The Broken Duke by Jess Michaels
I've read and loved many books by Jess Michaels up to now and "The Broken Duke", the third book in the "The 1797 Club" series, is no exception there.
Okay, I must admit that I was a bit miffed as it wasn't that Graham was really in love with his former fiancée, so all his pouting (yes, that's what I call it!) and his feelings of betrayal are a bit over the top, right? I mean, alright, he had to find out the hard way that she preferred someone else and he had trusted him but....if anybody had paid attention and if he had really been interested in her, he might have noticed that she was in love with someone else. Alright, rant over.
Sooo, I might have been a bit irritated by his behavior no matter how human and natural it was but I really loved this book and I also loved his character. And I loved Adelaide, our heroine. Adelaide or Lydia, depending on where we meet her, is a wonderful character.
A wallflower by day, she lives for the moments when she can turn into Lydia and take the stage as one of the most celebrated actresses. When Graham enters her life, that is - Lydia's life - the two of them slowly but irrevocably fall for each other.
Enters Adelaide, the wallflower, best friend of his best friend's new wife and the woman in whose company he suddenly finds himself very often only to realize that she is occupying his thoughts as well. A lot. The more he falls for Lydia, the more he feels for Adelaide as well. While he is still trying to figure out a way to deal with the fact that he is attracted to two such different women, danger strikes and he'll have to find a way to protect those he loves....if it is not too late already!
I loved how Lydia and Adelaide were described. You could feel the difference in their personas while knowing and feeling that essentially they are the same. You know why Graham is attracted to both of them and you really get that he is not just a little pervert or an idiot who can't decide who he loves but that the two of them, Lydia and Adelaide, are indeed two halves, two parts of her and that they complete each other, they complete her. And in the end, you realize that those two aren't that different from each other, they never were. Lydia was always a part of Adelaide.
No matter which of the two he meets, though, you can feel the chemistry, you can see the sparks and you just want them to get their HEA because they have earned it, especially Adelaide who has already suffered so much.
I also loved to meet the other dukes and their wives again and find out how they fare and, well, I am definitely looking forward to the next book because I really love Ewan and I am very much looking forward to reading his and Charlotte's story.