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Anything but Dukes!

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message 1: by Kristin (new)

Kristin | 3 comments So I've found that I tend to enjoy historicals more than contemporaries (with a few exceptions), but I'm sick of dukes. Any recs for good historicals that are a bit more working/merchant class?


message 2: by Emily (new)

Emily KJ Charles? I've only read Wanted, A Gentleman but it made me want more of hers and neither hero is a noble.


message 3: by Kristin (new)

Kristin | 3 comments Emily wrote: "KJ Charles? I've only read Wanted, A Gentleman but it made me want more of hers and neither hero is a noble."

Sounds good, I haven't read any KJ Charles, although she's been on my radar before.


message 4: by Lizzy (new)

Lizzy | 1 comments Alyssa Cole's books are about African Americans in several different time periods. No dukes there!


message 5: by Jessica (new)

Jessica | 1 comments So....

KJ Charles has some great m/m historicals, and even the ones that do involve members of the nobility don't ignore class. You might try the first book in Sins of the Cities, which is called "An Unnatural Vice" and is about the keeper of a lodging house and a taxidermist. Her Society of Gentlemen series is great, but includes a bunch of noble heroes although not everyone is.

Rose Lerner is going to be great for you, I think. Her Lively St. Lemeston series has a lot of working class/middle class politics. The hero in the first one, Sweet Disorder, is a son of an earl, but the heroine is the widow of a newspaperman. The third book in that, "Listen to the Moon", is about a maid and valet who worked for characters in previous books. You could read them as standalones if you like, although I'm the sort of person who always likes to read in order. The fourth in that series is about a sweetshop owner and shopgirl.


message 6: by Kristin (new)

Kristin | 3 comments Lizzy wrote: "Alyssa Cole's books are about African Americans in several different time periods. No dukes there!"
I loved Extraordinary Union! I keep meaning to add her other books to my TBR list as well.


message 7: by Kate (new)

Kate (katesss) | 1 comments 3rd-ing KJ Charles (A Seditious Affair is one of my favourite books of all time and features a romance between a seditious pamphleteer-cum-bookseller and an upstanding but untitled member of the Home Office) and seconding Rose Lerner, especially Listen to the Moon. And you might try Cecilia Grant's Blackshears series; no dukes and although the hero of the second book is aristocratic he actually suffers social consequences when he falls in love outside of his caste.


message 8: by Heather (new)

Heather | 1 comments Another yes to KJ Charles over here. One of my favorite things about her is how she deals with class and inequality. Since no one's yet named it, my favorite: Think of England, which features a former-soldier-turned-rather-inept-spy and a Jewish poet.

Elizabeth Hoyt generally has entirely Too Many Dukes, but Thief of Shadows has a hero who runs an orphanage (and also fights crime!) and an aristocratic widowed heroine.

Not quite working class, but Theresa Romain's Secrets of a Scandalous Heiress has a heroine who's the heiress to a cosmetics fortune and a mixed-race hero who is secretary to his titled cousin. I haven't read many of her books, but I liked that one.

Tess Bowery has working class and artist characters in her Treading the Boards series. A housemaid, an actress, a staymaker, a dancer, a set-painter, a musician.


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