Monday, October 1, 2012

Review of The Ugly Duchess by Eloisa James

Title/Author: The Ugly Duchess (Fairy Tales #4) by Eloisa James
Publisher/Date published: Avon, August 28th 2012
How I got this book: received it from the publisher as an egalley

Goodreads summary: "How can she dare to imagine he loves her…when all London calls her The Ugly Duchess?
Theodora Saxby is the last woman anyone expects the gorgeous James Ryburn, heir to the Duchy of Ashbrook, to marry. But after a romantic proposal before the prince himself, even practical Theo finds herself convinced of her soon-to-be duke's passion.
Still, the tabloids give the marriage six months.
Theo would have given it a lifetime... until she discovers that James desired not her heart, and certainly not her countenance, but her dowry. Society was shocked by their wedding; it's scandalized by their separation.
Now James faces the battle of his lifetime, convincing Theo that he loved the duckling who blossomed into the swan.
And Theo will quickly find that for a man with the soul of a pirate, All's Fair in Love — or War."

I was a bit hesitant to start The Ugly Duchess, because I was disappointed with The Duke Is Mine, or more accurately: the second half of The Duke Is Mine. But I'm happy to say The Ugly Duchess did not suffer from the same problems as The Duke is Mine did!

The plot was pretty unique as far as romance plots go! I've never before read about a man forced into marriage, being made to leave by his wife and then turning pirate! It was SO GOOD! I mean, there's all this tension BEFORE the big event after which she tells him to never come back, because you KNOW something is bound to go wrong because you've read the summary and know this.

Eloisa James really shows what a great storyteller she is with The Ugly Duchess! I was swept up in the story and I could easily see both sides of the fight Theo and James were having! I'm usually angry at one of the parties, but in this one I was just so sad for them both!

I thought Theo was a really strong female character. She knows what she wants and she takes care of business after James leaves England. I love how she managed to turn the estate profitable again and how she's not ready to just fall into James' arms straight away when he comes back.

And James! *le sigh* That man... He is just swoonworthy and a good man underneath it all. He had issues with both his parents and it has made him into the slightly damaged, but beautiful man he is. I loved how he genuinely finds Theo beautiful, even when she's not conventionally so according to the rest of the world. Goes to show how beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

Together they had amazing chemistry! Everything that was missing in The Duke Is Mine was there for me in The Ugly Duchess: a likeable hero and heroine, sexy sexytimes, tension, wonderful chemistry and a couple I could root for! Also: PIRATES! They make everything better. The only thing that would have made it better and would have made me give it 5 stars is if I would have cried. But maybe better luck next time?

My rating: 4,5 stars


  1. Daisy!! So glad you liked it so much!! And after reading this review, freaking awesome, I'm sure as hell going to read this!! :) :)

  2. This sounds like SO MUCH FUN! I definitely need to read more Eloisa James books, and I'm kind of tempted to start with this one...

  3. I'm glad this one worked out better than the duke is mine. Like you, I also give books extra points if they can make me cry. The book sounds interesting but Ms James and I don't click well. LOL

    Also, I actually don't like ugly duckling stories all that much.