Lady Sophia has long been estranged from her husband, Vane Barwick, the Duke of Claxton, whose rumored list of amorous conquests includes almost every beautiful woman of the ton. Yet a shocking encounter with him in a crowded ballroom - and a single touch - are all it takes to reawaken her furious passion for him. But how can she trust the man who crushed her dreams and took away the one thing she wanted most?
Claxton has never forgiven himself for the youthful mistake that ruined his marriage to Sophia. Now, after nearly a year abroad, the reformed rogue vows to win back the only woman he's ever truly loved. He'll do whatever it takes to prove he can be the honorable husband she deserves - and the passionate lover she desires. As the snowdrifts deepen outside their ancestral home, can they rekindle the flame that burned so bright and find a new path to forever?
©2013 Kim Ungar (P)2013 Tantor
"Dalton's Regency debut resonates with real feeling.... Unlike some one-note tortured heroes, Vane is sincere and appealing. Sophia's pain is very real, and every interaction is fraught with honest emotion. As they struggle to recapture their romance, readers will feel deep sympathy with both characters and hope for them to find happiness." (Publishers Weekly)
The story is about a duke who falls in love and marries but shortly after she mistakenly opens a letter addressed to her husband from one of his old mistresses. Assuming he is having an affair she decides to leave him but then falls on the icy stairs by her front door, losing her unborn child in the process. Unable to get his wife to even talk to him regarding their issue, and saddened by his marriage falling apart and feeling helpless, the duke decides to leave the country for a while which turns into a year. He comes back after the year away and attempts at mending things at any cost since she is the only woman he has ever loved. However, it is hard for Sophie to forgive her husband but after about a total of 5 days of being stranded in their country home, she finally relinquishes her stubbornness and all the insecurities she feels about him and their relationship only to find herself in a unpleasant situation once again.
I found the heroin, though kind and loving, was very rigid, condemning and judgmental. The duke on the other hand was not only loving and kind but also forgiving and understanding. True that he had a hard time expressing his feelings but both are to blame for their poor skills at communication. Almost the entire book the hero is held at an arm’s length with her unwavering condemnation because she is trying to “protect” herself from getting hurt again. The disappointing part is that the duke is portrayed as the villain when at least he is trying relentlessly while she makes no attempts at improving the relationship between them neither before he leaves nor after he comes back. She truly seems so self-centered and pampered that she believes herself entitled and him guilty. Well okay she does believe that he has been a rake sleeping around the entire time they had been together but then he is not even given a chance to prove her wrong...It was exhausting reading about this character.
Nevertheless, I still enjoyed the book because of the duke. His character truly made the book more interesting.
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