Review: What A Difference A Duke Makes by Lenora Bell

Posted April 9th 2018 by The GingerSnap in Blog Tours, Giveaways, Reviews / 0 Comments

Review: What A Difference A Duke Makes by Lenora Bell


What a Difference a Duke Makes

Review: What A Difference A Duke Makes by Lenora Bell
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.
Author: Lenora Bell
Series: School for Dukes #1
Publisher: Avon
Release date: March 27th 2018
Genres: Adult, Historical, Romance
Pages: 384
Format: eBook
Source: Pure Textuality PR
Add to TBR: Goodreads
Purchase: Amazon UK | Amazon US | The Book Depository | iBooks | Kobo

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Star rating:
Heat rating: three-half-flames

Wanted: Governess for duke's unruly children

Edgar Rochester, Duke of Banksford, is one of the wealthiest, most powerful men in England, but when it comes to raising twins alone, he knows he needs help. The only problem is the children have chased away half the governesses in London. Until the clever, bold, and far-too-enticing Miss Mari Perkins arrives.

Lost: One heart to an arrogant duke

Mari knows how to wrap even the most rebellious children around her finger. But their demanding, wickedly handsome father? He won't be quite so easy to control. And there's something else she can't seem to command. Her heart. The foolish thing beats so wildly every time the duke is near.

Found: A forbidden passion neither can deny

As his employee, Mari is strictly off-limits. But what if she's the one breaking all his rules? In the game of governess versus duke, how can Edgar maintain his defenses when the only thing he wants to do is let the tempting beauty win?


The GingerSnap’s review

This book was exactly what I needed this weekend while I was stuck on the couch with a cold. It’s heart-warming, full of good, honest characters, and will have you rooting for HEAs all around. I devoured it in two sittings and kind of wish I could just read it from the beginning again.

Edgar Rochester is a classic grumposaurus, feelings-averse workaholic who doesn’t know how to person when he finds himself suddenly thrust into the role of father to his two vivacious twins, Adele and Michel, after the death of their mother, his former mistress. Adele and Michel are insanely bright and creative kids, but their energy and previous lack of boundaries mean they don’t understand how to fit into their new aristocratic world after a childhood spent frolicking on the beaches of France.

Thankfully, Mari Perkins, whose name is suspiciously close to Marry Poppins (and with good reason, as she is Queen Governess of all the Governesses because of her awesomeness), arrives to save the day. She’s the governess they’ve needed all along– she’s kind, encouraging, creative, and gives them the love and affection they’ve been craving but haven’t gotten from Edgar. The scenes of Mari interacting with Adele and Michel were some of my favourite of the book, because it’s clear how much she cares for them, and how competent she is at her job. She knows exactly how to handle them in a way that gives them the reassurance and confidence they need to grow and develop, and it was such a joy to read how she interacts with them.

Not going to lie, though– as much fun as it was to read about Mari and the kiddos, it was 10x more fun to witness the steamy sexual tension erupting between Edgar and Mari from the moment they meet. Edgar is an avid inventor and developer, tinkering to create the newest and most efficient fire engine and advance railroad technology in England. He doesn’t have time for anything except his work, which makes it all the more enjoyable to see him in the classic alpha male conundrum, which I will illustrate below in Cookie Monster language, as I think it best suits the situation.

  • Male: pretty lady! arg! Me feel feelings!
  • Female, doing things and being a person.
  • Male: Me feel even more feelings! Argh! Me want to kiss her!
  • Female, being sassy and saucy and inviting
  • Male: Conflicting thoughts! What me supposed to do?! FEELINGS.

Thankfully, Edgar gets his shit together and he and Mari engage in some top-notch making out and third-basing, followed by the world’s best balcony-to-bed sex I’ve seen this side of the 19th century. Also– he makes sure that Mari is 1. comfortable 2. pleasured 3. happy before anything else happens in the bedroom. I am all for this. Can this happen in every book for the rest of time?

Best part of the book, though? Mari getting into a sticky situation with her former almost-employer, who rats her past out to Edgar, who declares he doesn’t give a flying fig about her past and loves her just as she is, and he’ll throttle anyone who defames her. PROTECTIVENESS AT ITS BEST, Y’ALL.

I have no complaints about this book. Not one. It was basically perfect. Good plot, good writing, good characters who all deserve the happiest of endings, and a hero who prioritises his heroine’s pleasure over his own. Read it, friends!!


I would recommend this book to…

Lovers of grumpy heroes with hearts of gold, badass governesses who make Mary Poppins look like a half-assed babysitter, balcony fondling, and hilariously quippy children you just want to hug


About Lenora Bell

Lenora Bell is a USA Today bestselling, award-winning author of historical romances. She blames the long, dark winters in her tiny Alaskan hometown for making her a lifelong bookworm. A teacher with an MFA in Creative Writing who has lived on five continents, Lenora currently shares an old farmhouse in the Pacific Northwest with her carpenter husband and two tiger-striped rescue kitties. She loves to hear from readers!



Open to US shipping addresses only. One winner will receive a cloth bag filled with paperback copies of What a Difference a Duke Makes and Lenora Bell’s entire back list. This giveaway is administered by Pure Textuality PR on behalf of Avon Romance. Giveaway ends 4/9/2018 @ 11:59pm EST. Avon Romance will send the winning copies out to the winner directly. Limit one entry per reader and mailing address. Duplicates will be deleted.

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