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Author: Juliana Gray

HOW TO SCHOOL YOUR SCOUNDREL by Juliana Gray

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Source: Publisher
This book may be unsuitable for people under 17 years of age due to its use of sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and/or violence.
HOW TO SCHOOL YOUR SCOUNDREL by Juliana GrayHow to School Your Scoundrel by Juliana Gray
Series: Prince in Hiding #3
Published by Penguin on 2014-06-03
Genres: Historical
Pages: 320
Reviewed by Shayna

Three intrepid princesses find themselves targets in a deadly plot against the crown—until their uncle devises a brilliant plan to keep them safe... Princess Luisa has devoted her life to duty, quietly preparing to succeed her father as ruler. Nothing, however, primed her to live on the run, disguised as a personal secretary to a notorious English scoundrel. The earl is just the man to help her reclaim her throne, but Luisa is drawn to her powerful employer in ways she never imagined... Philip, Earl of Somerton, has spent six years married to a woman in love with another man—he refuses to become a fool due to imprudent emotions ever again. Only, as his carefully laid plans for vengeance falter, fate hands him hope for redemption in the form of a beautiful and determined young princess who draws him into a risky game of secrets, seduction, and betrayal. And while his cunning may be enough to save her life, nothing can save him from losing his heart...

Crown Princess Luisa of Holstein-Schweinwald-Huhnhof watched as the entire life she was raised to lead got turned upside down by the revolutionaries who murdered her father and her husband.  Now disguised as a man and living in England while her uncle works to regain her crown, Luisa has gone from princess to personal secretary of the most dangerous man in England.  The Earl of Somerton is dark, lethal, and extremely bitter.  His wife is in love with another man and his focus has devolved into a quest for vengeance.  Only Luisa seems able to reach him.  But can she tell the man who trusts almost no one that she’s been keeping secrets from him?  Even if he forgives her deception and promises to help her cause, Luisa isn’t so sure Somerton will ever be able to open his heart to her…and she’s very afraid she’s already lost hers to him.

 

The fate of a small German principality is decided in How to School Your Scoundrel.  In the third Princess in Hiding book, Juliana Gray has penned a story filled with action, disguises, deception, redemption, and love.

 

Somerton is not an easy hero to like, but I grew to care about him fairly quickly, thanks to Ms. Gray’s talent.  Somerton has never known love or genuine kindness, and each time he’s opened his heart he’s been slapped in the face in return.  His marriage comes across as a twisted Beauty and the Beast story, one where Beauty would never give the beast a chance because he wasn’t the Adonis of her dreams.  Somerton has become someone extremely bitter and hurt and it takes Luisa to bring him from the darkness to the light.  Luisa is smart, capable, and just a bit cheeky.  She doesn’t back down from Somerton and isn’t afraid to speak her mind.  The two of them are a great pair and their relationship – both before it turned into a romance and after – gives How to School Your Scoundrel life.

 

How to School Your Scoundrel is a fast-paced read for the most part.  The overarching series plot of the revolutionaries in Luisa’s country adds action to the story.  Though I won’t spoil what happens, I will say that Ms. Gray resolves this plotline in a satisfying manner.  Where How to School Your Scoundrel dragged was the plot involving Somerton’s wife.  There seemed to be good chunks of the story missing, likely because Elizabeth and her lover are the hero and heroine of another book (A Gentleman Never Tells) and Somerton is presumably the villain in that story.  Not having read A Gentleman Never Tells I only got Somerton’s point of view and thus many of the events in his book that paralleled Elizabeth’s story seemed out of place when they were only part of a larger story.

 

All in all, How to School Your Scoundrel is an enjoyable read and an excellent conclusion to the Princess in Hiding trilogy.  I adored Luisa and Somerton together and their stellar chemistry had me turning the pages of their book late into the night.

HOW TO TAME YOUR DUKE by Author Juliana Gray

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Source: Publisher
This book may be unsuitable for people under 17 years of age due to its use of sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and/or violence.
HOW TO TAME YOUR DUKE by Author Juliana GrayHow to Tame Your Duke by Juliana Gray
Published by Penguin on 2013-06-04
Genres: Historical
Pages: 320
Reviewed by Shayna

Three intrepid princesses find themselves targets in a deadly plot against the crown—until their uncle devises a brilliant plan to keep them safe... England, 1888. Quiet and scholarly Princess Emilie has always avoided adventure, until she’s forced to disguise herself as a tutor in the household of the imposing Duke of Ashland, a former soldier disfigured in battle and abandoned by his wife. When chance draws her into a secret liaison with the duke, Emilie can’t resist the opportunity to learn what lies behind his forbidding mask, and find out what adventure really means... The duke never imagines that his son’s tutor and his mysterious golden-haired beauty are one and the same. But when the true identity of his lover is laid bare, Ashland must face the demons in his past in order to safeguard both his lady—and his heart.

Emilie is the quietest of the three princesses of Holstein-Schweinwald-Huhnhof, but beneath the calm façade is a woman who wants more than the staid life of a princess.  When her father is murdered and she and her sisters are forced to flee Germany, Emilie gets the adventure she’s always yearned for.  Separated from her sisters and disguised as a man, Emilie takes a position as tutor to the Duke of Ashland’s son.  Her new position is not without its cost, however, and the price of playing a man is not being able to give into her feelings for her new employer.  Ashland bears scars inside and out and the temptation he presents too much for Emilie to resist.  It’s a risky game, playing both tutor and seductive stranger, but Emilie succeeds in capturing the duke’s heart.  But what will happen when Ashland learns that his mystery woman is not only a member of his household, but a princess being targeted by assassins?

 

Juliana Gray has constructed a plot worthy of the Bard himself.  Disguises, intrigue, danger, and romance fill the pages of How to Tame Your Duke and I, for one, could not be happier.

 

Emilie is the scholarly middle sister of the three Holstein-Schweinwald-Huhnhof Princesses.  All her life she’s been defined by her role as princess, but now that she has a chance to break free, Emilie truly comes into her own.  I loved that she was a mix of bluestocking, adventurer, and romantic.  She was the perfect match in every way for Ashland.  The duke in question is a man who deserves all the happiness that comes his way.  He’s honorable and caring, but his time on the battlefield has left him deeply scarred outside and the abandonment of his wife has left its own marks within.  He’s a good man, but not fully alive until Emilie comes along, and watching his interaction with Emilie both as his mystery woman and as “Grimsby,” his son’s tutor, was a delight.  And speaking of his son, Freddie might just be my favorite character in How to Tame Your Duke.  The young lord is a teenager too smart for his own good, which made him a wonderfully entertaining character.  Indeed, it’s Freddie who brings the bright spots to How to Tame Your Duke, ensuring there is humor mixed in with the seriousness and suspense.

 

How to Tame Your Duke is the first book in a trilogy featuring Emilie and her two sisters.  Though we don’t see much of Stefanie or Luisa, I’m eager to learn more about them and the fate of the German principality they call home.  I finished How to Tame Your Duke a well-satisfied reader, and I can’t wait to read Stefanie’s book, How to Master Your Marquis!

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