Posted by: Jennifer | January 25, 2008

The Devilish Pleasures of a Duke – Jillian Hunter

Hunter, Jillian. The Devilish Pleasures of a Duke. (New York: Ballantine, 2007). ISBN – 9780345487629.

Main Characters: Adrian Ruxley, Viscount Wolverton and Emma Boscastle, Viscountess Lyons

Date: 1815

Related Work:  This book is part of a series about the Boscastle family. The series includes the following titles thus far: The Seduction of an English Scoundrel (the story of Sir Nigel Boscastle and Lady Jane Welsham), The Love Affair of an English Lord(the story of Chloe Boscastle and Dominic Breckland, Viscount Stratfield), The Wedding Night of an English Rogue(the story of Lord Heath Boscastle and Julia Hepworth), The Wicked Games of a Gentleman (the story of Lord Drake Boscastle and Eloise Goodwin), The Sinful Nights of a Nobleman(the story of Lord Devon Boscastle and Jocelyn Lydbury) and The Devilish Pleasures of a Duke (the story of Emma Boscastle and Adrian Ruxley, Viscount Wolverton).

Description from book

Adrian Ruxley may be a ruggedly charming rogue, but he’s not a man to stand idly by while a lady is accosted – even at a wedding organized by the lady herself, Emma Boscastle, instructress in the social graces at her London academy for young gentlewomen. Adrian confronts the offender, a scuffle ensues, and now this smooth-talking heir is delighted to see the deep concern in her lovely face. She has a charm no scoundrel can resist.

Emma is scandalized by her own behavior – seduced by a handsome stranger, indeed! How will she be able to hide her indiscretion from the perceptive Boscastle siblings? The divine passion that Adrian has unleashed, and the sensual delights he has shown her, have suddenly turned Emma’s days at the fledgling academy into a display of impropriety and her nights into a velvet abyss of sensual abandon. But as their intimacy reveals Adrian’s turbulent secrets, Emma is inspired to her most ambitious endeavor: redeeming a rake.

My Thoughts:

Ok, I have to admit that I seriously irked my husband while I was reading this book. I had to go and read in the other room. “Why?” you ask. Because I was laughing out loud at Adrian’s antics. The beginning of this book is absolutely hysterical. Adrian Ruxley sees Emma at a wedding she is hosting and is intrigued. They flirt a bit with each other, and then, Emma goes to check on one of her students. She finds the man who has been courting her trying in a compromising position with a servant. Adrian follows Emma and tries to play hero for her. The servant’s love interest comes into the fray and mistakenly bashes Adrian over the head with a chair.

An injured Adrian finds that he is enjoying Emma’s concern. He milks his injury in order to stay in Emma’s brother’s house and stay close to her. In a couple of days, Adrian does return to his home. Despite this, he is determined to continue to see Emma. However, her brothers have become aware of the budding relationship and are determined to keep the two from spending time alone. This effort is rather entertaining. Eventually, the females of the family get involved determined to thwart the brothers’ efforts. Funny, funny stuff!

Overall, I’ve only read two other books in this series – The Wedding Night of an English Rogue and The Wicked Games of a Gentleman. I know that I am going to have to correct this oversight.

Some of the funny bits:

“He might be perfectly well in the morning,” he [the physician] announced with little conviction.

“Well, thank heavens,” Emma said from the opposite side of the bed.

“Then again,” the physician added, “he might not.”

“How does one know?” she asked in consternation.

“One doesn’t,” the Scottish doctor replied with cheerful morbidity. “That’t the challenge of medicine.” (p.33)

A little bit later:

“I believe he’s coming around,” the doctor said. “Can you give us your name?” he asked, biting off each word with a distinctive burr as if her were addressing a child.

Adrian folded his arms across his chest and sat at, his head pounding. “King Tutankhamen.”

“He’s fine,” Heath said with a droll smile.

“He does not look entirely fine to me.” Emma glanced down at Adrian. He stared back at her keenly.

“And indeed he might not be,” the physician warned with a grave air. “If he has sustained a skull fracture, he might never be himself again.”

“Who will I be?” Adrian asked in a wry undertone. (p.34)

Read first January 24, 2008

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