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Jewels of the Ton #1

When You Give a Duke a Diamond

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He had a perfectly orderly life...

William, the sixth Duke of Pelham, enjoys his punctual, securely structured life. Orderly and predictable—that's the way he likes it. But he's in the public eye, and the scandal sheets will make up anything to sell papers. When the gossip papers link him to Juliette, one of the most beautiful and celebrated courtesans in London, chaos doesn't begin to describe what happens next...

Until she came along...

Juliette is nicknamed the Duchess of Dalliance and has the cream of the nobility at her beck and call. It's disruptive to have the duke who is the biggest catch on the Marriage Mart scaring her other suitors away. Then she discovers William's darkest secret and decides what he needs in his life is the kind of excitement only she can provide...

356 pages, Mass Market Paperback

First published August 2, 2012

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About the author

Shana Galen

85 books1,459 followers
Shana Galen is three-time Rita award nominee and the bestselling author of fast-paced, witty, and adventurous Regency romances. Kirkus says of her books, "The road to happily-ever-after is intense, conflicted, suspenseful and fun," and RT Bookreviews calls her books “lighthearted yet poignant, humorous yet touching." She taught English at the middle and high school level off and on for eleven years. Most of those years were spent working in Houston's inner city. Now she writes full time. She's happily married and has a daughter who is most definitely a romance heroine in the making.

Want to know more? Visit Shana's website at http://www.shanagalen.com and sign up to be notified when Shana has a new release http://bit.ly/ShanaGalenNews

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 286 reviews
Profile Image for S.
381 reviews91 followers
November 14, 2015
"The princess showed Will he didn't have to love in this fortress. He could exist outside its wall. He could laugh. He could have fun. He’d never had fun before because this Will was a duke. And dukes were supposed to be serious and act in a manner that befitted their stations. Dukes do not have fun."

…Her breathing seemed regular, and the thought she must have fallen asleep. He lowered his voice to a murmur.

"And then one day the princess told Will she loved him. That was even more confusing than trying to have fun. No one had ever loved Will before. He didn’t know why anyone should love him. He didn’t understand why the princess loved him. She was beautiful and witty and popular for her dazzling personality, while he was dull, dreary, and sought after only because of his title."

Perfection! Books like this make me wish there was a sixth gold star. I just have one message for all my GR friends: put this on top of your TBR-pile xD

There are not words to do it justice. It was brilliant. It was romantic, endearing, funny, touching, heartwarming, hot and enticing. I cared so much for Juliette and Will, the Duchess of Dalliance and the Dangerous Duke.

It was now nigh eleven. His daily routine was shot to hell. Considering he now had a dead footman, a scared courtesan, and a cryptic note on his hand, he didn't think his day was going to improve.

They were perfect for each other. Favorite hero, favorite heroine and best couple. Will likes order. And Juliette manage to sneak her way into his life and bringing laughter, fun and spontaneity. And she's one of the "Three Diamonds" – London's most sought after and celebrated courtesans. Needless to say, Will is perplexed. Juliette is divorced and treated very badly by her ex-husband. At heart she is such a sweetie with so much love and she brings out a caring, protective and warm side of Will. My heart melted so many times.

She understood men. She understood Will wanted her but was not prepared to admit he wanted her, because he was A Duke.

Note to all other romance authors: this is how to do it. It was a true romance with a long and wonderful buildup and both Will and Juliette grew together. The ending was one of the sweetest I’ve ever read.

I melted. I smiled. I tingled. I read slowly to savor each word. I loved it. Truly loved it.
Profile Image for Duchess Nicole.
1,258 reviews1,527 followers
February 25, 2013
I hoped to love this but I kept getting held back from really liking the heroine for some reason.

The "three diamonds" are courtesans...a nice word for prostitute back then, only supposedly for one man at a time. And the heroine in this book is one of the three diamonds, a very popular trio. Events lead her to meet the Duke and all of London is abuzz with talk of the "Dangerous Duke" and the "Duchess of Dalliance".

I couldn't get over the fact that Juliette wouldn't come clean about her past, and made no excuses for her supposed line of work; yet she expected Pelham to just accept her lifestyle. And of course, she got her feelings hurt when he wouldn't marry her and make her a true Duchess. What?! You're a prostitute! Not that people shouldn't be forgiven, but I think that the time frame of this novel is only two to three weeks. Give the man a break! He's a stuffy, pompous Duke! You have a reputation as a famous mistress, and you expect him to fall at your feet?

Now, that's not to say that Pelham isn't quite the ass a couple of times. The man was downright cruel. But he changes quite drastically, and I just felt like Juliette expected major changes from him without even revealing her true self...let alone change to fit the title of Duchess.

I'm oversimplifying the plot here, and I know that. This was just one of those books that didn't do much for me, for some reason.
Profile Image for Katherine.
770 reviews350 followers
July 9, 2016
Well, now I have a splitting headache.
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I love anything with the word historical in front of it. Historical fiction, historical fantasy, historical speculative fiction, you name it. But the one genre that I never seemed to get around to (aka I avoided it like the plague), was historical romance, which I put into the same category as bodice rippers. AKA, there was no way in everloving hell I would read it. I started dipping my toes into bodice rippers and historical romance based in part on the encouragement of Nenia, so it’s a process stepping completely outside of my comfort zone. And while the bodice ripper beginning was disastrous, compared to that, this wasn’t that bad. However, the main two love interests were extremely insufferable to the point that they gave me a headache.

So grab your favorite stuffed rabbit and glass of brandy, cause it’s going DOWN.

