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Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Blog Tour: Duke of Desire by Elizabeth Hoyt (Q&A + Review + Giveaway)

Gah, the last full length book in the Maiden Lane series is here guys. I am both excited and saddened by this. Elizabeth Hoyt’s long running series has been on my favorite series list for years and now I don’t know what I’ll do without new books! I can't think of a better way to end the series though, and as a BIG bonus treat, I got to ask Elizabeth a few questions. I can now check that off my wishlist with a big ole heart. Lol.

About Elizabeth Hoyt:

Elizabeth Hoyt is the New York Times bestselling author of over seventeen lush historical romances including the Maiden Lane series. Publishers Weekly has called her writing "mesmerizing."

She also pens deliciously fun contemporary romances under the name Julia Harper. Elizabeth lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota, with three untrained dogs, a garden in constant need of weeding, and the long-suffering Mr. Hoyt.

Find Author:
Online l Facebook l Twitter l Pinterest l

1. How does it feel to have the end of such an amazing series finally come?
A little sad, a little happy that the series turned out so well, and a little impatient to start my new series.

2. What will you be working on now?
Right now I’m plotting a new historical series. Readers can get a glimpse of the process by checking out Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/elizabethhoyt/

3. Since the series is now at an end, I feel like this is a good time to ask, which character or couple has been your favorite or most challenging?
Favorite character would be Valentine Napier, the Duke of Montgomery—I loved writing him! Most challenging character is probably the hero of Duke of Desire—Raphael de Chartres, the Duke of Dyemore. It took a long time for me to find out who he was inside.

4. If you had to write a book about the children of only one couple from the series, who would you pick and why?
Oh, that’s a hard one! Maybe Temperance and Caire’s children? I just finished a novella—Once Upon a Maiden Lane—in which they have cameos. Annalise in particular seems like she’d be a fun heroine.

5. Anything you'd like longtime fans of the series to know?
Yes! Due to bad time management on my part there’ll be two Maiden Lane novellas published after Duke of Desire. Once Upon a Maiden Lane (featuring Mary Whitsun) is out in November and Once Upon a Christmas Eve (with Sarah St. John and Lord d’Arque) will be a December book.

I’d also like to thank everyone who emailed me, chatted with me on Facebook or Twitter or Goodreads, and told me in person how much they enjoyed the Maiden Lane series! Writing is a lonely job and sometimes all it takes is a lovely email to help the author write that next page. Thank you all!

Guys be sure to show Elizabeth some love and pick up your copy of Duke of Desire today! If you're new to the series then now is a great time to pick up Wicked Intentions, the first book in the Maiden Lane series!

Format: .mobi (A copy of this book was provided by the publisher via NetGalley for the purpose of an honest review. )
Publisher: Forever
Release Date: October 17, 2017

Refined, kind, and intelligent, Lady Iris Jordan finds herself the unlikely target of a diabolical kidnapping. Her captors are the notoriously evil Lords of Chaos. When one of the masked-and nude!-Lords spirits her away to his carriage, she shoots him . . . only to find she may have been a trifle hasty.

Cynical, scarred, and brooding, Raphael de Chartres, the Duke of Dyemore, has made it his personal mission to infiltrate the Lords of Chaos and destroy them. Rescuing Lady Jordan was never in his plans. But now with the Lords out to kill them both, he has but one choice: marry the lady in order to keep her safe.

Much to Raphael's irritation, Iris insists on being the sort of duchess who involves herself in his life-and bed. Soon he's drawn both to her quick wit and her fiery passion. But when Iris discovers that Raphael's past may be even more dangerous than the present, she falters. Is their love strong enough to withstand not only the Lords of Chaos but also Raphael's own demons?

What’s it About? After narrowly escaping death at the hands of the Lords of Chaos you’d think Iris, Lady Jordan, would be more grateful to her savior right? Wrong. She shoots him out of fear and then realizes her error as Raphael de Chartres, the Duke of Dyemore spirits her away to his estate to keep her safe. Unfortunately the only way he can hope keep Iris safe is to marry her but what’s worse is that Iris isn’t content to be his wife in name only, she insists on making the best of her circumstances and being a real wife to him. And Raphael can only fight his attraction to her for so long even as their enemies close in on them from all sides.

Overall reaction to the story? Duke of Desire is captivating, passionately raw, and completely original in a way that only Elizabeth Hoyt can pull off. It was a bittersweet feeling reading Duke of Desire given that it is the last book in the Maiden Lane series. It’s fitting though that Raphael and Iris be the last couple in the series since he was so deeply connected to the nefarious Lords of Chaos. I first picked up the series with Thief of Shadows back on its release day and have faithfully followed the series since (And read the first few books since then). I honestly don’t know what I’m going to do without this series and these characters because they’ve become such a big part of my life. I read through this book in two days with both excitement and a bit of sadness. What a fitting end to the series that I’ve always placed on my top five favorite series list.

Describe the hero in five words: Damaged. Vulnerable. Protective. Gruff. Stubborn.
Did you like him? Yes.
Why? I half expected to see Raphael under the definition of “stubborn” because dang he was almost as immovable as a mountain. He was so convinced of his path that it was almost his downfall. As scary and dangerous as he was, Raphael hid a vulnerable side to him that made him impossible not to love and want to protect. Seriously, he was a terrifying character to everyone around him but man I just wanted to swoop in and protect the little boy he once was. I defy anyone to read about his childhood and not be moved. I liked Raphael from the start but as more and more of his personality came out I just fell in love. He has such a blunt way of stating things but that was one of the things I liked about him the most because when he’s tender it’s such a stark contrast to his usual personality.

Describe the heroine in five words: Stubborn. Caring. Intelligent. Courageous. Sassy.
Did you like her? 90% of the time.
Why? Let me just get this out of the way, the one thing about Iris that I definitely did not like was her lack of care over the dangerous situation she in. She wasn’t just being told that the Lords of Chaos were after her, she had been rescued from them and she knew that they would come to kill her sooner or later. Yet she did some pretty silly *coughs* stupid *cough* things like traipsing about town without a care and yup, being discovered by known members of the Lords of Chaos. Pretty foolish right? But at the same time, Iris faced her predicaments head on, including having no choice but to marry Raphael for protection. I loved that she wasn’t a hysterical woman and believe me, she landed in some pretty stressful situations that called for hysterics but she never gave in. Another thing I really enjoyed about Iris was her conviction that Raphael needed to be taken care of even when he was snarling at her and trying to push her away she countered that with a strong resilience mixed with snarky responses.

Let’s talk about the romance: Raphael and Iris’ first meeting was memorable to say the least but their connection was undeniable. I loved that Raphael saw Iris as a light in his life of darkness because without knowing it, that’s what she became. It was more than just their physical attraction, it was her giving him a chance to see what he could become instead of what he had resigned himself to being. Their relationship was built on a forced trust, she had to trust that he would protect her and he had to trust that she would keep his secrets. I loved their relationship that was a combination of sexual chemistry, friendship, trust, and reluctant affection.

How about that supporting cast? Raphael and Iris are mostly alone in their fight against the Lords of Chaos but with Iris being close friends with Hugh, the Duke of Kyle, I was expecting to see him again and of course I was thrilled to see Alf too.

Click It or Skip It? Click It. Duke of Desire does the Maiden Lane series justice and as sad as I am that it’s over, I’m glad it ended with Raphael and Iris.

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