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The one woman he will never forget…
Malcolm Bevingstoke, Duke of Haven, has lived the last three years in self-imposed solitude, paying the price for a mistake he can never reverse and a love he lost forever. The dukedom does not wait, however, and Haven requires an heir, which means he must find himself a wife by summer’s end. There is only one problem—he already has one.
The one man she will never forgive…
After years in exile, Seraphina, Duchess of Haven, returns to London with a single goal—to reclaim the life she left and find happiness, unencumbered by the man who broke her heart. Haven offers her a deal; Sera can have her freedom, just as soon as she finds her replacement…which requires her to spend the summer in close quarters with the husband she does not want, but somehow cannot resist.
A love that neither can deny…
The duke has a single summer to woo his wife and convince her that, despite their broken past, he can give her forever, making every day
THE DAY OF THE DUCHESS
About the Author
A life-long romance reader, Sarah MacLean wrote her first romance novel on a dare, and never looked back. She is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of historical romances, and the author of a monthly column at The Washington Post celebrating the best of the romance genre. She lives in New York City with her husband, daughter, dog and a ridiculously large collection of romance novels. She loves to hear from readers.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
A few things to know before diving into this book (or any book by Sarah MacLean). You have to enjoy drama: from full blown productions with characters who won’t let go to little moments of temper-fueled outbursts, usually brought on by one of the characters acting to type, or diverting from it. Appreciating female characters that are a bit more modern than one would expect: no shrinking violets these, they have thoughts, dreams, and desires and are not afraid to take a chance to grab that joy. Men who aren’t ever quite sure what hit them, especially after they find themselves unable to forget her, and even those who are aware enough to recognize their own missteps. And when that is boxed together with a family that wasn’t born to society and gives even less credence to the expectations of same – you get this. Grab a chair and prepare yourself for a ride! Malcolm, Duke of Haven has retreated from society – he’s ashamed of his behavior and the scenes he caused in a very ‘un-duke-like’ manner. Now, the decisions and his bad behavior have come to a head: he needs an heir, thus he needs a willing wife. Problem is – he has one, and she doesn’t want him. Left him without a trace nearly three years back, and with her unforeseen return comes yet another blow: she wants a divorce and to never see him again. Seraphina spent the early years of her marriage being denigrated and feeling “less than” her husband. A stickler for propriety, he was shamed by her family and the scandal that surrounds them. What she doesn’t know is that during the time, Malcolm had searched for her, reviewed every moment of their marriage, revisited every interaction and knows now that he was more than harsh, and she is the woman he wants above all others. But, he’s got to convince her, and to convince her that he has changed he comes up with a plan. Sophie knows that Malcolm needs an heir, but she’s not volunteering for that job. So, when she’s faced with a marriage she doesn’t want, or her freedom in exchange for finding a ‘suitable’ replacement for Malcolm. What she doesn’t realize is that Malcolm has decided that he will use every moment he can to convince her to come home. Permanently. Oh poor Sophie: she really did love Malcolm, and his behavior cut her to the quick. Now, she’s determined that he won’t get another chance to hurt her again….but he’s so….. Together these two are everything: adorable together with a wonderful banter: but this was no simple connection. Too much history and Malcolm’s inability to ask the questions he so desperately needs answers for kept them in the back and forth: him trying to show he’s changed his perspective and Sophie desperately trying to guard her heart – the one he shattered into little pieces with his cutting words and behavior. I didn’t actually think that they would actually hit that point of honest emotion where they could trust in one another to share openly, but slowly the cracks in the façade broke, and they both are struggling with the missteps of the past, as Sophie finally finds her own voice and makes her own choices without first considering her family’s or her husband’s wishes. Oh her growth was wonderful – and Malcolm: a good grovel never hurts and he is truly feeling it – something that the very fair-minded (and just a little in love) Sophie can’t help but see. With a wonderful reunion and informative epilogue – their story comes with bows, smiles, tears and big hearts. I received an eArc copy of
