Saturday, May 31, 2008

The Lost Duke of Wyndham by Julia Quinn


Jack Audley has been a highwayman. A soldier. And he has always been a rogue. What he is not, and never wanted to be, is a peer of the realm, responsible for an ancient heritage and the livelihood of hundreds. But when he is recognized as the long-lost son of the House of Wyndham, his carefree life is over. And if his birth proves to be legitimate, then he will find himself with the one title he never wanted: Duke of Wyndham.

Grace Eversleigh has spent the last five years toiling as the companion to the dowager Duchess of Wyndham. It is a thankless job, with very little break from the routine...until Jack Audley lands in her life, all rakish smiles and debonair charm. He is not a man who takes no for an answer, and when she is in his arms, she's not a woman who wants to say no. But if he is the true duek, then he is the one man she can never have...

I have never read a Julia Quinn. Pick yourself up off the floor please. :) I know it's surprising, but it's true. I've heard wonderful things about her, especially her Bridgerton series, but as I've said, I'm just recently getting back into historicals after a long hiatus.

I decided to pick up this book when I was at B&N yesterday. I thought the blurb sounded interesting & I'm nothing if not adventurous, so I bought it. Boy am I glad I did!

TLDoW was a wonderful book! It looks like it's a new series & was wonderfully entertaining. I found myself laughing out loud quite often. At one point I got the snorts, which (I'm thinking) is a good thing.

The story starts out when Grace and the Dowager Duchess are coming back from a party. They are set upon by highwaymen. Things gets all haywire, identities are revealed & insanity begins. This is a very cut&dry version of what happens.

I love mistaken identity stories & at first, this book seems like a classic case of that. Jack has no interest whatsoever in finding out if he is the Duke or not. He's happy with the life he leads & he doesn't want anything to change.

Unfortunately, he has absolutely no control over anything that happens. His life is now in the hands of the Dowager Duchess, who is a complete & total psychopath.

It's hard for me to explain exactly why I loved this book so much. There were very few things about it that bothered me, which is amazing in & of itself. The humor, the people, the sheer insanity of the whole story captured my fancy from the beginning & I did not put the book down until it was finished. I think the better way to say that is I couldn't put it down!

What I loved:

Grace-Her life changed drastically 5 years ago when her parents were killed. She has been the Dowager's constant companion ever since & her life has not been easy. Instead of whining & feeling sorry for herself (or being a martyr), she does her job with a sense of humor and an ability to ignore the Dowager that I envy. She is intelligent, funny and not a bluestocking! Yay!

Jack-He is perfect! Funny, sarcastic, handsome and just all around entertaining. There are moments in this book that totally had me laughing out loud. He has his faults, but he's the kind of hero, especially in historicals, that I adore. I wish more heroes were written like him.

I'm not going to write excerpts of dialogue or any of that, though this one tiny little piece cracked me up! The Dowager is reading the newspaper and finds out there's been a fire at a neighboring estate...The dog perished. Oh my, that is a shame. Why that hit my funny bone, I don't know.

Page 137-138 had some very funny dialogue between the Dowager & Grace (who is thinking about Jack)

Pages 321-323...the joys of English swearing. Truly one of the funniest things I've read in a long time. :) Your opinion is always welcome! :)

Anyway, this book was just wonderful. Funny, sweet, heartwarming...I'm sure I could think of more adjectives, but you get the idea. Julia Quinn is now an autobuy author. In fact *wincing* I went and bought the entire Bridgerton series. I'm on The Duke And I right now, but already the trademark Quinn writing is there. :)

My Rating: A...definitely


Marg said...

I loved that swearing scene as well too! So glad you enjoyed this, and you are in for a treat if you read some of Quinn's backlist!

Tracy said...

Oh I can hardly wait to read it. I've never read any JQ either so don't feel too badly! :) Great review!

Anonymous said...

You are missing out. The Viscount Who Loved me is the best, followed closely by An Offer from a Gentleman, Romancing Mr. Bridgerton, and The Duke and I. Someone on the blogosphere said that her very first book, which I think is called Splendid, is her best. But I haven't read the earliest ones. She has a fabulous dry sense of humor. And she lives in Seattle!!!