Historical romance has long been a genre I’ve skipped – I don’t know why but whenever I think of historical fiction I think of mass-market paperbacks with women in satin dresses and Fabio on the cover. There’s certainly a market for those books but I’ve never considered myself as that demographic. So when it came time to make my Book of the Month selection and I saw Bringing Down the Duke was one of the options, I decided to finally give historical romance a whirl. Sadly, it was in part due to the fact that it didn’t have a stereotypical historical romance cover (as shallow as that is). Judgements aside, Bringing Down the Duke turned out to be a phenomenal book and one of my new favorites.
England, 1879. Annabelle Archer, the brilliant but destitute daughter of a country vicar, has earned herself a place among the first cohort of female students at the renowned University of Oxford. In return for her scholarship, she must support the rising women’s suffrage movement. Her charge: recruit men of influence to champion their cause. Her target: Sebastian Devereux, the cold and calculating Duke of Montgomery who steers Britain’s politics at the Queen’s command. Her challenge: not to give in to the powerful attraction she can’t deny for the man who opposes everything she stands for.
Sebastian is appalled to find a suffragist squad has infiltrated his ducal home, but the real threat is his impossible feelings for green-eyed beauty Annabelle. He is looking for a wife of equal standing to secure the legacy he has worked so hard to rebuild, not an outspoken commoner who could never be his duchess. But he wouldn’t be the greatest strategist of the Kingdom if he couldn’t claim this alluring bluestocking without the promise of a ring…or could he?
Locked in a battle with rising passion and a will matching her own, Annabelle will learn just what it takes to topple a duke….