The Art of Duke Hunting is the most charming and engaging historical romance I have read in a very long time. Sophia Nash has a fresh, humorous voice and creates a hero and heroine that are more than just handsome and beautiful. They are complicated and flawed, yet two of the most appealing characters I have met on the page.
When Esme, Countess of Derby, encounters Roman, the Duke of Norwich, on board a ship during a storm, they both overcome their fears and past wounds in order to share a moment of unexpected passion. When their connection leads to a marriage of convenience, they finally have to face their personal demons and decide whether the walls they have erected to protect themselves are more essential than their growing love for each other.
Both Esme and Roman have a delicious sense of humor and I enjoyed every page that included a snippet of banter between them. Though their relationship starts with a burst of passion, their love develops more slowly, based on admiration and respect for each other. Roman admires Esme’s skill at painting, for instance. Likewise, Esme comes to see Roman as something more than an arrogant aristocrat and drunken dilettante follower of the Prince Regent.
Though Esme and Roman eventually enter into a marriage of convenience, Sophia Nash invests the oft used plot device with vibrance and warmth. Their romance is not a simple one, and it’s many layers -- related to fear, trust and hope -- make it utterly engaging.
The Art of Duke Hunting is a funny, charming and heartfelt historical romance that defied my expectations by exceeding them. With witty banter and a romance with emotional depth, it is easily the best historical romance I have read this year.
The Hangover meets Regency England in RITA Award-winning author Sophia Nash’s wickedly clever and wonderfully sensual Royal Entourage historical romance novels. In The Art of Duke Hunting, the second in her series, the dashing Duke of Norwich—on the morning after a most extravagant royal bachelor party that he simple cannot recall—awakens on board ship and well out to sea…and in the arms of a stranger, an enchanting and most proper lady. The Art of Duke Hunting is funny, sexy, and wonderfully romantic, as fans of Karen Hawkins, Elizabeth Boyle, and Victoria Alexander will most assuredly agree. And unlike the members of the Royal Entourage, you will happily recall every delicious moment of it!