The Duchess Mass Market Paperback – Aug 1 1992
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From Publishers Weekly
Mutual deception lies at the heart of this agreeable romp set in 1883 Scotland. American money (Claire Willoughby) is to snare a Scottish title (Harry, 11th duke of MacArran). But Claire's parents are bankrupt and spend Claire's dowry on their own lavish pleasures. Unknown to the Willoughbys, Harry's family is also penniless and counting on Claire's inheritance to upgrade their 12th-century estate, Bramley House. On a prenuptial visit, Claire meets an enigmatic rogue named simply Trevelyan. In fact, he is the true duke, Harry's older brother, and leads a spectacular double life as a Sir Richard Burton-esque explorer, Capt. Frank Baker. Recuperating from a debilitating illness, Trevelyan hides in a carefully concealed section of Bramley House. Claire, restless and inquisitive, stumbles through secret passageways and locates Trevelyan's exotic nook. Unaware that he is Harry's brother as well as the explorer whose books she has read with such eagerness, Claire strikes up what begins as a spirited friendship with Trevelyan. Soon Claire entertains second thoughts about Harry, who is far too devoted to his horses and to his mother, the sinister Duchess Eugenia. Written with a light touch and a quick wit, this latest offering by veteran romance novelist Deveraux ( Mountain Laurel ) contains numerous surprises in its final, exuberant chapters.
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Kirkus Reviews
More from the famed mistress of heartthrob (Mountain Laurel, 1990, etc.)--this time bogged down in 19th-century Scotland, where a host of silly, mostly unpleasant characters move sluggishly through a love story that never gets off the ground. Claire Willoughby, a big-bosomed American heiress, falls in love with mama's boy Harry Montgomery largely because he is blond and a titled duke. The dimwitted Harry wants Claire because she will inherit ten million dollars as soon as she weds a proper guy. Lusting for the dough--as well as the approval of his revolting mother, Eugenia--Harry whisks the buxom but bookish Claire, along with her childish parents and precocious sister ``Brat,'' to his Scottish castle, Bramley, where an odd bunch of family members roam in and out of dark passageways mumbling about horses and dogs. In this chilly atmosphere, Claire stumbles upon the cynical but sexy Trevelyan, who, she later learns, is her childhood hero, explorer Frank Baker, whose writings about the exotic and erotic have held her in a state of dire excitation all these years. Passion bubbles and festers, but there is so much mean-spirited jousting to and fro that by the time the two take the plunge no one cares. Finally, the highly emotional heiress grapples with a moral dilemma as it dawns on her that although she loves the lecherous Trevelyan, she must marry the boring Harry in order to secure her inheritance. The ever-so humdrum final twist reveals the real identity of Trevelyan/Baker, and leaves Harry right where he belongs--in the arms of the conniving little Brat. Fictional sludge. -- Copyright ©1991, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
Positives: Great characters. Vellie is certainly not your every day hero. He is entirely too self confident, frequently insensitive, and too egotistical. However, if you can get past all of that and the fact that he cannot stop bragging of his sexual adventures, chances are you might love him as much as I did. Probably my favorite hero ever - very different and I just adore him. Claire is also fun - I found her love of Scottland refreshing and interesting. The Scottish guy, whose name escapes me, was a treasure, I adored his scenes!!!
Negatives: Well, there are a few. If I did not love characters as much as I do, chances are I would not be too crazy about the book. 1. The ending chapter was terribly disappointing to me. I don't want to give it up for anyone, but I expected much more than the one sentence Claire and Vellie got. Even that sentence was a huge disappointment. 2. The plot - not very well developed in regards to Vellie's mother. Not developed at all, I should say. 3. I honestly expected more from the sex scenes due to the way Vellie was portrayed. They were good, especially the first time they kissed, that was amazing... but I expected more from the other ones.
Overall, I will always love this book. I wish, however, the author would take time to rewrite it and address some of the issues above!
claire is you typical dumb heiress, with the spendrift, rather [stupid] parents and a bratty sister. she thought she fell in love with harry, and if you knock her head with a box of romance books she coudn't see his obvious flaws. then she goes to that god forsaken house full of cold family members, and ends up spending her time with trevalyan. they suit each other. the dumb heiress and the even dumber duke/traveller/spy/writer/soldier/wanderer/whatever else. by the time they realized their feelings for each other the readers will be groaning "about time!" and flip to the next page.
and for a well-read lil miss, claire is quite closed up about everything else isnt she? she insists that christianity is the true religion, and doesnt respect other people's beliefs. i find it real irritating. she should read more books, i say, and stop reading them frank bakers. she's getting mentally unwell reading them all.
conclusion, in most parts the characters are unlikable, but the storyline's okay. i'd read it if only for the story. an okay read overall.
Most recent customer reviews
This is one of my top five favorite Jude Devereaux books. The hero is very similar to the famous Victorian explorer, Sir Richard Burton (not the same as Liz Taylor's on again-off... Read morePublished on June 10 2004 by Melissa McCauley
A really really really really... great, loving story from the beginning to the end. I especially love Claire and of course Trevelyan. Read morePublished on March 28 2004
I have not yet read this book for I am trying to find out in which order does this book come in the Montgomery series order. Read morePublished on May 8 2003 by Barbara Lewandowski
I couldn't put it down and so I stayed up all night to finish it! I read it in one day because it hooked me. I have been a Jude fan ever since. Read morePublished on Dec 30 2001
I couldn't put it down and so I stayed up all night to finish it! I read it in one day because it hooked me. I have been a Jude fan ever since. Read morePublished on Dec 30 2001 by Brad and Bea Schreiber
I am new to books on tape and I really have been enjoying all of the Deveraux novels....the "Duchess" was delightful and I really enjoyed the plot.... Read morePublished on Nov. 1 2001 by Maria
I've read lots of Jude Deveraux works and her Montgomery-Taggert Saga is my favorite of all of her works. I've enjoyed most of her books and this isn't an exception. Read morePublished on Oct. 27 2001 by Abbys