cover image A Duke Like No Other

A Duke Like No Other

Valerie Bowman. St. Martin’s, $7.99 mass market (368p) ISBN 978-1-250-12173-8

Bowman’s ninth Playful Brides Regency (after The Right Kind of Rogue) reunites a career soldier and his independent wife after a 10-year separation. Gen. Mark Grimaldi has political aspirations of becoming the next home secretary after spending his adult life in the military. Upon learning that he must be married in order to be considered for the position, Mark travels to France to ask his estranged wife, Nicole, to return to England with him until he achieves his goal. She agrees to Mark’s conditions as long as he will consent to fathering a child with her. Mark and Nicole are both unprepared for the intense mutual longing they experience when reunited, and they are haunted by the misunderstandings of their pasts. When an unexpected death puts Mark next in line to inherit a title, Mark and Nicole join forces to investigate the murder, and their interactions sizzle with emotions and sensuality. The fast pace of the novel is enhanced by delightful characters who are defined not by their class but by their integrity. This is a strong entry in an enjoyable series. Agent: Kevan Lyon, Marsal Lyon Literary. (May)