Duke of Desire – Review

Duke of Desire by Elizabeth Hoyt
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Duke of Desire

Maiden Lane

Elizabeth Hoyt

Release Date: October 17, 2017


Refined, kind, and intelligent, Lady Iris Jordan finds herself the unlikely target of a diabolical kidnapping.  Her captors are the notoriously evil Lords of Chaos.  When one of the masked-and-nude!-Lords spirits her away to his carriage, she shoots him…only to find she may have been a trifle hasty.


Cynical, scarred, and brooding, Raphael de Chartres, the Duke of Dyemore, has made it his personal mission to infiltrate the Lords of Chaos and destroy them.  Rescuing Lady Jordan was never in his plans.  But now with the Lords out to kill them both, he has but one choice: marry the lady in order to keep her safe.


Much to Raphael’s irritation, Iris insists on being the sort of duchess who involves herself in his life—and bed.  Soon he’s drawn to both to her quick wit and her fiery passion.  But when Iris discovers that Raphael’s past may be even more dangerous than the present, she falters.  Is their love strong enough to withstand not only the Lords of Chaos but also Raphael’s own demons?

Amount of sex 3.5 / 5
How explicit 5 / 5
Story 5 / 5
Overall: 5 / 5

What’s a girl to do when a group of naked men in masks want to rape and kill you? Fight back and hope the very nicely endowed guy in the wolf mask helps you out. Ha and you’ve just gotten an awesome preview of his body, so why not marry him (of course after you’ve shot him).

I loved Duke of Desire! It was a compelling and different story than the usual maiden at odds with the hot guy (don’t get me wrong there was lots of that too). It also is very steamy and panty melting when it gets to the spicy parts of the story (which doesn’t happen for a while hence the 3.5). Within the first few pages, Iris is being led in front of several dozen naked men after being taken by force after her friend’s wedding. Well turns out that the Lords of Chaos have mistaken her, but the hot guy in the wolf mask wants to take her and promises to kill her after he’s done with her. As he takes her away, she shoots him, oh but he doesn’t mean to harm her, he was only trying to get her away from the debauchery. Darn it – now he can’t physically protect and convinces her (without much arm twisting) to marry him.

I couldn’t put down this action-packed story. Despite its rapid pace, it also has a deep story of what can happen when a man’s desires circumvent everything. The characters are unique in how they relate to this central theme in the story.

My only complaint is the cover. I usually don’t care about the cover, it is the writer’s marketing machine that usually creates them, and therefore I usually care less about them. However, the main character Raphael de Chartres, the Duke of Dyemore, whom I presume is the cover character, is supposed to have an enormous scar on his face. It is an important part of the story and understanding of the character’s motives. Making him scar-less on the cover is an insult to this masterful story.

Desperately she flung herself at the opposite seat and tugged it up. Thrust her hand in.

A pistol.

She cocked it, desperately praying that it was loaded.

She turned and aimed it at the door to the carriage just as the door swung open.

The Wolf loomed in the doorway—still nude—a lantern in one hand. She saw the eyes behind the mask flick to the pistol she held between her bound hands. He turned his head and said something in an incomprehensible language to someone outside.

Iris felt her breath sawing in and out of her chest.

He climbed into the carriage and closed the door, completely ignoring her and the pistol pointed at him. The Wolf hung the lantern on a hook and sat on the seat across from her.

Finally he glanced at her. “Put that down.”

His voice was calm. Quiet.

With just a hint of menace.

She backed into the opposite corner, as far away from him as possible, holding the pistol up. Level with his chest. Her heart was pounding so hard it nearly deafened her. “No.”

The carriage jolted into motion, making her stumble before she caught herself.

“T-tell them to stop the carriage,” she said, stuttering with terror despite her resolve. “Let me go now.”

“So that they can rape you to death out there?” He tilted his head to indicate the Lords. “No.”

“At the next village, then.”

“I think not.”

He reached for her and she knew she had no choice.

She shot him.

The blast blew him into the seat and threw her hands up and back, the pistol narrowly missing her nose.

Iris scrambled to her feet. The bullet was gone, but she could still use the pistol as a bludgeon.

The Wolf was sprawled across the seat, blood streaming from a gaping hole in his right shoulder. His mask had been knocked askew on his face.

She reached forward and snatched it off.

And then gasped.

The face that was revealed had once been as beautiful as an angel’s but was now horribly mutilated. A livid red scar ran from just below his hairline on the right side of his face, bisecting the eyebrow, somehow missing the eye itself but gouging a furrow into the lean cheek and catching the edge of his upper lip, making it twist. The scar ended in a missing divot of flesh in the line of the man’s severe jaw. He had inky black hair and, though they were closed now, Iris knew he had emotionless crystal-gray eyes.

She knew because she recognized him.

He was Raphael de Chartres, the Duke of Dyemore, and when she’d danced with him—once—three months ago at a ball, she’d thought he’d looked like Hades.

God of the underworld.

God of the dead.

She had no reason to change her opinion now.

Then he gasped, those frozen crystal eyes opened, and he glared at her. “You idiot woman. I’m trying to save you.”


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Rating Report
Amount of sex
3.5 / 5
How explicit
5 / 5
5 / 5
Overall: 5 / 5

2 thoughts on “Duke of Desire – Review”

  1. Great review. Thanks for the post. Love Elizabeth Hoyt’s Maiden Lane Series.
    Carol L
    Lucky4750 (at) aol (dot) com

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