Duke Undone by Joanna Lowell

QOTD: What’s the last book you binge read?
Duke Undone
Joanna Lowell
Pub date: April 6, 2021
I absolutely love historical romances and they are usually about the stuffy older brother Duke who is rigid and knows all the rules.

But what about the younger brother who unfortunately suffers from, possibly, dyslexia and has been called an idiot his whole life because of it. The one that has had to overcome in other ways but has been horribly taken advantage of because he can’t read like others can or process the same. He falls back on his good looks and acts like a fool to distract. Don’t we all.

This book was so fun! An independent artist attending the Royal Academy happens upon a corpse in an alley as she is walking home. But finds it is actually just a very drunk man. A beautifully proportioned naked man, and at the time she wasn’t allowed to paint male nudes. Soooo… she goes for help but when she returns he’s gone and she decides to paint him not knowing who he is.

The fun part is when he goes to find her after she sells this painting. She is so delightfully curious. But he is stuck under his dead fathers thumb in a codicil being treated as a child so he drowns himself in oblivion. There’s mysteries behind his mothers, fathers and brother’s deaths and his sister’s disappearance. It is all blamed on their temperament and that is used to control him. Ugh condescension will forever be my least favorite form of attack. It’s so revolting and it’s always used to humiliate and set people in their place.

And the surgeries they did, stuff of nightmares! Luckily they didn’t talk about what they did (that’s not this kind of book) just that they did. 

Also, as always I find fascinating and appalling the list of reasons women can be admitted into an asylum – I mean novel reading and imaginary female trouble…. we would all be in an asylum. (Added a list from one asylum in the 1800s it was so long it cut off)

👏 Definitely cheered for Lucy and Anthony!

Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
Steam: 🔥🔥🔥

Thank you @netgalley and @berkleypub for the e-ARC for my honest and voluntary review.


An artist stumbles upon a naked duke and an unlikely love story begins in this captivating Victorian historical romance.

When Royal Academy painting student Lucy Coover trips over a naked man passed out in an East End alley, she does the decent thing. She covers him up and fetches help. Trouble is, she can’t banish his muscular form from her dreams as easily. She finds herself compelled to put every detail down on canvas. What she doesn’tknow is that she’s painting the infamous Duke of Weston, and that her life will never be the same.

A second son, Anthony Philby thought he could flee his brutal family legacy and become his own man. Forced back to London by his brother’s death, he inherits a fortune… with strings attached. One scandal will sink his bid for independence. It’s in his best interest to burn Lucy Coover’s shocking painting and pretend he never met the bewitching young artist. Instead, he finds himself offering a devil’s bargain. He’ll save her aunt’s dressmaking shop from ruin, if she’ll seek out his missing sister, Effie.

As they work together, an unexpected passion ignites between them. But the hunt for Effie leads to unexpected danger, and soon they find themselves risking everything… for a love that might destroy them both.


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