New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Amelia Grey is back with the first installment of her new Rakes of St. James series
LAST NIGHT WITH THE DUKE (St. Martin’s Paperbacks; March 7, 2017; $7.99; 978-1-250-10249-2)! Enthralling and enticing, Grey weaves together the seductive story of a naughty Duke and the enchanting woman he falls for.
Could finding love be his greatest scandal of all?
The Duke of Griffin has never lived down his reputation as one of the Rakes of St. James. Now rumors are swirling around London that his twin sisters may bear the brunt of his past follies. Hiring a competent chaperone is the only thing Griffin has on his mind--until he meets the lovely and intriguing Miss Esmeralda Swift. In ways he could never have expected, she arouses more than just his curiosity.
Esmeralda Swift considered herself too sensible to ever fall for a scoundrel, but that was before she met the irresistibly seductive Duke of Griffin. His employment offer proves too tempting for her to resist. She can’t afford to be distracted by his devilish charms because the stakes are so high for his sisters’ debut Season. . .unless one of London’s most notorious rakes has had a change of heart and is ready to make Esmeralda his bride.
This was a really fun book. Esmeralda and Griffin were so entertaining and throw in an incorrigible young girl and her dog, and a pair of identical twin girls who are making their debut and it just made this book so fun to read. Esmeralda and Griffin's chemistry was straight off right from the start, sexual tension is always fun especially when it's so distracting for the main characters.
Griffin and two of his friends did something stupid in their youth and now they will never live it down. So much to the point that now that his two younger sister are making their debut there is a rumor going round that someone thinks it would be poetic justice if someone were to do something to his sisters. Griffin is now worried and trying to narrow down the possibilities of who maybe behind the possible misdeed. It doesn't help that the girls' aunt has fallen ill and now Griffin must find a suitable chaperone. Esmeralda run an agency that matches suitable chaperones, governesses, nurses, and such to the right family she took over the job when the previous owner dies and it suited her needs perfectly because that means she could look after her sister. Esmeralda is the Granddaughter of a Viscount but when her mother fell in love with an Irish poet her brother disowned her. Now with both parents dead and a little sister to take care of she has to work and the tempting and expensive offer Lord Griffin has offered her is far too much money for her to turn away. He even meet all her demands to work as his sisters chaperone.
It was lust at first sight, but the more time they spend with each other and Griffin's amazing patience with her sister has her fall in love when she know she shouldn't. Griffin should be focused on finding the rake who plans to seduce and ruin at least one of his sisters but he keeps getting distracted by Esmeralda and even before he realizes who she is related to he knows that she should be cared for and loved and shouldn't have to work, he knows almost immediately that he is going to marry her.
Overall, I love how this story played out. The main focus is Griffin and Esmeralda even with the little side notes about the sisters it never really goes into great detail about what is happening with them. I enjoyed reading this so much that I stayed up late reading it until I finished, I couldn't put it down.
She evaded him again by saying, “Did you ask one? I thought you were making a statement.”
He gave her an amused smile. “It’s always a challenge with you, Esmeralda. I like that.”
She gasped. “You can’t call me by my given name.”
“I can and will when we are alone and no one around to hear but you. Now, here is a direct question for you, Es- meralda. Have you ever been kissed?”
Her immediate instinct should have been to shy away from such intimate conversation once more and insist he call her Miss Swift at all times. It was on the tip of her tongue to tell him she was outraged he’d ask her some- thing so personal, but staring into his striking gaze as it
brushed down her face to her mouth, she knew she didn’t want to resist him in that way or any way.
Maybe she wanted him to call her Esmeralda and to know that her lips had never been touched by another’s. Maybe she wanted him to know she’d welcome his kiss.
Still, her practical, survival nature came to her rescue and she resisted what her heart desired and said, “I’ve not had time nor opportunity for such things as hugs and kisses.”
“Twenty-five and never been kissed.” His voice was low, and soft. “I find that very intriguing.”
His hold over her intensified. There was something about his unobtrusive interest in her that stirred her wom- anly passions to an anticipation she couldn’t have known existed.
Her throat ached with an increasing need that was al- ways denied—to feel his lips caress hers. Perhaps he found it intriguing she’d never been kissed, but she found it dis- couraging that she’d never had the opportunity to know what it felt like to be kissed. She wanted to know.
Putting all her sensible, inner declarations aside, and willing her voice not to quiver, she asked, “Are you offer- ing to change that, Your Grace?”
Copyright © 2017 by Amelia Grey and reprinted by permission of St. Martin’s Press.
PRAISE FOR AMELIA GREY:
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Amelia Grey read her first romance book when she was thirteen and she's been a devoted reader of love stories ever since. Her awards include the Booksellers Best, Aspen Gold, and the Golden Quill. Writing as Gloria Dale Skinner, she won the coveted Romantic Times Award for Love and Laughter and the prestigious Maggie Award. Her books have sold to many countries in Europe, Indonesia, Turkey, Russia, and most recently to Japan. Several of her books have also been featured in Doubleday and Rhapsody Book Clubs. Amelia is the author of twenty-five books. She's been happily married to her high school sweetheart for over thirty-five years and she lives on the beautiful gulf coast of Northwest Florida. Her first book with St. Martin's was The Duke in My Bed.
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