Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Book Review: The Duke is Mine by Eloisa James

I have been a fan of Eloisa James for years. Last spring I was lucky enough to meet her and hear her speak at the Connecticut chapter of Romance Writers of America Fiction Fest. I showed her my copy of her book, "When Beauty Tamed the Beast" on my kindle. I guess it was the first time she'd seen her book on a kindle because she was excited. She then signed the free copy she'd given out at breakfast, making me even more inclined to love her. I don't know if I'd consider us exactly collegues yet. I'm more of an up and comer and she's established romance writer royalty. Ahem.

When I saw a few weeks ago that she had a new book out, I immediately pre-ordered it. It follows her new theme of re-writing fairy tales and she hasn't turned a toe wrong yet.  I have to say this book was worth the wait. If you haven't read it yet, I'll try not to put in too many spoilers.

 The story is about Olivia, a plump but attractive twin who has been betrothed since birth to a man five years her junior. Her parents are so eager to make sure the betrothal isn't broken, they tutor their twin daughters daily on the appropriate behavior of a duchess. While Georgiana takes to the lessons like a duck to water, Olivia tosses all the rules when she's not around her mother. She shocks her sister and delights her friends with her love of naughty limericks and double meanings that words could have.

The Duke, Tarquin, is about as amusing as a stick in the mud. He's shoved all his emotions down where the sun doesn't shine because the last time he believed in love his heart was torn out of his chest and stomped on. When his wife ran away with her lover, she wasn't content with merely leaving, she had to take their son and the heir with her, dooming them both to a watery grave. Now, in need of an heir, he's decided to let his mother decide whom his lucky bride should be and she has a method that makes sure love won't factor in. She invites the lucky candidates to be his Duchess to an intimate house party to test them and see how they measure up. One of her contestants is Georgiana who brings her sister. And the fun begins!

I don't want to give it all away, but I thoroughly enjoyed every moment of reading "The Duke Is Mine." I could relate with Olivia in feeling like her body was too plump to be fashionable. Then realizing that a man found it very desirable, she realizes that she is beautiful in her own right. What I loved about the story was how Olivia and Georgiana discovered things about themselves they hadn't known and really came into their own as people. I also loved how Olivia showed Quin that life was full of laughter and love and he didn't have to be afraid of either.

If I had a rating system, I would rate his a 5 star book. If you love romance and a fun story with some unexpected twists and a satisfyingly happy ending, this is the book for you. If you'd like to check out more about Eloisa James or see more about the book, click this link to Eloisa James official website.