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The Duchess Hunt

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New York Times bestselling author Lorraine Heath continues her Once Upon a Dukedom series with this lush love story of a duke who discovers what he desires in a wife may not be what he needs... Hugh Brinsley-Norton, the Duke of Kingsland, is in need of a duchess. However, restoring the dukedom—left in ruins by his father—to its former glory demands all his time, with little New York Times bestselling author Lorraine Heath continues her Once Upon a Dukedom series with this lush love story of a duke who discovers what he desires in a wife may not be what he needs... Hugh Brinsley-Norton, the Duke of Kingsland, is in need of a duchess. However, restoring the dukedom—left in ruins by his father—to its former glory demands all his time, with little room for sentiment. He places an advert encouraging the single ladies of the ton to write why they should be the one chosen, and leaves it to his efficient secretary to select his future wife. If there exists a more unpleasant task in the world than deciding who is to marry the man you love, Penelope Pettypeace certainly can’t imagine what it might be. Still, she is determined to find the perfect bride for her clueless, yet ruthlessly charming employer. But when an anonymous note threatens to reveal truths best hidden, Kingsland has no choice but to confront the danger with Penelope at his side. Beguiled by the strong-willed, courageous beauty, he realizes he’s willing to risk everything, including his heart, to keep her safe within his arms. Could it be the duchess he’s hunting for has been in front of him all along?


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New York Times bestselling author Lorraine Heath continues her Once Upon a Dukedom series with this lush love story of a duke who discovers what he desires in a wife may not be what he needs... Hugh Brinsley-Norton, the Duke of Kingsland, is in need of a duchess. However, restoring the dukedom—left in ruins by his father—to its former glory demands all his time, with little New York Times bestselling author Lorraine Heath continues her Once Upon a Dukedom series with this lush love story of a duke who discovers what he desires in a wife may not be what he needs... Hugh Brinsley-Norton, the Duke of Kingsland, is in need of a duchess. However, restoring the dukedom—left in ruins by his father—to its former glory demands all his time, with little room for sentiment. He places an advert encouraging the single ladies of the ton to write why they should be the one chosen, and leaves it to his efficient secretary to select his future wife. If there exists a more unpleasant task in the world than deciding who is to marry the man you love, Penelope Pettypeace certainly can’t imagine what it might be. Still, she is determined to find the perfect bride for her clueless, yet ruthlessly charming employer. But when an anonymous note threatens to reveal truths best hidden, Kingsland has no choice but to confront the danger with Penelope at his side. Beguiled by the strong-willed, courageous beauty, he realizes he’s willing to risk everything, including his heart, to keep her safe within his arms. Could it be the duchess he’s hunting for has been in front of him all along?

30 review for The Duchess Hunt

  1. 5 out of 5

    Maureen Carden

    Secretaries don’t come much better than Penelope Pettypeace. In fact she is such an excellent secretary that her employer of eight years, the Duke of Kingsland, has given Pettypeace the task of choosing the woman who will become his Duchess. Not such an easy task because the duke has placed an ad in the paper asking for applicants to write a letter of why they should be his Duchess. In The Duchess Hunt Pettypeace’s job is to sort through the very large number of applicants and chose the best on Secretaries don’t come much better than Penelope Pettypeace. In fact she is such an excellent secretary that her employer of eight years, the Duke of Kingsland, has given Pettypeace the task of choosing the woman who will become his Duchess. Not such an easy task because the duke has placed an ad in the paper asking for applicants to write a letter of why they should be his Duchess. In The Duchess Hunt Pettypeace’s job is to sort through the very large number of applicants and chose the best one to fit “the job”. Kingsland’s definition of the job is to “be a quiet duchess, one who is there when I need her and absent when I don’t.” Pettypeace is an unusual secretary. Number one- she is still a rarity in Victorian times-she is a woman with a respectable job. Number two- she seems to have invented the spreadsheet. (Sorry couldn’t resist) One way in which she is not a total rarity- although she is the epitome of a resourceful and efficient secretary- is that that she has fallen in love with her boss. Oddly enough the duke seems to be falling in love with Pettypeace but of course won’t admit to it for some fairly typical HR reasons. For one he refuses to believe he is capable of love, two that he is a somewhat snobbish duke. He is lacking in self-awareness, mostly because he and his brother suffered tremendous abuse at the hands of their father. So here we are at the real meat of the book, the reason that made this a true HR standout. First let me give you one of the best quotes of the year “….That is the things about monsters, Pettypeace. They are monsters because they can delude people into thinking they aren’t.” Then we come to their secrets. Both the Duke and Pettypeace have secrets that are real doozies. Here’s what kills me. One secret can lead to execution; the other secret can lead to becoming a pariah. Three guesses to whose secret caused the most angst and anger. Buzzz and give a stuffed animal for the little lady who answered correctly. Heath almost always writes charming and appealing characters. Neither Kingsland nor Pettypeace are without friends, another hallmark of a Heath book, strong friendships. I also enjoy books set in Victorian times, Heath presents a vibrant and lively portrait of the times and settings. Heath’s series tend to run from intriguing secondary characters to the next series. So it’s a fun guessing game, which character will have the next book or the next series. I think it might be Marcus with hopefully the Chessman to follow. One more thing, The Duchess Hunt has one of the sweetest endings I have read in years. Brava! Thank you to NetGalley for an ARC for review purposes.

