters who fall in love pretty quickly, whose comments are sometimes a bit cheesy, and where some situations will make you roll your eyes something fierce, yet it was a page-turner and I laughed and
giggled 
GIGGLED so much I just can’t rate it below 3.5, and I’m rounding it at 4. Not to mention the steamy scenes. Did I talk about that? Yeah?

As guilty I can feel about that, it was a complete enjoyment. Damn. I’m ruined.

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