USA Today bestselling author Julia London, "a gifted and versatile author" (Publishers Weekly), introduces a sexy, wildly romantic and emotionally charged new trilogy in which three aristocratic young ladies, upon discovering they are destitute, resort to desperate means to keep up appearances...and find the husbands of their dreams.
When the young ladies of the Fairchild family learn that their stepfather has absconded with their late mother's fortune, Ava, the eldest, hunts down the notoriously wealthy rakehell Jared Broderick, the Marquis of Middleton and heir to a dukedom. Much to her shock and delight, the marquis sweeps her into a whirlwind romance and proposes marriage. But after their passionate wedding night, Ava discovers Jared has ulterior motives of his own. Not only does he expect her to deliver an heir while he continues to enjoy a rogue's life, but Ava also suspects she is a pawn in her husband's quest for revenge. Marriages of convenience work for some, but for Ava a loveless bond won't do. So she devises a bold plan to confront her husband's demons so that he might be free to choose to give her his heart for the right reason: because she is the only woman he will ever truly desire.
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1 . Very enjoyable after a long day of work
Posted July 01, 2009 by ambeni , Taunton, MAI purchased the Julia London bundle and have enjoyed reading all of the books. The story was entertaining and kept me interested throughout. A very good story (all three) to relax with after a long day of work.
May 22, 2006
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Excerpt from The Hazards of Hunting a Duke by Julia London
The Marquis of Middleton, who was the sole heir to the powerful Redford duchy, had an air about him, a palpable energy that exuded power and wealth. There was also the potent sexuality of a very masculine man that was felt by most women-and perhaps a few men. It was indeed a potent sexuality.
The marquis, Jared Broderick, said or did nothing to provoke such feelings in others, for in all honesty, he was quite unaware of his remarkable power. Had someone suggested that he caused women to feel weak at the knees with just a look, he might have laughed and unabashedly confessed to adoring all women, for he did. Poor women, rich women, daughters of Quality or commoners, he cared not-just as long as they were completely and unapologetically female. That meant they must have a scent of sweet waters about them, be soft, occasionally silly, vexing, enticing, and inspiring-both in the boudoir and beyond.
With his darkly golden brown hair, square jaw, broad shoulders, and hazel eyes flecked with gold, he was considered dangerously handsome among the haute ton, the elite society of London. He was tall and broad and lean, possessed of an athletic build. His rakish habits had a slightly sinister side, too, for a man who enjoyed both gaming and women was bound to run into a spot of trouble from time to time. Whispered rumors of a duel persisted, a duel in which he had purportedly proceeded fearlessly and had emerged victorious.
The most recent tale of his recklessness had to do with his performance during the course of a stag hunt last autumn. The stag had sensed the hunters and had broken through the forest to escape. It was said that Middleton risked his neck and that of his big bay horse to catch the stag, leaping over rock walls, storming through dangerous gullies and thickets, racing far ahead of the other riders. But when Middleton had cornered the stag, he reined up, turned his mount around, and returned to the estate. They said it seemed as if it wasn't the hunt that mattered but the ride.
In the posh interiors of London's gentlemen's clubs, more than one man remarked that the marquis rode so hard that day not because he was in pursuit of a prize stag, but because his own demons were in pursuit of him.
Whatever his habits, they were routinely reported, thinly disguised, in the London morning newspapers, and surely none endured around the elite Mayfair district of London as well as the tales of his exploits in the beds of some of the most important women in town. What made these rakish tales even more scintillating was that he was heir to one of the most powerful duchies in England and Wales, and the thought of him siring bastards about town was cause for great distress to his father, the current Duke of Redford.
It was well known that many lords desired that their daughters be groomed for a match with Redford's son, and the odds-on favorite was thought to be Lady Elizabeth Robertson. Lady Elizabeth's father was a dear boyhood friend of the duke's, and it was agreed by all wagging tongues that her pedigree for becoming a duchess was unparalleled.
What the gossips didn't know, however, was that the marquis and the duke had engaged in many loud arguments about Lady Elizabeth in which the marquis had steadfastly refused to entertain the idea of a match with her and the duke insisted he would approve of no other match.
It was, in fact, another on dit in this morning's newspaper that had prompted the duke to summon the marquis like a servant once again.
Jared came, but he sat carelessly as his father paced. The duke was gripping the latest edition of the Times in his hand, too angry to speak for several moments. " 'A certain widow,' " he read, and threw the paper down as he pinned Jared with a cold glare. "I know very well to whom they allude-everyone in town knows of your affair with Lady Waterstone."