Published by Avon on August 28, 2018
Purchase: Amazon, Barnes & Noble
United in a common cause…
Juliette Matthews longs to be much more than just another pretty ornament in society. But using her recently acquired fortune to do some good is more complicated than she anticipated. Young ladies are not expected to risk their safety in helping the less fortunate. And the one gentleman who could help in her mission is stubborn, infernally handsome—and far too honorable to act on their mutual attraction.
And in a desire impossible to deny…
Florian Lowell has suddenly been made heir to the Duke of Redding—a far cry from his status as a dedicated physician. Yet even with his new role as the country's most eligible bachelor, the beautiful, fearless Juliette is utterly beyond his reach. The scandalous circumstances of his birth would destroy both their reputations if they became known. But when a more urgent danger threatens Juliette's life, Florian must gamble everything…including the heart only one woman can tame.
Book at a Glance
Not so long ago, a few colorful images on Pinterest caught my eye. When I clicked on the pictures, I was immediately sucked into the world of bullet journals and have since started my own. Why I’ve only discovered this amazing and creative way of keeping track of my life now (years after the fact), is a really good question. It has given me the chance to get back to drawing – something I have not done in almost two decades because…well…I guess I had other things to do. But bullet journaling is perfect because I can do the drawing part without feeling as though I’m being unproductive.
And then, one day while I was planning a new week ahead, I started thinking about creating a similar structure for my books – a way in which to see my books at a glance. So I sat down with a fresh notebook and started sketching. Below you’ll see the results.
The first three are very similar and scrap-bookish. I printed out images, wrote various comments/notes and drew some pictures for fun.
A Most Unlikely Duke
The Duke of Her Desire
The Illegitimate Duke
After creating these pages, I decided to add a bit more structure so it wouldn’t look quite so messy. As interesting as the scrap-book look was, I was trying to create A Book at a Glance, so that meant having easy to find information. I’d also had a bit more bullet-journal experience at this point and a chance to figure out the most relevant items I wanted to include on my page. Chances are it will change again in the future, but for now, here’s my updated version of Book at a Glance for my 2019 release of The Infamous Duchess with an extra page for notes (not pictured):
The Infamous Duchess
“—I mean, to think we could be so lucky is almost too much,” one of the women on the other side of the screen was saying. “Our debuts looked positively dismal with no chance to snatch up a duke.”
“Until now, that is,” the other woman said in a dreamy voice that made Juliette roll her eyes. She glanced at Vivien and had to force down a laugh.
“Can you believe our good fortune?” the first woman said.
“Well, he’s not a duke yet. Is he?”
Juliette straightened and tilted her head. They were obviously talking about Florian Lowell, the physician Raphe had sent for when she’d been sick with the measles the previous year. News of his recent change in status had been the subject of great discussion at Huntley House the previous evening when Raphe had returned home with the announcement.
Juliette still wasn’t sure she understood how the title or the inheritance had come about, but it did look as though Florian would one day outrank his older brother, Mr. Lowell, who was set to become Viscount Armswell one day.
“Either way, I could easily get used to the idea of marrying Florian,” one of the women was saying. “He’s ever so handsome.”
Both women burst into giggles. Muted whispers followed and then the sound of the door opening and closing plunged the room into silence. Juliette looked at Vivien and grinned. “Well, I wish them luck. In truth I don’t believe I’ve ever met a man more unapproachable than Florian.”
“He does look rather starched,” Vivien muttered. She stood and adjusted her gown. “Mind you, I’ve only seen him once or twice, so I could be wrong.”
“No. I don’t believe you are. In fact, my impression of him is not much different. He’s an excellent physician who seems to take his work very seriously. One cannot fault him for that, though I do wonder what it might be like to see him smile.”
“Do you now?” Vivien asked with a smirk as the two returned to the hallway and started making their way back toward the ballroom.
Juliette nudged her friend with her shoulder. “Oh, you know what I mean, Viv!”
“All I know is that you wondering what it might be like to see him smile will likely pester you until you find a way to make it happen.” They entered the ballroom. “Of all the people I have ever known, none are as determined as you when you set your mind to something.”
“Well I—” A wave of chatter cut Juliette’s thought process short. She glanced around, aware of the agitation rolling through the ballroom like tremors threatening to toss all the guests up into the air. “What on earth is going on?”
“Look,” someone said as Juliette pushed her way between a few people, pulling Vivien along by her hand.
“There he is,” another voice muttered.
Shouldering her way past a cluster of women who craned their heads and stared toward the ballroom entrance, Juliette caught a sudden and very unexpected glimpse of the man she and Vivien had just been discussing.
Her breath caught and her heart slammed hard against her chest. Because there he was and dear God if he didn’t look superb! Dressed in evening black, his copper streaked hair was neatly combed, though a single stray lock slashed roguishly across his brow. She’d never seen him like this before. The last time they’d met at a ball he’d been wearing an unremarkable suit cut from brown wool, if memory served. Now, however, he looked like the dukely title would fit him as well as the perfectly tailored jacket and trousers he wore. They seemed to accentuate his masculine physique in a way she’d never considered. It was almost as if his shoulders were broader, his build a little taller and . . .
Juliette blinked. No. She would not be like all the other silly girls swarming toward him and vying for his attention. He was just a man, after all, even if he was capable of saving the sick and putting a broken body back together again, which was admittedly something to be admired. But that didn’t mean she would ever be able to look past his stern demeanor or want anything from him besides medical advice and possibly friendship.
And yet, while she thought of all this, Florian’s head turned in her direction and his gaze locked with hers. The moment was fleeting, no more than a second perhaps, but it was exactly the right length of time required for Juliette’s pulse to leap and for an unfamiliar flutter to fill her stomach.
She sucked in a breath and deliberately turned away. Fresh air was what she needed, that was all. The stuffy heat in the ballroom had obviously affected her senses. So with this in mind, she maneuvered her way toward the French doors and slipped out onto the terrace, breathing a sigh of relief as the cool night air cleared her head.
To celebrate the release of THE ILLEGITIMATE DUKE by Sophie Barnes,
we’re giving away a paperback bundle of The Most Unlikely Duke & The Duke of Her Desire!
~~Review by AnnMarie~~
The Illegitimate Duke is the third book in the Diamonds in the Rough series by Sophie Barnes. It can easily be read as a standalone story.
Florian Lowell is a physician, he disagrees with many of the old ways of medicine such as using leeches to bleed the sick. He is more forward thinking and because of that, he cures more patients than many doctors of his time. When Typhus is discovered in St Giles Florian knows he must do all in his power to have it contained in that area. He has had the disease before so should be immune to it now so he will be the one to go into the area and help the afflicted.
Juliette Matthews is fed up with being expected to sit around gossiping, or doing needlework etc. She was brought up in St Giles, but good fortune finds her now a lady of means and she wants to use that money to help others less fortunate. She decides she will donate her yearly allowance to the local hospital with the proviso that she join the hospital committee so that she can have a say in how the money is used. The money couldn’t come at any better time because a clinic needs to be set up in St Giles in order to deal with the Typhus outbreak.
Being on the committee brings Juliette and Florian together. They know each other already and both feel an attraction to the other. Florian fights his attraction because he has a terrible secret that would ruin her if anybody found out, and there is somebody threatening to let that very secret out. So not only does Florian have the stress of the outbreak, of trying to fight his attraction to a very determined Juliette, he also has to fear an enemy that he hoped never to have to deal with again.
This book has it all, romance, drama, intrigue. There is never a dull moment. Juliette and Florian are so perfect for each other, and I love when he has the opportunity to be her hero. I also shuddered at the reason he needed to be that hero. This book definitely had me running the gamut of emotions and although there were a couple of things that have left me wondering, I can still happily recommend this story and this series.
“I requested and received this e-book at no cost to me and volunteered to read it; my review is my honest opinion and given without any influence by the author or publisher.”