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Dukes Prefer Blondes

(The Dressmakers #4)

3.85  ·  Rating details ·  4,803 ratings  ·  654 reviews
Just this time, can the beast tame the beauty?

Biweekly marriage proposals from men who can't see beyond her (admittedly breathtaking) looks are starting to get on Lady Clara Fairfax's nerves. Desperate to be something more than ornamental, she escapes to her favorite charity. When a child is in trouble, she turns to tall, dark, and annoying barrister Oliver Radford.

Mass Market Paperback, 372 pages
Published December 29th 2015 by Avon
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Regency Reader2 Lady Clara Fairfax, raised to be a duchess but refusing that role in the first Dressmakers novel by Loretta Chase, is now the season's reigning beauty…moreLady Clara Fairfax, raised to be a duchess but refusing that role in the first Dressmakers novel by Loretta Chase, is now the season's reigning beauty, and has refused more marriage proposals than any other beauty. She is bored and frustrated because society limits her to her social role. No one looks beyond her status, dowry and beauty to see her, until Oliver Radford sweeps her out of the path of a runaway horse. Raven Radford, brilliant, irritating, talkative barrister, considers the ragamuffins of Seven Dials worth defending.
This is about Clara and Raven recognizing and understanding each other's intelligence and desires, both to improve their world and to explore their attraction to each other. The result is a fast-paced, sparkling duel of minds as Clara emerges as a force to be reckoned with.(less)

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Average rating 3.85  · 
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chan ☆
Jul 02, 2020 rated it really liked it
i think i have a new fav historical romance author!

while i adore the popular historical romance authors of the moment (tessa dare etc), i really have to say how much i appreciate some of the older authors. they really take the time to set up place, plot, and characters in a way that makes me fall even more deeply in love with character relationships.

i really don't think loretta chase has an equal in writing banter between heroine & hero. i always find myself grinning like a big idiot at the jabs
Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽
4.5 stars. Recommended if you like kind of steamy historic romance novels, though it's mild compared to some of Loretta Chase's other novels. It's also a better read than the title might lead you to think. :)

Set in England in the mid-1830s, the romance is between Oliver Radford, a successful and alarmingly intelligent barrister *fistpump for a lawyer hero*, and Lady Clara Fairfax, a lovely and equally intelligent young woman who's tired of being valued only for her looks, and of not having the
Oct 19, 2015 rated it really liked it
3.5 stars

****Full Review****

I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Lady Clara comes from a loving, titled, and rich family, she also happens to be stunningly beautiful. Even with all these advantages, Clara is still denied the one thing she truly craves, freedom. The early 1800s are not a forgiving time for women and the naturally intelligent and commanding Clara has been forced into a silent pretty
Lady Wesley
Thank you, Loretta Chase, for listening to your fans and giving Lady Clara Fairfax her own happily ever after. We first met Lady Clara, daughter of the Marquess of Warford, in Silk Is for Seduction, when she was unofficially betrothed to her childhood friend, the Duke of Clevedon. She was perfectly beautiful and beautifully perfect – except for one thing. Clara's wardrobe was dreadful, and the French-English Noirot sisters were determined to get her as a client for their dressmaker shop. They di ...more
Review written October 14, 2016

4.8 Stars - Terrific!! Perfectly sweet romantic, subtle ironic funny with a delightfully teasing tone, and so very well narrated, etc etc.

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Ahhh!! This was great. Happydancing great.
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Dukes Prefers Blondes is the young very beautiful Lady Clara Fairfax and the clever barrister Oliver Radford's lovely enjoying love-journey.

Dukes Prefers Blondes had it all I want in a audiobook HR...
We gets a good enough storyline and plot. There is a fantastic narrat
UniquelyMoi ~ BlithelyBookish
See, it's books like this that made me fall in love with Loretta Chase's stories years ago when I read Lord of Scoundrels and was swept off my feet. She knows how to write characters so wonderfully that they become living, breathing people who I want to know better. And the story plots are intriguing, compelling, and always leave me wanting more. She is, without a doubt, one of the very best historical romance authors out there.

Clara is a force to be reckoned with which is one of the things I lo
“Your obnoxiousness knows no bounds.”
“You knew I was obnoxious when you married me. All the world knows it. My picture is in the dictionary next to the word.”
“You’re not even trying,” she said.
“I don’t actually have to try to be obnoxious,” he said. “It comes quite naturally.”

Lady Clara Fairfax is considered one of the most beautiful ladies of society. She is used to receiving marriage proposals from men who are only interested in her looks and cares nothing for her as person. Because she w

Nov 02, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I've given this an A- at AAR, so 4.5 stars rounded up. (I thought the first half deserved 5, the second 4, so I averaged it out!)

