Fortune Favors The Duke by Kristin Vayden

⭐️⭐️⭐️1/2

The Cambridge Brotherhood series focuses on friends whose older brothers tragically die in a fire.  The friends, who were second sons, or “spares” now find themselves heirs to their family’s titles.  Fortune Favors The Duke focuses on Quinton, the new Duke of Wesley, and Katherine, Quinton’s late brother’s fiancé.

This book is not a light-hearted romance.  The romance is there, but much of the focus is centered on grieving and healing.  The emotional depth of this novel is phenomenal.  The topic of grief is handled in an informed, respectful way.  The book lagged for the first half; there needed to be more substance.  However, the second half took off rapidly, and there were copious amounts of content.  I drifted for the first thirty percent, but after that point, I became avidly invested.

This is a sweet/clean romance.  I did not feel this detracted from the story, yet I know some would want a warning.  I was pretty impressed that a few kisses and longing looks could translate into the passionate connection Quinton and Katherine shared.  I could feel the turmoil and indecision roll off both characters.  The journey to love that Quinton and Katherine’s transverse is realistic.  Starting as friends with a common loss, they find strength, camaraderie, and eventually healing love.

This story had both strengths and weaknesses.  The plot needed more urgency in the first half.  All the action occurs in the last forty percent.  This needed to be spread throughout the entirety of the book.  There was a secondary plot line that involved a secret I found disturbing.  I liked that this was a raw, gritty look into the aftermath of a tragedy.  The characters were vibrantly stunning, even the secondary characters touched my heart.  My heart ached for Quinton and Katherine’s loss.  The couple’s journey through the grief process was organic and honest.  The second half of the book was excellent.  I enjoyed the premise of the series and look forward to Quinton’s friend’s stories.  Fortune Favors The Duke is the first book in The Cambridge Brotherhood series.  Read this in knowledge that it deals with heavy subject matter and is a sweet/clean romance.  I feel that this was a strong beginning to a series that could be hauntingly beautiful.  

I voluntarily read and reviewed an advance copy of this book through Netgalley and the publisher.  All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Release Date: December 28, 2021

Published by jelee1976

I love to review historical romance books! I discuss book reviews, thoughts on authors and series, and just general stuff about me!

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