We arrive in jolly Old England, where there’s a RAWTHER scandalous story going around. It turns out that the esteemed Duke of Pelham is having a sordid romantic affair with Juliette, who along with her best friends Fallon and Lily, are three of the most celebrated courtesans in high society London. They make up the Three Diamonds who are given absolutely ridiculous titles by the Prince Regent himself, which are the Duchess of Dalliance (*snorts), Marchioness of Mystery (*giggles), and Countess of Sin (*bwahahaha*). Their de facto bosses are the Earl of Sin and the Countess, who provide them with their lifestyle and make sure they look fabulous. Courtesans are basically the European version of the Japanese geisha. They aren’t REALLY well-paid prostitutes. More often that not, their clients would talk with them and tell them of their troubles and woes and other unsexy stuff like that. HOWEVER, since they had to sell themselves somehow, they would often falsely advertise that fact to the newspapers and general public. Cause you gotta bring in the grits somehow, right?

Juliette, aka the Duchess of Dalliance, is a true heartbreaker, if you read some of the reports the Ton (aka the newspaper), would have you believe. With her white blond hair and aquamarine blue eyes, she can bring men to their knees with a single bat of her eyelashes.
”She broke hearts with a single smile and was never visibly affected either at the commencement or conclusion of a love affair. Her dalliances were legendary, and some claimed lovers fell into a swoon when Juliette but disrobed.”
But underneath her smexy appeal, all Juliette wants is to find her prince and live happily ever after. She tried it once, but her first marriage to the farmer Oliver was absolutely disastrous.
She accepted gifts and tokens from admirers who hoped to woo their way into her bed. But she didn’t want to endure a man’s caresses. She didn’t want to have to close her eyes and pretend he or she were someone else.

She wanted to fall in love. Forever.””
She’s not exactly surprised by the rumors swirling around in the paper, but then again they are quite amusing, considering she and the duke have never even met. Speaking of the duke...

William, the Duke of Pelham, is tall, dark, handsome... and extremely infuriating. A control freak who has to be on time and do things at that particular time (or he goes nuts), Will is not the sort of person to be cavorting around with courtesans. After all, the dude IS engaged to be married. All’s going swimmingly until he encounters his supposed mistress at a ball
”He had always claimed he was not impressed by female beauty. He had always claimed one woman looked pretty much the same as the next.

He was a colossal liar. ”
He’s bowled over, but stays cool as a cucumber about the whole thing. Cause 1)HE’S ENGAGED, and 2) She’s a courtesan who’s basically bedded every hot blooded, legally aged male in London. He’s not impressed, he’s not having it, he ain’t got time for that. So naturally, he does the extremely dumb thing of telling that to her face, kicking off the typical, headache inducing love/hate relationship, which include zingers like this,
”’You’re supposed to protect me.’
‘You?’ He raised a brow. ‘You’d give him one of your icy glares and slay him on the spot.’
‘You say the most romantic things.’”

And this...
”’Do not touch anything,’ the warned her. ‘Do not sit. Do not move. Do not speak to anyone.’
‘Is it all right if I breathe.?’
He gave her a dark look. ‘No.’”
So romantic, I know.

But these two lovers/haters have bigger problems on their hands. Specifically, a dude named Lucifer (no, not Satan). Lucifer is a spy/big bad wolf guy (I guess? His intent was never made clear) who wants diamonds. And he’s gonna get the diamonds if it’s the last thing he does. Unbeknownst to William, his darling Elizabeth is entangled with Lucifer, and with a name like that, you know it’s bound to go bad. It’s like the author intentionally made that choice to name him that so the reader would know it’s OBVIOUS he’s the bad guy. And unbeknownst to everybody else, Lucifer is also out for Juliette, looking for those same diamonds. Well, Juliette is extremely unfortunate enough to 1) not know what the hell he’s talking about, and 2)witness the balcony slaying of Will’s betrothed. Now all she has to do is get Will to believe her and have them go to the police, right?

HAHAHA, if only Will were so accepting of a courtesan telling him this news.

Juliette: “Hey Will buddy, I just met you, and we’re supposed to be having a sordid affair, you hate my guts and I hate your guts, but Lucifer just pushed your intended off a balcony looking for diamonds and now he’s after me. So help me maybe?”


Will:Yeah, and the Queen is my mother.

He’s not particularly thrilled with the idea of protecting the courtesan he’s supposed to be having the affair with, but he does it anyways. And he immediately regrets it because Juliette just plops herself right down in his perfectly orderly life and makes herself at home.
”He didn’t detest her. He just thought he did. Really, he needed her, needed someone to wrench him from his mind-numbing routine and introduce some fun into his life.”
Cause he’s extremely boring and curmudgeonly, and he needs someone not so orderly and not quite so curmudgeonly to help him out of his funk. And it kind of actually works. She starts to see a softer side to him, and he actually starts to have a heart of some sorts.
”She wanted to detest him, but how could she when he held her when she cried over a dog lost years before? How could she hate a man who sat on a rough attic floor with her, probably ruining trousers that cost more than one of her best gowns?”
But most importantly, he believes in treating stuffed animals with dignity, cause real men do that, dammit. You can’t hate someone who loved stuffed bunny rabbits.
”How could she hate a man who had treated Mr. Whiskers- who really was little more than a rag now- so tenderly”


He starts to dig her, and she starts to REALLY dig him, especially considering how horribly her ex treated her. But he’s a duke, and she’s a courtesan, so it’ll never work out. That doesn’t stop her from trying though...

Remember that little thing about Lucifer coming after Will and Juliette wondering about the diamonds, and how they were “supposed” to find out what these diamonds were so they could save their skins and all that? I put the supposed in quotation marks because..., well, they TRY to spend time wondering about the diamonds, but they get horribly distracted in the process. One minute they’re trying to find out what they are and then-

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Oh wait, here’s a hiding place in the bookshelf where there might be-

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She has to sleep somewhere, so here’s a nice little-

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OK, this is getting out of control, y’all. Why not take a nice ride into the country. What could possibly-

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:Sigh: Wonderful investigative work right there. Just regular Holmes and Watson.

