From the Land of Fire and Ice back to England’s shores, Alexandria Featherstone finds herself the new Duchess of St. Easton. Her husband has promised a wedding trip to take them to the place where her imperiled parents were last seen — Italy and the marble caves of Carrara — but a powerful Italian duke plots against Alex and her treasure-hunting parents.
Hoping to save them, Alex and Gabriel travel to Italy by balloon. Fraught with danger on all sides and pressured by Gabriel’s affliction to the breaking point, they must learn to work and fight together. The mysterious key is within their grasp, but they have yet to recognize it. This journey will require steadfast faith in God and each other — a risk that will win them everything they want or lose them everything they have.
A Duke’s Promise starts where the previous book in the Forgotten Castles series leaves off. Alex and Gabriel are now married, and it’s their wedding night. If you’re a Christian who doesn’t like any implication of sexual relations in their reading, you won’t like the next several pages. However, this is a married couple, it’s their first night together, and we need to remember that God created sex for married couples to enjoy. And they certainly seem to enjoy it throughout the book. (Right, I’ll step off my soap box now!)
This is the book where we finally meet Alex’s parents and, sadly, I took an instant disliking to them. Katherine is cold, manipulative, and deceitful, while Ian comes across as a bit of a mouse who defers to his wife in everything. It appears that their marriage was originally one of convenience, and there are questions about that which are never answered.
I enjoyed the first three quarters of the book, but I was disappointed by the final section. In my review of The Forgiven Duke, I said the plot reminded me of an Indiana Jones adventure. There were four Indiana Jones movies and just as I was disappointed by the final one so was I disappointed by the final quarter of A Duke’s Promise. The action moves from romance and adventure to science fiction and fantasy. I’m sure there was a deep meaning to what takes place, but I couldn’t decipher it. Furthermore, it appears I was on totally the wrong track with regard to Gabriel’s synesthesia. Finally, I was still left with logistical questions. How do they avoid any remaining Spaniards? How do they get home? How does the Prince Regent react to their homecoming? I guess I’m just practically-minded like that.
Publisher: B & H Publishing
Publication Date: 01 September 2012
Page Count: 320
I downloaded my free ARC of A Duke’s Promise from B & H Publishing on the NetGalley website. I was under no obligation to write a review.