Four Dukes and a Devil

( 24 )

Overview

What do you do with three dukes‚ a dog named Duke‚ and a devil? You put them into an anthology! We′ve combined five of today′s bestselling and popular authors into one volume to deliver romance like you′ve never experienced before.

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Four Dukes and a Devil

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Overview

What do you do with three dukes‚ a dog named Duke‚ and a devil? You put them into an anthology! We′ve combined five of today′s bestselling and popular authors into one volume to deliver romance like you′ve never experienced before.

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780061787362
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 6/30/2009
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Edition description: Original
  • Pages: 400
  • Sales rank: 427,255
  • Product dimensions: 4.20 (w) x 6.60 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

Cathy Maxwell spends hours in front of her computer pondering the question, "Why do people fall in love?" It remains for her the great mystery of life and the secret to happiness. She lives in beautiful Virginia with her children, horses, dogs, and cats.

Tracy Anne Warren grew up in a small central Ohio town. After working for a number of years in finance, she quit her day job to pursue her first love—writing romance novels. Warren lives in Maryland with a trio of exuberant young Siamese rescue cats and windows full of gorgeous orchids and African violets. When she's not writing, she enjoys reading, watching movies, and dreaming up the characters for her next book.

Jeaniene Frost is the New York Times, USA Today, and international bestselling author of the Night Huntress series and the Night Huntress World novels. To date, foreign rights for her novels have sold to nineteen different countries. Jeaniene lives in North Carolina with her husband Matthew, who long ago accepted that she rarely cooks and always sleeps in on the weekends. Aside from writing, Jeaniene enjoys reading, poetry, watching movies with her husband, exploring old cemeteries, spelunking and traveling—by car. Airplanes, children, and cookbooks frighten her.

Sophia Nash was born in Switzerland and raised in France and the United States, but says her heart resides in Regency England. Her ancestor, an infamous French admiral who traded epic cannon fire with the British Royal Navy, is surely turning in his grave.

Before pursuing her long-held dream of writing, Sophia was an award-winning television producer for a CBS affiliate, a congressional speechwriter, and a nonprofit CEO. She lives in the Washington, D.C., suburbs with her husband and two children.

Sophia's novels have won twelve national awards, including the prestigious RITA® Award, and two spots on Booklist's "Top Ten Romances of the Year."

Elaine Fox has spent enough of her life datingto know that the scenarios described in this book arecompletely plausible -- though she disclaims any direct experience with any of them. Fortunately,however, she has been able to parlay this extendedsearch for romance into a career and hopesher readers appreciate the cathartic experience whileliving happily-ever-after lives themselves. Elainecurrently lives in Virginia.

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Read an Excerpt

Four Dukes and a Devil

Chapter One

"But what about love?"

Miss Susan Rogers had anticipated Lady Theresa Alberth's question. It was the mental inclination of young women nowadays. She understood because she'd also once believed love was the only true concern when it came to marriage. But now, at six-and-twenty and firmly established as a spinster, she knew differently.

Lady Theresa was Lord and Lady Alberth's only child. They sat on chairs next to their daughter and turned to Susan as if they, too, needed an answer.

Susan set her cup and saucer on the side table next to her chair. She knew her role. It was to convince Lady Theresa to obey her parents' wishes.

"Love is important," Susan agreed, very certain of herself and her message. After all, she'd given this lecture numerous times over just the last week as anxious parents with willful daughters had sought out her services. "But is it more important than compatibility? Than security? You will have children someday, Lady Theresa. What do you hope for them?"

A small frown line appeared between Lady Theresa's brows.

"I'm not going to tell you," Susan continued, "that it is as easy to love a wealthy man as it is a poor one. Or that you have obligations to your family line. I'm certain your parents have already told you all that."

Lady Theresa nodded, her expression tense. Lady Alberth had confided in Susan earlier that their daughter believed herself in love with their land steward's son, a Mr. Gerald Grover. They were hiring Susan to convince her differently. They wanted a good family for their daughter, and a title.

"Whatthey say is true," Susan said matter-of-factly. "However, that doesn't change how one feels when one is in love."

"Yes," Lady Theresa agreed, half-sobbing the word.

Susan leaned forward, reaching for Lady Theresa's hand. The girl gave it to her. "I'm going to advise you to remember that love must be tested. It can be a liar, a thief."

Lady Theresa shook her head, but Susan pressed on. "Let me tell you my story. I was once in love. I would have willingly sacrificed everything for him. He said he loved me, too, and we were to marry. One week before the wedding, both of my parents died in a coaching accident."

"Oh, dear," Lady Alberth said. Her husband's expression had gone grim. Lady Theresa listened, that frown between her brows deepening as she placed herself in Susan's position.

"My two younger sisters and I were alone," Susan said. "The estate went to a cousin, who did not want the responsibility of us. My betrothed had told me he loved me. It was only natural I turned to him in this difficult situation. He said everything would be fine, but on the day of our wedding, he didn't appear for the ceremony." "You were left at the altar?" Lady Alberth asked.

