Miss Juliet Shelby has had a tendre for the dashing Lord Alec Deveril since she first met him, but as one of the “Ugly Ducklings” she knows he is well above her social standing and despite his gentlemanly manners and friendship she knows he will never want anything more. As well as being on a lower social rung, she is also crippled and cursed with a selfish overbearing mother who is ruthlessly intent on her marrying a man she finds repulsive and a little scary. But with one of Juliet’s old friends disappearance and the offer of dancing lessons, Alec and Juliet become close and neither can seem to deny their attraction.After reading How to Dance with a Duke I have been looking forward to reading the next in the Ugly Ducklings series and I wasn’t disappointed, it was fun, romantic and sweet. As with How to Dance with a Duke the book had a mystery to be solved, which gave Juliet and Alec an excuse to spend time together, but more then that the mystery itself was genuinely interesting if not a little disturbing (in a good way!) and I liked the unexpected twist at the end.

Although the title of the book How to Romance a Rake is deceiving as I thought Alec was in no way rakeish at all, he was a gentleman and a very sweet, gallant one and I did like him. He was the kind of man you would bring to meet your parents but would still ravish you on the carriage back home! Juliet, although I preferred Cecily from the first book, I still really liked and it isn’t often that you have a heroine with such a disfigurement.

This was an enjoyable almost a friends-to-lovers book where the hero and heroine were perfectly suited and an interesting mystery to make sure the story is told at a steady pace, I highly recommend it!

*ARC provided by publisher

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[about-author author=”Manda Collins”]

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