This was my first time reading a romance story by Alyssa Cole. I really enjoyed "A Duke by Default". Portia is a socialite who is a bit of a mess. She's never stuck with anything and is a frustration to her family. She decides to take a sword apprenticeship in Scotland and while there falls for her grumpy boss Tavish.
I found "A Duke by Default" really charming. Both characters are a bit outside the norm for this genre and I thought that was refreshing. Portia has ADHD and I loved that aspect. Her struggles felt very real. I loved she learned to accept that part of herself. Tav was a very interesting character also. I thought the author did a great job developing their personalities and their components of the relationship.
The writing was well done and I felt the story was paced well. It was creative and outside the box, which I much appreciated.
This book had a bit of everything. It was sweet, it was romantic and it was very funny in places. It is one of the best contemporary romances I have read it awhile and I highly recommend it.
Award-winning author Alyssa Cole’s Reluctant Royals series continues with a woman on a quest to be the heroine of her own story and the duke in shining armor she rescues along the way…
New York City socialite and perpetual hot mess Portia Hobbs is tired of disappointing her family, friends, and—most importantly—herself. An apprenticeship with a struggling swordmaker in Scotland is a chance to use her expertise and discover what she’s capable of. Turns out she excels at aggravating her gruff silver fox boss…when she’s not having inappropriate fantasies about his sexy Scottish burr.
Tavish McKenzie doesn’t need a rich, spoiled American telling him how to run his armory…even if she is infuriatingly good at it. Tav tries to rebuff his apprentice—and his attraction to her—but when Portia accidentally discovers that he’s the secret son of a duke, rough-around-the-edges Tav becomes her newest makeover project.
Forging metal into weapons and armor is one thing, but when desire burns out of control and the media spotlight gets too hot to bear, can a commoner turned duke and his posh apprentice find lasting love?