From the acclaimed author of Boyfriend Material comes a delightfully witty romance featuring a reserved duke who’s betrothed to one twin and hopelessly enamoured of the other.
Valentine Layton, the Duke of Malvern, has twin problems: literally.
It was always his father’s hope that Valentine would marry Miss Arabella Tarleton. But, unfortunately, too many novels at an impressionable age have caused her to grow up…romantic. So romantic that a marriage of convenience will not do and after Valentine’s proposal she flees into the night determined never to set eyes on him again.
Arabella’s twin brother, Mr. Bonaventure “Bonny” Tarleton, has also grown up…romantic. And fully expects Valentine to ride out after Arabella and prove to her that he’s not the cold-hearted cad he seems to be.
Despite copious misgivings, Valentine finds himself on a pell-mell chase to Dover with Bonny by his side. Bonny is unreasonable, overdramatic, annoying, and…beautiful? And being with him makes Valentine question everything he thought he knew. About himself. About love. Even about which Tarleton he should be pursuing.
I have mixed feelings about that one.
On the one hand, the humor was amazing and I was snickering on the street while listening to that story. More than once I risked spewing my coffee on the table as some quick remark took me by surprise igniting an irrepressible need to laugh.
The duo between Valentine, the oh so proper Duke of Malvern, all contained, cold and also immensely naïve in affairs of the heart and sex with Bonnie Tarleton, irresistible and joyful libertine who looked like an overexcited Labrador puppy was… truculent!
But on the other hand, it quickly felt like a “huis clos” between these two, with Valentine always questioning his life and what he had had no notion of. It was a little…tedious. It would have been welcome to have more interaction with a “crew” like we did for Boyfriend Material. It would have changed the pace, and opened up the story.
But with that being said, another asset of the book were of course the characters!
Alexis Hall really built two wonderful albeit very different heroes here! Their difference made it work extremely well and helped Valentine to grow into the man he has always been but forever denied and ignored.
Kudos to Alexis Hall too for using a prose worthy of the beginning of the twentieth/end Nineteenth century! It was even better than watching Bridgerton and absolutely delicious. I felt like talking about matters of the sex was even more decadent when using an elaborate and old fashioned language.
This book is about discovering who you truly are, what you really want and go after your dreams, whatever the society is expecting of you.
Also I learned a lot about sexual intercourse between men and it was really, really HOT!
Thanks for reading!