Review: How to Entice an Enchantress (The Duchess Diaries #3) by Karen Hawkins

This is the first book I’ve read by Karen Hawkins and I’m so glad I picked it up on a whim. I am a pug owner (I have three) and any book I read, especially a historical romance with pugs just makes my heart smile.

17571127The Duchess of Roxburghe is known for her matchmaking skills. With her sidekick Lady Charlotte and her pack of pugs at her side (six pugs! OMG!) she meets her biggest challenge yet… her godchildren. Can she make this match happen?

Dahlia Balfour is a beautiful bookish young lady. She is the youngest sister to two of the Duchess’ matchmaking successes. Also, she is one of many godchildren to the Duchess. Dahlia intelligent and practical with a romantic heart. She wants to find love and live happily ever after. She knows this can happen when the right gentleman comes along. Dahlia will not settle for anything less. She wants to be truly in love with the man of her dreams and he must feel the same and show it.

Viscount Kirk (Lord Kirk) is a widower. He is scarred due to the terrible accident that took his wife. He doesn’t care one whit what the world thinks of him or his manners. Though, he realizes he needs a wife to produce an heir. He has met Dahlia Balfour and spent many hours in her company talking about books. Kirk has decided they are compatible therefore they should marry. Only his godmother the Duchess can help.

Oooh the chemistry between Kirk and Dahlia is electric. From the moment they are in the same room there are sparks but not necessarily the sparks of a good kind. There is some history these two share that the Duchess and Lady Charlotte did not know; including a marriage proposal that really wasn’t very romantic. Dahlia and Kirk are very similar they feel they both are right. Which makes understanding one another very difficult. Dahlia believes in love, romance and poetry. Kirk believes love, romance and poetry is not real but compatibility and being practically is real and lasting. These two have a bumpy road before they realize what truly is important. Along the way we will meet some fun interesting characters that will help them see what is right in front of them.

I really enjoyed this read. It was fast pace with lots of intriguing characters and laugh out loud moments. Of course, a book with a group of pugs that were written to the breeds true characteristics makes me love it all the more. I loved the side stories and theme that maybe we aren’t always right and it’s ok to realize that maybe what we really want isn’t what we really need. I believe Ms. Hawkins has quite the backlist of books and I look forward to reading them.

Purchase How to Entice an Enchantress and other books by Karen Hawkins on Amazon and B&N.

-Romance Reader Girl

IMG_1042My Pugs!


Review: Any Duchess Will Do (Spindle Cove #4) by Tessa Dare

Readers, who challenged Tessa Dare to a book off? Because let me tell you, she put pen to paper and brought it! Oh my goodness! She rocked it in Any Duchess Will Do. I am a HUGE fan of the Spindle Cove Series and this one was stellar! This is a book you will want to read this summer. See why in my review below.


Pauline Simms is a serving girl in Spindle Cove. She is all things sassy with a keen mind. She is the daughter of a farmer and older sister to Daniela, a woman who has some challenges. Pauline has big dreams of working hard and opening a lending library in Spindle Cove, getting Daniela and herself out from underneath her bully of a father. When a grumpy duke wonders in and points to Pauline and says, “I pick her” her whole world is turned upside down and the chance of owning her lending library may be more of a reality than realized, but what will she give up to have her wildest dreams come true?

Surly, Griffin Eliot York, 8th duke of Halford has been drugged and taken to Spindle Cove to find a wife. Griff has no need or want for a wife. He wants to live his remaining days alone (he has a painful secret). However, the duchess (his mother) has other plans and wants grandchildren. She demands Griffin to pick any woman and she will train her to be the next duchess of Halford.

Griff strikes a deal with Pauline, if she goes along with plan for the duchess to put her in ‘duchess training’ and utterly fails, she will earn 1000 pounds. That is enough money to start her lending library and take care of Daniela. It’s an easy offer, essentially be yourself for a week, get some new gowns, eat fine food and at the end go home with 1000 pounds. How hard could it be? Add in a handsome duke hiding behind an emotional wall and a duchess that is hiding behind a hardshell, what could go wrong? Can both Pauline and Griff part ways after a week discovering that fate intervenes at the most inopportune of times?

One word for Any Duchess Will Do…S-P-E-C-T-A-C-U-L-A-R! This story is Tessa Dares best to date. I was laughing out loud within the first few pages and kept laughing throughout the story.

“A duchess might contemplate all manner of cutting remarks and frustrated oaths. But even in the face of extreme annoyance, she stifles such ejaculations.” “My,” Miss Simms said, wide-eyed. “I do hope dukes aren’t held to the same standard. Can’t be healthy for a man, always stifling his ejaculations.” -Pg 59 Any Duchess Will Do

Pauline’s fiery personality and Griff’s sarcastic point of view leaves them both perfectly match for awesome word duals. With the fire between them there is great passion and wonderful sweet tender moments. Oh and duchess is fabulous. This book is really about being true to yourself and own who you are. There will always be people out there that do not understand you or want and that’s ok, as long as you are happy with yourself, there is no reason to change for anyone. I have nothing but wonderful things to say about this book, it is just that great. The Spindle Cove series is wonderful and this book just makes it irresistible. I would highly recommend this series and book. 

A Week to be Wicked was previously my favorite of this series, but it now comes in at a close second to Any Duchess Will Do.

Spindle Cove Series:

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You can purchase Tessa Dare’s book on Amazon or Barnes & Noble.

Reach out to Tessa via her website or Facebook.

-Romance Reader Girl