Not all dukes are created equal. Most are upstanding members of Society. And then there’s the trio known as Their Dis-Graces.
Hugh Philemon Ancaster, seventh Duke of Ripley, will never win prizes for virtue. But even he draws the line at running off with his best friend’s bride. All he’s trying to do is recapture the slightly inebriated Lady Olympia Hightower and return her to her intended bridegroom.
For reasons that elude her, bookish, bespectacled Olympia is supposed to marry a gorgeous rake of a duke. The ton is flabbergasted. Her family’s ecstatic. And Olympia? She’s climbing out of a window, bent on a getaway. But tall, dark, and exasperating Ripley is hot on her trail, determined to bring her back to his friend. For once, the world-famous hellion is trying to do the honorable thing.
So why does Olympia have to make it so deliciously difficult for him . . . ?
Oh my goodness, I loved this book and cannot wait for the rest of this series!
The Duke of Ripley returns to England from abroad to find his world turned on its ear (in his words, “the future had arrived while [he] wasn’t looking”)–one of his close friends, one-third of the infamous trio “Dis-Graces,” is about to marry an unlikely bride, the bookish and almost-on-the-shelf Olympia Hightower. Ripley is roped into being his best man, tasked with making sure the wedding goes off without a hitch. One teensy little problem? The bride is no longer convinced of the wisdom of their union, but unsure of or how to get out of it gracefully–so she gets drunk and escapes out the window.
Naturally Ripley has to follow. And naturally, hilarious disasters ensue.
The first half of the story–their escape and Ripley’s thwarted attempts to bring her back–is an absolute joy to read. The second half–what happens next–slows things down a bit (it’s pretty inevitable, really, given the craziness of the first part) and things get more angsty as Ripley and Olympia realize that 1) they’re falling for each other and 2) the complications that this could cause might be disastrous. For a while there, an HEA seems almost impossible–fortunately, Ms. Chase pulls one off with aplomb (phew!)
Now we just have to figure out what the heck is going on with Ripley’s sister and her husband (another Dis-Grace, of course) and find an actual bride for Olympia’s jilted suitor–write fast, please, Ms. Chase!
Rating: 4 1/2 stars / A
I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.