A man of sin
Devastatingly handsome. Vain. Unscrupulous. Valentine Napier, the Duke of Montgomery, is the man London whispers about in boudoirs and back alleys. A notorious rake and blackmailer, Montgomery has returned from exile intent on seeking revenge on those who have wronged him. But what he finds in his own bedroom may lay waste to all his plans.
A woman of honor
Born a bastard, housekeeper Bridget Crumb is clever, bold, and fiercely loyal. When her aristocratic mother becomes the target of extortion, Bridget joins the Duke of Montgomery's household to search for the incriminating evidence - and uncovers something far more dangerous.
A secret that threatens to destroy them both
Astonished by the deceptively prim - and surprisingly witty - domestic spy in his chambers, Montgomery is intrigued. And try as she might, Bridget can't resist the slyly charming duke. Now, as the two begin their treacherous game of cat and mouse, they soon realize that they both have secrets - and neither may be as nefarious - or as innocent - as they appear....
©2016 Elizabeth Hoyt (P)2016 Hachette Audio
THIS BOOK WAS SINFULLY DELICIOUS!!! 5 SINFUL STARS.
When I first met Valentine Napier, the Duke of Montgomery, I hated him with a passion. Somewhere after his initial introduction, I started to like him--so much so that I wanted a book with him as the hero (hard to imagine him initially, I know!). You see, I realized there was a method to the madness; although I admit that some of the 'madness' couldn't be excused but I love a good bad boy. Eve's story convinced me of my thoughts.
I started listening to this book and unfortunately I wasn't all that impressed. In retrospect, I kind of jumped the gun. I hate secrets and subterfuge--the description of this book along screams it. I also wasn't too in love with Bridget *initially*. I was to a point where I thought I'd pause it and move on to something else but then I saw the sparks fly between Bridget and Val and I was instantly in love. I also realized the mastery of Miss Hoyt's mind--she had to make the plot (and woman for a while) as such because of the type of hero Val is. Val wouldn't be interested in some mousy woman who couldn't use her brain.
I smell what you're cooking Mrs. Hoyt and it smells delicious!
Miss Bridget Crumb, a competent but sneaky house keeper is on a mission, two to be exact. She comes off as sort of cold and scheming but I really grew to like her. I love that no many how many layers Val tried to put on to protect himself therefore hiding his true self, she saw the real Val. Everyone hated him including Bridget but she soon saw him in a different light. I believe that Bridget's relationship with Val also helped her grow as a character. She becomes more confident and she softens chapter by chapter. I really liked her.
Val, was a on mission, well maybe several missions. To be fair he is always scheming, on a mission or causing mischief. More villain than hero, he is sexy, arrogant and a bit of a narcissist. He has the mind of a scholar, the face of an angel, personality of a semi-sociopath and the sexuality of Zeus. He's not a man who sticks to one woman but his little housemaid intrigues him. Not only does she take him to task despite the rank differences (and he's her employer!), she has the intellect and will to go toe to toe with him. When her discovers her scheming, he's even more intrigued. Game on!
There were so many great scenes in this story. Val really takes the cake. His character is so dynamic, so insanely outrageous it's impossible not to like him, even at his darkest. The intimacy was steaming and wasn't overdone IMO. The secondary characters were great as well. This is one of my favorite books and the best IMO in the Maiden Lane series, maybe even all of E.H's book's. I look forward to seeing The Duke of Kyle in the next book.
Mrs. Hoyt is amazing. She made a villain into a hero, one of my favorite HERO's and VILLAINS of all time.
Narration: Ashford McNab is great for this series. I'm so glad that she's narrating the series again. She really brings the characters to life for me.
...and they lived happily ever after.
I went into this novel with full knowledge of the hero Valentine Napier, Duke of Montgomery, from other books in the Maiden Lane series. He was really an odd character, and could be ,at times, pretty despicable. I was extremely curious about how he was going to be the "hero" of this book. After finishing the audiobook, I am happy to say that Val is now one of my favorite heroes, ever. He is warped, to be sure. But he knows it and realizes he needs Bridget. Some part of him that is buried under his horrific childhood wants to be better. The relationship between Val and Bridget is a wonderful give and take. It's wonderful to see them both help the other see their own worth. Just as an FYI, there are some really big trigger elements in this book such as reference to a secret society that engage in pedophelia and a pretty graphic kidnapping scene. This book is graphically violent in ways that I don't remember any of the previous books being, but Val is a very visceral guy. It's shocking, but it's not because violence is part of him because of his past. I was ok with the intensity and the fact that it has so much to do with the plot. Val's past weighs in heavily and his strength of character to live through it brings so much to the table to make him lovable. The romance is intense and wonderful. I do highly recommend this next installment in the series. A.
Despite Ms McNab's creditable effort this book had to go back. The hero is such a hateful, despicable guy with no socially redeeming qualities that any romantic potential was just too forced. I just flat hated the guy and by half way through the book just wanted him DEAD and someone more interesting and less hateful in his place.
It comes a time when you have to choose between listening to audible or going to bed.
WOW! This read was excellent. I don't know if this or the Duke of midnight is my fav. Everyone loves a bad boy. Well worth the credit!
The Duke's total lack of concern for anyone but himself. It allows him to say such audacious and funny things.
"...have mercy, I plead, oh siren of chatelaines and unlovely bonnets..."
Dangerous in Diamonds by Madeline Hunter. It also has a desolate, hilarious, potentially redeemable Duke. Although,Montgomery's goodness is buried a bit deeper than Castleford's, they share the ability to shock and cajole in equal parts.
The Duke of Montgomery
Absolutely! As it is with every new Elizabeth Hoyt book.
I think Elizabeth Hoyt and Ashford McNab are a perfect match. Even though the stories were excellent, I was a bit disappointed with the two books in this series that were voiced by other performers. There is an element of romantic innocence in Ashford McNab's voice that is a wonderful counterpoint to the eroticism of Elizabeth Hoyt's writing.
I love Epic Fantasy....have become a Historical Romance fan because I am a sucker for a good Happily Ever After. Good characters are a must
This isn't one of my favorite Maiden Lane books, BUT it is a 5 star book none the less! AND I KNOW THAT MAKES NO SENSE. Val is a hard character to like at first - but he is not completely lost - thanks to Bridget.
Well written plot line and great well developed characters.
I definitely ran the gamut of emotions listening to this book....happy, sad, disgusted, angry, excited, laughing, and repulsed. There are some "triggers" (like another reviewer stated) in this book that may make it wrong for some readers. There is some graphic imagery. Animal abuse, pedophilia, and rape.
It is an HEA after all and I highly recommend this latest installment in the Maiden Lane series.
So this is the 10th book in the Maiden Lane Series and the last 5 were pretty much stand alone books, and of the last 5 this was by far my favorite. I absolutely loved Val. He was awesome! Kind of nuts but very smart. He was the bad boy you hated to love but couldn't help it. He did speak in fairy tale riddles but the things he said was very good and pretty funny a lot of the time. Loved his character.
Bridget was really awesome too, she was somewhat shy but smart and figured out Val fairly quickly. She was thwarting his blackmailing plans at every turn. The chemistry between the two was great. It felt real and genuine not forced. There are some steamy sex scenes too.
As for the narration. I love Ashford McNab. She has done such a great job with this series. I like that she does the men's voices very well, read with emotion but sounds somewhat flat. It just seems to be a good sound for her and it makes the characters come to life.
I just loved this book. I love when an author is talented enough to take a villain from prior books and give him redemption in a believable way. This book had some really dark themes and scenes which explained Val's background and how he'd become the man he was, but Hoyt expertly tempered the darkness with a sense of humor. There were lines in the book that made me laugh out loud. Val was such a contradiction, sometimes going out of his way to help the underdog at great expense, other times having no idea that what he did was morally wrong. He had a genuine lack of moral compass, but it was endearing in this book. Bridget became his moral compass, his conscience. She was Yin to his Yang. Val was not completely redeemed, which I felt made his story more believable. I still laugh when I think of how he was able to use kittens to do his evil at the end since Bridget wouldn't allow him to poison anybody. It was funny, yet endeared him to me even more. I truly felt this book was sheer genius.
This series was my introduction to the narration of Ashford McNab, which I loved. I usually prefer dual narration, but I thought McNab did an excellent job with the various voices, even the men's. She's become one of my favorite narrators, and I'll look for more from her.
This book is one of my favorites, and I'll be listening to it again. It's already a classic to me.
Addicted to listening, Loves a good story and a good narration!
Finally, after listening to several books in this genre that were so bad (shallow and stupid) that I couldn't even write a review, I returned to one of my favorite authors and she does not disappoint, she delivers intelligent writing!
Story: Good addition to the series, you would think that we would get bored but Elizabeth Hoyt finds a way to spin new engaging stories, interesting characters, a mystery to solve, and surprising relationships. Duke of Sin is vey good, but wait until you read the next book... it is even better!
Performance: Very good as always, Ashford McNab is the voice of this series, and gives the book its unique atmosphere as much as the story does.
Story: 4.5 stars, solid HR , good character development and relationship to past books.
Relationship/heat: interesting, unlikely hero, some well written sizzle
Performance: 4.5 stars, solid beautiful voice and acting.
Overall: 4.5 stars, intelligent writing, worth a credit!
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