Susan nodded. "Publicly humiliated." The words no longer embarrassed her. She'd said them too often... to other girls... in front of other parents. "You see, my gentleman had been informed an hour before we were to be wed that my cousin refused to pay my dowry. He had other plans for the money." She gave Lady Theresa's hand a squeeze. "Don't be foolish as I was. Is it so much for your parents to ask you to participate in one Season? Is your love so fragile it would not survive a few parties, a -couple of balls?"

Lady Theresa looked to her parents. "Does that mean I may marry Gerald if I go through a Season?"

"The lad is unsuitable—" her father started.

"You must follow my guidelines," Susan said, directing her comment to Lady Theresa but boldly cutting her father off. No good came from arguing with a young woman who thought she was in love.

To his credit, Lord Alberth shut up.

"If you believe in love, then this young man—what is his name?"

"Gerald," Lady Theresa said.

"If Gerald is the one, nothing will sway your love for him, but you will be certain," Susan assured her. "There is much at stake. I'm certain you wish to please your parents. And you don't want to look back in life and wish you'd had the fun and excitement of at least one Season. Just one."

Lady Theresa nodded solemnly. The frown line was still there.

Susan smiled. "So, will you join me? Just for this Season?"

Again, Lady Theresa nodded.

"You will enjoy yourself immensely," Susan promised.

"I shall endeavor to try," she said, directing her vow toward her anxious parents. "I will."

"That's all we can ask, kitten," her father said.

Lady Theresa stood. "If you will excuse me?"

Her parents nodded. Lady Theresa gave a graceful nod to Susan and left the room.

"Well done," Lord Alberth said, when his daughter was out of earshot. "We've been attempting to bring her to this conclusion for weeks."

"She is very much 'in love,'?" Susan observed.

"They all are at this age," Lady Alberth said. "I blame myself for not having been more vigilant over her when she was around Gerald Grover."

"They played together as children," her husband said dismissively. "You couldn't have seen it coming. After all, we thought we'd raised her better than this."

"Is Mr. Grover a bad sort?" Susan asked.

Four Dukes and a Devil. Copyright © by Cathy Maxwell. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 24 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(4)

4 Star

(12)

3 Star

(5)

2 Star

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1 Star

(1)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 24 Customer Reviews
  • Posted June 20, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    These are five terrific romances

    "The Irish Duke" by Cathy Maxwell. Having been jilted at the altar, Susan warns her younger friends to avoid rakes especially "The Irish Duke", but when they meet neither can resist the lure of the wager.

    "The Duke Who Came to Dinner" by Elaine Fox. On Cape Cod, Sam almost burns himself with his scalding coffee when he sees the naked woman on the bike. Humiliated Virginian Gray "Ghost" prays no one seen her. Sam pursues her with the help of his matchmaking roguish criminal canine.

    "The Devil to Pay" by Jeaniene Frost. In DC Blake buys Crack hoping an overdose will kill him. However, thugs mug him but he kills them as the demon inside him insures he lives. Elise the vampire lives alone under a train station. When they meet they fall in love, but must remove the demon, which means the host dies.

    "The Catch of the Century" by Sophia Nash. The new Duke John has become the latest catch among the Ton. He meets schoolmistress Victoria when his Coachman almost ran over her and her three young male students. He is attracted to her feistiness; he considers the teacher to be "The Catch of the Century".

    "Charmed by Her Smile" by Tracy Anne Warren. In 1809, Duke Quentin kisses India which leaves them both wanting more. However as she has problems especially with "Peter the Pest" he has doubts because he wants her to have more chances with life than a week of falling in love.

    These are five terrific romances with four loosely connected by a lead duke while Jeaniene Frost's entry is radically different as an urban fantasy. Still, fans will enjoy this fine collection as each contribution is well written starring solid lead characters. As a bonus, fans of Sophia Nash will recognize some of her protagonists from previous tales as support players.

    Harriet Klausner

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted September 5, 2009

    Cute

    This was quick and easy reading. The stories were cute and not too racy. A little tame for me.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 6, 2012

    Extremely fun and entertaining.

    A wonderful book to take you away from the hot days of summer and into a world of fun and romance.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 23, 2011

    Awsome short story by Jeanene Frost!!!!

    I bought this book because it has a short story by Jeanene Frost that has characters from her series, really good short story! Havent read the others yet but looking forward to it and maybe I will discover a new author!

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  • Posted April 10, 2011

    Dont waste your money

    These stories were to short especially cathy maxwell's. That one might have been better if linger and more time was used devepoing the story. Overall, not worth wasting your money.

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  • Posted September 10, 2010

    fabulous stories!

    I thoroughly enjoyed each of the tales. The only bad part was that they ended too soon!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 4, 2009

    4 out of 5 are good

    The Four Dukes stories are all historical and work well as a group. The Devil story is contemporary vampires and was a jarring addition to an otherwise enjoyable collection. The Devil could have been an historical character with Devil as a nickname and would have worked much better.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted September 28, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Some Good, Some Bad

    I enjoyed reading the first, fourth, and fifth story in this book; the first story being my favorite! I ended up only giving it three stars because the other two stories in this book just weren't worth my time.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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