  2. 5 out of 5

    WhiskeyintheJar

    2.5 stars I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review. If there existed a more unpleasant task in the world than selecting the woman who was to marry the man you loved, Penelope Pettypeace certainly couldn’t imagine what it might be. For eight years Penelope has been secretary to Hugh Brinsley-Norton, ninth Duke of Kingsland, and while outwardly he has only been “Your Grace”, he's grown to be so much mo 2.5 stars I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review. If there existed a more unpleasant task in the world than selecting the woman who was to marry the man you loved, Penelope Pettypeace certainly couldn’t imagine what it might be. For eight years Penelope has been secretary to Hugh Brinsley-Norton, ninth Duke of Kingsland, and while outwardly he has only been “Your Grace”, he's grown to be so much more. When the woman he was going to propose to (the first in the series) decides to follow her heart, Hugh is on the search again for a wife and decides this time to put it into Penelope's capable hands. Penelope is determined to find him a wife he can love, even though he claims not to have a heart, while keeping her own feelings hidden. Her respect for him knew no bounds, and her heart had followed. Second in the series, I had no problem jumping in here, the ground covered in the first is relayed fully. However, I did miss seeing Penelope and Hugh's friendship start and develop. When the reader comes into the story, they already have a solid friendship, Penelope knows she loves Hugh, and Hugh is just awakening to the fact that Penelope is more than just an essential part of his business life but of his heart, too. He viewed her as he might a man he respected, a man whose opinion he valued. And for her, who had never known any of that before him, it was an aphrodisiac. The beginning has a lot of Penelope alluding to some massive secret from her past that would destroy not only her reputation but Hugh's if it ever came out, her roadblock to thinking they could never be together. The reader isn't let in on it until around 80%, just a little before Hugh finds out, too. It felt a little stretched out for how long Penelope would bring it up as a harbinger for it to appear so late in the story and then have a fairly quick wrap-up. What made it feel even less, even though the secret does have weighty consequences, was that Hugh has his own secret and it honestly feels like it could be a bigger deal than Penelope's but his character never mentions it in thought or fear until it suddenly appears as a reason to get the two to travel together to Scotland. The plot points in this felt awkward to me for some reason, Penelope's bemoaned secret that doesn't show up until very end, Hugh's secret that was huge but barely shows in his character, and then Penelope being blackmailed and dealing with it as if the blackmail letter was meant for Hugh when this whole time she's been scared of her secret coming out. Heath's writing is always smooth and readable but there was some awkward fitting plot points in this for me. He’d taken her for granted, this woman who was such an important part of his days, who had begun to haunt his dreams. As I mentioned, I missed seeing Hugh growing to find Penelope indispensable to his life, this was more admitting that he already felt that way and Penelope already loves him when we come into the story. Around 60% they decide to meet each other needs, Hugh because this is the first step to admitting he loves Penelope and Penelope because she does love Hugh and at twenty-eight is ready to have all her needs met. Of course, this only brings them closer together and we have some ignoring denial from Hugh and Penelope saying she doesn't want to get married anyway because she'd lose all autonomy, even though she loves Hugh. These two were a nice couple but I wouldn't say the showing and telling of their emotions went beyond or even made it to memorable. Knight drew on his cheroot and blew out a series of smoke circles. “You might want to comb down your hair before going inside. You look as though you’ve been ravaged.” He felt as though he had been, inside and out, from the moment he’d stepped closer to her and she’d looked up at him with something akin to longing. Awkward fitting plot points, pretty sedate tone, and the faint praise of nice relationship between our main couple, made this into an ok read for me. Hugh's Chessmen friends and some debutantes we are given short intros through Penelope's interviewing for possible wives to Hugh, peak some interest for future books. This probably won't wow you but you won't be chucking it against the wall either.

  3. 4 out of 5

    JenReadsRomance

    I liked Pettypeace and the Duke quite a lot, but there was some really inexplicable choices where we get both character's POVs, but Pettypeace is obviously KEEPING A SECRET and all she ever thinks about IS WHAT IF SOMEONE FINDS OUT MY SECRET and then (view spoiler)[ it turns out the Duke has a secret that is **a way bigger fucking deal than hers,** but he never forecasts his fears the way she does. (hide spoiler)] And maybe it's supposed to be an indicator that she feels she has something more I liked Pettypeace and the Duke quite a lot, but there was some really inexplicable choices where we get both character's POVs, but Pettypeace is obviously KEEPING A SECRET and all she ever thinks about IS WHAT IF SOMEONE FINDS OUT MY SECRET and then (view spoiler)[ it turns out the Duke has a secret that is **a way bigger fucking deal than hers,** but he never forecasts his fears the way she does. (hide spoiler)] And maybe it's supposed to be an indicator that she feels she has something more to lose, but idk, instead I just found myself being really curious about the narrative choices. In the end, I was really interested in what she did and why and how she felt about herself and how she thought of it. But the way it played out in the text made it feel...Frustrating rather than mysterious. This review based on an ARC from Edelweiss.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Crystal Cook

    The Duke of Kingsland is in need of a wife. Penelope Pettypeace, his secretary of 8 years is tasked with finding said wife. There is some beautiful mutual pining because both of them are obviously secretly in love with each other. And BOTH hero and heroine are harboring their own great secret that could ruin their own individual lives. It pains me to rate this 3 stars as I COMPLETELY ADORED the first book. But there were several things I had issue with, one is the fact that both secrets aren't r The Duke of Kingsland is in need of a wife. Penelope Pettypeace, his secretary of 8 years is tasked with finding said wife. There is some beautiful mutual pining because both of them are obviously secretly in love with each other. And BOTH hero and heroine are harboring their own great secret that could ruin their own individual lives. It pains me to rate this 3 stars as I COMPLETELY ADORED the first book. But there were several things I had issue with, one is the fact that both secrets aren't really hinted at other than they are a big secret that would ruin them, until the moment they are revealed. While the Duke's secret is quickly glossed over (despite being kind of a huge deal) Pettypeace's secret takes front stage and honestly was painful to read about. I really disliked the Duke's dunderheadedness about Pettypeace, he truly held out to the very end to admit his feelings for her and that made most of their time together feel very much like using her. I just didn't believe he actually loved her. But what really put this at 3 stars is how he reacts to her secret. It was so disappointing and I really hoped for better from him. This book is truly beautifully written though, scenes are painted with so much clarity and beauty. But a few things were a no for me. I was provided an arc of this book in exchange for my honest review.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Julie - One Book More

    The second book in Lorraine Heath’s Once Upon a Dukedom series, The Duchess Hunt focuses on the Duke of Kingsland and his secretary Penelope Pettypeace. For eight years their relationship has been strictly professional. However, when the duke tasks Penelope with finding him a wife, Penelope knows she will do what she must to find him the perfect match, even if it breaks her heart. When a blackmail note threatens all they have worked for, Penelope and Kingsland must face their pasts and decide if The second book in Lorraine Heath’s Once Upon a Dukedom series, The Duchess Hunt focuses on the Duke of Kingsland and his secretary Penelope Pettypeace. For eight years their relationship has been strictly professional. However, when the duke tasks Penelope with finding him a wife, Penelope knows she will do what she must to find him the perfect match, even if it breaks her heart. When a blackmail note threatens all they have worked for, Penelope and Kingsland must face their pasts and decide if they should risk revealing their feelings for each other. Penelope is fantastic! She is smart and independent, secure in her position as King’s secretary. I love her confidence and her fierceness. She is not easily intimidated, and, much like King, she excels at her job. King is a man who likes to be in control. He is hugely successful and powerful, but he struggles to let people in. Both have secrets from the past that threaten to ruin their well-controlled and structured lives. I like how their secrets are slowly revealed throughout the story. They are tortured by their pasts, but the closer they become, the more willing they are to trust each other with their innermost secrets. I found this part of the story really interesting and unpredictable. I was surprised when their respective secrets were revealed and didn’t expect either. Penelope and King respect and admire each other, and they have worked together for eight years. They know each other well, but solely on a professional level. They both love each other, but their reluctance to cross the boundary that has been in place for almost a decade stops them from expressing their feelings. This leads to a lot of angst and sexual tension, which is fantastic. There’s so much yearning, since Penelope has loved King for years, and King is so unaware of and confused by his feelings. It takes him a long time to realize just how much he’s taken her for granted, but once he does, he does everything in his power to change. I loved their love story and how their relationship deepened and changed, and I wholly rooted for them even though social expectations, arranged engagements, secrets, blackmail, and more stand in their way. You know those love stories where the characters always refer to each other by their last names as a way to keep each other at a distance and maintain some semblance of formality? Then, when they finally use each other’s first names, it’s an epic moment – passion-filled and romantic and swoon-worthy? This book does that so well! It’s the type of romance that I find myself sighing deeply when reading because of the sheer beauty of it. I felt myself swooning a time or two, and the first time Kingsland said “Penelope,” I definitely fell in love with this couple a little more. The depth of their feelings and their longing for each other is lovely. Other characters in the story are equally interesting, and I’m hopeful that some of them will be featured in upcoming books in the series. King’s friends The Chessman and a couple of the women that King and Penelope meet are intriguing, and I’d love to learn more of their stories. Something else I really like about this series is the epilogues, which take place years after the conclusion of the story. I always wonder what happens to my favorite characters after the story ends, and Heath provides us with the answers in these books. It’s wonderful to see how their stories, and other characters’ stories, progressed and changed. This is a wonderful historical romance with dynamic characters and strong messages about love, trust, and forgiveness. Plus the love story is swoon-tastic! Even though this is the second book in the Once Upon a Dukedom series, it can easily be read as a standalone. Of course, Scoundrel of My Heart, the first book is also fantastic, and I highly recommend it! Thanks so much to NetGalley, Lorraine Heath, and Avon for a copy of the book in exchange for my honest review.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Heather K (dentist in my spare time)

