Review: NO GOOD DUKE GOES UNPUNISHED by Sarah MacLean

no good duke

 

 

Book Info:

Title: No Good Duke Goes Unpunished
Author: Sarah MacLean
Series: The Rules of Scoundrels #3
Genre: Historical Romance
Publisher: Avon
Release Date: November 26, 2013
Source: Bought Paperback copy

 

Book Blurb:

A rogue ruined . . .

He is the Killer Duke, accused of murdering Mara Lowe on the eve of her wedding. With no memory of that fateful night, Temple has reigned over the darkest of London’s corners for twelve years, wealthy and powerful, but beyond redemption. Until one night, Mara resurfaces, offering the one thing he’s dreamed of . . . absolution.

A lady returned . . .

Mara planned never to return to the world from which she’d run, but when her brother falls deep into debt at Temple’s exclusive casino, she has no choice but to offer Temple a trade that ends in her returning to society and proving to the world what only she knows . . . that he is no killer.

A scandal revealed . . .

It’s a fine trade, until Temple realizes that the lady—and her past—are more than they seem. It will take every bit of his strength to resist the pull of this mysterious, maddening woman who seems willing to risk everything for honor . . . and to keep from putting himself on the line for love.

 

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My Review:

This novel never did go how I thought it would be. But then, I’m glad because I am no genius and I don’t have the talent that Sarah MacLean has by the loads. She gives us another unconventional but so special love story that will stay with readers for a long time.

How would you reconcile vindication with happiness or vengeance with love? This book serves up these questions and more in one artistically done, beautifully written piece of literature that’s the latest from Sarah MacLean and her Rules of Scoundrels series.

I love Temple and Mara. They are such complex and dynamic characters.

But as much as I love the characters, I think my favorite thing about this particular book is the conflict. And I don’t say this much often. As readers and writers would say, the conflict is basically what makes a story. Without conflict, there would be no story at all. And this particular one, oh, the conflict just takes you by your hands and never let go.

Imagine waking up and finding yourself with no clear memory of what happened the night before only to find yourself drenched in blood which is not yours. Imagine being labeled and known as a killer for the rest of your life. Imagine doubting yourself because since you have no memory of that night, you are not sure if you really did commit murder or not. Imagine yourself thrown off the life you’ve known, the legacy that was your supposed destiny, because of that turn in your life. And then imagine one night, the very same woman whom you supposedly murdered revealing herself to you, alive. What would you do?

On the other hand, imagine yourself on the eve of your marriage to a man old enough to be your father. Imagine having to follow the demands and wishes of your own father whose main priority was securing for his name and family nobility once and for all amid all the wealth he has already accumulated. Imagine devising and executing successfully a plan that allowed you to run away from everything that is keeping you as prisoner in life only to find yourself, years later, again at the mercy of other men when your own brother gambles and loses every penny that you have kept for the orphanage you have helped found. Imagine that man is none other than the man whose life you ruined because he was falsely accused of murdering you.

Now tell me if that isn’t conflict or what? Genius. I don’t have any other way of describing it.

It’s the journey towards the resolution of this amazing conflict that is also the magic that reading this book will give you. I love the slow building romance between the two. I love that they are clearly very attracted to each other but again for a relationship or even a friendship to begin between these two people who have to so much past, so much history, they have to get past so many issues.

There were a few times that I got a bit restless because they were holding on so tightly to their issues, Temple with his quest for retribution and vindication, Mara with the feelings of guilt and calls to her conscience about what she did to Temple, but upon further inspection, I realized that their respective actions were completely understandable. The depth of their past and the span of the consequences of this is in no way simple or easy.

Plus, it was such an amazing experience reading about the fights of Temple in the ring. It was only mentioned in the previous books but it was an entirely unique addition to the story and to my reading experience to this particular genre in general. And it offered one of the hottest scenes in this book. I’ll leave you with that teaser. (So go on and read this amazing book!)

Next up? Chase’s story! (I can’t wait for this for so long!)

My Rating:

5 stars

 

About the Author:

macleanSarah spent much of her childhood lurking in the stacks of her local library, where she developed both her passion for history and her commitment to the romance genre.

Her love of all things historical helped to earn her degrees in history and cultural anthropology from Smith College and Harvard University before she moved to New York City, where she finally set pen to paper and wrote her first book. Since then, MacLean’s romance novels have been New York Times and USA Today best-sellers, translated into more than a dozen languages, and nominated for numerous awards.

MacLean burst onto the romance scene with Nine Rules to Break When Romancing A Rake, the first in her best-selling and critically acclaimed three-book Love By Numbers series. In early 2012, she began her new, pre-Victorian Rules of Scoundrels series with A Rogue by Any Other Name, which received the 2013 RITA award from the Romance Writers of America.

When she is not writing romance, Sarah travels the country to discuss the romance genre and its place in both gender and cultural studies. Her columns have appeared in the New York Times Book Review, the Washington Post andParents Magazine. She is also a vocal advocate for issues relating to education and literacy. She lives in New York City with her husband, her daughter and their dog.

Connect with Sarah MacLean:

Website  |  Instagram  |  Twitter  |  Facebook  |  Goodreads  |  Pinterest

 

 

Other books in the series:

a rogue by any other name one good earl

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7 thoughts on “Review: NO GOOD DUKE GOES UNPUNISHED by Sarah MacLean”

  1. Hi, Camille!

    This was such a wonderful review of one my favourite reads so far this year. You pose an excellent question at the start of your review (“How would you reconcile vindication with happiness or vengeance with love?”) and I loved how MacLean manages to answer this question so clearly by the end of the story.

    Like you, I’m excited for Chase’s story. ^_^

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    1. Thanks Tin! 🙂 One Good Earl is my favorite of the three but this one was just perfectly done.. and omg i can’t even begin to imagine the agony of waiting for chase’s story..

      Like

  2. I just finished reading this book and it didn’t work for me. My main problem is that I don’t think Mara was ever really sorry for what she did to Temple. The author had the character say she was sorry, but as a reader, this never came through for me. Mara’s solution to her problem ruined someone’s life and I don’t think the plot ever got beyond this.

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  3. I have not read this book yet, but the way Camille presents her review inspires me to make a dash to the nearest bookstore and grab the latest copy. Can’t wait to read this book; Now!

    Like

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