Skip to content

Feature book: Christmas with the Duke

10 April 2019

Christmas with the Duke by Katrina Cudmore

Subgenre: contemporary romance
Release date: 1 Oct 2018
Publisher: Mills & Boon
Format: ebook and print
Length: 256 pages
RRP: $5.99 (ebook); $14.99 (print duo)

I do love a second-chance-at-love story, and when you throw in a duke, I’m hooked. This is a modern day story, which is even more thrilling. The prospect of a commoner marrying a duke makes me dizzy with the romance of it all. (Seems like it’s happened just recently … hmm …)

Ciara is back at Loughmore Castle, working as a horticulturalist to protect and nurture the rare plants on the estate. She grew up there, and she and the son of the estate, Harry—no, sorry *cough*, Tom, played with Ciara and they fell in love together as teenagers. Their love burned high and hot, but it was like an upstairs-downstairs forbidden romance, sadly doomed to fail. They were too young, it was too forbidden, they had their lives ahead of them, they came from different society, etc …

Tom hasn’t visited the estate for years, but then his father dies, and he becomes Duke. He returns to Loughmore Castle, much to the disconcertment of the entire staff at his sudden visit, but especially Ciara, because she discovers his secret intent is not to live there but that he intends sell it to pay his father’s debts.

Ciara is horrified. She loves Loughmore and is totally passionate about her work there. And what about the rest of the staff, who’ve lived and worked on the estate for generations? How can Tom simply throw it—and them—away and let some hideous hotel or a golf course happen? It all gets rather heated and ghastly. Tom is surprisingly stubborn, demonstrating feet of clay here. But then he has huge debts to cover, debts his father has run up, and can’t figure out any other way to survive than to sell.

Ciara plots and plans and decides to simply try and win him over by showing him how special, how beloved, how important Loughmore is to Tom, the staff, the locals—and her. She cooks up all sorts of ideas about sustaining the estate, and sells them with endearing charm. I have to say I believed her.

Somewhere along the way, she and Tom begin to fall in love again. Or maybe they never really fell out of love to begin with … Oh, it does get tender and rather lovely.

This is a dear story. It shows how people can need a sense of home in their heart, and how important love is. I especially enjoyed how Ciara stubbornly calls Tom ‘Your Grace’ and he gets impatient and never stands on airs and graces, proclaiming he’s Tom! Tom! Who doesn’t love an unstuffy, down-to-earth Duke? So charming.

reviewed by Malvina

A review copy of this book was provided by the author.

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: