Title: Return of the Duke
Author: Lorraine Heath
Series: Once Upon a Dukedom #3
Release Date: July 26, 2022
Marcus Stanwick is determined to uncover all parties involved in the assassination plot that got his father hanged and his title stripped of him. He turns to the woman he despises for help and finds that she may be the one person who can help him uncover the truth.
This book was full of unexpected revelations. After reading the previous two books, I knew I couldn’t wait to get my hands on Marcus’s story and hopefully see him finally get some happiness out of his fathers betrayal. Marcus and Esme’s story started a bit slow but it was still very enjoyable.
Marcus is a changed man. He has hardened and became ruthless. His actions towards Esme in the beginning are very harsh because he doesn’t understand the truth behind Esme’s actions. I didn’t really like Marcus at first but he quickly grew on me as the story progressed. Esme was a fascinating woman. She has had a very interesting life. I really enjoyed how smart and sassy she was, and that she wasn’t afraid of danger. She was always ready to defend herself.
Marcus and Esme’s relationship starts as enemies but as they work together to bring down the other conspirators they quickly develop feelings. I really enjoyed the progression of their relationship, especially how Marcus always supported Esme and praised her abilities.
Overall, this was another great book from Heath. I enjoyed seeing Marcus find love and resolution in his life. This has been quite an enjoyable series. I do hope she writes stories about the Chessmen next because I really want to know more about those bachelors.
Trigger Warnings: Brief mention of unexpected hysterectomy. Abusive mother.
*ARC provided by Netgalley for an honest review.*
Previous books and reviews for the series: