When cousin Cyril is accidentally killed in a carriage accident, Raphael Flynn, as next of kin, inherits the mantle of Duke of Hartholm. Not only doesn’t he want to be tied down to the duties of the realm, but along with the title comes a bride with an impending wedding date. Neither Serafina McPhee nor Rafe want to participate in the nuptials, but there is an ironclad document and an insistent father. Although the Notorious Flynns are known for their scandals, Rafe must consider the future of his sister Annabelle as well as the reputation of the innocent Serafina by honoring the commitment. Despite his reputation as a Rake, Rafe is also an honorable man who loves his family. Serafina is accepted into the fold, and Rafe tries his best to make her feel loved and wanted despite the baggage she has experienced in the past. While Rafe’s feelings for his Sera evolve into true love, she continues to keep him at arms length, except when they are in the throes of passion.
The Other Duke by Jess Michaels is Book One in the Notorious Flynn series. We get to meet Raphael, Crispin, and Annabelle along with their mom, Alexandra. Always on the fringes of the Upper Ten Thousand, now that Raphael is a Duke, there are numerous invitations to decline, but many which must be accepted. With Serafina’s expertise from years of study to function as a duke’s wife, Rafe has a guide to show him the way. Surely there are some worthy members of the Ton and worthwhile causes where the Flynn’s money can make a difference. Serafina captures Rafe’s heart with her courage in the face of adversity, even though she is a coward in matters of the heart. Expect some steamy sex scenes as Rafe woos his previously wounded Sera and ignites her passionate capabilities.
The witty dialogue and character development keeps the readers’ interest. There is a tad too much repetition of the main characters woes as they try to deny their budding love for one another. However, there is also some surprise action which gives a little twist at the end. A simple, straight forward Regency Romance taking place from 1813-1814 which is sure to appeal to fans of this genre. Three and a half stars.