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Lord Sebastian's Secret (The Duke's Sons) Mass Market Paperback – January 3, 2017
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Ashford's talent for humor shows in this delightfully funny romance filled with sensuality, compassion and love. RT Book Reviews, 4 stars
"A busy and steamy romance
" - Kirkus
"Marvelously inventive." - Booklist
"Vivid characters and lively plots . . . The underlying message, that quirks and struggles should be no impediment to familial or romantic love, is conveyed with warmth and tenderness." - Publishers Weekly
"Delightful Regency romance . . . this is one I will reread again and again. 5 Stars. TOP PICK" - Night Owl Reviews
"A comic delight. Highly recommended to Regency lovers." - Historical Novel Society
About the Author
Jane Ashford discovered Georgette Heyer in junior high school and was captivated by the glittering world and witty language of Regency England. That delight led her to study English literature and travel widely in Britain and Europe. Her historical and contemporary romances have been published in Sweden, Italy, England, Denmark, France, Russia, Latvia, and Spain as well as the United States. Her website is janeashford.com and her Facebook page is facebook.com/pages/Jane-Ashford/154028944714495?ref=hl
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Lord Sebastian Gresham is a battle tested soldier and brilliant strategist. Yet all his life he's had to hide his complete failure to decipher letters. In his own mind, he's just stupid. What a miracle it is that he's found the perfect bride. Lady Georgina Stane is beautiful, witty, and brilliantly intelligent. Sebastian is head over heels in love, proud as a peacock, and terrified. If she finds out, he'll lose her love forever.
This book was a tough read for me. I kept putting it down and picking up another book for inspiration to finish this one. The sex scenes were hard to read and not because they were steamy and inviting. It's because they're just so odd....like the author has never had sex. For example: A country upbringing had shown her a bit about mating. She could see clear evidence of Sebastian's unsated arousal. "I should do something for you," she said. She had some ideas on that score. She reached up.
A country upbringing? Like watching cows mate? Really? I hate giving criticism on a book because I know how much time and effort goes into it but that's just wrong on so many counts. Also, the formatting is a tiny bit distracting for me especially with all the paragraphs.
There are so many different characters in this book that you really need to keep a journal. There's an Indian, a priest, an eastern magician, a couple dogs, a couple brothers, some sisters in law. I expect that there's going to be a clown at some point. I mean I keep waiting for this guy to grow a pair and he doesn't, he's stuck on his big secret.
At one point, I almost thought the author took a vacation and let a ghostwriter finish a couple chapters. The heroines (Georgina) father was eccentric and over the top and now he's a major bully. I won't let any spoilers go as to what he's taunting the hero about but it's a total DNF move. I would put the book down if I wasn't writing a review. I didn't really like Sebastian's one brother and I'm not sure I'd even read his book. I did like Randolph. I just didn't see the big deal with the humongous "secret" and I wouldn't have spent almost 400 pages keeping it a secret. I'd say at 25% it would have been great to just reveal it. All the drama of keeping the secret was enough to make me have heartburn and take some tums. I read to relax and this book made me take 2 Xanax and follow it up with chocolate. I'm gonna have to hit the gym after this book.
There are a few grammatical errors with sentence structure. For example: "Well, if we want run papa through with a saber, that might be helpful," There should be a "to" in there.
The book had some funny parts because it seems like all the people are crazy...Seriously, all of them are crazy. There's not a sane one in the lot.
Would I read this again? Or gift it to my friends? No, I don't think so. For the price of this book, I'd say save your money and buy a Lisa Kleypas or Susan Elizabeth Phillips novel and save your Xanax for another day.
I received this book for free from the publisher through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
The story itself was not as exciting as I thought it would be, but it had some moments of levity that set it apart from other regency novels I've read. While some are stuffy and focus more on setting the scene through lengthy descriptions and fancy dialogue, Lord of Secrets is quite the opposite. The story is very character based, so all the attention is on Georgina and Sebastian, and Georgina's quirky family. The Stane family is quite unconventional and a threat to the marriage. Georgina is worried that Sebastian will be turned off by them, but Sebastian is hiding a secret that he believes will cause Georgina to regret their pending nuptials.
Georgina and Sebastian were so obviously into each other from the very outset of the novel, so their doubts and insecurities about the marriage started to feel repetitive. If I as the reader felt doubts about their relationship I think it would have added some suspense to the story, but it was really plain how the story would play out. The road to get there, littered with obstacles from various members of the household, is another matter entirely. From pugnacious pugs to an obstinate father obsessed with reincarnation, something comes between Georgina and Sebastian over and over again.
After a certain point in the novel I felt like I was reading just to get to the end. I didn't expect any surprises, but sometimes when you start a novel it's easier to just finish it. Maybe the fourth book in the series, Nothing Like a Duke, will be a little more wild and unpredictable.
*eARC provided via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review*
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