    Loved this so much. RTC.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Dani

    Thank you to Netgalley and Avon for an ARC copy, in exchange for an honest review! 2.75 ⭐️ for the story, 4 ⭐️for the audiobook I was prepared to DNF this. I started this book in May. And it's now October... so. Yeah. Was not going well, to say the least. (But the audio was worth it and thank goodness for Kate Reading! 😭💖) Especially since the premise of this book was everything I wanted: an office romance between a boss and his employee, but make it ✨a historical romance ✨ What's not to like? The Thank you to Netgalley and Avon for an ARC copy, in exchange for an honest review! 2.75 ⭐️ for the story, 4 ⭐️for the audiobook I was prepared to DNF this. I started this book in May. And it's now October... so. Yeah. Was not going well, to say the least. (But the audio was worth it and thank goodness for Kate Reading! 😭💖) Especially since the premise of this book was everything I wanted: an office romance between a boss and his employee, but make it ✨a historical romance ✨ What's not to like? The hero, the Duke of Kingsland is in need of a wife and sets the task of finding a duchess to his secretary, Penelope Pettypeace. Little do they both know, they already have a crush on each other and everything ensues from there. My main problems were that this was a bit too slow-burn, and the actual romance started more than halfway through the book. The first half was setting up their friendship/working relationship, but I also didn't get a much deeper connection with them since their crushes on each other was already stated and developed. And my second problem was Hugh's reaction to Penelope's secret past. It was distasteful and I kind of lost my respect for him after that, though he did realize his mistake after. Not to mention that his secret was probably worse and a bigger deal... However, I really liked Penelope as a heroine, and her work ethic and relentlessness to achieve what she wanted was admirable. There were also great conversations about class differences, since it was unheard of for women to work the job she did and most secretaries were men. She was perceived to be above Kingsland's household servants in station but not as high as other 'office' workers or other secretaries just because she's a woman. Storywise, it was quite sweet and lovely at times but I wished Kingsland groveled a lot more at the end. The ending was quite good once they got together and that epilogue was *chef's kiss*. Overall, a solid read and I'm intrigued by the side characters: the Chessman gentlemen, who I'm hoping will get their own books, and I'm looking forward to read the first book of this series, whose heroine was Kingsland's first bride-to-be. ~ I was struggling to continue the ebook at the 60% mark, but this was my first Lorraine Heath (I should've started with another book of hers). I know a lot of HR readers love her so I didn't want to give up. So I restarted but switched to audio the second time, and WHAT AN IMPROVEMENT. Kate Reading's narration is heavenly! Heath's writing style definitely suited audio better to me than physically reading the words with my eyes. It flowed so beautifully and the storyline didn't feel quite as dragged out as it did the first time. I'm a fan and finished the audio in two days. *audio listened on scribd

  8. 5 out of 5

    Aksa

    4.5 stars!!!!! I love how lorraine heath never dissapoints me. I had been waiting for this book since the publishing date was announced and I am proud to say my 3rd most anticipated romance was a smashing success to me. In previous book in the series we get to know kingsland and he was portrait of a reserved and heartless man and we all knew it would take a very headstrong human species to get past his thick skull. And that exactly what happens. I especially loved penelope. Her independence, her 4.5 stars!!!!! I love how lorraine heath never dissapoints me. I had been waiting for this book since the publishing date was announced and I am proud to say my 3rd most anticipated romance was a smashing success to me. In previous book in the series we get to know kingsland and he was portrait of a reserved and heartless man and we all knew it would take a very headstrong human species to get past his thick skull. And that exactly what happens. I especially loved penelope. Her independence, her sharp mind, her complete understanding with Hugh, her secret love for him. No matter how indifferent she seemed to remain she loved Hugh since the moment she met him and had given him her heart. And then the poor soul was assigned with the work to find a duchess for him. And I admire the way she undertook all her duties Hugh was not so hard for me to love in this book. Though the hard childhood plotting is getting a bit old it still makes me ache thinking what some people has to suffer to become the person they are today. They were made for each other. There were boundries they cannot cross but the pushing away and staying away here was not in the least bit irritating as it sometimes is in some books Lorraine heath's twists never cease to surprise me and there is a suprise which I hadn't seen coming. And I never actually did imagine the secret of penelope's past either. Both of them were secretive. Both of them were trying to save their darkness but instead they became aware of each other so intensely that it was hard to imagine the life without the other one. The romance was as always amazing. I do wish that I could see the way penelope fell in love with hugh but it was not described in there. And the proposal was swoonworthy so romantic!!! I love the way lorraine heath gives her book the finishing. This book was no exception I loved how it ended. Gave me the feel of satisfaction! Beautiful❤❤

