Bringing Down the Duke by Evie Dunmore
Series: A League of Extraordinary Women #1
Genre: Historical Romance
Heat Rating: 🔥🔥
Annabelle Archer is tired, so very tired of taking care of her cousin’s household and his children. When she is given the opportunity to study at Oxford, she wishes nothing more than to have some independence. To study at Oxford Annabelle has accepted a scholarship, but she must support the woman’s suffrage movement and so she agrees.
Her first order is to recruit powerful men to champion on their behalf. This is how she quite literally runs into Sebastian the Duke of Montgomery. The Duke has quite the reputation. He is known to be cold, ruthless and the advisor to the Queen. When Annabelle – a commoner, bluestocking, and suffragist – shows up at his house he’s not quite sure what to make of her.
This is where Annabelle and Sebastian get to know one another. Stripped of their power – they are simply a man and a woman who are attracted to one another. But could they ever be together? Society has put limitations on how they must interact with each other – a nobleman could not and would not ever marry a commoner. And there is that other pressing matter that Annabelle is a suffragist and the Duke – well he surely cannot support that movement and be advisor to the Queen.
I absolutely loved the chemistry between Sebastian and Annabelle. Right from the beginning you could tell that these two were so drawn to one another. For me, what I enjoyed the most about the relationship between Annabelle and Sebastian was how real it felt to me. There was no easy solution to their affair and feelings were going to be hurt. Annabelle is fighting for a cause and she doesn’t lose sight of it. Sebastian is conflicted – he wants to spend time with Annabelle and love her like she deserves, but what would society think if he were to do that? Already a divorcee – this would be another scandal that he would could not live down.
The friendship between the suffragists was so great! I loved when Hattie, Catriona, Lucie and Annabelle would be on the page together. These ladies were so much fun together and were truly each others friend. It didn’t matter to them that Annabelle was not a noble woman – they still wanted to get to know her and befriend her.
It is so important – today more than ever – to understand that women like Annabelle and other suffragists fought so hard for the rights of women. We matter, our voice matters. Years and years of oppression and still we are not considered equals in many situations. Bringing Down the Duke was such a wonderful and refreshing historical romance. I cannot wait to read more from Evie Dunmore.