Tuesday, January 4, 2011

The Unclaimed Duchess by Jenna Petersen

This was another excellent read from Jenna Peterson. We get the story of the stuck up, proud Rhys Carlisle, Duke of Waverly, and his betrothed from birth wife Lady Anne. Upon arriving home from their honeymoon, their neighbor and friend, Simon delivers some devastating news to Rhys that makes him take off immediately without even a goodbye to Anne. Anne is devastated and sets out to find out where her husband is and makes Simon tell her of the one place Rhys used to go as a child that made him happy. Anne heads to the small countryside cottage, surprising Rhys who orders her to leave. She refuses as she can see he is in deep pain but he will not confide in her. Then Rhys deals Anne the news that they must divorce, but will not tell her why, and therefore they can not risk getting Anne pregnant.
Now, Anne has been in love with Rhys ever since they were children and he protected her from his friends and she refuses to listen to Rhys and sets about trying to seduce him and praying to keep her marriage real. Rhys and Anne spend ten wonderful, passionate (hot!) days together and Rhys slowly lets down his tough guard that has been installed in him from his father. After all, nothing is more important than bloodlines.... Rhys late father had installed in him how to be a proper, cold duke and that they are more important than everyone else. So it was wonderful to see Anne slowly chip away at some of that stubborn pride and remind him of that a caring duke can do great things for others as well.
Unfortunately, Anne and Rhys must return home to London and Rhys is still intent on his plans to separate from Anne, still not telling her his secret. When he finally reveals all to her, her love continues strong for him but she grows angry at his continual dismissal of their marriage and future together. When a blackmailer threatens to expose all, she fears she has lost him forever. The ending was very pleasant and resolved the situations nicely I thought. The epilogue once again led up to what should be another excellent book in this series. I loved how Anne stayed strong and finally broke down Rhys barriers with her love and I can not wait to read more from Ms Petersen. 4 stars

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