  9. 5 out of 5

    Barbara Rogers

    Barbara’s rating: 5 of 5 Stars Series: Once Upon a Dukedom #2 Publication Date: 9/28/21 Period: Victorian London Number of Pages: 384 Hugh Brinsley-Norton, the Duke of Kingsland, is a laser-focused, analytical, moneymaking machine. When he became duke, the title was in a total mess with no money in the coffers and debts running out its ears. He knew it was his job to protect his family, protect his tenants, and protect the duchy, so his one focus became that of making money. Fortunately, he was very, Barbara’s rating: 5 of 5 Stars Series: Once Upon a Dukedom #2 Publication Date: 9/28/21 Period: Victorian London Number of Pages: 384 Hugh Brinsley-Norton, the Duke of Kingsland, is a laser-focused, analytical, moneymaking machine. When he became duke, the title was in a total mess with no money in the coffers and debts running out its ears. He knew it was his job to protect his family, protect his tenants, and protect the duchy, so his one focus became that of making money. Fortunately, he was very, very good at it and he is now one of the richest and most powerful people in England. What he is not good at is emotions – because he has no heart. At least that is his belief. His father was a cruel and hateful man who used Hugh’s mother and brother to keep Hugh in line. So now, at the ripe old age of four and thirty, it is time for him to take a wife and set up his nursery. Fortunately, his requirements for a wife are very simple – she needs to be quiet and not bother him – and she needs to provide him with his heir and spare. He doesn’t plan to fall in love – or even like – and doesn’t expect his wife to love him either. It will be strictly a business arrangement and therefore he’s set his secretary to finding and choosing his bride. Goodness, goodness, goodness – will these men never learn? Penelope Pettypeace is every bit as bold, intuitive, organized, efficient, and focused as Kingsland and that is why they work so well together. She was amazed when he hired her as his secretary about eight years earlier. She had boldly walked into his office and proceeded to convince him that she was the perfect secretary for him even though she was NOT what he had advertised for. Now, he’s assigned her the most daunting task yet – she is to choose his wife. That is going to be a very, very difficult thing to do because she has come to care deeply for the man. She knows he doesn’t reciprocate those feelings – and even if he did, nothing could come of it. So, she’ll do her best to find him a bride who will make him happy – even though he doesn’t know that is what he needs. Penelope’s past has caused her to reinvent herself time after time, but she’s been Penelope Pettypeace longer than she’s ever been anybody else. She knows there will come a time when her unsavory past will catch up to her again and she’ll have to move on – but not today – please not today. Penelope and Hugh both have some very deep, very dark secrets. Secrets they share with absolutely no one else. Those secrets are much too dark to share – for anyone else to know. Yet, just as they have come to realize they share an interest in each other, those secrets threaten to come to light. Is it Hugh’s secrets or Penelope’s that are about to come to light? They’ll have to find out and deal with the threat of exposure. Will their fledgling relationship survive? We met Hugh and Penelope in the first book of the series, Scoundrel of My Heart, and I couldn’t wait to read their book. You don’t have to have read that book to enjoy this one, but it is such a good book, why wouldn’t you want to read it? This series is actually a spin-off of the Sins For All Seasons series – which is also a great series. I definitely recommend this book! While Penelope had known for a long time that she cared for Hugh, it was wonderful to see Hugh come to the realization that what he really needed had been under his nose all along. I hope you’ll read and enjoy this book as much as I did. Now, I can hardly wait for Marcus’s book! I voluntarily read and reviewed an Advanced Reader Copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

  10. 5 out of 5

    ChasingLeslie

    Hugh Brinsley-Norton, the Duke of Kingsland, is in need of a duchess and has already chosen the wrong fiancée once. Instead, he leaves the task to his very efficient secretary, Penelope Pettypeace. She is determined to find the perfect bride for her employer....even though Penelope herself has feelings for Hugh. This is the second book in the Once Upon A Dukedom series. While this book can stand alone, the first book is excellent and helps set up Hugh's bride hunt. Hugh and Penelope are likeminded Hugh Brinsley-Norton, the Duke of Kingsland, is in need of a duchess and has already chosen the wrong fiancée once. Instead, he leaves the task to his very efficient secretary, Penelope Pettypeace. She is determined to find the perfect bride for her employer....even though Penelope herself has feelings for Hugh. This is the second book in the Once Upon A Dukedom series. While this book can stand alone, the first book is excellent and helps set up Hugh's bride hunt. Hugh and Penelope are likeminded individuals: serious, focused, and trying to outrun their past history. I really enjoyed how Hugh depended on Penelope and valued her even before he realized his attraction. There is a slow burn while they try to avoid muddying their working relationship. Without getting into spoilers, I will say that I liked that there were surprises and how those reveals played out. Tropes: Class Difference, Working Heroine, Matchmaking Steam Rating: 4.5 (a good number of scenes, but not very long/detailed) * I received an ARC and this is my honest review. #TheDuchessHunt #NetGalley

  11. 4 out of 5

    Angie

    How could he have ever thought he needed to hunt for the perfect duchess when she had been with him for so very long? Perfect for his soul, his heart, his body. Perfect as his wife, his lover, his partner. In all things, he'd never find a better match. 4.5 stars! Even though this novel was such a slow burn, I found myself thoroughly entranced in the tenuous love story between King and Penelope. They both held onto secrets of their past, knowing they had the power to drastically change their fu How could he have ever thought he needed to hunt for the perfect duchess when she had been with him for so very long? Perfect for his soul, his heart, his body. Perfect as his wife, his lover, his partner. In all things, he'd never find a better match. 4.5 stars! Even though this novel was such a slow burn, I found myself thoroughly entranced in the tenuous love story between King and Penelope. They both held onto secrets of their past, knowing they had the power to drastically change their future, but they both yearned for the freedom and peace that could only be found in the truth. My heart broke for Penelope as she relived her unrequited love for King daily while searching for his future wife, while King started questioning Penelope's role in his life. The ending proposal was everything I was hoping for, and King's grovel was one of my favorites. I do wish there was a bit more danger and drama, but overall this was a brilliant historical romance by Lorraine Heath! *ARC provided by Netgalley, and I voluntarily reviewed it*

  12. 4 out of 5

    Christie«SHBBblogger»

