Series: Maiden Lane #10
Published by Grand Central Publishing on May 31, 2016
Source: Advance Reader Copy
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A MAN OF SIN
Devastatingly handsome. Vain. Unscrupulous. Valentine Napier, the Duke of Montgomery, is the man London whispers about in boudoirs and back alleys. A notorious rake and blackmailer, Montgomery has returned from exile, intent on seeking revenge on those who have wronged him. But what he finds in his own bedroom may lay waste to all his plans.
A WOMAN OF HONOR
Born a bastard, housekeeper Bridget Crumb is clever, bold, and fiercely loyal. When her aristocratic mother becomes the target of extortion, Bridget joins the Duke of Montgomery's household to search for the incriminating evidence-and uncovers something far more dangerous.
A SECRET THAT THREATENS TO DESTROY THEM BOTH
Astonished by the deceptively prim-and surprisingly witty-domestic spy in his chambers, Montgomery is intrigued. And try as she might, Bridget can't resist the slyly charming duke. Now as the two begin their treacherous game of cat and mouse, they soon realize that they both have secrets-and neither may be as nefarious-or as innocent-as they appear . . .
I haven’t read any of the Maiden Lane books, although they’ve been on my to-read list for years, but this caught my attention enough to read out of order.
(I asked around, and readers who’ve read it and the rest said I’d be okay, but just to know that Valentine has been the villain of the series)
Bridget Crumb is the housekeeper, but more specifically, she’s the best housekeeper in London. And she for the time being, is the Duke of Montgomery’s housekeeper. She’s a bastard, and her birth mother has asked her to help her find something that the Duke of Montgomery is using to blackmail her.
Bridget can’t deny her mother, so she agrees. And of course Val, who was exiled from England, walks in on her looking for something in his bed. He never really planned on leaving London, so he decides to blackmail the king into letting him stay. I can see where he must have been the bad guy before,
But this book is so much more than a duke falling for his housekeeper.
And Bridget is so much more than just a housekeeper. She is a fantastic heroine. She’s strong and stubborn, yet also she knows when to bend. She also discovers the best ways to handle Val, and she never tries to change him. But because of that, I think, he does change. And he finds himself falling for his housekeeper. And she finds herself completely in love with a man who is blackmailing her mother. How can this ever work out?
I don’t know how this author turned Val around, I can almost certainly see how he would be the perfect villain. He’s cold, but decadent. Deceitful, yet not…rather he’s tricky. He might be selfish and arrogant, but really, which duke wasn’t? He’s such a complicated hero, and he made a wonderful hero at that!
I found this book to be intriguing, beguiling, and exciting. The author has created such a beautiful world full of rich and vivid characters, that I really want to just binge-read the whole series.
***ARC courtesy of Grand Central Books