I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.
Addicted to the Duke
Alexander Sylvester Bracken, Duke of Bedford, has a mission: sail to the Mediterranean and track down Lady Hestia Cary’s missing father. It is a straightforward task, but for two rather vexing complications. First, the sea holds painful memories; second, for her own safety, Hestia is to accompany him. As Alex battles the demons of his past, he must also resist Hestia’s surprisingly skillful attempts at seduction. After all, Alex has sworn to leave her untouched, and he intends to honor that vow—until he can properly ask the Earl’s blessing.
Ever since His Grace rescued Hestia from the arms of a Turkish pirate six long years ago, her heart has belonged to Alex. So when he agrees to help find her father, Hestia is thrilled. Although Alex tries to hide it, there’s passion in his eyes—and a frisson of desire in the air—whenever they meet. On board ship, miles from home, Alex won’t be able to deny her any longer. But with scoundrels lying in wait, she may not live to tell the tale of her conquest.
I’m a little bit on the fence with Addicted to the Duke. It’s kind of hard to form an opinion on something that shocked me just a little bit. Shocked I tell ya! I’m not scandalized, but Alexander is NOT your typical hero.
Not sure if he is hero material but that might be a harsh criticism. Just as the title suggests, addiction plays a big ole in the story. Alex’s addiction to opium to be precise. From reading this he might even be addicted to his desire for revenge as well. The opening was a harrowing experience and it kind of set the tone for the rest of the story. A Turkish “sultan” type villain made me cringe especially as Alex’s history unfolds. I could totally understand his need for revenge against that character. So he’s dead set in his goals, not quite over his addictions, and totally attracted to the woman (then girl) that he rescued from his enemies clutches.
But even I was thinking that he’s not good enough for anybody. Such demons! I really didn’t understand Hestia either. She comes off as a brave character overall, but a mere mention of something that did not agree with her, she faints. I hate swooning heroines. It just did not fit with her character to do that.
Honestly, this story is mainly about Alex. I really wanted to know how he would overcome his demons. And he really had some great inner dialogue.
“She was open, brave, and giving, all the things he was not. She was perfect. And he hated perfection.”
“He had two great vices in his life: women and opium. Only one of these was entirely under his control: women.”
If you love unconventional heroes with a lot of demons and stories with a little shocking topics. Pick this one up. Just be warned that there are themes that include rape and drug abuse.