    Title: The Duchess Hunt Series: Once Upon a Dukedom #2 Author: Lorraine Heath Release date: September 28, 2021 Cliffhanger: no Genre: historical romance If there existed a more unpleasant task in the world than selecting the woman who was to marry the man you loved, Penelope Pettypeace certainly couldn’t imagine what it might be. Sometimes you open up a book and the very first line of the book is so attention grabbing that you're immediately compelled to read more. I experienced that with The Duchess Title: The Duchess Hunt Series: Once Upon a Dukedom #2 Author: Lorraine Heath Release date: September 28, 2021 Cliffhanger: no Genre: historical romance If there existed a more unpleasant task in the world than selecting the woman who was to marry the man you loved, Penelope Pettypeace certainly couldn’t imagine what it might be. Sometimes you open up a book and the very first line of the book is so attention grabbing that you're immediately compelled to read more. I experienced that with The Duchess Hunt and continued to be pulled in the deeper I went. Likewise, I was intrigued by both main characters from the start. Hugh was shrewd, intense, a bit aloof, but far from cold. He was an enlightened man for that time because he had no qualms about hiring a female as his right-hand woman. Not only that, but he views at her as his equal in intelligence and competency. Getting into his inner thoughts early on, you notice that after eight years of working closely together, he's more intrigued by her than he allows himself to acknowledge. He frequently pulls himself back from his awareness of her as a woman, mainly because of the power dynamic between the two of them, and that caused a tug of war between his heart and his head. I really enjoyed the angst as it built in momentum during his inner struggle. What was funny was that his latent feelings for her were glaringly obvious to not only the reader, but his mother and closest friends as well. The only one who seemed to be in the dark (or denial) for much of the book was the hero. Penelope was aware of her own feelings, but completely unaware of his. Blast her impertinent heart. Why did it always have to leap with joy whenever her gaze fell on him? Why did it have to yearn for what it could never possess? If Penelope Pettypeace had any inkling that the Duke who employed her had any feelings for her other than professional, she just might have run. Though she has been secretly in love with the man for years, she isn't really the person who allows herself to get close to people because of her past. She's a very private person who has been burned badly because of the secret she holds, which ironically could be the thing that sparked Hugh's curiosity to look at her more than surface deep. She has an air of mystery about her that presents an appealing puzzle to a man like him. The more he unveiled, the more curious he became. He was desperate to know everything. She’d always been an important part of the business side of his life, but it seemed at some point today a shift had occurred in his world, and he could no longer relegate her to only a portion of it. Hugh is an investor, problem solver and astute businessman. The fact that he has known Pettypeace for so long and knows very little personal information about her makes him appreciate even the smallest insight as a gift. And the way he secretly craved being able to make her smile and laugh was the sweetest. It was these small details that made me root for the two of them and feel that they were made for each other. As well, it was refreshing to read a romance where the couple was so similar in personality rather than complete opposites. They were both on the same wave length to the point that they could even finish each other's sentences and anticipate what the other would want or need. He put his complete trust in her abilities to handle his business empire if he had to travel in search of new opportunities. More importantly, he believed that she knew him so well, that she could even handle the tedious task of finding him a suitable wife better than he could. I will say that once the two of them started to explore their interest in each other a little bit, it felt a bit odd that they continued their discussions of her quest in finding him a wife. They were being a bit willfully ignorant about reality. The reality was that he was behaving jealously at the thought of her dancing with another man, he was possessive, and protective over her when she got sick. Then he would turn those thoughts off like a light switch and pretend that everything was casual until his permanent partner was found. They both also had very big secrets that they held back from sharing with each other for the majority of the book. Once his secret came out, I'm not going to lie, it made me uncomfortable. I couldn't quite wrap my head around how this was so casually explained away because to me, I think there needed to be something much more drastic pushing Hugh to do something like that. Up until this point, the book was easily five stars, but this plot point did detract from my enjoyment. Then Penelope's secret was outed and while is was quite tragic, my sympathy wasn't completely there for her because she continued hiding it from him until the bitter end. I understand the shame that went along with it but there was a lack of trust on her part that was disappointing after he opened up to her with his massive secret. The chemistry and drawn out anticipation over this couple made this romance really enjoyable for the most part. While there were some issues I had with the plot, the dynamic between Hugh and Penelope made up for a lot. I also really liked the detail that Lorraine Heath put into the epilogue, and thought it was an interesting way to close the story. If you're looking for a historical romance that's a little different from the common opposites attract, this could be the right book for you. FOLLOW SMOKIN HOT BOOK BLOG ON:

  13. 4 out of 5

    GigiReads

    The Duke of Kingsland needs a wife since his potential fiancee ditched him in the last book. His secretary, the stalwart Penelope Pettypeace is tasked with finding him a duchess. Pettypeace is determined to find him the perfect wife even though it will break her heart since she has been in love with him for years. But she's resigned to unrequited love because not only is she a commoner but she also hides a terrible secret and a scandalous past. I love Lorraine Heath. She's one of the few authors The Duke of Kingsland needs a wife since his potential fiancee ditched him in the last book. His secretary, the stalwart Penelope Pettypeace is tasked with finding him a duchess. Pettypeace is determined to find him the perfect wife even though it will break her heart since she has been in love with him for years. But she's resigned to unrequited love because not only is she a commoner but she also hides a terrible secret and a scandalous past. I love Lorraine Heath. She's one of the few authors I still auto-buy. I like her authorial voice, her prose is clean and not flowery, her books are romantic, her heroes sexy and she has a wicked way with a plot twist. All of these things are present in this book. I loved the dialogue, the humor, and the revelations that even after reading most of her books I didn't see coming. I liked Penelope. I loved her strength, her directness, and the way she just told it like it was. She was also a virgin but she wasn't shy about what she wanted and it came across as genuine and organic to her character. But, I hate to say his book fell a little flat for me. I devoured the first book but this one I put down and had to force myself to pick it back up. The first half was a slog. I couldn't understand why after eight years of working alongside Penelope Hugh had a sudden hard-on for her. What made him change his mind and see her as an attractive woman and not just an efficient secretary? This is never satisfactorily explained. I'm normally trash for the unrequited love trope but I felt I was being told and not shown Penelope's pining. The longing and yearning that LH shows so well in other books were missing here. This brings me to the big secret. Penelope has a huge secret and this is set up to be the conflict. Then halfway through it turns out the duke has an even bigger secret and that one is uncovered and resolved within a few chapters. Penelope's big revelation gets dragged on until the very end and then everything is rushed and we get a HEA. The pacing was way off and I disliked Hugh's reaction to her revelation which seemed out of character for him. I liked the second epilogue though. I love when I get a glimpse, no matter how small, at modern-day descendants. So in the end this wasn't bad or great. It was just okay. Recommend if you love slow burns, friends to lovers, and plain-speaking heroines. . ⭐⭐⭐/5 🔥🔥/5

  14. 5 out of 5

    Meg

    Lively and entertaining romance between a charismatic Duke and his adorable secretary. The story falls somewhat flat when it comes to the big ‘mysteries’, but I never expected much in the first place. Hopefully Marcus’ story will come next in the series!

