Daring the Duke

The Debutante Dares Series, Book One

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Pub Date 07 Oct 2021 | Archive Date 20 Oct 2021

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Description

In this Regency romance by Charlie Lane, a London season of scandalous dares forces a lady and her duke to see that perfect isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.

A redheaded bluestocking in desperate need of a wealthy husband.
A handsome duke looking for the perfect duchess.
And a dare that shows that opposites may not only attract but can be so much more.


Lady Tabitha Hampton has the memory of an elephant. Her sharp brain locks everything away tight as a trunk in an attic. But this talent fails to help the twenty-seven-year-old bluestocking attract the attention of a single wealthy suitor. And she needs one. With three sisters of marriageable age, a sickly father, and a series of bad investments draining their dowries, Tabitha’s marriage could save or ruin her entire family.

The Duke of Collingford needs a wife, but not just any one will do. Arthur’s future duchess must be perfect in every way—fair of face, impeccable manners, with enough social influence to impact his parliamentary projects. When he joins the whirl of the London season, the duke finds an insufferable, redheaded wallflower instead.

Tabitha insists she can be the perfect duchess, if he’ll only give her the chance. Arthur agrees to test her abilities, but she tests his control. And one taste of her lips is enough to make him embrace chaos.

Opposites may attract, but can they cooperate? Or will they lose everything, including their hearts?

In this Regency romance by Charlie Lane, a London season of scandalous dares forces a lady and her duke to see that perfect isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.

A redheaded bluestocking in desperate need...


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Featured Reviews

I received a copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This was an enjoyable historical novel. I loved the main character and the plot kept me interested throughout the whole book!

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A great start to a new series! Late to the marriage mart, Lady Tabitha takes a dare from fellow wallflowers and introduces herself to the Duke of Collingford with a different name each time. Convinced she's not memorable, she's surprised when Arthur singles her out for a dance. Collingford is looking for the perfect wife to fulfill an inheritance clause, and Lady Tabitha suggests that with her photographic memory, she can transform herself into the perfect duchess. Instead of achieving the perfect marriage, Arthur and Tabitha fall in love and in acceptance with themselves and each other. I really loved this theme of perfectionism. I also loved that Arthur is the one who decides they are both perfect as they are. This story was funny at times, very sweet, and highly enjoyable. I can't recommend this enough!

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This book brings the characters and their personalities to life immediately. This is a book of clean historical romantic fiction. It is a budding romance from evidently this third meeting of the two. This author uses humorous situations strategically and effectively. This is a Rom/Com that is most enjoyable. It looks at what it takes to be part of the English ton from the grandmother’s opinion….to the young couples deeds. You might be a blueblood but have never been given the tools to be elevated to a new position. First lesson, once the groom decided he should have received permission from the entire family, mother,brother, uncle, grandmother., then her family the bride snd and affirmed by all her friends, since the couple didn’t obtain approval in the correct order; the couple have a guest waiting for them upon their arrival home. This “small” overbite could cost them their marriage. Enstead a grandmother’s’ smothering conventional style to live up to may prove to be fatal to the marriage of this young couple. With much gratitude to the author,publisher and Net Galley for giving me the opportunity to review an advance copy of Daring theDuke in exchange for an honest review which I have done. I will definitely be seeking out more of Charlie Lanes’s books and will be not only be recommending this book but also Charlie Lane for her style of writing and her humor. Thank you so much.

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I am a huge fan of Historical fiction, especially romance novels and as far as "Daring the Duke" goes, I thoroughly enjoyed reading Tabitha and Arthurs adventure. Their beginning is hate turning into attraction and then love, and it all starts with a dare. I won't be revealing much about this wonderful and entertaining novel as I want to avoid spoiler and want the readers to enjoy it, but I will say this much, it has the right amount of bickering, humour, and erotica that we look for in a Historical fiction / Romance novel. I’m looking forward to reading more about the interesting side characters, especially Lillian and Devon.

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Loved this book! I really enjoyed the characters and the story line! This book kept me entertained and I read it in a couple days!!! I highly recommend this book!!! Thank you so much for letting me review this book!

