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Once Upon a Duke (Duke's Club, #1)
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Once Upon a Duke

(Duke's Club #1)

3.88  ·  Rating details ·  901 ratings  ·  95 reviews
What a Widow Wants:

Everything is going swimmingly for Kathryn Darrell. She's got an annuity of a hundred thousand a year, her lecherous-heart breaking husband has had the good graces to pop off, and best of all, she has her freedom-- Something she has every intention of reveling in to the fullest. And who better to revel with than Ryder Blake, the infamous Duke of Darkwell
ebook, 230 pages
Published July 7th 2014 by Bard Productions (first published July 5th 2014)
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3.88  · 
Rating details
 ·  901 ratings  ·  95 reviews

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Nov 19, 2015 rated it did not like it
Shelves: awful, 1-star, hr
And another one that made me want to bang my head against the wall. I'm wondering by now if I'm not experiencing a HR overkill.

First, a short summary of the plot, if it can be called a plot. We have our hero Ryder, Duke of Whatever, mourning the death of his beloved wife. He loved her so much that he never wears anything but black apart from a silk (or satin?) cream colored band around his wrist. Years have passed and he's gone down the road of so many HR heroes, debauchery and drinking. And, of
Carol *Young at Heart Oldie*
Jun 23, 2014 rated it it was amazing

Expected publication date: July 7th 2014 by Bard Publications


Eva Devon gives us a wickedly delicious and sparkling cocktail, with just a hint of bitters.


Add a large measure of Ryder Blake, the eleventh Duke of Darkwell…

a man with a reputation as the Duke of Debauchery and a tendency to act irrationally at times; a widower who has sworn never to let another woman into his heart.

Add an equal measure of Kathryn Darrell…

an independent-minded widow determ
Patty McKenna Van Hulle
A delectable & tremendous naughty Duke, an independent woman searching to make her vajayjay scream & soon NEKKIDNESS brings the pesky emotion called LOVE!

Mrs. Kathryn Darrell is finally having it all with mega bucks aplenty, a glorious townhouse, her BFF "never saw a closet I didn't want to get naughty in" Imogene, London Society at her diamond encrusted slippers & totally freedom from her worthless hubby, as he did her the greatest FAVORS by kicking the bucket! So the first thing on
Dee Deacon Foster
Dec 30, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Rich widow Kathryn Darrell has had enough of being hidden in the country. With her philandering husband now dead she decides to hie to London & enjoy her freedom & experiencing life - even if she happens to shock the ton a little. And who better to do this with than the Duke of Darkwell, often written about in her beloved tabloids as the Duke of Debauchery.

Ryder Blake, Duke of Darkwell, has buried his heart with his 1st wife. Determined to never love again he gives his body & enjoyme
Jane Silhouette
Jul 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I have had the privilege of reading an Advanced Reader's Copy of 'Once Upon A Duke', A Duke’s Club Novel by Eva Devon. I don't usually write reviews with the understanding that everyone's opinion is different based on how and what as we interpret the storytelling, but, I wanted Miss Eva Devon to know what I thought of her novel and her story. I enjoyed reading this story immensely, the introduction page was a welcoming change, the heroine determine to the core. The dialogue refreshing, and the b ...more
Jul 07, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Holy Smokes, this was a laugh out loud read and I loved it. Ms. Devon takes a look at the other side of the Ton. The side where the rules can be bent a little. Kathryn (Kate) Darrell is a widow that was left in the country while her husband made a spectacle of himself in London. When he dies, Kate goes to London to take control of her life and experience things she had been missing out on while in the country. Kate decides Ryder Blake the Duke of Darkwell will be the perfect person to help her e ...more
Valerie Bowman
Jul 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Absolutely delightful. This book begins with a bang with the heroine dashing through the hero's house and ends with a poignant, sweet declaration of love. In between is an absolutely dashing set of circumstances that are fun, fresh, and extremely sexy. Truly unforgettable.
Hysterical, this book is a regency book but it’s as though Bridget Jones herself was sent back in time. A must read!!! Think MC club these boys are so bad!!
Originally Reviewed For: Bodice Rippers, Femme Fatales and Fantasy