  15. 4 out of 5

    Christi (christireadsalot)

    The Duchess Hunt is book 2 in Lorraine Heath’s Once Upon a Dukedom series and I was so excited to get my hands on an early copy (thank you SO much to Avon Books). This book releases September 28th and I loved it! The slow burn, the angst, the direct & bold heroine, a hero trying to do better than what he grew up with…it all worked for me really well. Both characters are introduced in the first book of the series and I could not wait for Hugh Brinsley-Norton, Duke of Kingsland, and Penelope Pettyp The Duchess Hunt is book 2 in Lorraine Heath’s Once Upon a Dukedom series and I was so excited to get my hands on an early copy (thank you SO much to Avon Books). This book releases September 28th and I loved it! The slow burn, the angst, the direct & bold heroine, a hero trying to do better than what he grew up with…it all worked for me really well. Both characters are introduced in the first book of the series and I could not wait for Hugh Brinsley-Norton, Duke of Kingsland, and Penelope Pettypeace’s story. Penn has worked as King’s secretary for 8 years, and the mutual pining from the start made this read so deliciously angsty! In this read we also have a cat named Mr. Purrcival and get a caretaking scene (the hero takes care of the heroine). Working for King for years, Penn has really become his right-hand woman in all aspects of his life. Whether taking notes and discussing pros/cons of new business investment opportunities, dealing with his daily correspondence, advising his valet when he’s in need of a hair trim, planning his balls, accompanying him at dinners, etc. And now he needs her help in finding him his Duchess…but the more he realizes what he wants in a wife, the more he sees how Penn is already that partner for him… I loved Penn and how she wants to help other women have financial freedom. I loved how she is bold and confident, not willing to settle for anything less than equal to the men in her life. And I just loved how much of a partnership she had with King. King had wanted his younger brother and mother to have a better life once he took over the dukedom, but in doing so his brother gets himself into trouble. I loved how Penn brought this to King’s attention and offered advice on how to help his brother have a real purpose in life (besides being his spare). Both characters hint to secrets in their past and in classic Lorraine Heath-fashion while I had guesses at what they could be, in the end I didn’t see either coming (which I love in a reading experience). I loved the epilogue, the very last bit especially pulled at my heartstrings. 🥺

  16. 4 out of 5

    Niki (mustreadalltheromance)

    Hugh Brinsley-Norton, the Duke of Kingsland, can no longer put off his need to marry, but his focus has long been on restoring the dukedom his father ruined and he has no time for frivolous courtship. He does the expedient thing and places an ad asking ladies of high society to write a letter extolling the reasons they should be his duchess and places his secretary in charge of making the selection. Penelope Pettypeace can’t conceive of a more awful undertaking than selecting a bride for the man Hugh Brinsley-Norton, the Duke of Kingsland, can no longer put off his need to marry, but his focus has long been on restoring the dukedom his father ruined and he has no time for frivolous courtship. He does the expedient thing and places an ad asking ladies of high society to write a letter extolling the reasons they should be his duchess and places his secretary in charge of making the selection. Penelope Pettypeace can’t conceive of a more awful undertaking than selecting a bride for the man she loves. Still, her employer is a good man, even if he is clueless, and she’s determined to find someone who will appreciate him. When an anonymous note threatens to reveal disastrous secrets, King confronts the situation with Penelope in tow. Soon he realizes he wants her by his side and no one else, and he’s willing to risk everything he’s built to keep her with him as he slowly realizes his perfect match has been right beneath his nose all along. I was so unsure of this book at first because I thought we might be heading for some other woman drama that I would want no part of, but I’m happy to say that didn’t really happen here. I’m not sure I’ve ever read a heroine who pined for her hero while also being so strong, independent, and efficient and I couldn’t help but like her for it. Hugh, I wanted to shake for being so oblivious and yet he was still very charming in his own oblivious way. Both Hugh and Penelope had secrets they wanted to keep hidden but I loved that they were able to confide in and rely on each other. I’m still not really sure exactly when Hugh stopped seeing Penelope as just a secretary and began appreciating her as a woman and developing feelings for her, but that inexplicability never really bothered me. Hugh’s gradual self-realization made for an interesting read and the need to know their secrets kept me turning pages after my bedtime. I was rooting for these two and I really wound up loving their story, especially as it features one of the best grand romantic gestures I’ve ever read. I’m looking forward to the next book in the series. I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Blog link: https://mustreadalltheromance.blogspo...

  17. 4 out of 5

    Janna MacGregor

    Review to come!! Lorraine Heath is an auto-buy for me. I'm in love with this series and I can't wait to see how she continues the series. Review to come!! Lorraine Heath is an auto-buy for me. I'm in love with this series and I can't wait to see how she continues the series.

  18. 5 out of 5

    b.andherbooks

    Hugh Brinsley-Norton, the Duke of Kingsland has tasked his steadfast secretary Penelope Pettypeace with finding him his future Duchess, but increasingly becomes distracted by Pettypeace as he realizes what finding a wife will do to *their* relationship. Pettypeace herself has secretly loved the Duke for most of her employment with him, but has kept it carefully hidden away like the leather notebook in her secret pocket. She'll find him his duchess AND will start considering finding some companion Hugh Brinsley-Norton, the Duke of Kingsland has tasked his steadfast secretary Penelope Pettypeace with finding him his future Duchess, but increasingly becomes distracted by Pettypeace as he realizes what finding a wife will do to *their* relationship. Pettypeace herself has secretly loved the Duke for most of her employment with him, but has kept it carefully hidden away like the leather notebook in her secret pocket. She'll find him his duchess AND will start considering finding some companionship of her own, even if it is just anonymous liaisons at the new club for second sons and commoner women. But when a secret blackmail letter reveals both Pettypeace and King have secrets, their search for a Duchess is put on pause and gives them an opportunity to try a short term arrangement, for just giving into their sexual tension. This was fun and swoony, the secrets bit was a little overwrought but I enjoyed the character development! CW: exploitation of a minor (view spoiler)[Pettypeace, to pay the bills and take care of her family, agrees to pose for nude photos when she's very young, a child. She is threatened by the villain in the story to expose her secrets to the Duke and society. (hide spoiler)] , drinking, fighting

  19. 5 out of 5

    Aou

    I liked the both MCs even if they were too modern!

  20. 5 out of 5

    Paige

    3.5 stars rounded up. The first half of this book was cruising toward 4.5 stars. I loved our setup and our characters — King was a cold, but never ruthless, Duke (I haven’t read the first in this series, but I hear he’s kinda a dick in that one). Penelope was his dedicated secretary, trusted with selecting him a wife. A task made all the harder by the fact that she’s in love with him. Excellent all the way around. Both of these characters are keeping massive secrets from the other. As long as th 3.5 stars rounded up. The first half of this book was cruising toward 4.5 stars. I loved our setup and our characters — King was a cold, but never ruthless, Duke (I haven’t read the first in this series, but I hear he’s kinda a dick in that one). Penelope was his dedicated secretary, trusted with selecting him a wife. A task made all the harder by the fact that she’s in love with him. Excellent all the way around. Both of these characters are keeping massive secrets from the other. As long as the reveals are handled well, I don’t mind that. The problem arises when those secrets are also kept from me, the reader. From practically the first page, Penn’s inner monologue goes on and on about how she has this massive secret — the nature of her secret isn’t revealed until like 82%. The hero, who is not nearly as vocal about the presence of his secret, reveals his at around 69%. What is the point of being in a character’s head if we aren’t going to find out their secrets and thoughts and desires until they vocalize them to the other character? These sudden and delayed reveals made the end feel massively rushed. The tension didn’t have any time to build up. I was never worried about what would happen to the characters if their pasts get out, because I was mostly just annoyed I hadn’t been told what was going on. Overall, I did enjoy this book. Certainly enough to go back and read the first one. But be warned — don’t read it if you have a low tolerance for being kept in the dark. CW: child abuse (past, described but not depicted), revenge porn Thank you to NetGalley for the advanced copy of this book; my review has been left voluntarily.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Tori