The Day of the Duchess is such an emotional read. This is perhaps the very first book that I read where I didn’t know if the hero and heroine would end up back together! I mean, THE thing that broke them apart in the first place was so damn devastating that I didn’t know if both of them could even heal enough to forgive each other. To say that I enjoyed The Day of the Duchess is an understatement. I’m not saying that this is Sarah MacLean’s best work yet but this is one of the most refreshing ones that she has written (possibly after Don’t Judge a Lady by Her Cover). As you all know, I am a sucker for second chance romance. In fact, it is one of my favorite tropes and The Day of the Duchess is an amazing second chance romance that will really tear your heartstrings. Lady Seraphina is back in London after a few years away, barges into the House of Lords, during a session and demands for a DIVORCE! GASP! Divorce was taboo during that day and only the bravest of souls could weather the scandal. The story revolves around Sera and her husband Malcolm, the Duke of Haven. Sera wants a divorce so she can own her own pub and be free while Malcolm refuses to let her go and devices a plan to get her back. Now, this is where it gets tricky. Malcolm convinces Sera to help him find his replacement Duchess (the suitesses – this is genius, by the way). Sera agrees with the understanding that Malcolm will grant her the divorce. Unfortunately, this is the part where I absolutely did not care for. I know I may be the minority here, but the days spent with the suitesses felt that they dragged too long. Basically, I was done with them. There were a couple that I can see starring in their own spin-off series, but still! I actually discussed this with a few reader groups and as expected, the majority of them disagreed with me, claiming that this was when Sera gave up on their relationship. In all honesty, I wanted more Sera and Malcolm interaction. When they were actually talking to each other and discussing their current problems and facing the hurt, THEY WERE EXPLOSIVE! I mean, I could feel their chemistry sizzling right off the page! So yeah, I WISH there was more. The suitesses bit practically had only a few Malcolm appearances! YIKES! And I was understandably peeved. Again, I am the minority here, so I doubt that the situation would dampen your reading of The Day of the Duchess. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book so much. The hurt and struggles were real and I felt like this situation could indeed happen in real life. If you haven’t read any Sarah MacLean book, this is the perfect time to start! Definitely, a MUST read!
4.5 STARS It's been a while since I read my last Historical Romance and I really missed it. The gallantry of men, the noble ladies, the unconventional heroines, the beautiful words and poetry in the story-telling, they all contribute to my love for this genre. Sarah Maclean has always been one of my favorites so it was a pleasure and an honor to receive an advanced reading copy for The Day of The Duchess. Malcom Marcus Bevinstoke, Duke of Haven, feels the weight of every single day since his wife left him. Or he told her to leave. Two years and seven months ago. He has been searching for her since, yearning for the woman he fell in love with all those years ago. To no avail. Malcom's search comes to an end when she crashes back into his life and the last parliamentary session in the summer. And what she demands is outrageous as it is painful. A divorce. Two years and seven months ago Sera almost died giving birth to daughter who didn't survive. Devastated over the loss of a possible future with the man she ever loved and grieving for the child that didn't live she accepted his callous mother's offer to disappear from his life in exchange for a hefty sum, at the same time freeing him from a barren wife. From the woman who trapped him into marriage. She has come back to give them both what she thinks is best. Freedom for her to run her tavern and for him to take a new wife and produce heirs. She didn't anticipate Malcolm's opposition - he offers her to agree to a divorce if she spends the summer with him finding him a new wife. The story is told jumping back and forth between past and present. Sarah Maclean leads us through the history of these two characters with skill and we get to know both hero and heroine very well. Malcolm is a proud aristocrat whose parents were in the same situation Seraphina put him when she trapped him into marriage - only that there was no need for her to do it. He was hers the minute they met. Being the product of a loveless marriage he didn't want that for himself so obviously and understandably, he was immensely hurt by Sera's betrayal. Malcolm is an amazing character, his remorse and love for his wife is tangible in every word. I fell in love with him right away. Sera is one of the scandalous Dangerous Daughters. She never cared about not being fully accepted by society but she fell in love with the Duke and when he didn't ask her to marry him for months she agreed to her mother's suggestion to force his hand. Completely unnecessary. The reason for him not asking her right away were really sweet I thought. The book is surprisingly angsty and while I'm a sucker for the tightness in my chest when a book is really emotional I thought at some point that it went on a little bit too long. I was so ready for Malcolm's and Sera's Happily Ever After but the heroine was obstinately holding on to her belief that a divorce would be the best for both of them. It was a little bit frustrating, admittedly. Mistakes were made on both sides but both of them have paid a huge price for them - it was time to wrap the story up. The last couple of chapters and the epilogue made up for that though - so beautifully written. Sarah Maclean's prose is beautiful and lyrical. I marked so many passages in this story that made my heart sing and tighten with emotion. She is a master storyteller with a poignant writing style who captures the atmosphere of the Victorian age.