This fourth book in Loretta Chase’s Dressmaker series takes up the story of Lady Clara Fairfax, who has been a recurring secondary character since the first book, Silk Is for Seduction. Clara is the most sought-after young lady in London – possibly in the whole of England. She’s beautiful, of excellent lineage and well-dowered, but is suffocating in her life of see
Carol Cork *Young at Heart Oldie*
This, the final book in Loretta Chase’s The Dressmakers series, is Lady Clara Fairfax’s story. Lady Clara has been a popular secondary character throughout the series and I am delighted that she finally gets her well-deserved Happy Ever After. Although this book can easily be read as a standalone, I would urge you not to miss out on the other delightful books in the series.

Being considered the most beautiful and sought after girl in London might seem every girl’s ultimate wish, but for Lady Clar
Jul 28, 2015 rated it it was ok
A couple of things.

Firstly, I really struggled to finish this book. I was so bored that I finished 6 loads of laundry while reading. This means that I chose laundry over reading - 6 loads of hauling, washing, drying, folding - over reading. (Maybe you are one of those people that are always on top of laundry and it never morphs into a man-eating mountain, well, I'm happy for you. In my house, laundry is done when we are down to the mismatched socks with holes in the toes).

The problem is that t
5 stars for narration, 4.5 for content

I'm not reviewing this elsewhere and I've already reviewed the book HERE, so this is just an add-on about the audiobook version.

As usual, Kate Reading's performance is superb; she has an amazing affinity for Loretta Chase's deadpan humour and, in the wonderfully snarky exchanges between Clara and Radford is simply brilliant. She always does a great job with the heroes, but I have to make special mention of her interpretation of Radford in this, because she g
Dec 12, 2015 rated it really liked it
All I can say after finishing Dukes Prefer Blondes is: well, that wasn’t what I was expecting. And I mean that in the best possible way. I will admit that I judged this book on it’s cover and title, assuming that it would be delightfully frivolous. However, I was blown away by the writing, detailed historical facts, and by the author’s examination of what it means to be a woman of the upper class. This, my friends, is exactly what I love about the romance genre. For all that it gets a bad rap fo ...more
Jan 03, 2016 rated it did not like it
It's rare for me to rate a book one star. If it is dislikable enough to rate 1 star then I usually end up DNFing it. For some unknown reason, I had read this one to the very end but there is a large part of me that wonders why.

This series is hit or miss for me as a whole and I found this one to be a huge miss. It was extremely hard to maintain any interest. Uneven pacing, choppy writing, and a unlikable hero whose insults are framed as foreplay left me feeling rather antagonistic towards the rom
What a terrific HR this is.
Our heroine, Clara, is a familiar character from Chase's Dressmakers series, where she quickly became their favourite client (she was very beautiful and well-connected, as well as being a thoroughly lovely person). (view spoiler)
But she is an intelligent woman who, because of her beauty and the fact that she is an aristocratic lady, is never taken seriously. Potential suitors only see her looks, her titl
Aug 24, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4 1/2 stars
Sammy Loves Books
Loved Lady Clara, and her man Radford, aka Ravine!

Lady Clara is courted by multiple men, but she has turned them all down with the hopes of becoming a spinster.

When Ravine steals her heart, her parents are completely against the match. He isn't fashionable or social, but he is the grandson of a Duke.

Radford was very skillful in fighting to win court! And I loved it!
May 25, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: historical
Finally we get Lady Lara's story!
It was fun and really endearing to see which man Clara has chosen! Hahaha!
I liked Oliver and how his mind worked! I also liked how he treated Clara and how he made his proposal to her parents! LOL
A sweet and nice story!
Oh, how I loved this book. It is like a lemon tart. Biting, sweet, unusual and so delicious.

The banter is to die for. The hero and heroine book have such sexy, sexy brains.

I had not read any of the other books in the series and that didn't dampen my enjoyment one bit.

They are a complex couple. Chase does such a wonderful job with the mixed emotions and falling in love.

The romance is in perfect balance with the action of the story. I can't wait to reread my favorite parts. This is a book I wi
Oct 12, 2014 rated it it was amazing
4.5 Stars!! This was a smart and fun read. While some of LC's earlier works are very hard to compete with, I really liked Oliver "Raven" and Clara as a couple. They were both smart and I loved their verbal sparring with one another throughout the story. By the time it was over, I wanted to move next door to the five story Malvern House and have barbeques with them. Fun story for sure. ...more
Lady Wesley
Kate Reading does her usual first-class job in the audio version of this book. See my five-star review here.

