Lilian and the Irresistible Duke by Virginia Heath review and giveaway

dukesource: ARC courtesy of Rachels Random Resources
title: Lilian and the Irresistible Duke (Secrets of a Victorian Household Book 4)
author: Virginia Heath / Twitter
genre: historical romance
published: February 1, 2020
pages: 288
first line: Lilian huddled beneath her fancy new shawl, enjoying the bracing sea breeze almost as much as the soft heat of the early morning sunrise.
rated: 4 out of 5
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about:

Lilian and the Irresistible Duke

A reunion in Rome…Sparks an affair to remember!

Responsible widow Lilian Fairclough is persuaded to travel to Rome for a hard-earned break and to let down her hair! She’s surprised to be reunited with passionate, cynical Italian duke, Pietro Venturi. He reawakens her sensual side and intrigues her with glimpses of pain beneath his rakish surface. Enticed into a secret and temporary affair – what will happen once she returns home?

Purchase Link – Lilian and the Irresistible Duke

my thoughts:

Lilian and the Irresistible Duke is book 4 in Virginia Heath’s Secrets of a Victorian Household series. I have not read the previous books in this series, but this reads fine as a stand alone.

Lilian Fairclough is a 45 year old mother and widow who a few months prior in the previous book in this series shared a passionate kiss during a carriage ride with Italian duke Pietro Venturi. She is now on her way to Rome for a vacation. Her adult children are happily married and they wanted her to get a way for a while and relax. She goes to Rome with her cousin to stay with a friend for several weeks. Little does she know she will run into the tall, dark and handsome Pietro Venturi while on her vacation.

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Nights in Rodanthe by Nicholas Sparks

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source: purchased
title: Nights in Rodanthe
author: Nicholas Sparks
genre: contemporary romance
pages: 212
published: 2002
first line: Three years earlier, on a warm November morning in 1999, Adrienne Willis had returned to the Inn and at first glance had thought it unchanged, as if the small Inn were impervious to sun and sand and salted mist.  
rated: 5 out of 5
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blurb:
Adrienne Willis is 45 and has been divorced for three years, abandoned by her husband for a younger woman. The trials of raising her teenage children and caring for her sick father have worn her down, but at the request of a friend and in hopes of respite, she’s gone to the coastal village of Rodanthe in North Carolina to tend the local inn for the weekend. With a major storm brewing, the time away doesn’t look promising…until a guest named Paul Flanner arrives. At 54, Paul is a successful surgeon, but in the previous six months his life has unraveled into something he doesn’t recognize. Estranged from his son and recently divorced, he’s sold his practice and his home and has journeyed to this isolated town in hopes of closing a painful chapter in his past. Adrienne and Paul come together as the storm brews over Rodanthe, but what begins between them over the weekend will resonate throughout the rest of their lives, intertwining past and future, love and loss.

my thoughts:
Nights in Rodanthe is a re-read for me. After hitting a mini reading slump with the mystery book I was reading, I decided to grab something I knew I would enjoy to try to get back on my reading track.

There is something about a Nicholas Sparks book, they are definitely comfort reads for when I am in the mood for romance with heart. They are the literary equivalent of a cozy cup of hot chocolate and freshly baked cookies. According to Goodreads, I first read Nights in Rodanthe in 2010. I really enjoyed it the second time around.

“Despite all that had happened in the years that had passed since then, Adrienne still held tight to the belief that love was the essence of a full and wonderful life.”
– Nicholas Sparks, Nights in Rodanthe

My favorite Sparks novels center around middle-aged couples like Adrienne and Paul. In this one these two are both at a crossroads in their lives. Adrienne’s husband left her a few years ago for a younger co-worker. She is raising three teenagers on her own and works part-time at the library after being a housewife and stay at home mom all her married life. She still grieves the loss of her marriage and throws herself into working and being a caretaker leaving no time for herself.

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