I basically couldn’t stand Will and Juliette as a couple or as individuals for most of the story. Juliette was particularly whiny and acted like a spoiled four-year-old brat for the most part, and Will was just as bad, if not worse. He continuously berates Juliette for her “occupation” while simultaneously sleeping with her, which goes to show that the brain and the male appendages have extremely different agendas. For the record, he never apologizes for calling her those names, nor does he take it back.
”Had he ever apologized to her for cutting her at Carlton House? For calling her a slut or a strumpet? For embarrassing her at the inn after they’d left London? What he had said at the prince’s ball? She was not a lady but a well-paid whore?”

In an attempt to excuse his behavior, the author puts the blame on his abusive past, such as when his father beats him for being late (leaving him deaf in one ear), killed his dog, and was put in the care of two basically shitty parents for his childhood. I like to call this the “abuse excuse”. This is where a character is generally an asshole, but the author makes him/her have an abusive past in order to try and explain their behavior. “Oh, I know Snuffy is an asshole, but LOOK AT THEIR PAST! YOU’LL SEE WHY!!” While I do believe that some people with abusive backgrounds do grow up to have amoral behavior, their past doesn’t excuse it.

In the end, Will realizes the power of tru wuv conquers all, and in the process FINALLY realized what an asshat he’s been
”He’d never been loved. His father certainly hadn’t loved him. His mother, if she had loved him, never showed it that he could recall. His friends might like him a great deal, but he doubted they loved him. No one loved him. No one had ever loved him. No one would ever love him.
Except Juliette.
And now he’ driven her away. ”
(The most profound quote in the whole book)

They make up publicly, and live happily ever after, the end!

All without finding out Lucifer’s true intentions, cause ain’t nobody got time for that with all the sexy times going on.

This wasn’t necessarily a bad book. It was a nice piece of fluff to get away from troubles. However, the two main characters were basically unbearable to read about, and their antic gave me a headache. However, Juliette’s two best friends Fallon and Lily sound much better than their friend, so I’ll give the next book another shot. If anything, this book was good for some shits and giggles, as well as a tasty look inside the world of Regency England.
Profile Image for Ingie.
1,344 reviews169 followers
May 5, 2017
Written May 24, 2014

3 Stars - Sweet and amusing - though not a brilliant audio narration

This has been my "listening" romance these last days.

My friend (and compatriot) Susanne (a devoted m/f HR reader) liked it and after having had the e-book unread for quite some time I downloaded the audiobook for just a couple of dollars a few days ago.

A fairly traditional HR romance about a stiff and cold duke and a blond beautiful courtesan sounded pretty fun. ~ These historical (rather ridiculous and predictable sometimes) have an ability to capture me....oddly enough!!

When You Give a Duke a Diamond is maybe not unforgettable but quite fun and entertaining for the moment. My advice: skip the audio book and read the book yourself. This narration (Lucy Rivers) made most of this romance, and most of the characters, to sound more silly and soapy than I think it was meant to be.

Cream of the crop in London whispers, it is rumored that the structured and pedantic William, the sixth Duke of Pelham and Juliette, a beautiful and celebrated courtesan (nicknamed the Duchess of Dalliance) are having an secret love affair.

...A completely untrue rumor, they have not even met yet. But this - for the rigid and rather sulky duke, so outrageously brash reputation, and for the witty courtesan, so promising gossips and rumor - is the beginning of a tangle of events.
Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos

When You Give a Duke a Diamond starts as a light-hearted and funny historical romance about missing diamonds, a murdered fiancée, a diabolical game halls owners and old sad things that should best be forgotten. Not to forget; broad shoulders, a handsome and stately rich blue eyed high-noble man and a nifty blonde woman with amazing eyes and soft hair.

I'm sorry to say but When You Give a Duke a Diamond was kind of corny and very cheezy in parts, and the dukes voice was horrible. OMG that man sounded like a big boring fussy nerd. A more off-putting character I've never heard in my short time with audio books - the author must wail for breath. Though the heroine was fun and she made me wanting to keep on listening.
“Love was not ordered or diciplined. Love was not logical or stately. Love made fools of everyone it touched. He hadn't thought he could fall in love— that was the chink in his armor.

I'm really trying to not be ironic, but it's hard not to.
Maybe it's unfair to this story to listen to it as an audiobook. Things as grand emotions, sentimental and dramatic situations and quivering steamy sex - probably sounds more corny and ridiculous when you hear someone read the words for you than when you read them yourself.

I almost blush when I think of how an extract of this audio book would sound by those who are unfamiliar with this type of romances. ~ Either way I laughed and it was pretty unbeatable fun.

I LIKE - enough to fascinated listening in hours..
Profile Image for Feminista.
826 reviews1 follower
July 10, 2014
Rating: 2 out of 5.

This book didn't live up to it's expectations.

At first I couldn't stop laughing at the Titles given to the Three Diamonds and the Dangerous Duke. At one point, someone in the book called out something like it's "The Dangerous Duke". And I was like, seriously? It was so unrealistic, I couldn't even begin to list the things that were wrong with it. But I'll list the basic thing that was wrong, how did they even get a Prince to dub them that? When he hadn't even slept with them. I mean did the Prince one day wake up and go, "Oh I know what I am going to do today, give three women fantasy titles".

As for the characters, I honestly couldn't say that I liked either of them very much. I thought Juliette had very little self-respect when she kept on going back to William and sleeping with him even though he called her a slut, failed to stand up for her and refused to tell her he loved her, etc. I mean, really, stop throwing yourself at the man and move on with your life.

As for Will, I thought he was really weak. He couldn't stand up to anyone until the very end and that wasn't enough for me. In this situation, I like men who know what they want and who go for it. And don't get me wrong, I understand that it is completely unrealistic for Dukes like Will to go after courtesans and make them their wives, but then if we are being realistic, why did he do that in the end then?

Of course, this was another book where "celebrated courtesan" was a code word for a-good-girl-who-only-slept-with-her-ex-husband, which I suppose is better than virginal courtesans who are suddenly celebrated and keep their virginity well-hidden... but not by much.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Carol Cork *Young at Heart Oldie*.
425 reviews203 followers
October 24, 2014
This is my first book by Shana Galen and I can understand why she is one of the foremost authors of Historical Romance. I loved this opposites attract story with its entertaining blend of romance and mystery.

