ELEVEN SCANDALS TO START TO WIN A DUKE’S HEART by Sarah MacLean
Eleven Scandals to Start to Win a Duke’s Heart by Sarah MacLean
Love By Numbers, Book 3
Reviewed by Shayna
Simon Pearson, Duke of Leighton, needs to get married now. The reputation of his family means everything to Simon and in order to keep that same name untainted, he must marry a young woman of impeccable taste and breeding. A woman who has never had and never will have so much as a hint of scandal attached to her name. Simon knows exactly the woman he should wed, and it isn’t the one who tempts him to throw away all that he has worked for.
Juliana Fiori is everything the ton finds distasteful in a young, unmarried woman thrust into their society. She’s Italian, “barely legitimate,” passionate, outspoken, and dislikes the rules society deems its women should live by. The gossips annoy her, but most infuriating of all is the “Duke of Disdain,” Simon Pearson. Simon is uptight and bound by the strictest of society’s rules, yet Juliana can sense the passion brimming beneath the man’s stoic façade. And when fate – not to mention escape from an unwanted suitor – lands Juliana in Simon’s carriage, it sets off a chain of events that changes everything for both of them. For Juliana wagers that even a rigid duke like Simon can’t live without passion. And she has two weeks to prove it to him.
Sarah MacLean outdoes herself in the dazzling Eleven Scandals to Start to Win a Duke’s Heart! Immediately upon starting Eleven Scandals to Start to Win a Duke’s Heart I had a smile on my face and that feeling of joy Juliana and Simon brought about never faded the entire book.
I fell in love with Juliana in her brothers’ books, Nine Rules to Break When Romancing a Rake and Ten Ways to Be Adored When Landing a Lord, so I came into her story with high expectations. Naturally, Ms. MacLean surpassed any hopes I had for Juliana, bringing the utterly endearing heroine to sparkling life. Juliana may pretend to not care what the ton thinks of her, but she does. She also doesn’t go looking for scandal like people think. Rather, scandal seems to find her. What Juliana craves most is love and acceptance for who she is, and my heart broke for her many times over the course of the book. I absolutely could not put Eleven Scandals to Start to Win a Duke’s Heart down because I wanted Juliana to find happiness with Simon so very badly. Happily, Simon is everything I hoped for and more in a hero and he’s perfect for Juliana. Simon was raised to be utterly cold and frequently he makes mistakes because of how he was raised to be. Yet he has such a capacity for love that I was spellbound by him, even when he made mistakes doing what he thought was right. Juliana and Simon bring out the best in each other, as all great couples should, and I was captivated by their romance.
Eleven Scandals to Start to Win a Duke’s Heart is the third book in the Love By Numbers series, and though I adored the first two books, it isn’t necessary to read them before enjoying Juliana and Simon’s story. Though Juliana and her two brothers are all happily wed, I hope Ms. MacLean plans to pen more Love By Numbers tales, for there are supporting characters in Eleven Scandals to Start to Win a Duke’s Heart that I am dying to read more about. Chiefly among them are Simon’s sister, whose inner strength impressed me, the kind Earl of Allendale (brother to Callie, heroine of Nine Rules to Break When Romancing a Rake), and yes, even “the grape,” also known as Lady Penelope, the woman Simon believes he should marry (she has a moment with Juliana that left a lasting impression on me).
Ms. MacLean just gets better and better with each novel and Eleven Scandals to Start to Win a Duke’s Heart shows it. Who doesn’t love a book that can make you happy every time you read it? I Joyfully Recommend Eleven Scandals to Start to Win a Duke’s Heart and plan on curling up with Simon and Juliana’s story and re-reading it many, many times.