on April 19th 2018
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Welcome to the Game of Dukes, a world that draws from London's finest drawing rooms and its darkest rookeries. Some dukes are peers of the realm, others lords of London's underworld, but all are relentless in their pursuit of justice, power, and passion. These commanding men will meet their match—in the strong, feisty women who capture their hearts.
The Duke Identity
Shattered by betrayal, former scholar Harry Kent has made a new life for himself as a police man. Sent on a dangerous covert mission, he must protect a clever and wicked beauty who stands for everything he scorns—and who seduces him with every look of her innocent eyes…
A princess of the underworld, Tessa Todd longs for freedom. Yet, fearful of cutthroat enemies, her powerful family keeps her under lock and key. When they assign her a standoffish and damnably handsome new bodyguard, she resists his dominant ways—and a passionate war of wills begins…
Thrown together by crisis, Harry and Tessa will test the bounds of desire, loyalty, and trust. On the run from their foes and from their own hearts, they must find salvation in each other—before time runs out.
In this scene, the heroine Tessa Black-Todd discovers that her grandfather, a powerful cutthroat, has hired a bodyguard to ensure that she complies with his plans. The bodyguard is the hero Harry Kent, who is using the alias of Sam Bennett because he is on a covert police mission to investigate Tessa’s family…
“I will not marry some stupid duke and breed a high-nosed litter!” Tessa raised her chin. “I belong here with you, with the people whose lives I make a difference in. You can’t force me to do anything I don’t want to do!”
“Won’t ’ave to. That’s Bennett’s job now.” Grandpapa’s smile was smug. “Meet your new bodyguard.”
“What?” She turned to Bennett, who’d risen when she had. “I don’t need another bodyguard!”
“’E’s your only one. ’Ad to let the other one go,” Grandpapa muttered. “Worthless git.”
“Your grandfather has your best interests in mind,” Bennett said. “You’d do well to abide by his wishes.”
As if her grandfather’s rejection wasn’t enough, now she was being lectured by this blighter? She’d credited Bennett with being an intelligent man, and he’d seen her in action this eve: her clever disguise, her duping of O’Toole, her agility in the stews’ streets. Yet he still believed her to be a bored miss in search of diversion? Some useless ninny who needed a keeper?
Her rage and despair found a fresh target.
“How much is my grandfather paying you?” she said acidly.
“None o’ your business, Tessie,” Grandpapa cut in.
She ignored him. “How much?”
“We haven’t discussed terms as yet,” Bennett said.
“Well, I can assure you that no amount of gold will be worth the trouble I’ll cause. If you take this job, you’re adding yourself to my List of Retribution,” she vowed.
He stared at her. Unbelievably, his lips quirked. “Your, er, List of Retribution?”
“An eye for an eye,” she said succinctly. “A Black never forgets a wrong.”
Instead of looking afraid, or even wary, amusement glinted in his eyes. “I’ll take my chances.”
“You will regret this.” Enraged, she poked him in the chest and was further irked when it felt as if she’d jammed her finger into a slab of granite. Ouch. Resisting the urge to rub her smarting digit, she stormed past him.
“Good evening, Miss Todd,” he called after her, and her face burned at the humor in his deep voice. “’Twas a pleasure to make your acquaintance.”
You don’t know me, Bennett, she thought darkly. But if you insist on crossing me…you’ll find out exactly what I’m capable of.
For a chance to win a copy of The Duke Identity comment with your answer to this question…
Grace’s heroine Tessa has a pet ferret, whom she named “Swift Nick Nevison,” after an infamous highwayman.
What’s the best name you’ve come across for a pet?