Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Review: The Day of the Duchess: Scandal & Scoundrel #3 by Sarah MacLean

A love that neither can deny…

Scandal & Scoundrel #3
Sarah MacLean
Releasing June 27, 2017
Avon Books

The one woman he will never forget…

Malcolm Bevingstoke, Duke of Haven, has lived the last three years in self-imposed solitude, paying the price for a mistake he can never reverse and a love he lost forever. The dukedom does not wait, however, and Haven requires an heir, which means he must find himself a wife by summer’s end. There is only one problem—he already has one.

The one man she will never forgive…

After years in exile, Seraphina, Duchess of Haven, returns to London with a single goal—to reclaim the life she left and find happiness, unencumbered by the man who broke her heart. Haven offers her a deal; Sera can have her freedom, just as soon as she finds her replacement…which requires her to spend the summer in close quarters with the husband she does not want, but somehow cannot resist.

A love that neither can deny…

The duke has a single summer to woo his wife and convince her that, despite their broken past, he can give her forever, making every day...


Rating: 3 out of 5 stars

It really saddens me to write this review. I never thought I would give such a low rating to Sarah MacLean. She is one of my favorite authors. Nine Rules to Break When Romancing a Rake is one of my favorite books of all time. I cannot come to terms with the fact that while reading the book, I was wondering when the book was going to end because I couldn't take it anymore. You see, I was tired of the angst and wondering when Malcolm and Sera would admit that they still had feelings for each other. I was tired of seeing Malcolm chasing after Sera and trying to make her fall for him. I wanted to see Sera trying to do something to fix her relationship with her husband. Malcolm was always showing her what he did for her and I wanted to see her figuring it out instead. He went to the effing America to find her. Even if in the beginning I wanted to be on her side, in the end, I ended up rooting for him. As much as I liked Sera's sisters, I was ok with them meddling so much. They made Malcolm's life a living hell. He did deserve it for cheating on Sera though even if they were already broken when that better be forgotten event happened. All these things wouldn't have happened if Sera hadn't listened to her mother and decided to trap Malcolm. He would have married her anyway because he loved her.

I am not giving a lower rating to the book for various reasons. For one, I loved watching the two main characters fall for each other. I loved even more Malcolm's friend who was in love with Helena. The secondary characters were very well written and I was invested in them and their stories. I cannot wait for Secile and her American! Also, I hope we will see Malcolm's potential wives get their own story and happy ending. The sisters are a force that cannot be stopped and when they weren't on the team that hated Malcolm were a very pleasant part of the story. I will probably erase this book from my memory and go read the last book of this author I have left as unread to make myself feel better. I know Sarah MacLean can write the perfect story, but I wasn't a fan of this one


Chapter 1


August 19, 1836

House of Lords, Parliament

She’d left him two years, seven months ago, exactly.

Malcolm Marcus Bevingstoke, Duke of Haven looked to the tiny wooden calendar wheels inlaid into the blotter on his desk in his private office above the House of Lords.

August the nineteenth, 1836. The last day of the parliamentary session, filled with pomp and idle. And lingering memory. He spun the wheel with the six embossed upon it. Five. Four. He took a deep breath.

Get out. He heard his own words, cold and angry with betrayal, echoing with quiet menace. Don’t ever return.

He touched the wheel again. August became July. May. March.

January the nineteenth, 1834. The day she left.

His fingers moved without thought, finding comfort in the familiar click of the wheels.

April the seventeenth, 1833.

The way I feel about you . . . Her words now—soft and full of temptation. I’ve never felt anything like this.

He hadn’t, either. As though light and breath and hope had flooded the room, filling all the dark spaces. Filling his lungs and heart. And all because of her.

Until he’d discovered the truth. The truth, which had mattered so much until it hadn’t mattered at all.

Where had she gone?

The clock in the corner of the room ticked and tocked, counting the seconds until Haven was due in his seat in the hallowed main chamber of the House of Lords, where men of higher purpose and passion had sat before him for generations. His fingers played the little calendar like a virtuoso, as though they’d done this dance a hundred times before. A thousand.

And they had.

March the first, 1833. The day they met.

So, they let simply anyone become a duke, do they? No deference. Teasing and charm and pure, unadulterated beauty.

If you think dukes are bad, imagine what they accept from duchesses?

That smile. As though she’d never met another man. As though she’d never wanted to. He’d been hers the moment he’d seen that smile. Before that. Imagine, indeed.

And then it had fallen apart. He’d lost everything, and then lost her. Or perhaps it had been the reverse. Or perhaps it was all the same.

Would there ever be a time when he stopped thinking of her? Ever a date that did not remind him of her? Of the time that had stretched like an eternity since she’d left?

Where had she gone?

The clock struck eleven, heavy chimes sounding in the room, echoed by a dozen others sounding down the long, oaken corridor beyond, summoning men of longstanding name to the duty that had been theirs before they drew breath.

Haven spun the calendar wheels with force, leaving them as they lay. November the thirty-seventh, 3842. A fine date—one on which he had absolutely no chance of thinking of her.

New York Times, Washington Post & USA Today bestseller Sarah MacLean is the author of historical romance novels that have been translated into more than twenty languages, and winner of back-to-back RITA Awards for best historical romance from the Romance Writers of America.

Sarah is a leading advocate for the romance genre, speaking widely on its place at the nexus of gender and cultural studies. She is the author of a monthly column celebrating the best of the genre for the Washington Post. Her work in support of romance and the women who read it earned her a place on Jezebel.com's Sheroes list of 2014 and led Entertainment Weekly to call her "gracefully furious." A graduate of Smith College & Harvard University, Sarah now lives in New York City with her husband and daughter.