24 March 2021
Listening to this for the third (or more time), I realized that I have a book-boyfriend crush on Raven Radford. He's obnoxious but loveable, and unlike many of Loretta Chase's heroes, he is not the least bit of a slow-top.
Mar 20, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: romance, dnf
DNF. Got to about the 7th chapter and said, “To hell with this.” I just can’t get into either character. Or the plot. Or the writing. Bleh. Next book.
'Ah who cares' were the last words I uttered as I shut this book. Made it to chapter 7 and just didn't care. It's 2016, I refuse to waste time on dull plots with shallow boring heroines and a somewhat interesting hero I suppose but like...nah I can't even care enough to finish this review. ...more
Melanie A. *mostly on hiatus*
Sep 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Melanie by: Angie
5+ STARS!!
The kiss was long and deep and joyful and filled with promise of future joy.
Pick me up off the floor . . . because ****SWOON**** that was the best thing ever!

Honestly, this book took me completely by surprise. I mean, yes, it's a British historical . . . there was the requisite dry, subtle humor, conflict, and no lack of historical detail, but that doesn't always equal fabulous.

Well, let me assure you, this one was FABULOUS!

Oliver 'Raven' Radford is the grandson of a
She burst into tears--and not mere weeping, but great, racking sobs, as of a long pent-up grief.
He started to reach for her and caught himself in time. "Stop it," he said, clenching his hands. "Stop it."
"No! You're such an idiot!"
"You're hysterical," he said calmly, while his heart pounded. "Don't make me pour a bucket of water on your head."
She stamped her foot again. "I'm already w-wet, you m-moron!"
"Oh good. What I always wanted. An irrational female bawling and stamping her foot, because sh
Short review (elaborate later).

What a great pair these two made. Great repartee and dialogue between them.

I laughed out loud at times with their witty and cute sassy remarks to each other. Nice chemistry and good sexual tension throughout.

The pacing overall was good but had a few spots that did seem a little slow and did drag.

Jen Davis
Dec 15, 2015 rated it liked it
Loretta Chase books are very hit and miss for me. Silk is For Seduction was one of my favorite books of 2011. But while that book touched me emotionally –this book had the opposite effect. I felt very little while I was reading and walked away feeling lukewarm. I think it has a lot to with the hero.

This is book 4 in the Dressmakers series and you’ll remember Clara as the woman who was supposed to marry the hero in Silk is For Seduction. She is a sweet girl who the Noirot sisters took under their
By far the best instalment in the dressmakers series - or rather a spin off - Dukes Prefer Blondes (despite its unfortunate title) is why I love historical romances. They provide a valuable lesson in history and the position of women in society.

Lady Clara is much more believable as a woman living in the 19th century - suffocated by her own life and by others' expectations of her that she should be like a house plant, good for decorative purposes only. Clara felt pressured by her peers - and even
Ririn Aziz
3.5 stars

The first half was good, full of insights and actions. Good repartee too.

But after the wedding, it's all about lust and making out. The carefully thought characters were drown out.

And of course Raven Radford will become duke. It was told right from the beginning, wasn't it?

Still, this one was better than the last one though.
Oct 30, 2015 rated it really liked it
4 "Smart Love" Stars!

Fans of Loretta Chase know that she loves to write romantic tales concerning highly intelligent couples that are attracted to one another, first and foremost, by their complementary intellect. Dukes Prefer Blondes definitely delivers on this front. You will not be at a loss for witty repartees, even if at times you may want to throttle the hero for some of his seemingly less than complimentary views of women. Fortunately, the heroine in Dukes Prefer Blondes knows just to ho
Barb in Maryland
Oh what an absolute delight! I was hesitant, as I actually DNFd the third in the Dressmaker series, but I loved Clara so much that I had to read her story. And I am so glad I did.
There is so much to like:
Radford and Clara actually talk to each other--usually with a good deal of wit. Clara stands up for herself at all times and delivers a few home truths to Radford.
We get to witness Radford's struggles between his logical, rational barrister-self and his emotional self and he does struggle a lo
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Loretta Lynda Chekani was born in 1949, of Albanian ancestry. For her, the trouble started when she learned to write in first grade. Before then, she had been making up her own stories but now she knew how to write them down to share. In her teenage years, she continue to write letters, keep a journal, write poetry and even attempt the Great American Novel (still unfinished). She attended New Engl ...more

Other books in the series

The Dressmakers (4 books)
  • Silk Is for Seduction (The Dressmakers, #1)
  • Scandal Wears Satin (The Dressmakers, #2)
  • Vixen in Velvet (The Dressmakers, #3)

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