Dukes, Actually by Erica Ridley
Genre: Adult Regency Romance
Book 5 in the 12 Dukes of Christmas series
The Duke of Azureford isn’t the arrogant, aloof lord his peers perceive him to be. Yes, he’s awkward, but he has a plan to fix it. In order to woo a respectable lady, he must learn how to flirt. The completely inappropriate girl next door would make a perfect instructor, but a terrible duchess. So why can’t he walk away?
Incorrigible hoyden Miss Carole Quincy likes fast carriages, carom billiards, and the beautiful, buttoned-up Duke of Azureford. She’d be delighted to help him out of his shell and into her arms. Who cares if they’re just pretending to flirt? The heady, breath-taking, soul-consuming feeling inside her runaway heart surely can’t be love…
The Duke of Azureford aka Adam has poor social skills. He is about as good at talking to people as I am aka almost hopeless. But he is lonely and wants a wife. He has a plan though. He plans to build a billiard room in his house in the small town called Christmas and work on his social skills with the local townspeople. Enter Carole. She is the opposite of Adam. She is friendly, funny, and gets along with everyone. When she offers to help Adam with his social skills and sparks start to fly between them. Maybe these two lonely people have found their match.
I love both Adam and Carole. Both have great hearts and really care for others. They both want to do their duty but have found it a lonely road. I love how Carole has a very unusual hobby for a woman in the era. Carole loves math and architecture. I really connected with Carole over her mother’s death and wanting to take care of her father. I love opposites attract romance and this one was perfect. The friendship, respect, and love that grows between Carole and Adam in the book is everything you want in a romance. My one complaint is that I wish the epilogue was longer. This was the perfect Christmas read and can’t wait to read more books in this series.
Rating: 5 stars
*Thanks to NetGalley and Erica Ridley for giving me this copy to review. All opinions are my own.*