Redemption of the Duke: Angst and Arrogance in Equal Measure

by Gayle Callen
Series: Brides of Redemption #3
Published by Avon, Harper Collins Genres: Historical Romance, Victorian
Source: Publisher

REDEMPTION OF THE DUKE

Redemption of the Duke CoverBrides of Redemption #3
by Gayle Callen
HarperCollins/Avon
April 29, 2014
Paperback/Ebook 384 Pages

victorianheat level 1Mystery IconFamily IconAfter the War Icon

Book provided by publisher for review purposes. No remuneration was exchanged and all opinions presented herein are my own except as noted.

A duke who needs to be tamed . . . a lady who refuses to be rescued.

Adam Chamberlin was the third son of a duke, known for gambling binges and drunken nights. No one expected anything of him . . . until tragedy strikes. Now Adam is the new Duke of Rothford, determined to right the wrongs he’s done. Except a secret in his past means helping the one woman who doesn’t want his help at all . . .

It’s not every day that a duke introduces himself to a woman sitting by herself in Hyde Park. Faith Cooper is even more surprised when Adam offers her a position as a lady’s companion to his elderly aunt. Faith refuses to be beholden to a man again—certainly not this man, who both infuriates and attracts her. But with passion simmering between them, will Faith surrender to forbidden desire? HarperCollins.com

My Take!

This book had an interesting mystery plot and I was not completely certain of the villain at the root until the big reveal. While it more or less can stand on its own, I think I would have enjoyed it more with more backstory.

If you like a book with steamy feelings but not too much fire then this might be a good choice; there’s some nookie but not a huge amount.

I felt the story lagged in rehashing the duke the guilt feels over and over and in -gasp!- Faith’s terrible secret.  And then there’s the blackmail and trying to figure out the perpetrator.

Like a lot of romance novels, the primary problems in the story are communication or arrogance related.  A Victorian era duke would probably be fairly arrogant, but this one was not raised to be the duke but his wartime experiences in India and his insistence that it was his arrogance that caused the problem would point to him being self-aware.  But he keeps making these decisions and it’s just too obvious.  He is likeable in that he is very human and fallible; not an all too perfect type hero.  Faith, just annoyed me in her willingness to accept her lot in life.  No wonder the duke keeps making decisions for her.  But at least she is a thoughtful and kind person; willing to take the fall for those she loves or to whom she feels indebted.

There are several angsty things in the book but the blackmail is the really nasty one and it gets less attention than this arrogance issue.  I did think that Callen handled the mystery of the perpetrator  very well.  I  had an idea of who it was but it was not until the more likely character is exonerated that I felt confident in my deduction.

The most likelable character is the duke’s aunt, Theodosia, who hires Faith to be her assistant.  She was ahead of her time in the quest for equality for women and eschewed much of the social convention with which she was raised. She’s a little like Downton Abbey’s Lady Viola in her temperament but without her arrogance.

I was interested in the description of the Duke’s London residence as being set off from the road. Usually, the homes of nobility in historic romance are townhouses, but here it is most definitely described as not being a town house. On the other hand, the duke is able to look down and see Faith walking by, and chase a young man by running out on the street, so it felt a little inconsistent.

If you have read the entire series, or you like a less steam filled romance this would be a good choice for you.  I like mine a little spicier than this but Callen’s characters are human and accessible.

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Challenges LabelWith this book I have completed my Historic Romance Challenge!

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