To paraphrase the opening lines of ‘Hart to Hart’, one of my favourite TV shows:

This is William, the sixth Duke of Pelham. He is rich, powerful and influential. His world is one of order, decorum and punctuality.

This is Juliette, the Duchess of Dalliance. She is a much sought after courtesan. Classically beautiful with pale blonde hair, she can break hearts with just a smile.

and when they meet….sparks are bound to fly!

“I would never be rude to a lady. You, madam, are not a lady. You are nothing more than a well-paid whore.”

Oh yes, William’s hero status is definitely a bit rocky at first, but as details of his early life are gradually revealed, I understood how his cold, heartless father had shaped him into the man he has become. Since birth, his father had drummed into William the principles he must adhere to…'a duke was never uncertain, never faltered, never showed emotion. And a duke was most certainly never late'…any failure resulted in a harsh retribution from his father. One of the delights of this book is watching William slowly emerge from his orderly existence to discover that he doesn’t have to be a prisoner of the past, that he can choose his own destiny.

Juliette is not everything she is perceived to be by the ton, who never know the real woman behind the façade. Divorced from an abusive husband, she still dreams of finding someone 'who loves the farmer’s daughter and the Duchess of Dalliance and everyone I’ve been in between'.

It is fun seeing how she completely disrupts Will’s (as she insists on calling him) orderly life and makes him realise that he can be both a man and a duke…that it is okay to laugh and have fun. Her refusal to conform to his rigid rules had some hilarious consequences such as when Will physically drags her out of bed because she’s late for breakfast! But Juliette is more than a match for him…

"Do you ever cease looking at that watch of yours? I think it must be permanently affixed to your hand.”

“Some of us must live our lives on a schedule,” he answered.

She lifted a plate. “Eat on a schedule, sleep on a schedule, walk on a schedule. Tell me, do you visit the privy on a schedule, as well?”

I felt that Will not knowing the truth about Juliette’s real situation made his willingness to declare his love for her in such a public way so romantic.

“But I’m a courtesan. I can’t be your duchess.”

“Juliette, you are my love. No other woman could ever be my duchess.”

I enjoyed the scene in Will’s club where he is joined by his friends, Lord Andrew Darlington and Warwick Fitzhugh. The banter between them is so amusing.

The plot had enough action and danger to hold my interest and the unresolved story thread involving the ruthless Lucifer neatly sets the scene for If You Give a Rake a Ruby, the next book in the series.

This was a wonderful introduction to Shana Galen’s books and I’m looking forward to reading the other two books in the series.


The Jewels of the Ton series (click cover for more details):

When You Give a Duke a Diamond (Jewels of the Ton, #1) by Shana Galen If You Give a Rake a Ruby (Jewels of the Ton, #2) by Shana Galen Sapphires Are an Earl's Best Friend (Jewels of the Ton, #3) by Shana Galen

This review is also posted on my Rakes and Rascals blog:

Profile Image for Lover of Romance.
2,851 reviews823 followers
April 5, 2013
William, the Duke of Pelham, is adamant in being punctual and formal at all times. That there is always a plan in advance with every detail known. William knows that it is time to marry and beget a heir, as his duty. When he arrives in London for business and to continue his courtship of the woman he plans to marry, his world is turned topsy turvy when he meets Juliette and all the drama that accompanies her. When a gossip column claims that William and Juliette are having a affair, he is outraged, since that would never EVER happen, not in his world. He plans on ignoring the gossips among the ton and carry on as usual. Juliette is rumored to a talented and beautiful courtesan, and is part of the courtesan trio the "Jewels of the Ton". Juliette is very well known and loves the life she lives, but when a danger threatens her she has no choice but to turn to the Duke of Pelham who needs to be taken down a peg or two, and who better to do it than herself? He has a way too obsessive and orderly life, and she wants to show him the joys of chaos...and the power of true love.I can't say how much I just ADORED this book!!! I haven't read this author for a very long time, when I saw this title at my library, I just loved the cover and the blurb and knew I had to pick it up. Boy I am so glad that I did, I would have missed out on a fantastic read that just kept me captivated for a whole afternoon. That's right...I read it in just a few hours (that's right...it means I really really liked it) It definitely had its swoon worthy moments, and sexy and strong but yet vulnerable characters that had me feeling totally captivated. The flow of the writing was smooth and seemed to blend in perfectly and keep the reader interested. I also loved the exciting plot that keeps you on the edge of your seat, wondering what is going to happen next. I also enjoyed the side characters as well, it added additional flavor to the story. The enriching descriptions that are so vivid in detail, this author creates a enchanting setting for any reader to admire. I just love this author's amazing talent of making a story come to life, with witty scenes that just had me bursting out laughing at random moments, that I am sure others thought I was crazy. But I don't care.....I LOVED it!!! Had me seduced from the very first line!!! I can't wait to read the rest of this series, and planning on reading the rest of Galen's books. New top favorite author!!

Favorite Quotes
And then his pride bubbled to the surface, and he took three steps, caught her about the waist, and swung her around.
"Oh, now what?"
"Now this." He lowered his mouth to hers and kissed her. He meant the kiss to prove to her that he could be spontaneous, that he was not as she painted him. But of course, as soon as he kissed her, he started wondering if this had been a mistake and if he shouldn't just go to bed--alone--to prepare for the early morning departure.
And then she kissed him back,
Her mouth moved under his, and she made a small sound like a satisfied cat. And Will forgot all about time and mistakes and everything but the woman in his arms.