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This is very good fun! The writing is smart, clear, and humorous and both MCs have some growing to do in order to earn their happiness. It's gratifying to follow their progress. There's a nice amount of chemistry and spice as well. This is definitely worth picking up for a light, enjoyable diversion! Many thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for the opportunity to read and review.

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Book received for free through NetGalley Loved this simple romance with a happy ending. Perfect distraction book.

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Tabitha and Arthur's story begins with a dare. She thinks no one notices her and he is the perfect duke everyone looks up to. They are creatures from different worlds. Tabitha's is guided by emotions, while Arthur is guided by what is expected of him. He needs a perfect Duchess, and Tabitha volunteers for the position because she needs to save her family. As she creates the persona 'The Duchess' it starts to grate on Arthur's nerves and is unsure of the path he has decided on. My favorite parts of the book is seeing Arthur realize who he really is and discovering he isn't quite as stuffy as he always believed. Well, that and his artwork! I thoroughly enjoyed this book and if you're a fan of Historical Romances you will too. I received this book free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

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Sometimes dares go wrong. And sometimes dares go right. In Daring the Duke dares go both ways as the intrepid heroine with a perfect eidetic memory is dared to be introduced by a different name after he fails to recognize her upon multiple introductions. Bored with a much belated season in which she is so roundly ignored she proposes to marry one of her father’s old friends, she accepts the dare. Between her desire to measure up as a duchess and her belief she does not, lies an ocean of travails and lessons for how do you become what you already are? An intriguing take on the usual trope of a marriage of convenience between an impoverished lass and a wealthy duke who requires a duchess approved by his entire family in order to inherit a beloved home in which he was raised. As they pursue their mutually beneficial plans, will love slip through?

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Tabitha and Arthur make an amazing pair. A London season of scandalous dares forces a lady and her Duke to see that perfect isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Charlie Lane has written a witty and awesome book in which a Duke learns to love. I received a complimentary copy of this novel from the publisher and NetGalley. This in no way affects my opinion of this book which I read and reviewed voluntarily.

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This was a new author for me. I found Daring the Duke to be a delightful tale of a duke with good intentions gone awry and a wallflower who needs to marry money to save her family after she makes a bad investment. Arthur is searching for his Perfect duchess in order to regain an estate where his happy childhood memories were made. Unfortunately, suitable misses of the ton leave him cold and bored. Tabitha, a flaming redhead with a penchant for taking dares pranks poor Arthur at every opportunity and leaves him both irritated and captivated. She cannot be the Perfect woman. Sometimes, the most perfect, imperfect love can be found in a very unlikely place.

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I recieved a free copy from netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This is the first book that I have read by this author and I throughly enjoyed it. Tabitha is 27 and having her first season. She must marry well to bring her family back from the brink for financial ruin, which she caused. Arthur must marry a woman his family approves of in order to fulfill his father's will and get his childhood home. Tabitha fascinates Arthur and she is put to the duchess test. I liked Tabitha and Arthur although I do feel like all of Tabitha doubts in the 2nd half of the book seemed a little out of character. I enjoyed this book and can't wait for Jane and George's story next.

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I received this book from NetGalley. Lady Tabitha Hampton is quite a lady. Late to the Ton season at age 27, she needs to find a husband, and fast, to help her family. The issue - she's a redhead and speaks her mind. She also does not have a mother to teach how to act refined as she passed away several years ago. The Duke of Collingford needs to find a wife and he is running out of time. Due to a quirk in his father's will (as has been done by his father, etc), he cannot inherit the place he wants to call home. He must find a wife that is approved by all living family members. When their paths cross, Tabitha plays a trick on the Duke thinking that the Duke would not remember her. Little does she realize, he cannot forget about her. Will this union work? Can Tabitha become the Duchess the Duke needs? This is the first book in a new series. I am really looking forward to the remaining books.

