skein's Reviews > The Duke of Shadows

The Duke of Shadows by Meredith Duran
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Oct 21, 2010

it was amazing
bookshelves: rrrrromance-novels, 5-star
Read from October 21 to 27, 2010

in-the-middle-of-the-book-review:
You know how you'll be reading something and someone comes and you have to sort of ... hide the cover? or immediately issue a disclaimer: It's not like THAT! Happens to me with romances and the Bible, mostly. (Although I have since sold my copy of the Bible.)
Yeah, that.
This book shouldn't be a romance. Or maybe it should: the story of its world -- our world -- is sorrowful and dark and agonizingly recognizable. Maybe it needs the junk-licking and fast heartbeats to keep a reader from the bottle. It's horrible tormenting vibrant fast-paced misery. I love it. It made me cry.
DON'T YOU JUDGE ME.

finished-the-book-review:

It's a dark and stormy night, tonight, which is appropriate for this season and this longitude and this hour of the day; I have finished this book twice (the second time I cried a lot more) and have begun it again. I don't want to talk about why I cried or why I enjoy it -- that's none of your goddamn business, and no-it-is-not-about-sex -- so let's go straight on to the plot/writing/characterization.
The characters were admirably drawn - I liked Emma and Julian (but bleh: the names bugged me). I liked her not-flowers-and-teacups art. I liked her holding-on-to-the-boat determination, and her PTSD, and her complaints about wine. I liked Julian, too, for not being a jerkass rogue tempered by her beauty and lack of crinolines. I liked his polite shall-we-proceed-upon-your-say-my-lady way of dealing with sex.

I liked (for that reason I will not explicate) their relationship. Especially after the (OMG SPOILER) separation. When you think someone is dead, when you think you've been abandoned, you get REALLY FUCKING PISSED OFF if they come back. You're not happy to see them. You don't go canoodling in corners. You pick fights and throw things and get furious all over again that they can still tear your heart in two. You've been perfectly happy with your sickness and your loss, and now they're come back to prove all your pain was useless and false? FUCK THAT.
You're going to go into the garden and drink now, and if they come to ask for conversation you are going to throw this champagne bottle at their head.


Four stars for a romance novel. Not, you know, as compared to Lolita or whatever.

(update: oh, fuck. it's a five-star book. I GIVE IN TO THE TRUTH.)
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Reading Progress

10/21/2010 page 202
53.0% ""She felt like a small moving planet. Perhaps the thought should encourage her. She could go smashing through the crowd, her own force of gravity.""
10/21/2010 page 202
53.0% ""She felt like a small moving planet. Perhaps the thought should encourage her. She could go smashing through the crowd, her own force of gravity.""
10/21/2010 page 202
53.0% ""She felt like a small moving planet. Perhaps the thought should encourage her. She could go smashing through the crowd, her own force of gravity.""
10/27/2010 page 202
53.0% "Whatever her expression revealed, it amused him. "Good to see I'm not the only one who's angry, Miss Martin.""

Comments (showing 1-6 of 6) (6 new)

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message 1: by Melanie (new) - added it

Melanie Love your review:-)


skein Why, thank you! I hope you enjoy reading it (and that my spoilers didn't spoil too much) - it's a very good book.


message 3: by Melanie (new) - added it

Melanie I'm sure I bought it, but I can't for the life of me find it among my 1000+ TBR stack!!:-( As to your itsy-bitsy little spoilers (;-p), I actually like knowing a little about what the book is about, especially in reunion stories (I'm wary of them as a general rule, because they're usually rife with infidelity, lol).. But if I read it, it'll be thanks to your review:-D


Tammy Walton Grant What a great review - I just read the book, and what you said about their separation, "When you think someone is dead, when you think you've been abandoned, you get REALLY FUCKING PISSED OFF if they come back. You are so right! And how nice to see that reality portrayed in a romance novel.


skein hey, Tammy, thanks!
I'm so fond of this novel, I'm afraid to read anything else by the author lest my crush deflate. hmmm ... you should read them and report back :)


Tammy Walton Grant I have it on good authority that a couple of her other books are almost this excellent, but I know what you mean. The letdown is terrible, lol.


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