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review SPOILER ALERT! 2017-05-13 22:34
The Duke
The Duke (Victorian Rebels) - Kerrigan Byrne

My review contains spoilers and they're mostly my thoughts...

Sooo, I finished Kerrigan Byrne’s The Duke, book 4 of her dark historical romance series Victorian Rebels and I’m not sure what to say. My feeling is rather ambivalent. I was really anticipating the release because the H of this one sounded very intriguing; however he failed to meet my expectations. Actually, there were equal bits of likes and dislikes throughout.

Wanna add that Victorian Rebels has no paranormal or time travel elements in it like the author’s previous works; just a few Victorian-era bad boys of the underworld getting their HEAs with women who bring them down to their knees, quite literally. More than once I’m happy to add. ;) These people are deadly and will do anything to survive.

In book 1, The Highwayman, we were introduced to the King of the London underworld, Dorian Blackwell and his band of misfits. Dorian is actually Dougan MacKenzie, the bastard son of the cruel and lecherous Hamish MacKenzie, now deceased Laird of MacKenzies. His darkness has seeped into all of his sons, doesn’t matter whether they were legitimate or illegitimate. The only difference was Dougan/Dorian wanted to fight it for the love of his life, Farah. Their story had a tragic beginning that started as young love kept apart for almost 20 years. They both thought all hope were lost for them until they found each-other again. Dougan was imprisoned for murder at the tender age of 12, where his life was a hell no one would want to wish upon another human being. However, he and a few of his rebellious friends survived that hell, came out deadlier than ever. They wanted revenge for what was done to them, they wanted to rule the underworld but most of all, Dorian wanted to find his “fairy” who he knew was still alive. He knew her to be his soulmate. Now all he wanted was to find the peace that eluded him forever. And no one but Farah will do. I really loved book 1, which was a great start to this series.

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review 2017-03-30 04:49
The Highlander - Kerrigan Byrne

Finished in the wee hours last night, so it could have been this morning.

 

It moved fast. The H has issues from an abused childhood (and I imagine the next book or two in the series will also feature titled gents with horrible childhoods. Yawn...) The h was encouraged by her father to marry a newly arrived neighbor... I'm somewhat mystified on this part because usually a title had a moldering pile attached to it somewhere, so why would a titled family acquire a new house? In any case, this was a bad idea because the entire family appears to have been wastes of skin. At the beginning of the book, the h has been locked in an asylum due to her interfering with her in-laws' scheme of killing off the previous h for reasons I've forgotten (it's been several months, and I've slept since then). Said asylum seems to be run by the same sort of people the poor h had married into. She was rescued in the nick of time, and packed off to be governess for the H's kids.

 

Lots of stuff happens. I felt like some disclosures didn't really get dealt with - I can only assume they'll be addressed in the next book. And well, no matter how you look at it, the h was NOT free to form a relationship until two chapters from the end. It's hard not to think about her being married, particularly since SHE keeps reminding herself.

 

Also, I really wondered about the whole "barren" bit. Still no kids in the epilogue but it seems odd I guess. How would a Dr know? And considering her husband's proclivities, did he have scattered proof of his own fertility?

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review 2017-02-13 02:11
Dark journey to love
The Duke - Kerrigan Byrne
I found this book hard to put down. It is the fourth in the series, but I felt it stood alone. Ms. Byrne's style of writing is not the usual historical romance. There are a lot of incidents of despair, violence, grit, but hope grows and shows the way to love. This is Cole's story, and he is battle-hardened with scars inside and out. The only thing keeping him going is the one night he spent with a woman who made him feel. Imogen did not forget that night either, but the outlook for her future became bleak so she took the option to help her step out of the filth. As they come together again, the secrets stay front and center until danger is knocking on Imogen's door. I highly recommend this book and the series, but be prepared for a darker journey toward the light.

I received a copy of this story through Netgalley, and it is a Book Obsessed Chicks Star Review selection. This is my unsolicited review.
 
