Scandal and the Duchess by Jennifer Ashley

scandal and the duchessTitle: Scandal and the Duchess

Series: Highland Pleasure bk 6.5

Author: Jennifer Ashley

Genre: Historical

Scandal follows Rose Barclay, young widow of the Duke of Southdown, wherever she goes. It’s never her fault – honor bright – but newspapers love to write about the young woman from Scotland, and the much older duke she married, who died on their honeymoon. The duke left her with a large widow’s portion, now contested by his younger brother, who kicks Rose out of the estate’s dower house and uses it to kennel his dogs. 

Rose does *not* need to be found with a large, handsome Scot passed out at her feet, fueling gossips and giving her brother-in-law more ammunition. The Scot is Steven McBride – a decorated soldier who is notorious for heavy gambling and womanizing during his leave time. Steven is happy to open his eyes and find the beautiful woman standing over him, and happy to help spirit her away. But the journalists get wind and start a campaign to couple Rose with the scandalous Steven McBride.

Thoughts: Ashley’s Highland Pleasure’s series is one of my absolute favorites. Now that all of the MacKenzies are married off we get the extended family and I’m loving those stories as much.

This is a super quick read. When Steven unknowingly adds stress to Rose’s life he comes up with the perfect plan to save her reputation and also get part of her inheritance back. What he doesn’t count on is falling hard and fast for her. Before long he realizes he wants to help her not because it’s the right thing to do, but because he loves her.

Rose had genuine affection for her late husband and has been dealing the best that she can after his unexpected death. Just when things couldn’t get any worse for her she’s rescued in a way she never planned. Steven has swept in and helped her solve her problems and given her the chance at the future she’s always wanted.

I adored this story. Steven and Rose were perfect for each other in the way that they come to the relationship damaged and help each other heal. It’s the perfect book to read on a cold fall afternoon with your favorite hot beverage and a blanket.

Grade B+

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