Title: A Lady for a Duke
Author: Alexis Hall
When Viola Carroll was presumed dead at Waterloo she took the opportunity to finally live as herself. Unfortunately, that meant she had to lose her wealth, title, and closest companion, Justin de Vere, the Duke of Gracewood. Now years later she learns how shattered Gracewood has been and is determined to help her old friend.
This was a wonderful slow burn romance. There was a lot more anguish than I was expecting, but this does cover a lot of very emotionally intense topics so I should have expected that. There is a lot of pining, grieving, pain, confusion, and a lot of love between these two. All these emotions kept me hooked from the very beginning and I didn’t want to put the book down.
Viola and Gracewood’s relationship was quite wonderful. I really enjoyed the progression of it, even when Gracewood was being a butthole. I also loved that as soon as Gracewood learned the truth he automatically switched to using her preferred name and pronouns. It was great to see a hero accepting the changes, even if he does struggle with other aspects of this change.
I did feel that the last 20% or so of this book with Gracewood’s sister felt a bit unnecessary. I don’t know if this was included because she plans to write Mira’s book and that was why it was included but it just felt a bit unnecessary to me. I did enjoy the side characters in this story though, including Mira. Overall, this was a wonderful historical romance and I look forward to reading more from this author.
Trigger warnings: deadnaming, ablest language, suicidal ideation, drug use, alcohol use, PTSD, violence, kidnapping.