At First Sight: Ransom Seymour, Duke of Ainsley has been plagued by guilt for the last few years. He and his cousin, Lord Walfort were together the night Walfort had an accident that left him paralized from the waist down and unable to have children.
Walfort's wife, Jane, has hated Ainsley ever since, not only because of what happened to her husband, but because she ended up losing the baby she was carrying at the time of the accident, due to the shock of what happened to Walfort.
Since the accident, Jane has remained by her husband side, faithful and loyal, though still yearning for a child of her own. Because of this, Walfort has come up with a crazy scheme: to get Ainsley to impregnate Jane, and later pass the baby as Walfort's heir.
At first, both Jane and Ainsley refuse, as she can't tolerate him and because it doesn't sit well with Ainsley to give up a child of his, but eventually they both give in... and get in way over their heads as feelings they didn't want to have come up to the surface.
Second Glance: Alright, so I loved the Texas trilogy, which I read earlier this year; and I was kind of looking forward to trying more from this author, only that I couldn't get the first couple of books in this series (London's Greatest Lovers) and decided to skip them all together - didn't suffer much for it, I think - and found myself being introduced to Jane and Ainsley.
And I have to admit that I had a hard time getting over the premise of the book - mostly the fact that Jane was married and seemed to love her husband - and I actually tried to read it once before but I didn't make it far into it. But, this weekend I just felt like reading it, so I gave it another shot. And I'm glad I did because it turned out to be a better story than I had originally given it credit for.
I quite liked the character of Ainsley, because his actions made sense. He's an honorable man, all in all, and does feel very guilty about the accident. And he loves Jane and he knows he shouldn't, and even if it kills him a little to be around her when she doesn't feel that way about him, he goes out of his way to try to make her happy. I liked him and his family (other than Walfort, who is his cousin) a great deal.
But I didn't quite like Jane that much, she has the blindly stubborn streak that I find a bit annoying in heroines of late. I never really got why she was so devoted to Walfort, particularly when somethings about him were revealed. She drags things out and it had me rolling my eyes more than once.
Bottom Line: Waking Up With The Duke is an enjoyable read to be sure, but I didn't like the heroine all that much and that's always hard for me. Other wise, I thought it was a very heart fealt story and I did feel for characters, if I didn't always like them as much.
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