Series: Mackenzies & McBrides, Book 6.5
Genre: Historical Romance
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Jennifer Ashley Reading Order
Scandal follows Rose Barclay, young widow of the Duke of Southdown, wherever she goes. It's never her fault, but newspapers love to write about the young woman from Scotland, and the much older duke she married, who died on their honeymoon. The duke left her with a large widow's portion, now contested by his son, who kicks Rose out of the estate's dower house and uses it to kennel his dogs.
Rose does not need to be found with a large, handsome Scot passed out at her feet, fueling gossips and giving her son-in-law more ammunition. The Scot is Steven McBride--a decorated soldier who is notorious for heavy gambling and womanizing during his leave time. Steven is happy to open his eyes and find the beautiful woman standing over him, and happy to help spirit her away. He comes up with a ruse to foil the journalists, but Rose will have to go along with his very scandalous proposal.
Scandal and the Duchess is bright and bubbly like good champagne. Jennifer Ashley has delivered a fast-paced tale that is wonderfully entertaining, thanks to her two irresistibly charming protagonists, Rose and Steven.
Steven is a soldier with an easy smile that hides regret. Rose is a kind-hearted young widow who’s down on her luck thanks to a bitter, grasping stepson. Pursued by reporters and with no place to go, Rose is definitely in need of a hero. A chance meeting has Steven practically falling into her lap, and the handsome Scotsman is eager to jump into the role of knight in slightly tarnished armor. Their whirlwind love story requires a touch of suspending disbelief, but both of them are so genuinely good and exactly the kind of people you’d love to be friends with that there’s no way you could not root for their romance. Though the obstacles they face are overcome fairly easily thanks to Steven’s family (and beloved series scene-stealer Ian Mackenzie in particular), I was still glued to my seat as I read Scandal and the Duchess.
Ms. Ashley’s Mackenzies & McBrides stories never fail to entertain, and Scandal and the Duchess is no exception. Rose and Steven’s story is sure to sweep you away for a few hours and I dare you not to smile as these two endearing characters find happily ever after.
FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.