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Lady Tabitha Hampton has a very handy knack for remembering everything. Yet this talent has not prevented the family falling close to ruin, through poor investments. So Tabitha realises that she must marry. Yet before she does, she can’t help but accept a dare from her friends, and in doing so, puts her family’s fate at risk. Arthur, the Duke of Collingford is in need of a wife, if he is to push for social reform in parliament. Yet when is involved in the dare by Tabitha, his interest is piqued. Yet Tabitha is not the duchess that he imagined with her red hair and lack of social contacts. However, he finds himself captivated by her ability to transform into a duchess and her charms have him enthralled. Now all he has to do is convince his family to accept her, which may not be as easy as it seems. I found this a lovely and quite unique story. Tabitha is such a refreshing character as are her two wallflower friends. Arthur is also an intriguing character as are his family members. Towards the end of the story, I found myself hoping that this book would just go for a bit longer as it did seem to be a bit rushed. Otherwise, I am now thrilled to read more by Charlie Lane and look forward to more books in this series. I received an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.

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The opening chapter was fun, I loved Tabitha and her friends banters, sure for her age, she can appear a bit naive and childish but women were allowed few to none freedom, and days and evenings were probably tedious when you had nothing else to do than sit or watch from the outskirts life pass by you and nothing else to do than wait for the night to be over. Arthur is not the perfect picture he is referred to be, why he is so set on finding the perfect counterpart to his supposed impeccable persona, to make do with his flaws. His family is weird from the grandmother to the uncle, only his brother, but he seems to be known for his spleen periods, and mother appear to be loving persons, enjoying life. The dynamic of Arthur and Tabitha’s relationship is fun, and while the wager is improbable, which person in its right mind would risk its legacy with some meddling person they know to be all wrong. How I disliked the Duchess mask, it was like Tabitha was part-time inhabited by a robot, yet it was fun to watch Arthur regrets Tabitha true self. Each is the other’s answer, she is in need of money to rescue her kin while he is in want of the perfect spouse to assist him. As they get to know one another, it is each other’s flaws that endear them to the other. I confess I am have been left with many questions about Tabitha, she is 27, why so late a debut, she lost the family money only a few months prior to the beginning of this book, so what held them all back, and why not choose the younger sibling instead. Why was she the one to manage the family’s businesses, she is the eldest but they are all adults and we’re no more kids when their mother was killed. Why is there need to explain her incredible memory outside a photographic one, and they are marquess’ offsprings not really lowly creatures so why the disdain. I’m a bit illogical, but I felt the story dragged for too long, yet at the same time, their relationship moved forward too soon. It was like the narrative went in too many directions but never really focused in one. Arthur is a nice and caring fellow caged by his duties and family expectations, Tabitha sets him free, even if she is even more flawed than he is. I love the author’s talent with words and her usually spunky feisty heroines, yet this story has not the usual vibe, a bit too deconstructed. 3.5 stars 𝗦𝘁𝗲𝗮𝗺 𝗹𝗲𝘃𝗲𝗹 onscreen lovemaking scenes I have been granted an advance copy by the publisher Wolf Publishing, here is my true and unbiased opinion.

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Arthur and Tabitha have a great story to tell. I enjoyed this immensely and was sorry to see it end. I had forgotten how much fun a good Regency could be.

