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Put up Your Duke
Dukes Behaving Badly #2
Dukes Behaving Badly #2
By: Megan Frampton
Releasing June 30, 2015
He was once happily bedding and boxing, but in the newest DUKES BEHAVING BADLY novel, Nicholas Smithfield has inherited a title and a bride…
To keep his estate afloat, the new Duke of Gage must honor an agreement to marry Lady Isabella. Stunningly beautiful, utterly tempting, she’s also a bag of wedding night nerves, so Nicholas decides to wait to do his duty-even if it means heading to the boxing saloon every day to punch away his frustration.
Groomed her whole life to become the perfect duchess Isabella longs for independence, a dream that is gone forever. As her husband, Nicholas can do whatever he likes-but, to Isabella’s surprise the notorious rake instead begins a gentle seduction that is melting every inch of her reserve, night by night…
To his utter shock, Nicholas’s discovers that none of his previous exploits were half as pleasurable as wooing his own wife. But has the realm’s most disreputable Duke found the one woman who can bring him to his knees-and leave him there?
She laughed in all the places he’d wanted her to, even though she insisted on correcting the ending to the story—instead of the princess heading off to fairyland to enact revenge on the mean fairy, as he’d recounted, she said that the princess would not be so petty, and would just let the mean fairy come to her own bad ends.
Nicholas would have to tell her the story of how the mean fairy got her comeuppance another night. And how revealing was it that he was picturing the mean fairy as his new mother-in-law?
“And now you should tell me what is on your list, princess.” He felt her stiffen in his arms, but she didn’t run away. Not yet, at least.
Was this how it felt to try to tame a deer or some other fragile, woodland creature? This constant worrying and tentativeness?
Because if so he had a lot more sympathy with zookeepers.
“The list of things I wish to do?” she asked, her voice higher and softer than usual. He dipped his head down to whisper in her ear. Not that anybody was there, but he couldn’t help himself.
“Yes. That list,” he said, feeling the skin on her arms get goose bumps as he spoke.
“Oh,” she said, the word more like a sigh.
She didn’t speak for a few minutes after that, but Nicholas could tell she was thinking—mostly because she felt relaxed in his arms, and if she hadn’t been thinking hard about something, he knew she would be much more self-conscious about lying there, together, on her bed.
“I want to go somewhere where it doesn’t matter if I laugh loudly. I want to dance without worrying about how I look, or if I am executing a misstep.”
She paused, and he felt his insides coil in anticipation of what she would say next. “But most of all, right now, I would like to kiss you,” she said at last.
Which was both the best and the worst answer she could have given him.
It takes lots of baby steps for Nicholas and Isabella to consummate their marriage. He is very sweet in the way he slowly gains her trust by telling her stories, playing cards and talking about his childhood. Slowly, Isabella begins to open up to him, and lets him see who she really is, not just what her mother raised her to be. It's a sweet romance with very little drama which makes it very enjoyable.
I received an ARC via Edelweiss for the purpose of an honest review. I was not compensated for this review, all conclusions are my own.
Megan Frampton writes historical romance under her own name and romantic women’s fiction as Megan Caldwell. She likes the color black, gin, dark-haired British men, and huge earrings, not in that order. She lives in Brooklyn, NY, with her husband and son.