Member Reviews

Dreaming of a Duke Like You was an enjoyable read featuring a romance with a club owner turned duke and a woman trying to save her brother from ruin.

Vivienne Tremeer keeps to the straight and narrow after a scandal ruined her reputation. But when her brother reveals he's in debt to a gambling hell, Vivienne storms into the club determined to get Gabriel Cadieux to forgive her brother's debt. Gabriel is struggling with the discovery that he's the heir to a dukedom and all of the newfound responsibilities that come with it. When Vivienne appears, he realizes she may be the answer to at least one of his problems. With six half-sisters to prepare for entry into Society, Gabriel offers to clear Vivienne's brother's debt if she agrees to teach his sisters Society's rules. Vivienne accepts his proposal and now she'll have to navigate spending time with the duke without falling for him and creating an even bigger scandal.

The premise of Dreaming of a Duke Like You was a fun one and I was looking forward to seeing how Vivienne's lessons for the sisters would turn out. Gabriel's sisters are a lively bunch and they don't really have a desire to conform with Society's expectations which makes teaching them a challenge. I really enjoyed the relationships Gabriel developed with them as he only found out about them after inheriting the title. The lessons themselves were fun and I liked how Vivienne connected with the girls.

Vivienne and Gabriel's first several interactions were great and I couldn't wait to see how their relationship would play out. The arrangement they come up with the clear the debt was fun and I liked how it forced them to be in proximity to each other. I did feel like the romance was a little slow to develop and I would have liked to see their relationship progress a little quicker than it did. I also didn't love Gabriel had a tendency to give in to whatever his grandmother said despite the fact he didn't have a relationship with the woman prior to inheriting and due to the fact she was a terrible person. Aside from those issues, I did like the two together and I would enjoy seeing more of them in a future book.

Overall Dreaming of a Duke Like You was a fun read despite the few issues I had with it and I'm looking forward to reading the next book in the series.

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You had me at “loathe at first sight”. Dreaming of a Duke Like You is an entertaining enemies to lovers historical romance, featuring a spinster and a gaming hell owner. While a couple of the plot points dragged a bit for me, I overall found this to be an engaging and entertaining read.

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Thank you Forever and NetGalley for the eARC of Dreaming of a Duke Like You! All opinions in this review are my own.

I loved the set up for this historical romance! Gabriel was raised in a foundling home but now owns a successful club. Just as Gabriel learns that he is the legitimate heir of a dukedom, Vivienne appears needing her brother's debts forgiven so Gabriel makes her a deal. If Vivienne will teach his sister's how to act in the ton, he will forgive her brother's debt. I like that the obstacle standing in their way to be together was social standing rather than an issue that Vivienne and Gabriel had with each other. It made the ending sweeter when the people who support them told them to ignore society rules and be together.

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Thank you to Net Galley and the publisher for this arc. I liked the premise of the book but the story was a bit hard for me to get into.

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This was a good adult historical romance novel, that I thought was really well written!

I received an e-ARC from the publisher.

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“It was time someone stood beside he and fought the world on her behalf. Time someone kept her safe.” The protector vibes in this story were an absolute delight. From their very first interaction, he was already stating “she’s mine”! Not in a possessive manner, but in an entirely protective manner, like he sees pat her mask to her vulnerability. Vivian is the person everyone relies on, the one taking care of all in her life, but who is there for her? Clearly, Gabriel is. The chemistry between them is instant and undeniable. Their story is fraught with struggles and barriers trying to keep them apart. Both selfless in giving up their own desires to better the life of their siblings. These two social outcasts couldn’t be anymore right for each other. There are so many parallels in their character that make their love inevitable. The fact that Vivian is denied as unsuitable because of pedigree is laughable when she proves how calming an influence she can have on their household. I loved Gabriel & Vivian together and in their own merits. Their sibling connections were a love story in their own. The tender emotion that grows between Gabriel and his sisters near the end was beyond touching. I got misty eyed. A really beautiful story of love of all kinds, romantic and familial.

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This was enjoyable and I liked the two leads and I wouldn't be upset if there were some more stories about this fmaily!

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Gabriel Cadieux is the owner of a gambling club and the new Duke of Grantham. He inherited an estate in debt and six illegitimate sisters. Vivienne Tremeer lives on the edge of society with some scandalous whispers about her reputation. Her brother Will put his inheritance in jeopardy with his gambling and debt to the Cadieux Gambling Club. Vivienne's willingness to pay her brother's debt leads Gabriel to offer her the job of preparing his sisters for society, especially the oldest with her come out. Neither expected the attraction and to fall in love, but her past and his duty to the title and family makes it impossible to be together. Gabriel has lived most of his life without a title. Does the man still have a chance for happiness? Too many noses in their business, but his sisters are so sweet and funny. Mild open bedroom door.
I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book.

