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review 2018-11-08 14:31
ARC REVIEW No Ordinary Duke by Sophie Barnes

 

No Ordinary Duke (The Crawfords, #1)

 

 

The Crawfords #1, I love books where one of the main characters hides part of who they are and fall in love, I always like how they redeem themselves to the other person. In this Caleb Crawford has finally comes home after studying architecture in France to prove his father wrong only to find out both his father and older brother died in a fire and he has now inherited the Dukedum. After trying for a couple of months, Caleb is at his breaking point he needs some time away from being the duke. His best friend Viscount Aldridge, has the solution, his sister lives out in the country with two other women and take care of orphan children. Seeing as how Aldridge's sister has never meet Caleb he just introduces himself as Mr. Crawford the new caretaker. 

Mary Clemens, the daughter of a tradesman who became extraordinarily wealthy, got burned by society. She thought she fell in love with a man above her social standing but he let his father ruin the relationship and the father spread horrid rumors about her all over London. Her only escape was to disappear from London society and to live with her friend in the country and help children in need. Mary knowing her reputation was irreparably damaged she figured she'd never marry so she created a life with her two friends that was satisfying. The appearance of Mr. Crawford unsettled her because he aroused feeling in her she never had before and the fact that he was a laborer and not from society was perfect but she keeps misreading his intentions. Caleb knows Mary is special and it doesn't take him long to figure out he wants to marry her, but with her dislike of society he has to find away to reveal who he really is without completely destroying her faith in him. Unfortunately that option is taken out of his hands and now he has to repair the damage done.

 

Overall, I really enjoyed this one. The characters were great. Mary even though she is a strong, opinionated, plain spoken kind of woman is so use to everything be blamed on her she keeps doubting everything. Caleb dealing with his newfound status in society and figuring out that he doesn't have to let the Dukeship define and dictate who he really is. I liked the set up with Caleb's brothers with at least two more books coming I look forward to Devlin's book. The epilogue felt off it was set so far in their future it would have made more sense to be at the end of the series with a wrap up of everyone's lives and not just these two and their kids. It feels so final and I don't want to feel that at the end of book one.             

 

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review 2018-02-22 12:47
The Duke of Her Desire by Sophie Barnes
The Duke of Her Desire: Diamonds in the Rough - Sophie Barnes

This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books.

I liked this book. I really enjoyed the first book in this series, A Most Unlikely Duke, so I was really excited to read more of the series. I didn't love it and I don't think I will remember much about it long term but it was a nice enough story. I thought that this was a pleasant read and am glad that I read it.

Thomas, the Duke of Coventry, agrees to watch over his friend's sisters while he is away. Amelia and Juliette are still trying to fit into society after living in poverty most of their lives. Amelia has other dreams and hopes to open a school for children where she used to live. Of course, she starts this process while her brother is away and Coventry jumps into to help. She is still keeping social commitments and considering potential husbands at the same time.

This was a really tame historical romance. I actually don't remember ever reading one quite this innocent. I don't need a lot of heat in this kind of story to find it enjoyable but I found it rather surprising. I really didn't feel a whole lot of chemistry between this pair and I do wonder if part of that could be because most of the book was rather chaste until the story got closer to the end. I don't think that you need sex in a story to have chemistry but it just seems that something was missing between this pair.

I did find both Amelia and Thomas to be interesting characters. Thomas has quite the story which I was very eager to learn more about as the story progressed. Amelia's quest to run a school was ambitious and really showed what kind of person she was. I was probably most entertained by everything that went wrong with the preparations for the school. I liked that they both seemed really committed to the cause.

This was a book that I liked in the end. It was a nice enough read and a nice way to spend a bit of time. It wasn't my favorite in the series but it was an acceptable installment. I am actually not sure if I will be picking up the next book in the series or not at this point but I would like to read more from Sophie Barnes in the future.

I received an advance reader edition of this book from Avon Books via Edelweiss.

Initial Thoughts
This will end up either being a 3 or 4 star read. I am going with 3 for now but that may change. I liked the book but I didn't fall in love with it. I would have liked to see a little more between Thomas and Amelia. It seemed liked the book was nearing the end before things really started moving between them besides very tame interest. I did enjoy reading this one.

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review 2018-01-02 00:00
Christmas at Thorncliff Manor
Christmas at Thorncliff Manor - Sophie Barnes Ms. Barnes has put into words all the sentiment and amusement of what makes the holidays a magical time. Falling in love, discovering new adventures and reuniting with the people you care most about. Christmas at Thorncliff is a love note to the heart. With a thirst for the unknown, behind the scenes matchmaking, new beginnings and happy endings Sophie Barnes speaks the language of any season. Heartwarming perfection.
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review 2017-12-30 13:20
Review For: The Duke of Her Desire by Sophie Barnes
The Duke of Her Desire: Diamonds in the Rough - Sophie Barnes

 

The Duke of Her Desire  by Sophie Barnes is book Two in the "Diamonds in the Rough" series.  This is the story of Thomas Heathmore, Duke of Coventry and Amelia Matthews. I have read the previous book (and loved it) but feel you can easily make this a standalone book.
Amelia and her sister Juliette along with their brother Raphe once lived in the slums of  St. Giles.  But a few months ago her brother, Raphe Matthews, became 'The Duke of Huntley'.  This has lead them into a higher station in life along with feeling not up to the towns standards.
Thomas is good friends with Raphe and has tried to help him along with his sisters have a easier time being accepted by the town.  So when Raphe ask him to watch his sisters while Raphe takes his wife Gabriella on a wedding trip, Thomas of course agrees.  Amelia and her sister will have their eccentric Aunt as a chaperone but Raphe feels they need more guidance that her.  So Thomas agrees to ask his mother the Dowager Duchess of Coventry to help him.  But Amelia now that her brother is gone thinks to put into motion her part to help the less fortunate children. Amelia has always taken to helping other along with animals.  Amelia had help to take care of her siblings when they were on the streets of St. Giles.  So Thomas finds he is in for more than just helping her to be seen as a lady.  Thomas has issues too from his past that has caused him to change greatly...is Amelia what he needs to get back to who he used to be.  
I am so in love with this series!  Can't wait for more stories!

Source: www.amazon.com/Duke-Her-Desire-Diamonds-Rough-ebook/dp/B06Y11VKYH/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1514234312&sr=1-1&keywords=The+Duke+of+Her+Desire++by+Sophie+Barnes
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text 2017-11-21 13:02
Review For: The Duke Who Came To Town Sophie Barnes
The Duke Who Came To Town (The Honorable Scoundrels Book 3) - Sophie Barnes

The Duke Who Came To Town by Sophie Barnes is Book Three in "The Honorable Scoundrels".  This the story Josephine Potter and Devon, the Duke of Snowdon.  I have read (and loved) the other books in this series but think this can be a standalone book.
Josephine is the older sister who has to take care of her sisters.  Doing so has brought her to being an account for a hotel.  When she is let go she argues with Devon who has insisted that she should be work as she is the granddaughter of a Viscount.
I loved watching their story play out and just added to my love of this series.  
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