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Mad About the Duke (Avon) [Mass Market Paperback]

Elizabeth Boyle

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Book Description

1 Oct 2010 Avon

Mad about the Duke is a rollicking good romp, filled with mischief and mayhem and delicious characters.”
—Sabrina Jeffries

Rita Award-winner, USA Today and New York Times bestseller Elizabeth Boyle delights once more with Mad About the Duke, the second book in her wonderfully creative, wickedly fun Widows of Standon historical romance series. It is a delectable tale of an intrepid young woman who employs an incognito duke—whom she mistakenly believes to be a common solicitor—in her quest to land a titled second husband. Featuring characters from her popular Bachelor Chronicles, Boyle proves once again to be one of today’s most imaginative writers of romantic fiction. Fans of the sensual, fast-paced historical romance of Lisa Kleypas and Christina Dodd will, likewise, be Mad About the Duke.

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Mad About the Duke (Avon) + How I Met My Countess + Lord Langley Is Back in Town (The Bachelor Chronicles)
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Review

“Delightful! A dynamic storyteller with tremendous heart and a wicked sense of humor.” (Gaelen Foley)

“Lively, delicious fun, Mad About the Duke sparkles with matchmaking, machinations, and mistaken identities. Elizabeth Boyle has a delightful flair for Regency wit and humor.” (Nicole Jordan)

“Mad about the Duke is a rollicking good romp, filled with mischief and mayhem and delicious characters. Elizabeth Boyle will keep you laughing long after you close the book!” (Sabrina Jeffries)

“All of RITA award-winning Boyle’s signature literary elements—deliciously acerbic writing, splendidly original characters, and sinfully sexy chemistry—blend brilliantly together.” (Booklist (starred review) on How I Met My Countess)

From the Back Cover

madness \mad-nes\ n (14c): the quality or state of being mad:a: rage b: insanity c: extreme folly d: ecstasy, enthusiasm.

And, added in the margins of the dictionary owned by James Tremont, the 9th Duke of Parkerton, one additional definition:

e: the state of finding oneself mistaken for a solicitor by a duke-hunting beauty who needs to be enthusiastically taught the true meaning of love.

Rage, insanity, extreme folly, and ecstasy will most likely be involved.


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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.1 out of 5 stars  30 reviews
25 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Totally Believable! 3 Nov 2010
By Rather Be Reading - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
A couple of the reviews of this book weren't very good so I was hesitant to buy it, then I remembered I liked EB's other books and decided to try it. I found it fun and very realistic! After reading a few hundred Historicals (literally)- if you go with the way aristocrats where supposedly raised back then, totally catered to and never even having to open their own doors- I could just picture James being at "sixes and sevens" when left standing alone in "the Standon Widow's foyer" at the beginning of this story. Then never having been in love before- when seeing Elinor for the first time, finding her "completely enchanting", falling head over heels in love with her, but of course, denying it to himself. So it stands to reason, he's going to make "a complete cake of himself" and let her just start assuming things that aren't true, which of course will lead to a snowball effect with him fighting his own aristocratic tendencies, learning how the other half lives, doing things he's never done before, trying to help her, and still hide who he really is throughout, leading to some funny scenes. I particularly liked his stunned servants reactions to his new behaviors, but felt they over-stepped themselves at the end. I also loved when he got very put out at her reaction of why she didn't have the Duke of Parkerton (himself) on her "Duke's list" and she sputtered, "The Duke of Parkerton? He's far too old!" And then when he tells her he's got it on good authority that he's the same age as himself (forty and then some)- She says, "Really? I can hardly believe you're that old" So he says, "You don't have to make me sound like Methuselah." Ha! Ha! I can just picture him never having been spoken to like that! Especially when he knows she's 31 yrs old herself. These were two good strong leading characters, which I need in any book I read. I really enjoyed this book, waiting to see just what James would do next, and am very glad I bought it.
20 of 24 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Oops! I did it again. Read a Boyle HR, that is, but I'm not sorry this time. 7 Oct 2010
By OLT - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
(3.5 stars probably.) When I finished reading Boyle's previous novel, HOW I MET MY COUNTESS, I told myself I really shouldn't bother with any more Boyle HRs because they're not exactly to my taste. They're not really historical and they're a bit silly. But there it was, MAD ABOUT THE DUKE, a new one calling to me and me with a very short stack of HRs to read, so...

Boyle's books can be a bit confusing for me because her characters in one book are interconnected or related to characters in many others and since I read so many HRs by so many authors in between the Boyle ones I forget many details. Thank goodness she has her family/character trees at the beginning of her novels to keep me from getting lost.

This book is about Lady Standon #2, Elinor Wraxton. The previous, HOW I MET MY COUNTESS, was about Lady Standon #3, Lucy Ellyson, and I suppose her next book will be about Lady Standon #1, Minerva Hartley. All these Lady Standons were married to a Marquess of Standon. There have been 4 marquesses since 1752 (brothers and cousins, etc., who take over the title after the death of the previous). (Just consult Boyle's family tree and all will be well.)