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I've tried several times to get into this book but it just didn't work for me. I like the set up, but the pacing did not work for me. I found the random plot points taking too much attention away from the central romance. I want my historical romances to be swoony and this just wasn't that. Sara's books are new to me so I'm not sure how this one compares to her others.

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An engaging story about a self-man man who suddenly learns that he was meant to be a duke. Left alone in the world after his mother passed, his father having abandoned them, Gabriel grew up in an orphanage. After his father died without any sons from his second marriage, Gabriel was found to be the legitimate heir. Shockingly, Gabriel learned that he had six half-sisters as well as a stiff dowager for a grandmother.
In Gabriel's previous existence, he was the successful owner of a gambling hell. He met Vivienne because of her younger brother's gambling addiction. While he was not going to let her brother off the hook, he did admire Vivienne's determination and family loyalty. Ultimately, he came to the realization that Vivienne would be an excellent guide for his sisters as they learned how to navigate the ton. They then made a deal to pay off the debt.
There was lots of storytelling in this book. Although, the romance of Gabriel and Vivienne was front and center, there were many other characters that could potentially get stories of their own at some point. Gabriel has two bachelor friends and Vivienne has a female cousin with a depressing love life. Of course, the six sisters also have lots of untapped potential. Vivienne's authoritarian aunt and ditzy mother were quite entertaining.
I really liked Gabriel and Vivienne as a couple and this book was enjoyable to read. I received a free ARC from NetGalley and this is my honest review.

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This was a new author for me and I really enjoyed this historical romance! It was so sweet with all the fun of the enemies to lovers vibes! I loved how Gabriel and Vivienne don’t get along at first. These two have to go through a lot to get to an HEA. Both have a past they overcome as well. I adored Vivienne! She’s such a strong women who will do anything to protect her brother! Gabriel is a gambling club but is also a new Duke! He came from nothing but has worked hard! I think Gabriel and Vivienne are well match! It was such a great romance read! I’m looking forward to what’s next from the author!

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Viviente and Gabriel’s story fell a bit short for me. It started out solidly, but then got a bit too complicated, like the author tried to fit too much in. It was well writtten, though, and I would consider reading more from this author.

I received an ARC from NetGalley. This is my honest review.

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Dreaming of a Duke like you is a well written, slow burn romance by Sara Bennett. This novel starts on a high with lots of baggage as we ease into this story. If you are expecting a romance full of twists and turns then you might find this ultimately a bit disappointing. But if you are in the mood for a broad start with some big conflicts that morphs into something that slows down and truly explores the growth of a relationship between two opposites, then you are sure to have a lovely time. Bennett's writing is clear and engaging, making this novel an easy read to progress through. Bennett's characters are drawn with understanding and precision making their goals and motives easily understandable.

Sara Bennett is definitely an author who will attract a seasoned Historical Romance reader. I think if you adore this sub-genre then you are sure to find something about Bennett's work to savor. I ultimately found her tone to be very enjoyable and delightful to read, but the overall slow burn nature of the novel did not fully endear it to me as a new favorite historical.

I would still recommend this novel to the historical romance lover, and I will definitely continue to keep Sara Bennett on my radar.

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(3.5 rounded up to a 4)

Dreaming of a Duke Like You by Sara Bennett is a Regency romance and the start of the Duke of Grantham series.

Gabriel Cadieux, once raised in a foundling home, has made a name for himself as the proprietor of a successful gaming hell. Being never welcomed by polite society, he is shocked to learn he is the legitimate heir to a dukedom. He opts to accept the debt-ridden title along with the six rebellious half-sisters he can't bear to abandon. Vivienne Tremeer has a scandalous past and intends to get the loathsome owner of Cadieux's club to discharge her brother's gambling debts. Gabriel offers her a trade: he'll do so if she helps train his sisters to adhere to polite society.

This was a fun read, and my first from this author. I stayed up way too late across several nights because the story was intriguing. The writing is good, but it didn't hook me overall as much as I wanted it to. There is a dual point-of-view that alternates between our two leads. The publisher did a great job with this cover, because the characters are exactly as I pictured them in my head.

I did enjoy the chemistry and sexual tension between our two leads that started from their first meeting. Another cute thing I liked was that Gabriel is a romance reader, including one that Vivienne wrote. Side characters are fairly well fleshed out, and I particularly enjoyed Gabriel's sisters and his two best friends.

If you're a fan of pining and angst due to scandal (or perceived scandal), this is definitely the book for you. In terms of spice, there are a few kissing scenes and a semi-closed-door "just one night" of sexytiems.

