The Duke’s Bride – Erica Ridley

Single father and confirmed bachelor Jack Skeffington is the mastermind behind an international smuggling ring, yet unable to control his rambunctious ten-year-old twins. What he needs is a stern, experienced, no-nonsense governess. What he gets is his business partner’s untouchable sister, whose delectable body Jack yearns to pull close.

Mademoiselle Désirée le Duc cannot wait to return to France and regain her lost vineyard. But to do so, she must repay crippling debt. Determined to buy freedom, she accepts temporary employment from an Englishman with a wicked smile and a big… wine cellar. His kisses taste like heaven and his arms feel like home. How can she choose between two families separated by the sea?

The 12 Dukes of Christmas is a series of heartwarming Regency romps nestled in a picturesque snow-covered village. Twelve delightful romances… and plenty of delicious dukes!

My review

We are already at number six of the 12 Dukes of Christmas. This time it is a female Duke. Desiree le Duc to be precise. Together with her brothers Sebastian (the smitty) and Lucien she has lived with their “Uncle” John for 18 years now. When they fled France all those years ago and lost their parents, it was John who took them in and kept them under his wing in Cressmouth. However, in order to finance this, he has mortgaged his home and land, which has to be repaid in time or John will lose his home. Since his health doesn’t enable him to work any longer, it is up to the le Duc’s to repay this dept. After this, then can go back to France, to reclaim their heritage and hopefully their vineyard.
Up until that time, they have to make due with smuggling wine across the countries. Their partner in crime is Jack Skeffington, widower and father of the ten year old twins Annie and Frederick. Since he lost his wife to a disease, he has been raising the twins on his own. But now they come to an age, where they need to be educated further. Since he doesn’t want to feel heartbroken again, he wishes to stay single. Therefore, he would like to hire a governess. Desiree wants to go back to France as soon as possible. So if working as a governess can help her brothers raise the funds even faster to move back home, she will do so. But while working for Jack, she can’t help but feel attracted to him and she adores his children. But since she will be moving to France in a few months and Jack will have to stay in Cressmouth with his children, they can never be involved. But it wouldn’t hurt to steal some kisses? Right?
Heartwarming, with a swoon worthy widower who does his best to raise his rebellious children. As always, a wonderful read. Thank you Netgalley for providing the arc. Five out of five stars from me and I’ll be looking out for Duke number seven.

Publisher: Webmotion

Published: November 2019

ISBN: 9781943794263

My Rating: ♥♥♥♥♥

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