THE ILLEGITIMATE DUKE by Sophie Barnes

THE ILLEGITIMATE DUKE

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KIRKUS REVIEW

An heiress decides to use her fortune for good and winds up working closely with a celebrated doctor. The two share an attraction, but a dark secret keeps him from wooing her and ultimately places her in grave danger.

Bored by the season and feeling she wants to make a difference, heiress Lady Juliette Matthews decides to support a hospital that caters to the poor, then becomes more involved when there is a typhus outbreak. Serving on an advisory board for the hospital highlights her compassion, intelligence, and ingenuity, and Florian Lowell, the famed physician, takes notice. Recently named heir to his uncle’s title and estate, Florian knows he should marry, and he’d like nothing more than to claim Juliette as his own. However, “he was not in the market for a wife and had no intention of ever gaining one.” He’s long harbored the shameful secret that he’s illegitimate and that his biological father is a notorious criminal. Society believes the man is dead, but Florian knows he’s alive and seems intent on harming people Florian loves. As Florian wards off an epidemic and fights his feelings for Juliette while trying to get to the bottom of his father’s nefarious plans, Juliette is confused by his mixed messages. Soon, though, she’s fighting for her own survival, and if she lives, she’s determined to fight for the man she loves. Fascinating medical and historical tidbits enrich an engaging storyline, and Florian especially is an interesting character. But Florian’s fickle treatment of Juliette, as well as their internal and external denials of feelings that are clearly there, becomes tiresome. Also, so much tension is built up toward the end that the quick resolutions to a number of conflicts feel anticlimactic.

Generally smart and action-packed but slightly uneven.

Pub Date: Aug. 28th, 2018
ISBN: 978-0-06-284972-4
Page count: 384pp
Publisher: Avon/HarperCollins
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1st, 2018




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