"Great romance"

At Brandhurst Hall, the Duke is dead having been murdered in his garden. His wife of two decades Olivia feels free after the abuse he piled on her, but also is frightened about the immediate requirements of an aristocratic burial. Not long after the funeral, Olivia meets gardener Will Barnes. The duo chats and soon they are in each other's arms sharing lovemaking like nothing that either has felt before.

A year later, the nephew of the deceased duke sees an opportunity to eliminate Olivia from sharing the family wealth. He plans to accuse her of murdering her husband with the means being her letter opener, the motive his abuse, and the opportunity anytime in the boudoir (though they rarely were there together). Unable to ignore Olivia's plight, Will makes inquiries to prove his beloved is innocent even though he knows the cost of his actions is everything he cherishes.

Assuming the high intelligence of her audience, Julie Beard provides her readers with a great late Victorian romance that is bound to make the short lists of every historical reader. The story line is loaded with a juggernaut of a cast who provides insight to the changing climate in England. The subplots such as female factory employment and the who-done-it brilliantly return to the prime star-crossed lovers theme. Though historical mystery readers will feel the amateur sleuth investigation is shortchanged, fans of romance and nineteenth century tales will fully relish the rich cleverly written THE DUCHESS' LOVER.

Harriet Klausner

Reviewed by PNR Group Member
Posted March 25, 2002


After more than twenty years, Olivia, Duchess of Brandhust, is finally free—free from the shackles of a lovless marriage to a cruel, domineering husband. An in one reckless night of passion, she experiences that freedom—in the arms of Will Barnes, a man she meets by chance in the moonlight of a garden, a man forbidden to her by the unwritten laws of Victorian society.

Once the night is over, Livie returns to her role of grieving widow. But memories of that night haunt Livie—and Will as well. Unable to forget her or the fierce emotions she inspires in him, he returns. With his working-class background and artistic talents, Will is unlike anyone Livie has ever known. Despite the scandal that threatens their love, and the differenced between them, she cannot resist him, or the beauty he brings to her life. But when Livie's enemies try to destroy her with vicious accusations about her marriage, Will is determined to save her, even if it means giving her up. Somehow, Livie must prove to him that their passion is worth any sacrifice, and that he is much more than the duchess' lover—he is her love...


The Duchess' Lover
by Julie Beard

April 1, 2002
ISBN #0515132772
EAN #9780515132779
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Other Books by
Julie Beard

Touch Of The White Tiger
Kiss Of The Blue Dragon
Midnight Angel
Very Truly Yours
My Fair Lord
Idiot's Guide to Getting Your Romance Published
The Christmas Cat

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