The Duke of Rockliffe is 36 years old, head of his house, and responsible for his young sister, Nell. He is, therefore, under some pressure to choose a suitable bride. Whilst accompanying Nell to what he speedily comes to regard as the house-party from hell, he meets Adeline Kendrick - acid-tongued, no more than passably good-looking yet somehow alluring. Worse still, her relatives are quite deplorable - from a spoiled, ill-natured cousin to a sadistic, manipulative uncle. As a prospective bride, therefore, Adeline is out of the question. Until, that is, a bizarre turn of events cause the Duke to throw caution to the wind and make what his world will call a mésalliance.
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A charming Georgian romance, expertly narrated
A great story, great characters & beautifully read
The characters have real depth - even the small parts - and you understand their motivations and can really engage with them emotionally. The historic period also 'lives' without sounding like a dull history lesson - you enjoy the background and it enhances the overall story.
Rockcliffe - of course - but also the heroine who manages to have character and wit and be a good foil to the hero. The cast of lesser characters also 'live' in their own right, as well as telling you things about the hero and heroine.
His ability not to intrude himself onto the story while making every character live' in their own right. There is never a problem knowing who is talking and whether they are inwardly thinking or talking out loud and the women are women not high pitched-speaking wimps!
The part where Adeline sees Rock for the first time with his hair un-powdered (a scene nicely echoed in reverse a little later) and when Rock finally loses it at the end and displays his real feelings.
It is rare to run across a book where the characters have such depth and which combines humour and witty dialogue with a strong sense of period - overall a delight and highly recommended.