"Jealous? Jealous? I am a duke. I do not feel jealousy."
To his utter amazement, she put her hands to her hears ears and screamed. ""If I hear you say I am a duke one more time, I will not be responsible for my actions. Duke's ar enot gods, Will. They are people. They make mistakes, apologize--or at least they should--and feel all sorts of emotions."
"I suppose you are an expert on such matters."
"I have known several dukes."
""Yes, and I am a duke--"
Her eyes widened, her lips pursed. "I" She shoved him. "Warned" Hard "You" Backward.
She shoved him again, and he stumbled against the lip of the tub, faltered, and fell, sloshing warm water all over the floor and soaking his clothing worse than the rain had done.
He stared up at her, water dripping in his eyes. He expected her to apologize, to look horrified, to beg his forgiveness.
Instead, she laughed.
Profile Image for Lisa.
328 reviews77 followers
August 27, 2012
Juliette is one of London's most dazzling courtesans. With the nickname Duchess of Dalliance, given to her by the Prince Regent himself, and her ice blue eyes and pale blond hair she is a vision of beauty and also of mystery. Her protector, nicknamed the Earl of Sin, also has two more courtesans--the Marchioness of Mystery and the Countess of Charm--and together they are a force to be reckoned with. But when Juliette witnesses a shocking murder, her life gets turned upside down when she must tell the fiance of the women murdered, the Duke of Pelham, a man she has no desire to get entangled with. However, when circumstances force this couple to search out the truth of the murder in order to protect Juliette's life, Juliette quickly finds herself falling for Pelham. With her own secrets to tell regarding her life, Juliette must find the strength to tell Pelham and hope that he will stand up for himself and her.

William, Duke of Pelham, goes about his life in a perfectly precise manor. He eats at the same time every day and expects his guests to do so as well. His pocket watch is his constant companion and he believes strongly in the structure of his life. He has found the perfect woman to marry, not for love but because he fits his requirements, so when a courtesan tells him of her death, he knows his life is slowly falling apart. First, this Juliette refuses to give him a last name. Calling her by her first name is just not acceptable! Then she disregards his set time tables and talks back to him. It allows for some fun interactions! But Juliette slowly uncovers the real Will underneath the Duke and starts to bring him back to life. Having been under the control of a overbearing father, Will needs reminding that he is in charge of himself and he makes his own rules. Even with the budding romance blooming between Will and Juliette, can Will push himself past all of his rules to make her truly his forever?

Shana Galen is one of my favorite, go-to authors for books filled with adventure, humor and passion and When You Give a Duke a Diamond fits the bill nicely! I loved that Juliette was not what society thought her to be--she is not some silly frivolous courtesan but a woman yearning for love, family and happiness and she finds it in the most unexpected place. The little tidbits about her past were delivered very cleverly and had me engrossed in the book to find out what would next be revealed. I loved how she saw right through Pelham and to his heart, to Will as she, and only she, called him. Will is your classic straight-laced, proper, by the books gentleman and Juliette comes in and turns his life right side up with hardly any trouble and it was a delight to read all their fun and later, steamy, encounters! Will grew up with three things drilled into from his father--routine, punctuality, and dignity and the consequences were dire if they were not meet at all times. Juliette is the perfect person to allow Will to make his life his own and one worth loving. I would highly recommend this book for fans of romances that are a wonderful mix of passion, danger, humor, good supporting characters that will leave you anxious for their own stories and even a bit of darkness that is balanced by some wonderful love and passion. 4 1/2 stars.

ARC provided by Sourcebooks via netgalley.com
Profile Image for Gilgamesha.
469 reviews11 followers
February 22, 2018
3.5 stars...I didn't like the hero at all. The heroine and secondary characters are what made this book enjoyable even if the plot line was too unrealistic even for a HR.
Profile Image for Daisy Sloan.
776 reviews95 followers
September 17, 2012
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I love contemporary romances with their fast paced storylines and faster paced romances. However, I cut my romance reading teeth on historical romances and as such, I harbor a special place for them in reading heart.

When you Give a Duke a Diamond is on FANTASTIC good read! I LOVED every minute of this book! This happens to be one of the better historical romances that I have read, and I’ve read quite a few in my many years!

When You Give a Duke a Diamond jumps right into the story. There’s no build up, it’s sink or swim! And from there it only gets better!

Juliette is a renowned courtesan who has been linked to the Dangerous Duke. The only problem is, she’s never been introduced to the man! When they are both at the same ball with Prinny, she takes a chance and approaches him as he’s speaking with Prinny. The Duke has the nerve to cut her publicly. She does the only thing she can do and strikes back. Then she sweeps out of the room with her head held high.

Later that same night she witnesses the murder of the Duke’s fiancé and the game is on. She needs the Duke to protect her from the killer, how will she convince him to keep her safe? From there they are thrown together as they try to solve the mystery of the Diamonds.

I really liked Juliette. As a divorced woman she has few choices open to her. She takes what life has thrown at her and does the best she can while holding on to her dignity. She’s been forced to remake herself over multiple times in order to survive. As she and the Dangerous Duke try to unravel they mystery of the diamonds, she offers him something he’s never felt before……love. He doesn’t know what to do with her love and ends up botching it all!

When I first met the Duke I didn’t like him….at all. I kept thinking “What a POMPOUS ASS!” As the story moved along and I got to know him better I started to like him. I began to understand why he is the way he is. We are the product of our parents. Juliette challenged him on so many levels and he realized things don’t have to stay the same!

This was a great book and I’m thrilled I got to read it! I can’t wait to read the rest of the books in this series. One mystery was solved, but one remains open. I’m looking forward to finding out the rest of the story!

I received a copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley for an honest review.
Profile Image for Angelc.
422 reviews49 followers
October 1, 2012

4.5 Stars

This regency romance is a lot of fun, and sweet at the same time. It's a really good mix of fluffy romance with a lot of heart and tender feeling as well.

Will is really a different sort of hero, which a good thing. He's so ordered and punctual almost to a fault. I really liked this side of his personality, especially when we get to know why exactly he acts that way. At the same time, he can be very very cold, especially to Juliette, which isn't so good. However, there is one point where we really understand where he's coming from, when he admits his true feelings for himself as well as why he covers them so much, and it is just absolutely heartbreaking. He has to do a lot of apologizing to Juliette, but he does find a way to apologize, and he definitely redeems himself.