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It all came down to a dare. Now in my time, I’ve been subjected to and forced others to do some dumb things. Absolutely harmless entertainment, but at times, on the fringes of what could be considered socially acceptable. In college, I was once dared to take those large orange construction cones and plaster them throughout our music history classroom. Dumb? Yes. Did I feel like a rebel? Sure. At no moment, however, was my reputation on the brink of being left in tatters. Since I was such a rebel and replaced the cones directly after class, I can’t say that the stakes were high. I was just having fun with friends (and maybe our buddy Nikolai) plus the shot of endorphins was real nice. The same cannot be said for our heroine, Lady Tabitha Hampton, whose whole financial and romantic future depend on her small deceit being kept under wraps. In Charlie Lane’s, Daring the Duke, the first of the Debutante Dares Series, we are made quite aware of the repercussions of foolhardy games in Regency England. A Little Bit of Plot Tabitha Hampton, with her eidetic memory and sharp wit, along with her band of wallflower friends, pass their time during boring social events with scandalous dares often at the expense of the dim-witted ton. For Lady Hampton, her dares involve the very straight laced and proper (i.e. hot as hell) Duke of Collingford. Unbeknownst to Tabitha, Arthur is in on her game and is determined to expose her to ridicule. While Arthur might not have time for games, he does have a need that must be met - that being the procurement of a proper duchess in order to obtain his rightful family legacy, Rose Hall. Tabitha knows that with her vice like memory and ability to learn any skill, she can become the wife he needs to secure his family’s approval. It doesn’t hurt that Arthur wants to do the horizontal mambo with her either - producing an heir never sounded so fun. I mean, for him, since she’s got to carry the baby, not a walk in the park for her. Plus! She’s a redhead and that was so 5 seasons ago! So, officially a pariah. (Every day I thank someone upstairs that I live in this era… I would probably have walked in front of a carriage after my first season if I lived during this time.) The Compliment Sandwich The Top Bun (The Pros) The Premise - The Dares This one’s tough to describe because I don’t want to ruin them. Lets just say there's mistaken identity afoot. Also, literal bare feet. Jane wiggled her eyebrows. “Dance barefoot.”...Jane pushed her right back out into the light. “No. This is your dare. You stand there, chin high, shoulders back. Meet the gaze of every man who comes your way, and say yes to the first one to ask you to dance.” Lillian’s gaze dropped to the floor, then bounced back up. “What about my shoes?” “Keep them this time, “ Tabitha hissed. “But next time.” She raised both eyebrows. “Barefoot”. The lengths these three women go for each other in this book are so enjoyable. I love a wallflower romance story - it’s like high priced catnip and this book delivered. We have three bluestocking, on the shelf, beautiful women who would rather spend time with each other than wagging tongues with the rest of the ton. I’m even okay with a little merriment at the expense of snobby bitches. While to us (in the now times), we would consider these dares to be lame and low stakes, each woman is mortified to be called out on their frivolity. Arthur is almost giddy to be catching Tabitha up in a falsehood. Escape? Simply not allowed. He reached out and wrapped his fingers around her wrist. She slammed to a halt, turned slowly, and met his gaze with fiery eyes. “I am sure Your Grace is accustomed to grabbing and taking whatever, or whomever, he wishes, but you will not do so with my wrist. The true her. Right there. It could be nothing less. The confident command in her voice knocked the breath out of him. He regained it quickly. “But I may do so with other parts of you?” Arthur is immediately intrigued with both Tabitha’s mind and her ability to command attention when she feels warranted. What starts as a bout of revenge ends with a fascination from both parties. You can say that she dares Arthur to marry her and make her his Duchess. Tabitha believes she’s the only one that can secure his family approval and get him what he’s been longing for - control of Rose Hall. She’s the first woman that has held his interest and for her, lets face it… the Scrooge McDuck sized money vault holds immense sway. Question, did anyone ever try to swim in a literal money vault? How did that dumb duck not break it’s neck? Also, was there an episode where they cleaned that thing? Could you imagine the