From it’s beautifully restrained and dignified cover to the polite perspicacious tone of the writing, I found A Man Above Reproach to be an enjoyable, intelligent Victorian.
Dragged by his friend to a house of ill repute, Elias, Duke of Lennox is disillusioned by the demands of his newly inherited title thus his friend’s plan to force him to enjoy the benefits of his station. Planning to escape at the first opportunity, Elias did not foresee the alluring woman playing the piano. He cannot resist conversing with the woman around whom so many rumors and innuendos are centered.
In 1830s London, scandalous whispers surround the pub known as the Sleeping Dove, a hidden bordello catering to nobles eager to shed the trappings of their stations. Josephine Grant knows the rumors are true—she plays piano at the Dove and is known only as the “Bawdy Bluestocking” to the pub’s faithful.
The reluctant Duke of Lennox is called “The Uncatchable” by society ladies, not that he cares for them or their nicknames. Elias Addison’s estate was thrust upon him when his father died, and it has been little else but a burden.
With no heir, the Duke of Lennox is expected to marry as befitting his station and as such Josephine Grant knows that there is no future for a woman known as the Bawdy Bluestocking with the “Uncatchable” Duke. Particularly, when she has secrets beyond those of a woman who plays the piano by night and sells books by day. The question remains will Elias remain the “Uncatchable” and choose a woman equally above reproach to be his Duchess or will he choose the “Bawdy Bluestocking”?
A Man Above Reproach is a respectable addition to the genre, with well developed intriguing characters. If the revelation of Josephine’s secret was somewhat anti-climatic, Pryce’s very appealing depiction of Elias’ journey of self discovery made the difference for me.
AUTHOR: Evelyn Price
RATING: 3 1/2 Stars
GENRE: Historical Romance
Disclaimer: ARC was kindly provided by the publisher for an honest review.
- A Man Above Reproach: Evelyn Price (arireads.wordpress.com)