Juliette is the perfect contrast to Will, she is such a free spirit. I love that this aspect of her character isn't watered down. She really is pretty reckless, it's not like she says she's reckless, but then in reality she's just a cultured 'miss' of the ton. The author does a really great job with both characters and makes them both interesting to read about and unique from the norm in historical romance. They butt heads quite a bit, and it is really fun to read about.

Overall, a fun regency romance with a lot of heart and two unique and likable leads.

ARC sent by publisher in exchange for honest review

reviewed for http://inthehammockblog.blogspot.com

Profile Image for Jane Stewart.
2,462 reviews848 followers
November 19, 2014
I was repeatedly annoyed with the story. I was also annoyed with hearing the audiobook narrator’s breaths.

The premise of Juliette being a courtesan, the why, and her actions were ridiculous. Her actions did not fit her motivations – a violation of writing rules. I describe it in Spoiler below.

There were some plot events that could have been interesting, but they were not developed. Instead most of the story is internal angst and pondering. She tells him something false and then is angsty and hurt because he believes it. He is angsty and hurt because he believes it.

There is child abuse and a disturbing scene killing a puppy. I don’t mind bad parents being the bad guys, but this was too troubling for me.

I didn’t notice them at first, but later in the book I could hear the narrator’s BREATHS. They were annoying and distracting. She needs to use a different microphone, or do something in the editing process to remove the breaths. Other than that she was good.

Narrative mode: 3rd person. Unabridged audiobook length: 10 hrs and 46 mins. Swearing language: mild. Sexual language: none to mild. Number of sex scenes: 5. Setting: Regency period England. Book copyright: 2012. Genre: regency romance.
Profile Image for Annie .
2,442 reviews814 followers
September 4, 2012
Posted on Under the Covers

4.5 stars

In a fresh new beginning to a series, Shana Galen brings forth scandal, mystery and the perfect balance of class and seduction.

Juliette is just one of the celebrated courtesans called Three Diamonds. Dubbed as the Duchess of Dalliance, she is in the constant eye of society where her actions and her non-actions are heavily noted. This time, rumors are spreading of her affair with the Duke of Pelham. This supposed intensely passionate affair is the talk of the town since Pelham has his own fiancée already. It’s really too bad that Pelham and Juliette haven’t actually met until one horrid act beings them together.

After a particularly rude first interaction, Juliette and Pelham go their separate ways, effectively putting the rumor to rest. However, when Pelham’s fiancée is murdered and Juliette is the sole witness, she and Pelham are thrust into a world of deception and mystery.

This was my first read by Shana Galen and it most certainly will not be the last. I absolutely devoured this book. Galen weaves an intricate and interesting plot where a case of stolen diamonds are the single most important thing everyone needs.

I was impressed by Galen’s ability to set up the series well. Within the first few chapters, I already wanted to know more about Lily and Falon, the other two Diamonds. Moreover, Galen addresses the issue of a lady of ill-repute with a man as titled as Will, the Duke of Pelham. I loved that Will was somewhat tortured by his past and I absolutely loved the fact that Juliette was willing to help him get over that.

While I thought that sometimes the same issues kept arising within the relationship, it was still nice to see two characters make a real effort to be with each other. Neither one of them gave up when things became difficult. And that to me is a true testament to Galen’s writing. I cannot wait for the next book!

*ARC provided by publisher
Profile Image for Kat ~ Forever Book Lover ♥ .
205 reviews133 followers
February 18, 2013
You can find this review and more at Forever Book Lover.

I will tell you the truth, I was hesitant in reading this book, I just didn't think I was going to bond with the heroine, I mean really, how could the lead character be a courtesan ?? So I put this one off a bit, then I found myself with a little free time between author commitments and I thought I would give this book a try. I have read Shana Galen's previous work and loved it, so maybe, just maybe this one would work for me..

Well first thing I learned is not everything that is on the surface is the true picture of a person. I was happy to find that Juliet, what a wonderful name for our wayward hero,is not a ill repute courtesan, she is a woman like any other that has been abused and hiding from her past, she is looking for that one love, the special love that completes her.

Our hero, well he is so squeaky clean and orderly that you can set your watch to him. Wait, that is just how he runs his life, everything down to the minute or his day is out of sorts. So imagine Juliet who lives by no rules meeting "Will" by the book. What you are in for is a wonderful banter between the two and sizzling love scenes that scorch the pages.

I enjoyed that the author gave us a mystery to solve as well along with the wonderful romance. I was heartbroken as each of them revealed their past sorrows on the last of their dogs, I would have loved to see, at the end, they found a stray looking for love.

I can't wait to read the stories of the other two "jewels", I can tell right now I won't wait to read them when they are released. And one last note, I absolutely love the cover!!
Profile Image for Karen.
321 reviews
September 25, 2012
I liked Juliette, though I had some issues with her believability as a character (seriously-- a courtesan who's SHOCKED to be cut by polite society??), but William really made this book. Rarely do you get to see a hero grow and change so much in the course of a romance, and watching him open up and come to understand his own mind was a pleasure.

In the beginning William is a bit of a stick, and he comes off as a complete ass. Yes, he IS a duke, and Juliette is socially faaaaar beneath his notice. But I kept being reminded of the quote about true nobility being not about reminding beggars of their place but in treating everyone like a king. In this, Juliette shows far more nobility of character than Will, though he has the better bloodlines. But Juliette-- and their situation-- is so far out of his realm of experience that he's at a loss for how to deal with her. Even when he comes to recognize that he's done wrong, he doesn't know what to do about it. Dukes Do Not Apologize. (Ass.)

Except... it wasn't that simple. William's personality wasn't a result of how he thought (or didn't think) about other people-- William's personality was entirely a result of the mental rulebook his father beat into him as a child-- who to associate with, how to act, how to treat others. Dukes are this. Dukes do NOT do that. (And above all, dukes are SCHEDULED-- I swear, losing his pocketwatch must have been like the Berlin Wall coming down, for William.) Isolated and abused as a child, the only way he knew how to interact with people was according to how well they fit or didn't fit with The Rules.

And then comes Juliette, who insists on treating him not as a duke but as a human being, and William has NO IDEA what to do with her... and that turns out to be the best thing in the world for him. Deep down, William had the makings of a real hero all along. This book really gave him the chance to prove it. (And when he makes up for his bad behavior... he REALLY goes all out.)

My only quibble was that Lucifer (no, not THAT Lucifer) is a bit of an all-powerful villain in this. I mean, obviously he's failed (so far) in locating his diamonds, but he seems to be able to do anything else without hindrance or difficulty. I mean... being able to murder a peer's daughter in the middle of a party and getting away without notice? Srsly? I kind of hope that gets toned down with the next book, because I do so love a good villain and Fitzhugh sounds like he could handle it. I'm definitely looking forward to finding out.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Blodeuedd Finland.
3,405 reviews292 followers
September 20, 2012
Sometimes I think too much when reading historical romance (while still really enjoying the book of course). And yes of course I thought about things here. A duke and a courtesan? Oh no! The ton would be horrified, their future children would suffer from it. And sure there was that point when I was all and she is a courtesan cos? But this is historical romance, this is meant to make you smile and feel happy and that is does do just that.

William is, oh how to describe him, he has a stick up his ass. He is everything a Duke should be and he lives his life according to rules that he has set before himself. And goals, one of those is to find a nice lady and breed a kid of two. But he is lovable, because you know he has some issues, and even in his dumb moments he is nice..underneath. Even if I wanted to smack him over the head once or twice. Courtesans are people too!

Juliette on the other hand lives life to the fullest, the nicest dresses, the best parties, the best the town has to offer when it all comes down to it. She is free and she loves it. And I liked her, she was so free and happy, most of the time.

As you can see these two are totally wrong for each other. Personality wise and station in life. But like a moth to a flame he is drawn to her and she is drawn to him and it can only end in disaster. Poor Juliette :/

There is also danger and adventure. I shall not tell you about what but something is going on.....

A good historical romance with a very unlikely couple. And those are the best to watch fall in love.
Profile Image for Lara.
1,596 reviews
January 6, 2013
My first Shana Galen is a story of the courtesan who is not what she seems and the Duke who needs to loosen things up a bit. One think I appreciated was the way Juliette was so aware of her role, and the need to actively maintain it. She was also terrified at certain parts, and acted believably as a woman of that time--she froze or ran, she didn't fight.

I was disappointed in the instant attraction/chemistry despite never having met. Also, the Duke changed a bit too completely too quickly. Finally, the proposal scene was over-the-top.

So, I liked the characters, although there was nothing unique about them. The main mystery in the story provided some great red herrings, although when the answer was found the location made no sense at all--a location the person in question was unlikely to have spent time in at any point.

Chances are I will want to read the second book when it is released as I found the hero particularly engaging in this book.
Profile Image for Donna.
444 reviews
September 16, 2015
Although I've been reading historical romances for a very long time, I was late in discovering Shana Galen. I'm trying to catch up on her older books. I loved this book! The hero is a stuffy Duke with a not so great childhood. The heroine is not what she seems to be. This book has a little of everything - mystery, bad guys, and a great romance. I'm reading the rest of this series asap.
Profile Image for Denise.
660 reviews8 followers
May 23, 2016
One of these times, I would like to see a courtesan NOT marry and actually live out her life happily as the mistress. They don't all have to get the wedding and titles. There are other happy endings. That doesn't happen though, she marries the Duke and yada yada yada.
Profile Image for Ella Quinn.
Author 65 books1,989 followers
October 10, 2012
This was a great read. I loved how Juliette related to Will and brought him out of his shell kicking and screaming all the way.
Profile Image for Bev Ross.
1,002 reviews11 followers
July 15, 2017
Loved it!

Love the intrigue! Mixed in with the romance and suspense! Juliet and
Will were a humorous couple! She loosened him up into a decent Duke!
Profile Image for Kate.
834 reviews95 followers
December 29, 2017
So...I mostly enjoyed this one. The characters, dynamics between them and plot were intriguing enough and I liked reading about how Juliette slowly coaxed Will out of his shell. At the same time, I feel like abuse that Juliette went through with her husband was somewhat neglected - yes, I saw her stand up to him but apart from that and a few other times I was TOLD about her past experiences, I feel like there weren't many times I was SHOWN the effects the abuse of her ex husband had on her.

Moreover, I really didn't appreciate how Juliette's profession was an excuse for other characters to slut-shame her at every opportunity (yes, I know, "historical accuracy" *rolls eyes*). But worse than that, Will also belittled and disrespected her because of that - and sure, he was raised a certain way and their social standing was not the same and again, historical accuracy *rolls eyes harder* but still, I'm of a conviction that a person's character shows best in how they treat those less fortunate than them or their subordinates, so you know, Will didn't really win any points there.

And one more thing that usually irks me A LOT in stories such as this one, where the main character is a courtesan, and it sure as hell happened here. Yes, Juliette was a courtesan "technically" (and Will thought so and treated her "accordingly" and there was Angst™ because of it that fueled half the book) but in reality, she'd never bedded any of her protectors. And sure, in the grand scheme of things, I'm happy that she didn't need to do that because he so clearly didn't want to (but then again, it was written this way by the author because, you know, Juliette is a character and has no agency of her own) BUT it just seemed like an easy - and too perfect and completely unrealistic - way out. Sure, in the end, Will said that it didn't really matter to him (AS IT SHOULDN'T!) but if it doesn't matter, well, then couldn't it be written differently?

Because it seems like authors almost always write it that way - and I'm not sure if it's because they don't want to deal with writing a character who actually IS a sex worker and all that it entails OR if it's because they feel that the heroine needs to be "pure" as in, not mar her body with sex for money (but still be seen as a courtesan so the whole superficial "glamour" of the profession is associated with her and it still creates angst between her and her LI). If it's the second reason - GROSS. If it's the first one, meh, ok, but I still don't have to like it.

