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A Duke of Her Own (Desperate Duchesses) Mass Market Paperback – July 28, 2009

164 customer reviews
Book 6 of 8 in the Desperate Duchesses Series

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Eloisa James is a USA Today and New York Times bestselling author and professor of English literature, who lives with her family in New York but can sometimes be found in Paris or Italy. She is the mother of two and, in a particularly delicious irony for a romance writer, is married to a genuine Italian knight.

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Product Details

  • Series: Desperate Duchesses (Book 6)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Avon (July 28, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 006162683X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061626838
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1 x 6.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (164 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #268,498 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

A reviewer from USA Today wrote that she "found herself devouring [Eloisa's] book like a dieter with a Hershey bar"; People Magazine raved that "romance writing does not get much better than this." Eloisa wrote her first novel after graduating from Harvard, but alas, it was rejected by every possible publisher. After she got a couple more degrees and a job as a Shakespeare professor, she tried again, with much greater success. Over twenty best-sellers later, she teaches Shakespeare in the English Department at Fordham University in New York City. She's also the mother of two children and, in a particularly delicious irony for a romance writer, is married to a genuine Italian knight.

For info about books, visit Or ask a question on Facebook (where Eloisa spends entirely too much time): And then drop in on her very romantic, very Eloisa Tumblr blog, a labor of love:

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

91 of 102 people found the following review helpful By Miss Bluestocking on July 28, 2009
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Leopold Dautry, Duke of Villiers' story has threaded through each book of the Desperate Duchesses series. And with this, the final book in the series, Eloisa James delivers her most delightful tale yet. Taken separately each element is nothing new, but James breathes new life into old tropes, weaving a tale of secret babies, secret lovers and just plain secrets with lyrical and at times blunt prose. The interaction between Villiers and his son Tobias is funny, but also sweet in that way only dialogue between fathers and sons can be. I won't spoil who the heroine is, but she is more than strong enough to deal with Villiers. After four books of watching him grow from cold, bored aristrocrat into something infinitely more caring and more human, it is a delight to watch Villiers fall in love. I closed the book with a smile on my face. And have been grinning all day at the memory of it. If that's not a great read, I don't know what is.
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40 of 46 people found the following review helpful By Grace on August 3, 2009
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I've read many of Ms. James books, and although I enjoy them I always feel that they require a real commitment. Her novels are usually interwoven, and you often have no idea what is happening unless you have read them all. It can be quite exhausting, and not always fun. Are these stories well written? Yes. Are they historically accurate? Yes. Can you tell that Ms. James is a well known Shakespearean professor and expert? Yes. Do these stories always work as romance? No. So you can understand why I put off reading a "A Duke of Her own", not because I didn't think it would be great, but because I don't look to her for romance, for great storytelling definitely, but romance, she is often a hit or miss.

A Duke of Her own was a pleasant surprise. The book is extremely well-paced and focused on the couple at hand. Although Villiers feels confusion, his confusion is paced on his sense of duty and honor, not on his feelings. Our heroine is amazing, and realistic. The book really explores love, and what it means to have a broken heart, in a way that is intimate and realistic. This is a romance novel in the best possible sense. It's one of those books that reminds you of your first love, and may help you realize that first love doesn't always mean best.

This is a book for your keeper shelf. The romance isn't scorching, but its heat will keep you warm for days, and the insights into love will last with you much longer.

P.S. Although the back of the book doesn't make it clear who Villiers belongs with, YOU will know within the first few chapters.
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48 of 57 people found the following review helpful By Kathy Kaiser VINE VOICE on July 29, 2009
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I was less than thrilled with James' last book. For the first half of that story, This Duchess of Mine (Desperate Duchesses), I entertained the notion that it might be my last in this Duchess series. But, lo and behold, James began to include quite a bit of the Duke of Villiers background and dilemma in the latter half of that book. He was one of her more interesting heroes in this series. So, I bought A Duke of Her Own and started reading with cautious hope. With each page I turned, I was enthralled more and more. This book is brilliant. James is back to her very high standard of writing with this final story in the series. Leopold is a marvelously complex, virile, masculine hero...totally yummy. And the true heroine (like the other reviewers, I won't provide a spoiler here) is one of the most courageous, strong yet vulnerable, wonderful heroines I've enjoyed in a long time. Villier's choice between two women for the role of wife provides the tension in this book, and I'll warn you, it lasts throughout the story. But, the ending is completely satisfying. The plot does include the Duke's search and rescue of his children, but most of the storyline centers on the love story. This is a touching, well-written, stand alone romance. There's no need to backtrack and read the others in this series if you haven't already. A Duke of Her Own is truly one of the best books I've read this year.
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25 of 29 people found the following review helpful By I Read Anything on May 13, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I gave this book 3 stars for its clever repartee and funny dialogue. But if I were to rate it on plot alone I would probably give it 1 star. Although the premise is interesting, the execution is poor. The protagonist, Villiers, needs a mother for his many children and has to decide between two aristocratic ladies, Lisette and Eleanor. Supposedly the duke is undecided, though there is NO doubt from the beginning who the ultimate winner is. Somehow all parties meet at Lisette's manor and hilarity ensues. It is clear from the beginning that Lisette is not just eccentric, but totally unhinged and Villiers, a supposedly brilliant man, is unable to detect this. All he ends up doing is parading around aimlessly like a peacock in his ducal finery looking fierce and curling his lip with amazing frequency. Eleanor walks around with the male equivalent of a constant boner and is indiscriminate in her actions. Lisette behaves in a manner not appropriate for a scullery maid, let alone a duchess, yet everyone thinks she is charming. The visit to Lisette's manor is interminable, it drags on and on and I thought they would never go home. The dog, the mother and the sister are equally annoying, all cardboard figures without depth.
Readers are supposed to suspend disbelief in regencies, but even so some of the characters' behavior in this book is implausible even by today's standards. I read another book from this series, When the Duke Returns, which I enjoyed. I abandoned another one, This Duchess of Mine, after reading the sample and did not bother to download. I think I am done with this series.
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