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Bridgerton: The Duke and I (Bridgertons Book 1): The Sunday Times bestselling inspiration for the Netflix Original Series Bridgerton (Bridgerton Family) Paperback – December 1, 2020
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- Publisher : Piatkus; 1st edition (December 1, 2020)
- Language : English
- ISBN-10 : 0349429219
- ISBN-13 : 978-0349429212
- Item Weight : 8.5 ounces
- Dimensions : 4.96 x 1.18 x 7.72 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #3,353,606 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
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Top reviews from the United States
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I’ll get to reviewing the quality of the material after this big thing that completely destroys this book and entire series for me: the main character Daphne rapes Simon and no one cares and there’s no consequences. One review I read also gave a bad review because of this but I genuinely thought they were wrong because there’s no way this would happen in an internationally best selling book with 1000 good reviews, right??? Nope, apparently I discounted how poorly understood male rape is in our society esp with female perpetrators. Was it “violent” or was he “forced”? Not really. Did he “””enjoy it”””? Technically, yes. But he was absolutely wasted, had no idea what was going on (which, drunk sex, it happens and can be fine) and then she (trying not to spoil??) very specifically decides to take advantage of his drunken state and do something to him he has EXPLICITLY said no to, multiple times over several instances. Is his reasoning on why not to do the thing stupid? Yes. More on his ridiculous character later. But it doesn’t matter if his reasons are dumb. He has said no to this many times and she has to sort of hold him down to get him to do it??? It’s very icky and was hard to read. He then, unsurprisingly, freaks out and is very upset and sort of has a mental breakdown? But he’s over it in about one chapter, there are no real consequences whatsoever, and Daphne explicitly thinks to herself “she’s not ashamed of what she did” afterwards. WTF??? I am so surprised more people aren’t taking about this with the adaptation announcement and I really hope the series drastically changes this.
Separately from this, is the book good? No, not really. I mean it’s readable, and I was entertained at least in the beginning. The family dynamics are cute and some scenes are funny but I read this 3 days ago and can’t remember anything else good about it. I can barely even remember Daphne’s personality. The pacing of the plot is a bit awkward alongside the pacing of the romantic development. Some scenes just stretch on into awkwardness with cringey dialogue but not in a funny, tongue in cheek way. Simon’s character is ridiculous and melodramatic to the point of exhaustion and the book leans heavily on the whole “tragic backstory” cliche but it barely even makes sense when you find out all his “secrets”. I love cheesy romance cliches and ridiculous characters in regency novels when they’re done well, when the cliches are cheeky and self aware and the book isn’t taking itself too seriously. This book fails at that. And I have no issue when characters act like a-holes or irrationally because of terrible things in their life. They’re only human. But Simon’s whole schtick is just ridiculous and so dragged out it's almost painful. Romance novels often get a pass for having not great or even bad writing, but I’ve read some genuinely fantastic and well written regency romance novels that are just so much better than this.
I don’t normally give bad reviews. If I don’t like a book I simply move on from it. But this one made me mad and has a lot of good reviews and a Netflix show about to release so here it goes.
I was uncomfortable when the hero threatened to rape the heroine. But, as that is unfortunately not uncommon of the historical romance genre, willing to move on. Until less than 30 pages later when the heroine rapes the hero. It made me ill to read. It’s made worse by the book later trying to convince the reader that it was not in fact a rape, when it clearly was. Just because it happened to a man doesn’t make it any less of a rape or any less awful.
If it weren’t for the book goal I’m trying to hit, I would not have finished it. The last hundred pages were a struggle.
Before that, the book was fine. Not fireworks, just fine. It starts to get corny and a little off track character-wise about 45% of the way through. I’ve heard that the other books are better but I’m not sure I will be able to read them after this one.
I still plan on watching the show. Hopefully Shonda Rhimes has sense enough to cut that part out.
I watched the Netflix series and loved it and wanted to read the book. I came thinking I would love it, as I am already a fan of these novels... boy was I mistaken. The producers did a MARVELOUS job at taking a horrible book and making a wonderful series. I advise you not to waste your time, and your money buying this book. Enjoy the series and avoid this book!!!
This book is so bad that I found myself rolling my eyes. It's just so horribly written. About 44% through I wanted to quit reading. I soldiered through but, finally gave up at 87%.. I somehow made it that far through... but I just had to stop. :-(
She sees he's incompacitated, determines he's helpless to stop her, and decides that is the only time she can get that she wants. Regardless of his consent. Which he explicitly denied on multiple occasions.
During and after the rape, she mitigates the violation with nauseatingly familiar justifications: she knows he wanted it, she couldn't help herself, it was his fault really for trying to deny her in the first place - he didn't have a right to say no, she was confused and couldn't remember exactly who had done what (lady, you sat beside him and methodically planned it out then raped him)!
Worst of all, she denies the rape until the bitter end and uses gas lighting techniques to convince them both it never happened.
It's sick. Daphne is the worst excuse for a heronine I've read in a long while.
Top reviews from other countries
Agree with the other reviews that the language and narrative were not right for the period the story is set in. It really felt like a supposedly historical version of ‘Gossip Girl.’ Nothing much happens in terms of plot, the events that do happen feel a bit contrived and there’s far too much sex described (one ‘scene’ or so is fine but it goes on and on) and agree that Daphne does indeed rape her husband (!) yet this is all poised as being perfectly acceptable behaviour because she’s apparently justified in her desire to have children at any cost.
Although I found myself able to read the book quite quickly, I don’t think I’ll be reading the others. I will give the Netflix series a try though!
So put those issues aside and proceed on the basis that arising out of a very unhappy childhood Simon Duke of Hastings resolved not to have children and then let's his hatred for his father govern his life. He gets caught in a compromising situation with Daphne Bridgerton then refused to marry her because of the child issue and is challenged by her brother.He apparently prefers to die in a duel rather than marry her, is how Daphne sees it. She intervenes in the duel and they end up married. Daphne soon comes to understand that he could potentially have a child and in a drunken encounter that he is an active participant in she ensures he ‘completes’ the act of intercourse inside her. I think on any rational analysis she does it with mixed motives - she wants a child and she loves Simon very much and wants him to be happy. Not surprisingly she doesn't want his father to rule his life from beyond the grave. How this is resolved I thought was very well written,there was lots of angst,but essentially I thought Daphne and Simon were great characters and ultimately she did him a huge service . Ignore the naysayers it's a wonderful story. I intend to read the rest in the series.