Rant over - to sum up, I enjoyed this book but I would enjoy it a hell of a lot more if the author did't take the easy way out.
Profile Image for Cindy.
2,006 reviews35 followers
February 3, 2018
I've not been a huge fan in the past of regency era novels. This book however has made me a fan. I read it in about 7 hours basically only putting it down a few times. It was. So. Good. It was good enough that I'm going to break my own rule of only reading books on Kindle Unlimited and I'm going to buy the second book in the series right now so I can get started. If it is half as good as When You Give a Duke a Diamond, it will be well worth the price.
Profile Image for Christine (KizzieReads).
1,324 reviews92 followers
November 11, 2022
I liked all the cloak and dagger stuff going on in the background with the diamonds and the hint of her being a courtesan. Especially as she is a divorced woman and he's a duke that is so stiff that it's almost comical. Everyone thinks they are having an affair, meanwhile, they've never even met. It was really good and I was anxious to finish to figure out what all mystery was about. It kind of ends with a few things hanging, so I will definitely be continuing on with this trilogy.
Profile Image for Heather Book Savvy Babe.
496 reviews135 followers
August 27, 2012
I reviewed the review copy for Book Savvy Babe Blog.

I absolutely loved this historical romance by Shana Galen. With intrigue, danger, and a trio of beautiful courtesans, Shana Galen has set the stage for an unforgettable historical romance series.

Juliette, he heroine, is independent, determined, and pretty much does as she pleases. She uses society to foster her reputation and has made a comfortable life for herself. She does have some concerns and dealing with the Ton is never easy, but after witnessing something dangerous, her complications become life-threatening. Her only hope for safety is with the brooding and predictable Duke of Pelham. William, the Duke of Pelham is used to order in his life and is unprepared for the whirlwind that is the Duchess of Dalliance, who he feels obligated to protect.

There is so much that I loved about this book. I love the 3 Diamonds, they are three courtesans who act and dress the part of lovely, seductive women. Wherever they go, crowds are sure to stare. Juliette is one of these courtesans, known as the Duchess of Dalliance (all three courtesans have these witty nicknames). I loved her character, she plays the ton instead of them playing her. For Juliette, the Duchess of Dalliance is a role to play to keep her place in society and a home for herself. She always wanted a home and a family, but was not willing to sacrifice her happiness and well being.

As for the William, the Duke of Pelham, he is a hard character to really like, especially at first. He is brooding, judgmental, and can be very cruel to Juliette. As the story goes on, his reasons for his actions become clear, and I felt for him as well. William grew on me and I wound up liking his character a lot too, and hoping that he could get himself together for Juliette’s sake.

There is more than a romance to this story, there is also of intrigue and murder. Juliette gets caught up in the drama of an underworld intrigue involving missing diamonds. Her life is in danger, and from more than one source. There is not much known about the murder and the source of the intrigue until the book winds down, where it promises to continue through future books. The missing diamonds are much more than jewels and involve some of the secondary characters in the book.

For me, When You Give A Duke A Diamond has that something extra that makes it a 5 star book. The writing is excellent, I love the characters (especially the spirited heroine), their nicknames, their place in society, the gossip of the Ton, and the romance. All together, I am hooked and I can’t wait to read future books in this series.

I highly recommend When You Give A Duke A Diamond to all romance readers, especially the historical romance fans. This book releases September 4, and on September 13 Shana Galen will be at Book Savvy Babe with an interview, so be sure to mark your calendars!
1,153 reviews14 followers
April 14, 2016
This book is not very well written. That is the strongest impression I had after reading it. I supposed it had good bones but the actual fleshed out material was a bit half-assed and nonsensical. I don't get why her ex husband turned up after years of nothing, I don't get why the diamonds had to be courtesans, she made it sound like it was either that or nothing, I don't get why the countess turned up and talked as if she was psychic and knew everything that happened between Pelham and Juliette. Anyways, it was a really sloppy book in my opinion. As far as I knew, the courtesan trope wasn't really utilized outside of her being accorded a bit of freedom. She didn't really sleep with anyone and the book just touches upon it for I suppose the cool factor. Juliette, outside of being branded a courtesan, was fairly unentertaining. However, I blame the writing for that. It just wasn't very good so I didn't really expect anything more. Perhaps the one scene that stood out for me as evidence of poor writing was their first exchange. He was so verbose when he could have just kept his words to a minimum. They had implied enough so the reader knows where he stands but he just had to spell it out that he thinks she is a whore. The exchange was something along the lines of him not talking to a lady like that and he said something along the lines of I don't. I thought that was pretty clear that he didn't think she was a lady. Then, he just had to elaborate and outright tell her she wasn't a lady, she was a slut and a whore. This was near the beginning so more cringey dialogue are present in the book. I couldn't really get past it.

The story revolves around Juliette and Will. Juliette was implicated in a crime by Will's fiancee. She stole something from Lucifer and Juliette's place was ransacked for it. When it became apparent that she didn't know where the stolen diamonds were, Lucifer left. The story continues as Juliette witnessed the murder of his fiancee. Will caught her and she tried to explain but he didn't believe her.

When she went home, her servants told her that a man was looking for her. She feared it was Lucifer and seeing that she was enmeshed in the whole affair, went to Will because he was a defacto ally. He still didn't believe her but a magistrate backed up her story. They travelled together to find the diamonds to get to the bottom of it. They started an affair.

The attacks followed and they discovered that the perpetrator was Juliette's ex husband. She beat him and he was arrested.

She returned to London after overhearing one of his disparagements of her character. He was vehement in his decision to not marry her and she just happened to be standing behind the door to hear everything. She left and he pined.

He consulted his friends on how to win her back. He proposed in public and she accepted. They figured out that the diamonds was a list of names, people who worked as spies.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
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