smell after so many times swimming naked, amirite? Cartoon ducks don’t wear pants! His corkscrew penis was just snail-trailing all over all that money! And don’t get me started on why the dogs were the second class citizens...specists! Okay, rant over. My mind is often a dark place. Over to the Meat (The Con) I think this book forgot exactly what a “Proper Duchess” was supposed to be at some point. Arthur has a view of what he wants right away; however, this changes after he spends a bit of time in Tabitha's company. He’s enraptured with her because she can quickly ‘learn’ to become what he needs to pass the familial ‘smell test’. With her eidetic memory, she can slip into the role of THE DUCHESS (ALL CAPS) at a moments notice which is sure to gain favor with both his stodgy uncle and the matriarch of the family, The Grandmother. Arthur suddenly realizes that he doesn’t want perfect, or he does, just not all the time. He’s quickly bored with Tabitha's ability to slip in and out of the Duchess persona. "Arthur yawned. Watching Lady Tabitha prove she could be perfect should be fascinating, exciting. It was boring. He watched the card table but shifted his focus to Devon and the girl, listening to their conversation”. Dude, you are the one that wanted her to be perfect! She fit what you needed like a damn glove. But it’s not enough for her to memorize Debretts and follow the portrait of a regal duchess, but she should also be spontaneous, fun loving,witty, sexy, go down on him in a thunderstorm, give fantastic massages, be ready for it 24/7, and also play the piano. And what special traits do men need to have at this time? Shoot shit and make money. It didn’t even matter if they were good at ‘the sex’; the women weren’t supposed to enjoy it. See? That encounter with the carriage is looking better and better... Arthur’s mother’s (the former duchess) has her own views on what that role looks like - and she believes that Tabitha fits the bill without her ‘alter ego’. Arthur’s grandmother feels that Tabitha’s ‘Duchess’ persona will lead her to finally crack and make everyone miserable. His uncle disapproves of her red hair. At one point, I said out loud “someone just make a damn decision because I’m getting frustrated”. It’s like if I’d been picturing Chris Evans baking me a birthday cake for a year and he finally does it and it’s made with that whipped topping or fondant as opposed to butter cream. Even if he does it shirt less, I’ll still enjoy it, but it won’t taste the same. Wait, my analogy isn’t working. Who’s going to turn away a cake made by a shirtless Chris Evans? Monsters. That’s who. The Bottom Bun Devilish Devon While I enjoyed both Tabitha and Arthur, I have to say I really loved Devon, the Dukes younger brother. I would equate him to Leo Hathaway, Lord Ramsey, in that he’s a scoundrel but has the utmost respect for the ladies. Devon scoffed. “You, Your Grace, are a privileged ass.”... “Right or not, he wasn’t about to let his little brother call him an ass and get away with it…”I’m certain I’ve heard more than one woman call you such.” “I’m certain you misheard. What she said was she felt privileged to touch my-” I’m not sure who he will be paired up with in the next book, but we are left wondering if a certain trip to Scotland with Lady Jane will be an issue. Devon is definitely the Pucci of this book. Every time he’s away I’m thinking “Where’s Devon? I wonder what Devon’s up to? Is someone touching Devon’s ass right now? Is it Jane? Is it Lillian?”. You can’t help but swoon at Devon’s support and protectiveness when it comes to his sister-in-law. Devon perused her from the tips of her shoes to the top of her bonneted head. “My that was duchess-like. My brother has got a surprise coming his way, I think.” Tabitha could not help it. She cracked. She probed. “Does the duke think I’m going to fail?”... “No idea,” Lord Devon said. “He keeps his cards close, he does. I think you’re doing fabulous.” He winked. Tabitha did not sigh. She winked instead. “Thank you”. Lillian and Lord George aren’t as forefront as the other characters, but I enjoyed their interactions with the main character as well. George has a very cryptic relationship with Lady Jane and Devon has taken an interest in Lillian. My luck is that Lane won’t pair them up at all, she’ll just wait until the penultimate book in the series and bring in some Mary Sue that’s never been referenced. What’s the male version of a Mary Sue? A Chad? Oh wait, we know that a Chad never gets the girl. All in all, this was a delightful Regency era romp with very low stakes. If you enjoy the use of the term ‘mind palace’ and the name Priscilla Pickles makes you giggle, you can’t go wrong.