Anyhoo, Lady Standon #2, Elinor, needs a wealthy husband (she would prefer a duke) to protect her 14-year-old sister from wicked stepfather Lord Lewis who has guardianship of the girl. So Elinor, mistakenly believing that James Tremont, the Duke of Parkerton, is a "cit" solicitor in the employ of the Duke of Hollindrake, asks this James to help her find a wealthy (preferably duke) husband. From there all the madcap adventure ensues and it's all very silly fun and an enjoyable read if you're in the mood for a light-hearted romantic farce.
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Boyle is back to her best, at last! 29 Oct 2010
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Years ago I was a big fan of Elizabeth Boyle's work but over the last couple of years her books have been so dire, I have taken her off my reading list. For some reason this book appealed to me, and I am really glad I bought it.

What's wrong with it? Well, the story is very cluttered with characters from other books which can be very confusing. And it certainly helps to have read This Rake of Mine (Avon Romantic Treasure) to give you some background to this particular story. The other thing that some reviewers have complained about is that it is similar to a previous book Boyle wrote, Love Letters from a Duke. But I loved this story. It has wonderful humour....a sweet romance...a hot chemistry between Elinor and James. I adored the way that stuffy, uncompromising James fell in love at first sight - he really is a darling. This book is not for you if you like your romances deep, emotional and full of angst. But if you are in the mood for some fun and froth, I can highly recommend it.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Very disappointed 19 Jun 2013
By J. Manifold - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This book was an incredible disappointment. I normally read a series in order, but I broke that rule for this book because the premise seemed so interested. I've been in the mood to read a book about "one person falls in love with another, thinking s/he is someone else" and this seemed just the thing.

I had enough issues with this book, I'm not sure I'll pick up any others in the series, let alone all of them. I didn't hate everything, but rarely has a book gone from "cute" to "unbearable" so fast.

Pros:
* Until they both got struck by a bad case of "excessive stupidity" I actually liked the main characters. The hero was less enjoyable in his scenes as the Duke than he was as Mr. St. Maur, but I liked them both overall.
* The premise is interesting, and while there are certainly other books out there with a similar premise, it's not SO common as to seem overly redundant.

Cons:
* I hated probably 90% of the supporting characters. All of the Duke's servants. His daughter. Tia was only tolerable. The Duke and Duchess of Hollindrake don't even show up in this book, but the way the other characters talk about the makes me never, ever want to read their book. Why? Because the way they're discussed by other characters makes me think that he's self-involved and is more concerned about his pocketbook than the people around him, and she'd steal a diamond off her dead mother's corpse before burying her if she thought it was worth something. Why would I read a story about them?
* The Stupid. DEAR GOD, THE STUPID. Okay, this isn't the first story to do this and won't be the last, but that doesn't make it any less STUPID.

==SPOILERS BELOW==

* Evil Guy who is clearly established as being an unmitigated Villain comes to Heroine and says, "Oh, yeah, Hero's actually a bad guy who wants to kick puppies, steal candy from babies, and sell your sister to the highest bidder." And she - who has spent a good deal of time with Hero at this point, says, "Ohmygod, that makes sense! I'm going to run off to Other Love Interest because Hero can't be trusted!" So she does. It doesn't make sense, but the book says she must do so, so she does. Actually, she does in order to justify the Hero coming to "rescue" her but is actually just stupid.
* The Duke's servants are all Deeply Concerned that he's going insane because he's...in love...and wants to go on a picnic...and so they start burning his mail and thwarting him at every turn. Huh? Their assumption that he's "inviting bunnies to dinner" nuts because he wants a picnic just didn't make sense to me. I don't care that it was out of character for him, it was an absurd conclusion for them to reach and doesn't make their actions understandable or reasonable. And it certainly doesn't make the characters likeable.
* Heroine finds out Hero has been lying to her and is angry as she storms to his house to Have It Out with him. She calms down a little, however, when she realizes he lives in a Really Nice House. The book makes a point of mentioning that she calms down a bit at seeing the house and all its chimneys and how much nicer a place it is than her house. (She loves him, I'm sure, but she loves his chimneys at LEAST as much.)
* The resolution to the above issue with the servants is that the Duke says, "Your actions were incredibly wrong and unacceptable. But I realize you love me and that's why you did what you did. So it's all okay. I love you too." And Heroine THROWS herself into her arms, realizing that she loves him, truly madly AND deeply. WHAT? HOW DOES THAT MAKE SENSE? Incidentally, this confirms that lying to the person you "love" "for their own good" is okay because "you love them." (FYI, there is no discussion between Hero and Heroine at all about the fact he'd been lying to her for the ENTIRE duration of the book, and while I DO like stories with that kind of premise, that conversation is the only thing that makes it work as an acceptable story device.

==END OF SPOILERS==

I considered giving this book three stars, but in the end, I couldn't quite bring myself to do it. I had considered reading the other books in this series before I picked this up, but after reading this one, I'm not really sure I want to do so.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Frustrating read 17 July 2011
By D. Salvagin La Deetda Reads - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This was my first Elizabeth Boyle book. I found it very confusing with characters obviously brought in from other books that I have not read. There was no indication on the cover of this book that I might need to start with other books. I gave it two stars because it wasn't horrible only a very frustrating read.

Two people who fall in love at first sight, mistaken identity that is not cleared up, acting totally out of character for one of the couple, acting illogical for the other of the couple and a bunch of servants who should have been fired.

The only adult in the book was a 12 year old Duke.
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