Welcome to British Isles Friday! British Isles Friday is a weekly event for sharing all things British and Irish — reviews, photos, opinions, trip reports, guides, links, resources, personal stories, interviews, and research posts. Join us each Friday to link your British and Irish themed content and to see what others have to share. The link list is at the bottom of this post. Pour a cup of tea or lift a pint and join our link party!
Book: A Lady for a Duke by Alexis Hall
Genre: Historical romance
Publication date: 2022
Source: e-book from the library
Summary: Viola found herself after she was thought to be dead, killed on the battlefield at Waterloo. She gave up her wealth, status, and title to feel like she belonged in her own skin. What she didn’t realize was that her presumed death left a hole in the life of a friend. A Lady for a Duke begins a couple of years later when she reconnects with that friend and must learn to navigate the relationship in a whole new way.
Thoughts: I didn’t call last week’s books romances because they didn’t follow the romance structure.
A Lady for a Duke follows the format of a historical novel set in the aftermath of Waterloo to a tee. I know because I’ve read dozens of those.
It begins with one of my least favorite tropes of this genre — an unrevealed secret between the two romantic lead characters. But, in this case, Viola’s secret has dire consequences if it is revealed in this time and place, so I readily accepted it. I appreciated that it wasn’t allowed to go on too long, though.
Appeal: A Lady for a Duke is less funny than the Winner Bakes All books, suiting the genre and the seriousness of the situation. Like the two Alexis Hall novels in the “Winner Bakes All” series, I devoured A Lady for a Duke. Goodreads says that the paperback has 460 pages. I read it in four days! Quite an accomplishment considering how little that I’ve been reading for pleasure in 2023.
Challenges: I’m celebrating Pride Month with books by Alexis Hall. A Lady for a Duke counts for the 2023 Diversity Reading Challenge. A Lady for a Duke also meets the LGBTQQIA mini-challenge for June. In modern times, Viola would likely describe her journey as transgender, so I get a T to add to G and B from last week.
Since A Lady for a Duke is a historical romance, it also counts for my Historical Fiction Reading Challenge.
Reviews: Like last week, Heather of Based on a True Story told me about this book. Her review: A Lady for a Duke.
Have you read this book? What did you think?