Three dangerous Dukes caught up in their own world. Each must face their darkest nightmares and decide if they truly do want to walk once again in the night. That is the basic premise of Eva Devon's Duke's Club Series. A not so unique concept and yet that's the challenge an author must face. Take something that has been done before and claim it as one's own. Ms. Devon adds twists and turns and likable characters to her own persona
Feb 22, 2016 rated it it was amazing
i have really started to love Eva Devon stories , I have read 3 of her other stores. I read book 2 first but it doesnt matter. I was so drawn to this book. I dreaded finishing it and waiting for book 3. Loved the spirit of kathryn. 2 peope getting together for different reasons. Her father was a very rich Merchent and once her Husband passed away she had more money than she knew what to do with . So she goes to London and makes an appointmoent with the duke , but using a males name .
They come to
Aug 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Kathryn Darrell is a country widow who endeared much in her marriage. Now that she has been widowed for a time, it is time to reclaim her freedom and possibly cause the biggest scandal London has witnessed. She sets out to seek the expertise of the infamous Lord of Debauchery who is also known as the Duke of Death. Once she has set her mind to do something....she will do it.

Ryder Blake, the eleventh Duke of Darkwell, also known as the Duke of Debauchery and Lord of Death has been dealing with hi
Ryder Blake, the eleventh Duke of Darkwell is better known as the Duke of Debauchery. He can pleasure a woman’s body and he can never get away his heart. He has so much guilty in his heart that he cannot allow himself to love another. It would be a betrayal of his first wife’s memory.

Kathryn Darrell is recent widow who was shunned away in the country and not allow experiencing any bliss of any kind. Kate wants one night of an uttermost pleasure. Well, she gets more than what she bargain for. Th
Jun 25, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This story is positively the most scandalous historical romance ever. I absolutely loved it. For a historical romance it was fantastic you normally expect these to be a bit slow to get into and you find that the storyline drags at some bits but that really wasnt the case with this novel as soon as you pick the book up you cant seem to put it down. I read this book over 2 days and it really was worth the read . The main characters are fantastic and so different then what you expect put of this ty ...more
Karen Docter
Nov 25, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: historical
I thoroughly enjoyed this story. Hot, hot! It was fun to see how completely a lady can be compromised and the consequences she has to deal with. Love the tortured hero. Actually cried toward the end but won't tell you where because the journey is worth it.
DNF @ 55%

Mrs. Kathryn Darrell is finally free. Her bastard of a husband is dead and she's free to come to London and finally live. She also cannot wait to experience true passion so she sets her sights on the most unattainable of bachelors, Ryder Blake, Duke of Darkwell.

Put that way, the story sounds interesting, right? Humorous, intriguing, passionate, romantic.

It could've been all that if it weren't for the hero. The man was an ass. An ass who had no idea what he really wanted. An ass that, if
Pamela Devereux
Sep 13, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Kathryn is a widow who was locked out in the country by her husband and her father. Now that they are dead, she is going to London. She wants to know what it feels like to go to heaven in a mans arms and she has the perfect candidate for the job. Ryder Duke of Darkwell. Only problem is he is not in the mood to help her out. Ryder's wife was killed by small pox & he blames himself. He has vowed to never love or marry again. He wears her ribbon on his wrist to remind. Yet they are caught at th ...more
Jun 28, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: bur-2014
This story approaches the Ton from the top down. We have a Duke who is wracked with guilt and feels unworthy of love. Then we have Kathryn Darrell who has been tucked away in the country by an unsavory husband who had thankfully died in a duel.

They come together when Kathryn sought to learn the reason for her late husband's frequent absences from home - the places he spent his time looking for pleasure away from her. She wanted to enjoy a passionate freedom for the first time in her life. She i
Clare O'Beara
This saucy romp features a young woman who was kept as token wife by an older man, who has now died. She's tired of rusticating in the country and wants to see London and enter Society. With a hundred thousand pounds a year, why not?

Slightly suspect is why she heads straight to the house of a rake who enjoys the company of many women. Still, she does, determined to find if there is more to lovemaking than she's found so far. He is a duke who shows no signs of marrying, though he would have been
Donna Wagner
Apr 25, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

Devon is a gifted author. I grieved for Ryder. His pain became a heartache for me. Our heroine, Kathryn, is a plucky widow, wanting to know the passion that was denied her by an adulterous fortune hunter. On her own again, Kate gets in serious trouble with the Ton, and, worse, loses her heart. Best friends, the Duke of Hunt and Imogene are delicious in their own right. Totally enjoyed reading this sexy, funny, slightly profane, sweet and amazing love story.
Jul 13, 2014 rated it liked it
This was indeed a quick read and I enjoyed this book. The character development was just detailed enough to give you some insight into their past. However, it was not enough to make you fall in love with characters. Secondary characters played a huge part in this book and I'm interested in reading their stories in future books. At this cost, I'd probably continue Ms. Devon's books.
kathy kemmerer
Jul 15, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Liked this story a lot.

