DUKE DU JOUR
by Petie McCarty
..a reverse Kate and Leopold...a light-hearted time travel romance where a bewildered modern-day duke ends up in Regency England and meets the girl of his dreams...
Jared Langley, present-day Duke of Reston, tumbles into an abandoned fountain on his ducal estate and travels back in time to the year 1816. There, Reston servants and local villagers think him a dead ringer for his namesake and rakehell ancestor--the seventh Duke of Reston, gone missing at the Battle of Waterloo. Unfortunately, Seven got mixed up with French spies out to assassinate the Duke of Wellington, and an unwary Jared ends up in their crosshairs.
Lady Ariana Hart has loved Jared Langley, the seventh Duke of Reston, since she was twelve years old, until the night the rogue broke her heart. Given up for dead, her rakish neighbor makes a miraculous return from Waterloo--only Jared shows up a changed man and reignites all the feelings Ariana had long ago buried.
Jared is in a race against time. He must waylay the suspicions of his quirky servants and neighbors, get to Wellington before the French spies do, fix his fountain--before Seven shows up--so Jared has a way home, and definitely not fall in love with the irresistible Lady Ariana.
Ari did not pull back as he had feared.
Her small hands gripped his Jaredet lapels and tugged him to her.
My little spitfire.
Jared couldn’t help it—he smiled against her lips.
She did pull back at that. “Why are you smiling?”
“You delight me.”
Jared could not have stripped the smile from his face if he had wanted to. He was just too damned happy. Ari wasn’t smiling, however.
“I am honored you allowed me to give you your first French kisses,” he said quickly. At her confused look, he added, “A kiss with tongues is a real kiss.”
“How did—” Her fingers pressed to her lips.
“Trust me. I know these things.”
Ouch. That sounded arrogant even to him.
Evidently to Ari, too. “And only a rake would find it humorous to give a woman her first real kiss.”
“No, that’s not what I meant.”
He reached for her. She lurched back, just missing the statue of David.
“I told you; I’m a different man now.”
Stick to the truth. It is always best.
Ari looked uncertain.
With her gaze keenly settled on his face, he managed to slip a step closer. “I’m a reformed rake.”
And Jared realized he felt like one.
“You reformed me,” he whispered and leaned in to kiss her.
“And when your memory returns, you’ll go back to the old Jared,” she said, easing back.
There’s something magical and, well, romantic about regency romances. The dance cards, the balls, the pretty gowns, the dazzling propriety of it all. It’s a time period I love getting lost in but wouldn’t necessarily want to visit for real. So, hats off to Jared for adjusting so well in this sweeping love story backed by a murder plot. The fact that Jared is a historian both helped and hindered him, and I enjoyed watching him blurt something only to realize the thing he suggested wasn’t invented for another hundred years. I did feel like Jared adopted the language of the regency era a bit too quickly, but otherwise, he was cutely hilarious being tossed back in time. Definitely a swoon-worthy hero.
For her part, Ari grows into a fantastic match for Jared. Together, they fight, love, and overcome many obstacles. Their romance is the perfect blend of heat and swoon. Knowing all this, Ari sometimes felt like two different people. In one scene, she’d be capable and confident and telling off suitors left and right. In the next, she’d overhear something out-of-context and run off crying. I actually lost count of the amount of times this happened, and after a while, it felt a bit overdone. All in all, though, I liked her, and if she wanted to share her wardrobe, that would be great.
The murder plot backdropping this love story kept the tension high. I knew who was behind it from a mile away, but that didn’t keep me from enjoying the reveals. Without spoiling the ending, I liked how the issue of love with time travel was resolved. This book was a quick read with snappy dialogue and engaging characters. Recommend to fans of historical romance, definitely.
Petie spent a large part of her career working at Walt Disney World -- "The Most Magical Place on Earth" -- where she enjoyed working in the land of fairy tales by day and creating her own romantic fairy tales by night, including her new series, The Cinderella Romances. She eventually said good-bye to her "day" job to write her stories full-time. These days Petie spends her time writing sequels to her regency time-travel series, Lords in Time, and her cozy-mystery-with-elements-of-romantic-suspense series, the Mystery Angel Romances.
Petie shares her home on the Cumberland Plateau in Tennessee with her horticulturist husband, a spoiled-rotten English Springer spaniel addicted to pimento-stuffed green olives, and a noisy Nanday conure named Sassy who made a cameo appearance in Angel to the Rescue.
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Petie McCarty will be awarding 3 ebook copies of Betting on Cinderella by Petie McCarty (US and International) to three randomly drawn winners via rafflecopter during the tour.a Rafflecopter giveaway