    Heath's lastest installment in her Once Upon a Dukedom series introduces us to a unique young woman whose heart wars with her practicality when her employer, the Duke of Kingsland, commands she help him find a bride. When an anonymous letter threatens them, the Duke decides to investigate side by side with his secretary, only to discover that maybe his duchess has been right in front of him all along. Wonderfully lush, vibrant, and intelligent, The Duchess Hunt builds a compelling romance that ce Heath's lastest installment in her Once Upon a Dukedom series introduces us to a unique young woman whose heart wars with her practicality when her employer, the Duke of Kingsland, commands she help him find a bride. When an anonymous letter threatens them, the Duke decides to investigate side by side with his secretary, only to discover that maybe his duchess has been right in front of him all along. Wonderfully lush, vibrant, and intelligent, The Duchess Hunt builds a compelling romance that centers around family, loyality, and abuse in multiple forms as two survivors fall in love while struggling with secrets that could destroy them both.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Saby Westcliff Bedwyn

    God, this was PERFECTION! The Duke who's pining in quiet for his secretary who has a terrible secret from her past, the side characters who adorn the story without taking over, everything was simply perfect. Kingsland behaved like an ass towards the end, and then groveled admirably enough to redeem himself beautifully in my eyes. The stunning epilogue was easily the best I've read in HR. 10 stars for this one! God, this was PERFECTION! The Duke who's pining in quiet for his secretary who has a terrible secret from her past, the side characters who adorn the story without taking over, everything was simply perfect. Kingsland behaved like an ass towards the end, and then groveled admirably enough to redeem himself beautifully in my eyes. The stunning epilogue was easily the best I've read in HR. 10 stars for this one!

  23. 4 out of 5

    nick (the infinite limits of love)

    I think I loved this one even more than the first book. Penelope and Hugh were SO GOOD together. There's so much mutual pining and the chemistry between the two is HOT. RTC CW: (view spoiler)[use of the word "savage", revenge porn, abusive parent (in the past), death of parent (off-page) (hide spoiler)] I think I loved this one even more than the first book. Penelope and Hugh were SO GOOD together. There's so much mutual pining and the chemistry between the two is HOT. RTC CW: (view spoiler)[use of the word "savage", revenge porn, abusive parent (in the past), death of parent (off-page) (hide spoiler)]

  24. 4 out of 5

    Sarah Verity

    *possible spoilers in all my reviews* Ok so, let me start off with I LOVE THIS HEROINE. Penelope is wonderful. She is smart and cute and just so sweet. And she knows what she wants! This girl is a virgin in 1800s England who is very self aware sexually and knows how to take care of her needs... and I loved it! I've never read a histrom with such an aware yet innocent heroine. She's superb. And then we have Hugh. Ahh.. Hugh Hugh Hugh... whatever will we do... with you..? (See what I did there) So, *possible spoilers in all my reviews* Ok so, let me start off with I LOVE THIS HEROINE. Penelope is wonderful. She is smart and cute and just so sweet. And she knows what she wants! This girl is a virgin in 1800s England who is very self aware sexually and knows how to take care of her needs... and I loved it! I've never read a histrom with such an aware yet innocent heroine. She's superb. And then we have Hugh. Ahh.. Hugh Hugh Hugh... whatever will we do... with you..? (See what I did there) So, Hugh is great. I love him. He's one of those emotionally-constipated heroes. And well, I have a soft spot for them. But, for multiple understandable reasons - i.e. age when he meets Penelope, his responsibilities, his history that has shaped him into the man he becomes, etc. - Hugh is rather slow-witted when it comes to realizing he has this amazing woman that's been living right under his own roof for like 8 years. Yea... EIGHT YEARS! Alas, his vision starts to become clear finally, and he starts to truly notice Penelope. Things start to get steamy and swoony and just a little bit wonderful! This is also the first histrom I've read that could count as a work place trope! So I found that another unique aspect. (I'm sure other more legit workplace histroms are out there, I just haven't read any!) As they become close with one-another they learn each other's secrets, and let me tell you that each of these lovely human beings had rather surprising not-so-lovely secrets. Hugh's secret definitely surprised me. I think for a few lines I just sat there in a perpetual "oh" pose. 😆 And when we discover Penelope's secret I felt heart-broken. I wanted to cry for her. I have a close friend who had something like this happen to her, in the modern-sense of course. (When you read the book you'll immediately understand. It's something that happens alot to people in this current day and age, what with our devices and the internet.) It was so sad and I felt horrible for her. I hated Hugh's reaction to her secret. (And it was because of the type of secret it was, and essentially because she was a woman) Penelope was non-judgmental when he confessed his secret. She was there for him immediately and was helpful and supportive. Hugh however was slightly disgusted and disappointed when he discovered hers. But given the time and society (hell, even current times, just not as bad) I can understand his reaction. I can also say given that, he still handled it well, better than most men or even women would have. And given his feelings about it, he still protected her and was not truly cruel. I think he handled the situation well, given how he felt, but he definitely could have handled it WAY better though too. But this also allowed for some wonderful groveling and emotional moments. Which I love. (I love some good drama in my romances!) Of course in the end they were there for one another and embraced each other and their pasts, and truly loved each other, flaws and all. Hugh quickly realized his mistake in his reaction. It was such a romantic and sweet and sensual story, yet with lots of angsty moments and drama. It was wonderful. I absolutely loved it. It's really hard to find histroms that I don't love. And even ones I'm not fully into, I still think are good. But this was definitely a unique one for me on so many different levels. It was great! Thank you so much Avon for sending me an early copy! ♡