Liked this story a lot.

Ryder and Kate's story was very good. Ryder hadn't gotten over his first wife's death and had to work hard to forgive himself even though he wasn't at fault. Kate just had a rotten husband and was afraid of loving someone at again. Lot's of scandalous behaviour by both always with each other.
Denise Stout
**I received an ARC in exchange for my honest opinion**

This was a fabulous read and everything I could want in a historical romance set in England! I hope there will be more stories from this "new to me" author! The characters and storyline were so devilishly clever and deliciously written, I could hardly put it down. I loved this story and hope you will, too!
Jul 19, 2014 rated it really liked it
This story was spicy, funny and I loved reading it! A few grammatical errors were sprinkled in, but I will check out other books by this author.
Aug 22, 2017 rated it liked it

The worst kind of love, is when the one you love can't let go of a past love. That can be one of the most painful feeling in the world...and that's why I feel horribly sorry for the heroine yet I commend her bravery and courage to love all the same.

OUR HERO is in deep, dark mourning for the wife he lost years ago, holding onto a memento of her on his wrist in the form of her white ribbon. H
Eileen Dandashi
Dec 29, 2018 rated it really liked it
Enjoy this light-hearted and rather silly romp as author Erica Ridley takes you through the season of Christmas—in a village which celebrates Christmas all-year-round.

Christopher Pringle is rather a character if I must say so. He likes things tied up in nice little packages (all puns intended), rather a control freak and definitely a very serious man. He had one passion—the stars, the night sky and that happened to be the linchpin for a romance and happy ever after ending.

It’s true, he needed to
Joan Osborne
Jul 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Conquered by Love

Two individuals determined not to love again find that the heart is not easily thwarted. Ryder Blake, the Duke of Darkwell grieves for his wife whom he loved and made a vow to love forever and he refuses to betray her memory. Having become a rake of the first order, living for pleasure, he has earned the moniker the Duke of Darkness and has his exploits in the gossip columns often. Ryder dresses in black to let the world know he mourns his wife still and wears a band on his wris
Shannon S
I really liked the idea of a woman out to please herself and damn society, but the plot and execution of this novel is not very good.

What I love about romance novels is watching the two fall in love - the behind the eyes thoughts and perceptions. This novel has none of that. You have absolutely no idea what each sees in the other, and why they are going SO far out of their way to be with each other, to the point where they become the scandals of London. Why does he want his woman, and is willin
Dec 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Kathryn Darrell was foolish and fell in love with a man who only wanted her money. Now she is a very wealthy widow and determined to enjoy all she has missed. There is someone who has been in all the scandal sheets who might be able to help.
Ryder Blake, Duke of Darkwell buried his heart along with his wife. He has earned the title of "The Duke of Debauchery" by throwing himself into physical pleasure. He is also known to have very dark moods.
Our heroine is too innocent to try and navigate the
Alishba Asif
Aug 30, 2017 rated it liked it
The start seemed a bit cliché at first but I soon began to understand Kathryn more and more. For once there is a guy lost in love not in anger or hatred. So that was a change. The author has done very well with the story, I just wish some parts were more elaborate. For example the part in the end, where they are having their final clash before true love confession. The married life should have had more details. Because I would have loved to see them have breakfast happily or enjoy a book. That i ...more
Aug 08, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: his-fic-hist-rom
Yes, the patriarchal irony. It takes two to tango yet the ton was all to eager to castrate Kate yet rally behind the Duke of Darkwell (that bloody name suits him well). I like that Kate want something (namely pleasure) and she went for it and since this story is similar to many historical romance you know hearts will fail no matter the whole diatribe to keep it out. Sigh. For some reason I was mighty suspicious of Kate's friend, there is something odd about her behaviour at times I could not sha ...more
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Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 2 Mar 12, 2015 09:15AM  

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Other books in the series

Duke's Club (9 books)
  • Dreaming of the Duke (Duke's Club, #2)
  • Wish Upon A Duke (Duke's Club, #3)
  • All About the Duke (Duke's Club, #4)
  • Duke Ever After (Duke's Club, #5)
  • Not Quite A Duke (Duke's Club, #6)
  • A Duke By Any Other Name (Duke's Club #7)
  • My Wild Duke (The Dukes' Club Book 8)
  • If I Were a Duke (Dukes' Club Book 9)