Throughout the series, the main couple was always Jemma and her duke, Elijah. But someone drew my interest way more than that couple, and that was Leopold, Duke of Villiers. Talk about your anti-hero. At the beginning of the series, he sets out to seduce Jemma (via a chess game) who was married! So you know right away, this guy is a scallywag. But throughout the series, you get to know him better and when it comes out that his six, yes six, bastard children were not being as well taken care of as he had thought, you kind of feel for the guy. Especially when he makes the right choice and tracks them all down. Now in his book, he still has two girls to find and he's looking for a duke's daughter to marry, because who else but the very highest of nobility can raise six illegitimate children and make them respectable?
Now I don't want to give anything away - because looking at the blurb, and reading the book, there are two birds who can become the Duchess of Villiers. Eleanor, in love with another man and Lisette, who seems to have a few loose screws.
First of all, I thought the first half of this book was hilarious. Eleanor's sister says the most outrageous things but she's also very astute and she makes Eleanor realize that she needs to shake things up, that she can't keep pining for a married man. Then there's Tobias, Villiers' oldest son. He takes after his father very much.
Finchley snorted, and Villiers cast him a glance. "There's nothing withered about me," he said, pulling on the rose-colored coat over his sleek, skintight breeches.
"I'm not the one you need to convince of that," Tobias said, plopping down into his chair again. "It's your wife who's going to wonder if you're a molly or not." He turned back to his book.
Villiers felt his lips twitch. No one had ever called him a molly. Or implied he had a limp potato-finger.
Unfortunately, A Duke of Her Own loses some its sparkle in the second half. Not enough to make me stop reading, but there is a change in energy. I was still very much involved in Villiers story and I have no complaints with how things turned out. And really, Eloisa James is such a great writer, that even though the second half was less than the first half, it's still pretty damn good.
A Duke of Her Own gets 4 stars from me. It was a great finish to the Desperate Duchesses series.