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Daring the Duke The Debutante Dares Series, Book One by Charlie Lane Lady Tabitha desperately needs to marry well and really only a duke will do . Tabitha being an intelligent spirited red head chooses to dare Arthur the duke in question and find that opposites do attract. A thoroughly enjoyable well written book. Fabulous characters which proves a very good start to the series. Things don’t go as smoothly as expected but great read.

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A wonderful historical romance from Charlie Lane and Wolf Publishing. Tabitha and Arthur have a tumultuous beginning but eventually enter into a mutually beneficial fake courtship. Follow their journey from nemesis to friendship to love. Definitely a must-read for historical romance lovers. Thank you Charlie Lane, Wolf Publishing and NetGalley for allowing me an advance copy for my honest feedback.

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This was an enjoyable story. It is part of a series and I think this is the first story that I have read by this author. I really liked this story and not just because the heroine was 27 years old. The heroine is the oldest of four girls and their father is doing poorly. Their mother died about 8 years before and the estates aren't producing very much money. The heroine is tbe oldest and has been running everything. She became aware of an invest that would triple their funds. So she used their savings and it was a scam. She was swindled out of all of their money. She needed to get married to a wealthy man and so began her first season. Her sisters are are old enough to have a season also, but they do not have the money. So while she is in her season, she becomes friends with 3 other girls. They are considered wallflower spinsters. To amuse each other they dare each other. The heroine has to seek an introduction to a duke who is looking for the perfect wife. But every time she asks to be introduced, she uses a different lady, at a different event and gives him a different name. He realizes after the second introduction, but doesn't let one. She intrigues him and so he decides to seek her introduction. She uses a different name again, but he asks her to dance and her friends dare her. While they are dancing he uses her real name and she realizes that he knows she was giving him false names. I enjoyed this story so very much. It was the style of writing that grabs you and keeps you reading. It did have a couple of slow parts, but what book doesn't. I like the way the hero and heroine communicated. After realizing the dare about the names, both parties were honest with each other and tried to communicate with each other. I liked the way this story described the parties and settings of the story. I enjoyed the other charavters. Both main characters developed and grew throughout the story. This story met all of my requirements for a 5 star review and a recommendation to read.

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Tabitha, Jane, and Lillian are accustomed to watching the ball instead of participating. They are, for the most part, easily forgotten or ignored completely. To deal with the snub and boredom, they play a game of dares. One of their dares even brings Tabitha together with Arthur, Duke of Collingford. The next dare is a doozie. She dares him to marry her, claiming that her fantastic memory will allow her all she needs to know to be his perfect wife, the one who will gain the approval of all his family so that he can inherit his childhood home. Interesting, but iffy. Tabitha and Arthur are opposites. They take notice of each other, but it is not love at first sight. I love the way the romance built slowly. Both work hard, maybe too hard, to be perfect, but realize that perfect, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder. The characters are all great, even Uncle Brutus, who makes the perfect villain. Tabby’s friends and sisters and Devon are fun, and Arthur’s mother is smart, caring, and gives very good advice. There is a bit of drama as it all comes together, but in the end all is well. Interesting story. I enjoyed and recommend it. I received an ARC of this book from the publisher via NetGalley. My review is voluntary.

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This was a well-written, entertaining Regency romance. It was clever, funny, steamy, captured my interest and I didn't want to put it down. This is the first book in a series, though it can be read as a standalone story. I enjoyed this Regency romance and look forward to reading more books in this series as well as others by this author.

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Tabitha has an incredible memory, and some of those memories she would rather forget, like when she made a bad investment with her family's savings and lost it all. Arthur is in need of a duchess and Tabitha has caught his eye. After all, she's been introduced to him multiple times under different names, something that is a little beyond the pale in the Ton. Unfortunately,. he needs to find the perfect duchess in order to finally inherit his childhood home in the country and the rules of his inheritance are strict! However, when he does confront her about her about her deception, she makes a counter proposal. She will act as his duchess to be, which will allow her a position to take care of her family's needs. Naturally, Arthur is skeptical. How is this daring bluestocking supposed to become a demure duchess overnight? To Arthur's surprise, she's actually pretty good at. To his further surprise--and hers--this ruse begins to become less of a ruse as they begin to lose their hearts against the better judgement of their heads! This book was really good. I finished in in two nights while on vacation and it was a totally different take on Ton life than I'm used to. I loved the characters and their families. I look forward to further adventures in Lane's take on the Ton. It was sweet, fiery, and funny, and that's everything you want in a light-hearted historical romance read!

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A perfectly imperfect romance! First of all, I loved the change of pace that gave us a heroine who regrets some mistakes she's made - even the huge ones are not excused away, but faced head on. I adored her determination to convince Arthur that she could be a proper duchess, and it was refreshing to see that he simply dismissed her without even considering her proposal, so convince was he that she couldn't fit his idealized image. These are not typical romance characters; instead they each have a bit of an edge and are clearly self-serving in the beginning, so watching their love grow was especially rewarding because they had so very much to overcome. I love the compassionate yet proper example his mother set, and how she helped him understand exactly what the position of duchess required. Arthur's brother and Tabitha's two friends were absolutely intriguing additions to the cast and I hope to read each of their stories in upcoming books. The HEA was sublime, and I loved the role that Arthur's grandmother played. This was a joyous journey from adversaries to happily in love, and I enjoyed the story immensely. I voluntarily reviewed an ARC of this book.

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