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Publisher's Summary

When girl meets duke, their marriage breaks all the rules....

Since his return from war, the Duke of Ashbury's to-do list has been short and anything but sweet: brooding, glowering, menacing London ne'er-do-wells by night. Now there's a new item on the list. He needs an heir - which means he needs a wife. When Emma Gladstone, a vicar's daughter turned seamstress, appears in his library wearing a wedding gown, he decides on the spot that she'll do.

His terms are simple:

  • They will be husband and wife by night only.
  • No lights, no kissing.
  • No questions about his battle scars.
  • Last, and most importantly...once she's pregnant with his heir, they need never share a bed again.

But Emma is no pushover. She has a few rules of her own:

  • They will have dinner together every evening.
  • With conversation.
  • And unlimited teasing.
  • Last, and most importantly...once she's seen the man beneath the scars, he can't stop her from falling in love.

©2017 Eve Ortega (P)2017 HarperCollins Publishers

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

100% perfect

I love romance novels by Georgette Heyer, Lisa Kleypas, Laura Kinsdale, Julia Quinn, and many more but This!Was! Wonderful! The perfect combination of humor (I actually laughed out loud), charm, intelligence, feminism, machismo, psychological insight, plot, children, cats, and OMG the sex! It was hot, inventive, not too much, not too little...All was made even more enjoyable by the stunningly adept, perfectly nuanced, absolutely spot-on interpretation, and always compelling performance by Mary Jane Wells, who is now my favorite narrator (and I've listened to a gazillion audio books, trust me). Other than the aforementioned Georgette Heyer's Regency romance novels, which are in a league of their own (and have no sex scenes, by the way, but you don't really miss it), I have never before loved a romance novel so much that I wanted to re-read it immediately, but this is so much fun I can't wait to read it again!

21 of 21 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Bellen
  • Indiana, USA
  • 09-26-17

A Comedic Romance That You Can Take Seriously

If you could sum up The Duchess Deal in three words, what would they be?

Marriage. Of. Convenience.

What other book might you compare The Duchess Deal to and why?

This book is similar in concept to Lisa Kleypas's "Devil in Winter." In both books, two people get married to further their separate goals, but wind up falling in love.

Which character – as performed by Mary Jane Wells – was your favorite?

I adored Mary Jane Wells's portrayal of Ashbury, the hero. She makes him sound pompous, almost stuffy, which is not the typical voice for a love interest. But Wells makes it work, turning Ashbury into a hilarious, distinct, and lovable character.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

Come at once if convenient. If inconvenient, come all the same.

Any additional comments?

Mary Jane Wells knocked it out of the park with this performance. Tessa Dare exceeded expectations. This book should be a part of any Historical Romance library.

17 of 17 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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5 HUGE FUNNY STARS!!!

The Duchess Deal by Tessa Dare (Audio Edition)
Narrated by Mary Jane Wells
Series: Girl Meets Duke, book 1

5 HUGE FUNNY STARS! This book was fantastic!! It was super funny and had me laughing within the first few paragraphs! The writing was superb, the use of uncommonly used words, in just the right spots made all the difference. The wounded/tortured hero is not my favourite plot line, as usually I find them too sulky or whiny. This book did not conform to that. While Ash did sulk, he did so with flair and wit.

I loved how Ash was actually a good person, how he longs to love her.. and how sometimes he just can't stop himself from doing so- even when he tries to. Emma was a strong leading lady, she stood up for what she wanted and didn't let Ash get away with anything. She kept pushing his boundaries and they had wonderful chemistry together.

The narration fantastic! Mary Jane Wells has a style all her own and pulls out the sarcastic wit that was needed for this audiobook to succeed!

I highly recommend this book and I am sad it is over… because how will the next book I read compare?!?!

~Paragraphs and Petticoats~

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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10 STARS MAGINIFICENT LOVE STORY!!!

THE DUCHESS DEAL IS ONE OF THE BEST HISTORICAL ROMANCES I HAVE READ ALL YEAR. VERY WELL WRITTEN!!!

Emma Gladstone appears in the Duke of Ashbury's study wearing a Outlandishly hideous wedding dress. The Duke's ex finance Annabelle has refused to pay Emma for making the gown.

Ash has been horribly scarred from a rocket that hit him and exploded at the battle of Waterloo. The blast scarred one side of his face and parts of his shoulder and chest. The scars are hideous making Ash believes he looks like a monster. Ash is taken with the forth right beauty Emma who although working as a seamstress she is a gentlemen's daughter and she is very beautiful and intelligent. Emma is also, not afraid to look him square in the face. Most people run screaming from him or look away. But not our Kind and Courage's heroine Emma.

Ash needs and heir. Who else would marry him but a girl down on her luck in need of money. But Emma surprises him once again an refuses his marriage proposal. This is resolved quick enough No stupid angst with this couple.

There road to love, romance and very hot sex as a married couple is brilliantly written. There is not that dreadful misunderstanding angst that I think most HR readers are sick of!!. There eventual love story takes a road of learning to trust each other and talking about things. They don't hide behind there hurt feelings they discuss them and overcome them. They build a wonderful believable marriage together.

The storyline is interesting a twist on Beauty and the Beast. It moves fast, has very interesting secondary characters. Ash is written like a Duke should be written. Oh and thanks to the author he is not improvised he is very rich. That improvised Duke storyline has had its last days I hope!! Thanks Tessa Dare for writing believable, honest and intelligent H/H that the readers can love and not hate.

If I could give The Duchess Deal 10 stars I would. I Highly Recommend This Story!!

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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a SEXY Beauty and the Beast!

An independent but poor young lady meets her beast in the form of the Monster of Mayfair. Sure, we know the girl gets the guy in the end but there's a lot of fun along the way.

I love Mary Jane Wells. She's my favorite reader of historical romance, then Rosalyn. There are so many readers I can't stand (ie hissy, whiney Justine Eyre or the monotone cadence of Heather Wilds aka Carmen Rose) but Mary Jane does a wonderful Scot and Welsh male voice and the girls are great, too. Mary Jane gives the author great pillow talk.

I can hardly wait for Tessa's next novel. They are steamy and sexy!

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Great listen!!

The narrator truly made the story come to life and the characters personalities an enjoyable listen.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Tracy T
  • Jacksonville, FL USA
  • 09-03-17

Amazing Story. Great Narration

I loved this story! it was so good! I just loved Ash and Emma! They were perfect for each other. They had lots of chemistry and lots of hot and steamy sex. Well written sex.

The story line and plot was great. It all flowed so nicely and the wow was there some funny LOL moments. Even though the Duke was scarred he was funny witty and a great personality. Emma was beautiful and funny and witty as well, She was not going to let his sarcasm get the best of her at all.

I highly recommend this book, Tessa Dare is one of my favorite authors. There was lots of amazing dialogue throughout the entire book! LOVED IT!

As for the narration, it was great! Mary Jane Wells did such a great job on the voices and the deliverance of the dialogue it made the book even better. She reads with emotion and the men sound like men.

LOVE IT LOVED LOVED IT!

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Not much plot

I loved the characters and the narration. The dialogue was clever, funny and witty as many other reviews have noted. The problem I had is that there really wasn’t much of a storyline. Boy meets girl and they commence to misunderstand each other until the latter part of the book. I was hoping for more plots twists or action.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Funny - would make a really good movie.

I'm on my third time listening to this story. I've found it funny and lighthearted. And with Mary Jane Wells narration I have pictured the story as a movie. She has added just the perfect intonation to the Duke's voice and I can visualize the seamtress's eyes rolling.
Very entertaining!

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Wonderful tortured hero romance!

Any additional comments?

The Duchess Deal is such a wonderful tortured hero historical romance. It made me laugh, cry, and feel all warm inside. The perfect blend of comedy, passion, and healing power of love. And Mary Jane Wells as narrator really brought the story to life and made the characters real. Bravo!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful