Friday, June 08, 2007

The Duke and I, Julia Quinn

Title: The Duke and I
Author: Julia Quinn
Published: 2000, Avon
Category: Historical Romance
Rating: 7.5/10

I thought that I had read all the Bridgerton books, but then I saw someone blog about this and realized that I somehow missed this one. And it's the first one in the series! Don't know quite how I managed that.
Simon Basset, the irresistible Duke of Hastings, has hatched a plan to keep himself free from the town's marriage-minded society mothers. He pretends to be engaged to the lovely Daphne Bridgerton. After all, it isn't as if the brooding rogue has any real plans to marry - though there is something about the alluring Miss Bridgerton that sets Simon's heart beating a bit faster. And as for Daphne, surely the clever debutante will attract some very worthy suitors now that it seems a duke has declared her desirable. But as Daphne waltzes across ballroom after ballroom with Simon, she soon forgets that their courtship is a complete sham. And now she has to do the impossible and keep herself from losing her heart and soul completely to the handsome hell-raiser who has sworn off marriage forever!
When I first discovered Julia Quinn I thought she was just fabulous, maybe because her writing seemed very different from most romances. Her books are so bright and frothy, while at the same time being quite sweet and surprisingly touching. I gobbled up a lot of them all at once. Nowadays I seem to be able to take her only in small doses. I'm not sure exactly why. They're not getting worse or anything, I think it's a personal thing. But sometimes all that froth becomes tedious to me.

Anyway, this one is quite delightful. You get to meet the boisterous Bridgerton family--all eight siblings, who fight and bicker and get on each others' nerves, but really are close-knit and loving. The family dynamic is definitely one of the things people like most about the Bridgerton books. They sound like such a fun family, everyone wants to be a part of it. :)

The romance in this didn't particularly grab me, but the characters are really nice. Daphne is just a nice girl. And you don't see too many nice girls in romance novels! It was refreshing. And Simon is a bit angsty, but his stutter is so endearing that I could easily forgive his thick-headedness.

Quinn has a new book out next month, The Secret Diaries of Miss Miranda Cheever, which I believe is the beginning of a new series. I should be about ready for another Quinn by then, so I'll definitely check it out. :)


Mailyn said...

I think I bought this book but I haven't read it yet. I do know I bought one in this series. Can't remember which. LOL

C2 said...

I like Julie Q's books (some a lot, some just a regular amount)...but I'm glad she's one of those authors that only does one book a year. More than that would be too much, I think. I am looking forward to the new book (probably new series, too). A new direction might inspire her.

This one and Colin's book (Romancing Mr. Bridgerton??) are my faves. Colin is my favorite of the family so I have to like his book. :o)

Jennie said...

Mailyn--I think you'd like the humor in these books. But wait until you're in the mood for something light, because it won't be your usual dark and brooding fare. ;)

C2--I liked Colin's book too. And the heroine (Penelope, right?) was adorable. Yeah, it's definitely easy to overdose on Quinn. I'm hoping her new book is well received. Her last one was sort of universally booed down. :(

CindyS said...

Of the Quinn's I have read this one was my favourite although I did have a problem with what Daphne did. (would be spoiler) but then neither of them were acting all that grown up.

The first book of hers I read was her saddest where the heroine's husband is the cousin of the hero and the hero has loved her all along. When the husband dies they are both so devastated and then it's five years later. The angst was different in this book because I do like angst but I thought the heroine was too dense for too long.


Rosario said...

I really liked this one, except for the scene Cindy is refering to (I think). That's a huge hot button for me.

TDAI is not my fave, though. That would be the next one in the series, The Viscount Who Loved Me.

Devon said...

I feel the same way about Quinn. I completely glommed the Bridgertons, but then I just had to stop. It was like an overload of the tone or something. Haven't read any in awhile. Strangely, though, my favorite is the angsty one Cindy was talking about. I'm blanking on the title, though.

Jennie said...

Cindy--I definitely agree that what Daphne did was wrong, but he was being such an ass and taking advantage of her too that I didn't mind that much.

I think you're talking about When He Was Wicked? That one was angsty--definitely the darkest of the series. :)

Rosario--You know, I have trouble remembering which book was which in this series. Though I think my fave was To Sir Philip with Love--maybe because it was the first one I read, but also I liked the hero in that one. ;)

Devon--Did you see Smart Bitches post comparing romance authors to food? It was so funny. I think Quinn is a funnel cake or something. LOL. Really enjoyable but if you eat too much, you feel a like nauseous.

Rowena said...

Ooh I loved Simon and Daphne's cute! This is my favorite book of all of the Bridgerton books!