"The Reluctant Duke," the first in the Seabrook Family Saga, is a short and sweet romance with a creative plot. Readers will enjoy the story of Thomas, an English duke, and Emma, his American ward. Christine Donovan brings steamy romance and unexpected twists to "The Reluctant Duke," and readers will be compelled to know what happens next. The repertoire between Thomas, Myles, and Edward is brilliant, and the best parts of the story are when the three friends are together. While separated from his two friends I find Thomas to be lacking in compassion, and the usual hidden soft side of a romance hero is absent in Thomas. He is almost too gruff and moody for my taste. Emma I find to be lacking in depth and likability, and she and Thomas don't treat each other very well. "The Reluctant Duke" does have a pleasing ending and a charming theme. Readers who enjoy short and to the point romances will enjoy "The Reluctant Duke."
Thomas Seabrook, a duke with little money, incredibly wins a fortune one night at the gaming tables. He also wins Emma Hamilton, an American who becomes his ward. Thomas travels to America to bring Emma back to London to marry her off. But as the season progresses Thomas realizes he may be falling in love with Emma. He wants to succumb to his passion, but his family might not be able to recover from another scandal.
Thomas Seabrook, the penniless Duke of Wentworth, walks into White's for night cap. He leaves no longer in need of coin. In fact, he has become a wealthy man and owner of Hamilton Whaling Industries of New Bedford, Massachusetts and guardian of a seventeen-year-old girl. Thomas travels to Boston intent of bring his ward back and marrying her off to the first eligible gentleman who requests her hand. Except the first gentleman to ask for her, is his own brother Sebastian. Thomas refuses, because bloody hell, he wants her for himself.
Emma Hamilton is not happy with her new situation. Her papa brought her up to be independent and assertive. How dare this stranger, this moody noble, dictate what she can do and not do? When she finds herself thrown into a London season, being introduced from one gentleman to another, looking for a husband, she realizes only the Duke will do. Can Emma break through the Duke's dark, hard exterior and find the loving, caring gentleman she knows he hides from the world?