Tropes in this book include: unexpected inheritance, enemies to friends to lovers, forced proximity, slow burn, grumpy/sunshine

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Sisters galore! I love a hist. Romance with a hero that built himself up all on his own and is out to prove he doesn’t need society to make his success, but eventually comes to accept some form of propriety through his love for the heroine and sets a new standard for his life without relinquishing his freedoms. Whew. Anyway, both sides of the couple are outsiders in society that prove the ton wrong and build a happy life for themselves. Would recommend!

Thank you to the team at Forever for a copy of this ARC!

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Thank you to Forever and NG for a free review copy, all opinions are my own.

I have slowly been introducing myself to historical romance fiction, and this one was just absolutely lovely. I really loved the story, the slow burn of the romance, and all the characters - even Will, who was honestly annoying and kinda pathetic sometimes. (Like, seriously, get yourself in such debt and then sulk about it but continue to do the bad shit? Nah, ridiculous.) Vivienne and Gabriel has such good chemistry, even when they're standing against each other.

I think the only thing that kinda threw me off is Gabriel's sleepwalking, and how it was portrayed as a bad thing.

I really really loved this, and I am excited to see where this series may take us.

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This was one of these books that while it wasn't my favorite, it will surely be the favorite of someone else.

One of the main issues I had with this one was with Gabriel himself. Here you have someone who pulled himself up from being raised in an orphanage to running one of the most successful gaming hells in London - when you first meet him he is very confident in who he is and what he wants.

Only suddenly, when he is informed that he is a legitimate duke with six half-sisters that now need to be launched into society his personality does a complete 180. He becomes absolutely cowed by his grandmother, giving in to her every demand, even going so far as to attempt to court someone his grandmother handpicked for him. Suddenly, that confident man who built an empire from nothing, is being told what to do and listening. I would have liked to have seen him stand up to her more throughout the book, not just suddenly grow a backbone once Vivienne was seemingly lost to him.

Another issue I had with this is that according to the Dowager Duchess, everything Gabriel does reflects on his sisters (which is true), but she seemed to act as though the fact that they were all illegitimate would mean nothing to society, when we all know these girls would have been shunned, and none of them would be making the "brilliant match" to a member of the ton like she claimed would happen if Gabriel would just fall in line.

Vivienne was little better, I understand that she was considered "ruined" due to a mistake, but even she was not what I expected. What made me warm to her character was the way she interacted with Gabriel's sisters, and then (at least tried) to bow out gracefully when she realized that he intended to marry someone else. Well at least until she did what she did, but I can understand her reasoning. After all, a lot of books such as this one give the heroine "one night to remember."

I was also expecting more from the villain of the story, from everything we were told about him and his plans to have Vivienne's father's will overturned, it seemed he was dealt with in a very anti-climatic way.

As I said before, while this one won't be sitting on my of my favorites lists, I do believe it will appeal to other readers who enjoy historical romances. I would read this author again if she continues with this series as I am curious about her plans for some of the other characters we were introduced to.

DISCLAIMER: I received a complimentary copy of this novel from the publisher. This has not affected my review in any way. All thoughts and opinions expressed in this review are 100% my own.

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I will definitely say that this feels very reminiscent of the Bridgerton series (minus Lady Whistledown), but I wasn't mad at it. I loveee a good bodice-ripping regency romance, which I wish this had risen to the occasion of. The story was nice but lacking a bit of the edge necessary to keep the interest on the page. I would honestly have preferred a more contentious relationship between Vivienne and Gabriel, a la enemies-to-lovers, but they got too nice too fast. I'd have to say this book was just good, not great sadly.

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I am a sucker for all things dukes. Sara Bennett never misses. I love her work so much! I cannot wait to read more of her work.

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Vivienne Tremeer and her brother are in London, trying to make a go of things and hide from their stepfather while living on the suffrage of their aunt. Too bad Vivian’s brother gets in with the wrong crowd, precipitating her need to go to the gambling then her brother is in debt to an ask for leniency… obviously that doesn’t go as planned.

Gabriel Cadieux has become wealthy and successful by not backing down, so when the delectable spinster sister of one of his clients shows up, he is not swayed.

Lucky for Vivienne, Gabriel soon finds out that he is the legitimate heir to a dukedom that just so happens to have sex feisty, unmarried half sisters included with it!

Time to strike a deal! He calls Vivienne, the most proper lady he knows, and strikes a bargain to absolve her brothers death if she becomes his sisters governess and get them ready for society!

Are full of lots of a family drama on the side for both Vivienne and Gabriel, the story had a lot going on, and made it hard to focus on the growing attraction in relationship between these two.

I was also surprised with so many side characters, like the brother and the sisters and the dowager duchess, that I didn’t really get a good well rounded feeling any of these characters to help add personal touch to the story.

In the end, I was happy and contented with the HEA presented, but it was a long and sometimes arduous path to get there.

Thank you do you forever Romance for my arc review copy. Opinions are my own.

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