The Heiress Gets a Duke by Harper St. George
January 26, 2021 by Berkley
Review by Angela
If I’m being completely honest it was the cover for this book that caught my eye and had me requesting for review. I didn’t know who the author was or what the book was about, but I wanted to read it. So kudos to the art department at Berkley.
AFTER hitting the request button, I did read the blurb. LOL. The Heiress Gets a Duke features a trope that fans of the genre will be familiar with… forced betrothal and marriage. But as I mentioned to a friend the other day, it was very, very well done.
This book introduces an American heiress heroine, August Crenshaw, who is deeply entrenched in her family’s iron business and has basically less than zero desire to wed at this time in her life. When her family heads to London at the request of a family friend who has married into the aristocracy, it doesn’t take long before her mother has the idea that she can marry one of her daughters into London society as well.
Evan Sterling, the Duke of Rothschild, is desperately in need of a wife to save his estates. He’s tried everything else, including prizefighting, to bring in funds, but it just isn’t enough to even make a dent in the debt his father left after his death. His mother has put forth the name of a young American heiress who she thinks will make a wonderful duchess, but it’s really her older sister who Evan has set his sights on.
Despite having read tons of historical romances with this very same premise, The Heiress Gets a Duke felt like a breath of fresh air. I think the main thing that I loved was that there wasn’t any pretense between this couple. Evan wants August and never for a minute entertains the idea of going the easy way and courting her sister, who is basically offered up on a platter by her parents. August doesn’t want to marry and lets him know immediately that no matter how excited her parents are at the idea, she isn’t on board and isn’t likely to be on board in the future, either. I really, really liked the honesty between them. I liked that in order to win her over Evan has to get to know August, and quickly realizes how progressive and intelligent she is and wants her all the more for it. And I loved that August held her ground and stayed true to herself until the end.
August is everything I love in a heroine. Competent and resourceful, interested in politics and business, and who understands the world around her. She is determined, yet not foolhardy. She gives as good as she gets and even after being let down by her parents, uses her ability to negotiate to ultimately get what she wants.
Starting the book out with a scene of the hero participating in a prizefight for money may lend to the idea that Evan is some alpha asshole, but he really isn’t. I was pleasantly surprised at his more laid back, teasing demeanor. Yes, he has issues. Yes, he has some shit that haunts him after the deaths of his brother and father. But, he doesn’t let that make him an angry, person. He’s actually the perfect partner for August.
And their chemistry is off the charts hot.
Their relationship builds quite nicely while in London, but it isn’t until after they get to Evan’s country estate that it really shines. I like a tender hero who is able to be vulnerable in his heroine’s arms and I love a heroine who handles that openness with care. The way this couple was able to open up and finally get to a place of understanding after being so at odds was delightful.
This couple worked for me in almost every way. Their bickering and back and forth, their flirting and chemistry, the acceptance of each other’s true selves, and even the HEA they chose. The Heiress Gets a Duke is such a great historical romance read and I highly recommend.
Final grade- A