  25. 5 out of 5

    eyes.2c

    Unusual! A workplace romance set at a time when roles and responsibilities were strictly adhered to. A Regency tale expounding the trope of the heroine entering a man’s world in a time when women just weren’t employed in such positions. The courageous Penelope Pettypeace becomes secretary to the Duke of Kingsland in a male dominated world. Hugh Brinsley-Norton, ninth Duke of Kingsland, is a leading investor and his philosophy is to take opportunities. After all, if they fail they can be cancelled Unusual! A workplace romance set at a time when roles and responsibilities were strictly adhered to. A Regency tale expounding the trope of the heroine entering a man’s world in a time when women just weren’t employed in such positions. The courageous Penelope Pettypeace becomes secretary to the Duke of Kingsland in a male dominated world. Hugh Brinsley-Norton, ninth Duke of Kingsland, is a leading investor and his philosophy is to take opportunities. After all, if they fail they can be cancelled. Penelope Pettypeace (I love the iteration of her name!) is a woman with a secret past, she’s a chameleon, able to walk away from a a life she’s conjured when needed. She hasn’t needed to so far. Her hidden identity is something she strictly guards. Even with all his resources Kingsland has not been able to uncover anything about her. Efficient to point of prescience Penelope takes to the investment world and secretly to Kingsland. Kingsland lives only for business, Penelope lives to assist his aims. He has his own set of darkness inherited from childhood. But it’s time to marry. His last effort didn’t go so well so he’s handed the task of choosing the perfect wife to meet his needs over to his perfect secretary. Her mission is clear—select his wife. After all his last attempt didn’t go so well so bring out the non negotiable requirements. (I have to say Kingsland’s either a man of his times, totally focused on his business, or insensitive. Marriage for him has become a business merger.)Penelope carries a notebook with a list of names, crossing off those who have some aspect that is not on Kingsland’s list of what he wants. This all seems sterile and cold untl the rules change! Suddenly Kingsland and Penelope find in each other a temporary fulfilment, something they both realize will be short lived until the right Duchess is found. Can they walk away from each other? When both are threatened by their pasts, how will the other react? An enjoyable read. An Avon / HarperVoyager ARC via NetGalley

  26. 4 out of 5

    Stacee

    I had read and loved the previous book in this series and couldn’t wait to dive into this one. I liked Penn and King well enough. They’re more alike than they think and I did enjoy how they came to rely on each other. I wasn’t expecting both of them to basically be pining after the other right from the beginning, so I was thrown on that. Unfortunately, it didn’t make for loads of chemistry and banter. Everything was neat and tidy, including the romance. Plot wise, it was a bit slow. There’s a lo I had read and loved the previous book in this series and couldn’t wait to dive into this one. I liked Penn and King well enough. They’re more alike than they think and I did enjoy how they came to rely on each other. I wasn’t expecting both of them to basically be pining after the other right from the beginning, so I was thrown on that. Unfortunately, it didn’t make for loads of chemistry and banter. Everything was neat and tidy, including the romance. Plot wise, it was a bit slow. There’s a lot of inner monologue and a lot of it is repetitive. I did like the thread with Lawrence and how that played out. And the two secrets were shocking, so there’s that. I do think my favorite part was the so very far in the future last paragraph. Overall, it was a good read, but missing the sparkle I always expect to see in Lorraine’s books. However, I can’t wait to see Marcus get his story. **Huge thanks to the publisher for providing the arc free of charge**

  27. 5 out of 5

    Luz Trevino

    The Duchess Hunt Book 2 in the Once Upon the Dukedom Series Rating: 4 stars Thank you to the publisher for the ARC given through NetGalley for review. All opinions are my own. The Duchess Hunt was a great story!! I enjoyed reading about a secretary who has felt an unrequited love for her boss who happens to be a duke. Sadly this duke is in search of a duchess and it is Penelope's job to find the best suited one for Hugh. I liked the slow pace of the story and how day by day Hugh was realizing that Pe The Duchess Hunt Book 2 in the Once Upon the Dukedom Series Rating: 4 stars Thank you to the publisher for the ARC given through NetGalley for review. All opinions are my own. The Duchess Hunt was a great story!! I enjoyed reading about a secretary who has felt an unrequited love for her boss who happens to be a duke. Sadly this duke is in search of a duchess and it is Penelope's job to find the best suited one for Hugh. I liked the slow pace of the story and how day by day Hugh was realizing that Penelope was becoming someone very important to him, beyond her top notch secretarial duties. There were times when I felt bad for Penelope because she was just falling more and more for him while finding Hugh the duchess who he thought he needed. They both had secrets from each other and it is once certain secrets of their past are revealed that the trust they built for each other was put to the test. I loved their bantering and romance! I highly recommend it and I look forwards to the next one in the series!!

  28. 5 out of 5

    PlotTrysts

    This is such a fun book! Penelope has been working as the secretary for the Duke of Kingsland for many years. In that time, she's become indispensable to the smooth running of his life... maybe a little TOO indispensable, because he has asked her to take charge of identifying his duchess. ⁠ ⁠ Really, she's the perfect person to do it, too - because she's made a study of knowing exactly what he wants. Too bad he's exactly what SHE wants, because she knows he's expecting her to choose someone else t This is such a fun book! Penelope has been working as the secretary for the Duke of Kingsland for many years. In that time, she's become indispensable to the smooth running of his life... maybe a little TOO indispensable, because he has asked her to take charge of identifying his duchess. ⁠ ⁠ Really, she's the perfect person to do it, too - because she's made a study of knowing exactly what he wants. Too bad he's exactly what SHE wants, because she knows he's expecting her to choose someone else to be his bride.⁠ ⁠ The Duchess Hunt is not only very fun, it has some very sexy carriage action (thanks Gigi for the heads up 😘) and maybe the cutest epilogue of all time. ⁠ This objective review is based on a complimentary copy of the novel.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Tammy

    This is Lorraine Heath’s second book in the “ONCE UPON A DUKEDOM” series, releasing 9/28/21. It can be read as a standalone. Loved it! ♥️ I devoured this incredible book in one sitting. The duke is seeking a wife and an heir, and puts the task of finding a bride in the hands of his very trusted secretary of eight years, Miss Penelope Pettypeace. Penelope harbors an unrequited love towards her employer, Hugh, the ninth Duke of Kingsland. Hugh cares about little more than making money and securing This is Lorraine Heath’s second book in the “ONCE UPON A DUKEDOM” series, releasing 9/28/21. It can be read as a standalone. Loved it! ♥️ I devoured this incredible book in one sitting. The duke is seeking a wife and an heir, and puts the task of finding a bride in the hands of his very trusted secretary of eight years, Miss Penelope Pettypeace. Penelope harbors an unrequited love towards her employer, Hugh, the ninth Duke of Kingsland. Hugh cares about little more than making money and securing success at any cost. With a small twist of fate, Hugh finds he does have a heart after all. This is the sweetest story about finding love where you least expect it. I can’t wait for the third book in this series. Thanks to Avon Books and Harper Voyager via NetGalley for kindly providing this ARC in exchange for an honest review.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Lana (Bibliomedico)

    I love Lorraine Heath writing style and mostly enjoy her books , they are entertaining , romantic and addictive . But this one was a big NO from me !! I didn't like the characters at all !! The plot wasn't exciting . But what really annoyed me is the potential !! After reading the blurb , This book promised something way different , it had a huge potential but ended up disappointing . I don't recommend this book but , still Heath's writing style is excellent SO , go read Heath other novels , they I love Lorraine Heath writing style and mostly enjoy her books , they are entertaining , romantic and addictive . But this one was a big NO from me !! I didn't like the characters at all !! The plot wasn't exciting . But what really annoyed me is the potential !! After reading the blurb , This book promised something way different , it had a huge potential but ended up disappointing . I don't recommend this book but , still Heath's writing style is excellent SO , go read Heath other novels , they are way better .

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