So many of my GR friend loved this book, but I'm disappointed to say that I found it very slight and shallow. The main premise is inspired by a stupid TV show called The Bachelor
, but here the duke is setting up a competition to find a bride for his younger brother. The duke himself has sworn never to marry, having been scarred by his father's cruelty to his loving mother.
I suppose that a clever author could have crafted a funny book from this idea, but once the ladies arrive at the duke's castle for the face-off, the contest becomes a secondary story. Instead, we have the duke finding himself unaccountably attracted to our heroine, Madelyn. There follows a whole lot of smouldering repressed passion, and he constantly finds himself barely able to restrain himself in her presence. And this just goes on and on. And on.
Madelyn was sweet and insecure and saddled with a cruel, ambitious stepmother, but I never felt that we knew much about her. Eventually, she starts smouldering too, and the couple has several steamy encounters before finally succumbing to temptation. Then, there's a Misunderstanding (not even really a Big Misunderstanding), an HEA scene, and an epilogue with babies.
Just not much there there.