 

 

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review 2017-02-07 19:24
The Duke
The Duke - Kerrigan Byrne

'The Duke' by Kerrigan Byrne is book four in the "Victorian Rebels".  This is the story of Collin Talmage, Duke of Trenwyth  and Imogen Pritchard.  I have read the other book in this series but I feel this is easily a standalone book.  I have truly loved this series and this book just added to the enjoyment.   Collin has lost his family and now he has inherited the Title of Duke of Trenwyth. Collin happens to meet Imogen 'Ginny' when she is trying to keep her mother and sister from the poor house.  Imogen has taken to working as a nurse by day and working at at bar/brothel at night to pay off her fathers debt.  Imogen noticed a sadness in Collin that first night at the bar.  Collin too noticed Imogen and paid for her for the night.  Imogen tried to talk her boss out of taking the money and turning her into a prostitute.  But the money would pay a large part of her fathers debit. So Collin and Imogen spent the night together with Imogen sneaking out before morning.  Collin and Imogen didn't see each other for a few more years after that night.  We learn that Collin was taken as a prisoner of war and was hurt badly during that time. Imogen is still working both jobs so when Collin is brought in she is the nurse assigned to him.  It seems Collin hasn't forgotten 'Ginny" but he doesn't realize that who Imogen is.  Imogen doesn't get the chance to tell him nor is she sure she wants too.   Collin and Imogen story does have some drama in it when there appears to be a stalker after Imogen. This was just and exciting read that I could not put down and read it until the end.  
"My honest review is for a special copy I voluntarily read."

Source: www.amazon.com/Duke-Victorian-Rebels-Kerrigan-Byrne-ebook/dp/B01IA6FN9S/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1486495259&sr=8-1&keywords=Kerrigan+Byrne
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review 2017-02-06 06:06
Review: The Duke by Kerrigan Byrne
The Duke - Kerrigan Byrne

http://witandsin.blogspot.com/2017/02/review-duke-by-kerrigan-byrne.html

 

The Duke is dark, intense, and completely addictive. Imogen and Cole captivated me from the very beginning and did not let go, no matter how rocky the road to happily ever after got. Kerrigan Byrne has a gift for penning intriguing, imperfect heroes and heroines, and Imogen and Cole are no exception.

I absolutely loved Imogen. She’s lived a hard life, has known starvation and violence, yet she doesn’t break. She looks for the sunshine in the clouds, and I loved her optimism almost as much as I loved her desire to help those less fortunate. At the beginning of the story, Imogen is a nurse who must spend her nights serving alcohol in a brothel in order to pay off her father’s debts. One night changes everything when Cole, the newly-minted Duke of Talmage, walks in and she finds herself seduced by the handsome, heartbreakingly sad man. Fast-forward to the present (so as to avoid giving spoilers) and Imogen is now a wealthy widowed countess who works hard to give others a second chance and a safe environment. She’s determined to make the world a better place, even though society may scorn her for it.

Surprisingly (for a romance), Cole is one of her detractors. He grew up privileged and was raised with the prejudices typical for his class, and on top of that war and imprisonment have shown him the uglier side of humanity. Even though he’s in the wrong, I liked that Ms. Byrne showed where he was coming from, how his upbringing and the trauma of war (and his PTSD in the aftermath) have affected him. Yes, Cole could be frustrating because he’s so scarred and angry that he can’t see what’s right in front of him. But even though Cole isn’t the perfect hero, I really liked watching him grow as a character and become the hero he should be.

Despite its sensual beginning, the romance between Cole and Imogen is slow to burn. He’s fixated on finding the woman he spent one night with, and it’s no spoiler to say that he doesn’t realize that “Ginny” is Imogen. Thus their love story is more of an enemies-to-lovers one, and it was nice to see them actually get to know one another as they (however reluctantly) fell in love. What took this story down a notch for me was the fact that I felt we didn’t get much time with Cole and Imogen as a couple. With Cole being such a harsh character, I would have loved a few more heartfelt moments between the two, something to give me the sense of tenderness or happiness from a couple in love that I’ve come to expect to see in a romance.

In addition to the love story, there’s a level of suspense in The Duke thanks to a plotline involving Imogen’s stalker. I liked the added element of danger, but as with the romance, I felt the resolution was rushed and I would have liked just a bit more to it to leave me fully satisfied. Even with these few issues, I thoroughly enjoyed The Duke overall. Ms. Byrne is a fantastic writer and I love the complex, interesting characters she creates. Every Victorian Rebels book has swept me away, and The Duke is no exception. I cannot wait to see what Ms. Byrne has in store for readers next!


FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Source: witandsin.blogspot.com/2017/02/review-duke-by-kerrigan-byrne.html
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