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The Duke Mass Market Paperback – Nov 28 2000
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"Gaelen Foley . . . is destined to captivate readers."
From the Inside Flap
Driven to uncover the truth about the mysterious death of his ladylove, the Duke of Hawkscliffe will go to any lengths to unmask a murderer. Even if it means jeopardizing his reputation by engaging in a scandalous affair with London's most provocative courtesan--the desirable but aloof Belinda Hamilton.
Bel has used her intelligence and wit to charm the city's titled gentlemen, while struggling to put the pieces of her life back together. She needs a protector, so she accepts Hawk's invitation to become his mistress in name only. He asks nothing of her body, but seeks her help in snaring the same man who shattered her virtue. Together they tempt the unforgiving wrath of society--until their risky charade turns into a dangerous attraction, and Bel must make a devastating decision that could ruin her last chance at love. . . .
Top Customer Reviews
I'm actually kind of speechless right now but here goes...
This was such a beautifully written story. I loved every minute of it from start to finish. It flowed well, it was well paced, it was full of romance, steam, angst, heartbreak, with some action and suspense. I cried and laughed and sighed my way through this book feeling a deep connection to the heroine (Bel), she suffered at the hands of just about everyone including the hero (Robert). Though she suffered she was strong and loved deeply. Robert made some very hurtful errors but he also loved deeply. Stuck between what society would dictate for him and what his heart would dictate for him he struggled throughout this story.
I'm so glad this is a serious because even though we didn't meet all the Knight brothers, the secondary characters we did meet were intriguing and I'm eager to read their stories.
I would highly recommend this to any and all historical romance fans!!
Maybe its my own fault, since it was the first book I picked up to read after reading Perfect by Judith McNaught... and I just don't think any book could compare after coming down off the high that book gave me.
My only real problem with the book was that I really couldn't get interested in the plot or the characters until about the middle of the story. It just kinda seemed dull. I mean it was ok reading but I kept putting it down and taking my time in picking it up again during the first half.
Thankfully, during the second half I was drawn in pretty deeply to Bel and Hawk's lives. I did sigh at the complete and utter love they had for each other because it became so obvious, especially when they were apart for a time. I could understand Hawk's dilemna and yet I wanted to scream at him to do what his heart was telling him to do.
The ending was heartwarming and beautiful and made up for the slow beginning. Because of this, I do plan to read the sequels to this book... Lord of Fire and Lord of Ice. These brothers and the rest were introduced in The Duke and I am kinda interested to see how their stories will go. I'm a big fan of books that continue with the family line. And I'm hoping to hear more about Bel and Hawk.
All in all... it was a good read and you'll be glad you took the time and paid the money to read it.
The Duke is the first in a series that Foley is still writing. I read book two (Lord of Fire) and book three (Lord of Ice) prior to reading The Duke. Lady of Desire is the fourth in this series and was just released in 2003. I know Foley is writing yet another in this series at this time.
Although I realized Foley was a great romance author, it did not really hit home until I read The Duke. I kept reading the back of the cover and could not convince myself that it could be all that good. Once I did decide to read it, I could hardly stop reading. I thought it would be rather tame compared to Lord of Fire and Lord of Ice but it was not. Robert, the Duke of Hawkscliffe, may be conservative compared to his brothers in the two Lord books, but he is no less sexy. Being the oldest brother, he is written not only as conservative politically, but very moralistic. How can a moralistic, political duke have an affair with a highly visible courtesan? We are told on the back cover that their affair is in name only. Robert wants to flush out a killer and knows this courtesan, the heroine, Bel, can help him.
This book moves swiftly from one great plot line to another. Robert and Bel become closer and closer and the action gets faster. Foley does such a good job writing these stories because she utilizes few of the overused romance scenarios. There are no silly misunderstandings.Read more ›
"The Duke" goes into a part of society that most romance novels skim or overlook altogether. Belinda is a gentlemen scholar's daughter that has fallen on hard times. Her father has been thrown into Fleet prison due to the workings of a not so nice Dolph Breckenridge and she has also lost her job at a finishing school and now is an orange seller in the East End also due to Dolph in his quest to own her.
Belinda during all of this manages to hold her head high and is very careful not to fall into the trap of having to entertain men until her innocence is cruelly taken from her. Now she will do the one thing she promised herself she would never do and that is to become a courtesan. She will find a protector and will forever be out of the reach of Dolph.
Robert "Hawk" Hawkscliff is a Duke that loved from a far and has now been asked to find the killer of Lucy the Earl of Coldfell's wife. The Earl feels that the person responsible for his young wife's death is his nephew Dolph. As a result Hawk learns about Dolph's obsession with Bel Hamilton and he feels that this the best way to get the guy so he goes after the girl. Together they work toward proving Dolph guilty of murder but at the same time learning things about each other as well as themeselves.
Robert is unprepared for the feelings that Bel inspires in him. Belinda has promised herself that she will not fall in love. Mistresses cannot be Duchesses but she is unable to stop the way she feels. Robert also falls in love with Bel knowing that he must do what is right and that is not in following his heart. Or does it?Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
There are so many good reviews here that I feel like I'm being redundant, but this terrific book just screams for more praise. Wow, what a compelling story. Read morePublished on June 4 2004
Wow...I decided to try Foley after reading the wonderful reviews and boy, is she every bit worth the 7 dollars!
The story captivating, enchanting, devastating, and emotional. Read more
My first Gaelen Foley and not my last. I picked this book up on a whim and boy was I surprised. Definately a great surprise. Read morePublished on Oct. 6 2003 by Romance addict
Because you wont be able to put it down, I started late yesterday, and at 3am I was still up reading, only put it down, because I couldnt keep my eyelids open anymore... Read morePublished on Sept. 21 2003 by Linda
I've been reading "romance" novels since I happened to get "ransom" by Garwood, struggling to get out of this indulgence. Read morePublished on Sept. 15 2003 by Cate
This book had me from the first page then it lost me. It got boring, then it got good. So I gave it 3 stars.Published on Aug. 15 2003 by S. Quevedo
I loved THE DUKE by Gaelen Foley! From the opening page, I was captivated with Robert "The Paragon" Knight and I couldn't think of a better complement to him than the... Read morePublished on Aug. 13 2003
Between two people who both want revenge is a very tempting things , especially with how the opposites sex attract between men and women. Read morePublished on July 28 2003 by Tuyet
This was a howlingly bad book. First off, there are so many historical and grammatical inaccuracies, it was painful to read. Read morePublished on June 26 2003 by J. Mullally