Duke of Sin by Elizabeth Hoyt
(Maiden Lane series)
Publisher & Release: Grand Central Publishing, May 31, 2016
Time and setting: 1741, London
Genre: Historical Romance/Georgian
Length: 360 pages
Heat Level: 2 Flames
Rating: 4.5 Gold Crowns
A MAN OF SIN
Devastatingly handsome. Vain. Unscrupulous. Valentine Napier, the Duke of Montgomery, is the man London whispers about in boudoirs and back alleys. A notorious rake and blackmailer, Montgomery has returned from exile, intent on seeking revenge on those who have wronged him. But what he finds in his own bedroom may lay waste to all his plans.
A WOMAN OF HONOR
Born a bastard, housekeeper Bridget Crumb is clever, bold, and fiercely loyal. When her aristocratic mother becomes the target of extortion, Bridget joins the Duke of Montgomery's household to search for the incriminating evidence-and uncovers something far more dangerous.
A SECRET THAT THREATENS TO DESTROY THEM BOTH
Astonished by the deceptively prim-and surprisingly witty-domestic spy in his chambers, Montgomery is intrigued. And try as she might, Bridget can't resist the slyly charming duke. Now as the two begin their treacherous game of cat and mouse, they soon realize that they both have secrets-and neither may be as nefarious-or as innocent-as they appear . . .
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I have been a fan of Elizabeth Hoyt’s Maiden Lane series ever since the first one was published. When I found Duke of Sin on Net-Galley, I immediately requested it in exchange for an honest review. I thoroughly enjoy this book!
Bastard daughter of a lady, Bridget Crumb is the housekeeper to the notorious Duke of Montgomery. He’s amoral, a blackmailer, a man without a heart. Determined to foil his plan to blackmail her mother, she searches his chamber for the evidence he holds against her.
Valentine Napier is a troubled man, scarred by his childhood. He is determined to never fall in love. After all, then he would have to kill her because love kills. That was the message he learned at an early age, one he will never forget.
Their secrets should forever keep them apart, but the passion they feel for one another burns brighter than any secret. Can Bridget overlook Val’s many sins or will they drive her away?
I fell in love with Bridget’s character from the first page. She is fierce and loyal when she has very little reason to be so. I loved her passionate nature which she tries very hard to deny. She fights furiously to push away her desire for the evil duke, but her soft heart interferes when she learns what drives his atrocious behavior.
Val’s character is definitely a tortured soul, my favorite kind of hero. He is deliciously gorgeous, and Ms. Hoyt does an astonishing job of painting a clear picture for me. While he is indeed very wicked, he does have vulnerabilities. Hoyt has given me a truly flawed character, one that could be too much for some. I really worried there was no way she could ever redeem him, but she worked her magic. I became so emotionally involved and began to overlook his terrible behavior. Val is truly a villain, one that a reader will either love of hate.
Ms. Hoyt is a true master at pulling me into her story, even when I fought it. I already mentioned that Val is not an easy character to like, let alone love, but she managed it with me. Duke of Sin is fast-paced with plenty of suspense woven into the vivid Georgian setting. From the description of the costumes to the manner in which her characters speak, I felt as if I were living in this period of history. It would be easy to overlook her brilliance in this area with her incredibly compelling characters driving the story.
If you’re looking for a truly emotionally-charged story with unforgettable characters, then you will love Duke of Sin as much as I did. This entire series is a true pleasure to read and this book definitely lived up to my high expectations. Happy reading!