The Scandalous Love of a Duke by Jane Lark
Marlow Intrigues #3
Genres: Adult, Romance, Historical.
The Scandalous Love of a Duke
Welcome to the Jane Lark Summer Extravaganza Tour! Today’s stop is dedicated to the latest of Jane’s historical ‘Marlow Intrigues’ Series ‘The Scandalous Love of a Duke’. Be prepared for some steamy Duke’s and some fiesty heroines. This is a book not to be missed!
‘Isolated by life and choice, John Harding, the Duke of Pembroke, sees an angel in a pale mauve dress across a room and is drawn closer as lust grips firm and hard in his stomach.
The wheat-blonde hair escaping her dull dove-grey bonnet and caressing her neck lures his eyes to a spot he’d like to kiss.
She speaks with animation her hands moving. Then as if she senses his gaze the stranger turns and looks at him.
A rush of pain and longing spilled from Katherine’s heart into her limbs. It was so long since she’d seen John but her reaction was the same as it had been more than half-a-dozen years before. She loved him, secretly, without hope, but a chasm of years and status stood between them.’
Book Review ~ ‘The Scandalous Love of a Duke’ by Jane Lark ~ 5 Stars!
The chance to see the wonderful John Harding all grown up was something I was not going to miss. As we saw in ‘The Illicit Love of a Courtesan’ his childhood had been rooted in emotional and physical upheaval, with him being taken from his mother to grow up with his Grandfather, and when he is rescued, and given the chance of a new life with his mother and her new husband, he was uprooted again. I always thought there would be more to John’s state of mind than the shy, but polite young boy we saw in the first book in the ‘Marlow Intrigues’ series, and it just shows how well Jane Lark knows each of her characters that she was able to create John’s story where he is now a young man and to see the effect that his uprooted childhood had on him.
As with all of Jane Lark’s books, I felt so emotionally connected to the characters in this novel. John was a character that could quite easily have been very unlikable, but instead came across as a deep, yet emotionally scarred young man, who you couldn’t help but root for. The relationship he had with Katherine was one that really struck with me, because we got to see two very similar people in terms of their troubled childhoods, become two very different products. Where Katherine remained hopeful, and still loving, John had become closed off, which made the development of their relationship really exciting to read, especially when they begin to switch, and Katherine becomes doubtful of John when he finally begins to open up and express his true feelings. It really was a fantastic dynamic between the two that ranged from electric tension to sweetly romantic.
I loved the pace of this story, especially when circumstance forces them to go along with societies rules. John’s constant failure in his eyes was great as we were able to see him make a change in his personality due to his worry of losing those he loved. Where we often see this happen in a natural development, it was really refreshing to see John make a conscious decision regarding his actions, and to see him sometimes fail in his effort to become a better man.
There was something slightly darker about this book, which gave me shivers. I’m not sure quite what it was, only that John’s seduction of Katherine, seemed so deliciously forbidden that I was on tenterhooks throughout the scenes they had together. For some reason it seemed that there was so much more at risk than with the previous couples, should they have been caught, that I just couldn’t put my Kindle down until I knew how the story finished.
This was a stunning addition to the ‘Marlow Intrigues’ series. I laughed and cried along with the characters, and became so deeply connected to them, I could feel their pain as my own. The little snippets we see of Ellen and Edward in this novel was also a joy to read, as we see that time has not lessened the strength of their love and devotion to each other. Katherine and John became another favourite couple along with the other couples featured in this series.
As if this could be anything but 5 Stars!
Like what you’ve read so far? Check out Jane’s books over on Amazon