Melissa's Reviews > The Way to a Duke's Heart

The Way to a Duke's Heart by Caroline Linden
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Aug 29, 2012

really liked it
bookshelves: romantic-reads
Read on August 28, 2012

This was burning a hole in my NOOK whilst I read The Ugly Duchess (hey, Eloisa tweeted me, so she got to be first - I'm easy that way). Being a romance novel I had no doubt as to the outcome of the Durham Dilemma (duh) but I just wanted to know how it would all unwind as well as who Charlie would be paired with.

First off, I have to say I quite loved Tessa's companion/cousin, Eugenia Bates. Yes, Bates. Who has much the sweet, chatty, dithering demeanor of the Miss Bates of Austen's Emma - but not as annoying since we're not seeing her through Emma's eyes. And she has a taste for the luird Gothic novels of Mrs. Radcliff.

Second, I quite liked how Linden let us see how Charlie resented his younger brothers' freedom, just that little bit (Edward his facility in estate management and Gerard his fearless antics), and how he regretted that his break with their father had perhaps put the family in the situation of the Durham Dilemma (well, it would have been less-bad if Edward hadn't told his idiot fiancee at the beginning of One Night in London - but then he got Francesca and that was much better).

Third, Tessa is an excellent foil for Charlie. But she isn't set up as a paragon who is right all the time with regard to the business of the canal - she's allowed to have a failing or two.

But I do have a slight misgiving about the climax of the book and hence, spoiler warning:

(view spoiler)
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