Thursday, September 22, 2016

Review: The Duchess War by Courtney Milan

Title: The Duchess War
Series: Brothers Sinister
Author: Courtney Milan
Read copy: eBook (Kindle)
Published: December 6, 2012
Publisher: Courtney Milan

Sometimes love is an accident.

This time, it’s a strategy.

Miss Minerva Lane is a quiet, bespectacled wallflower, and she wants to keep it that way. After all, the last time she was the center of attention, it ended badly—so badly that she changed her name to escape her scandalous past. Wallflowers may not be the prettiest of blooms, but at least they don't get trampled. So when a handsome duke comes to town, the last thing she wants is his attention.

But that is precisely what she gets.

Because Robert Blaisdell, the Duke of Clermont, is not fooled. When Minnie figures out what he's up to, he realizes there is more to her than her spectacles and her quiet ways. And he's determined to lay her every secret bare before she can discover his. But this time, one shy miss may prove to be more than his match...

My rating:

***eBook available for free on Smashwords***


Don’t get me wrong, it was well written, I love Ms Milan’s style and voice. The problem was everything else, really.

It was too long. Definitely too long with obstacle upon obstacle thrown into the MCs path—less is more, and this book had one conflict too many for my taste. And since it was too long, and too damn convoluted, the pacing suffered. It dragged and it got boring, helped by the two main leads.
The woe-is-me, nobody loves me, I’m nothing, I don’t deserve happiness, I’m all alone and depressed got old pretty soon (in the first third of the story, to be precise), and I just couldn’t sympathize with either of them. I know you’re suffering, my heart is bleeding for you (not), now own it, grow a pair, and move on, don’t drag it on and on, using your “issues” to create more and more conflict. Sheesh!
I simply wished someone would come along and slap them silly...Or for a sudden plot twist that introduced the true MCs of the story.
Alas, it didn’t happen and I had to endure. I could’ve DNFd it, I know, but I held out hope, until there was no more hope. And then the book was over.

I loved the supporting cast. The scene on the train with Violet and Sebastian was hilarious, I was a little on the fence about Lydia, but I warmed up to her, and Oliver who was so much like his father (not sire, but father, the man who raised him). And that recounting of the fainting spell in the courtroom with the dowager duchess and her umbrella. She might’ve been cold toward her son, but I loved her in that bit (and the epilogue).

This was all wrong for a freebie, in my opinion. A freebie should be one that entices the reader to read the next books in the series (something along the lines of the “starter” of this series), not something that kicks you in the teeth while you’re already writhing in pain on the ground.

Sorry, but this one was a huge disappointment.


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