Review: When a Rogue Meets his Match

I received this book for free from Netgalley in order to prepare an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: When a Rogue Meets his MatchWhen a Rogue Meets His Match (Greycourt, #2) by Elizabeth Hoyt
Series: Greycourt #2
Published by Forever on December 1, 2020
Genres: Historical
Pages: 496


FINAL DECISION: Absolutely amazing book because of the deep affection between Gideon and Messalina. Loved how he is completely devoted to her. Romantic and dark, this is my favorite Hoyt book since Duke of Sin.

THE STORY: Gideon Hawthorne has watched Messalina Greycourt since he was a young man in her uncle’s employ. Now her uncle, the Duke, has a special task he wants Gideon to complete and is willing to induce Gideon to agree by giving him Messalina in marriage. Messalina agrees to the marriage but has her own plans — to leave Gideon as quickly as possible with at least part of her dowry in her own hands so that she can create her own life.

OPINION:  I really loved this book. I enjoyed the first book in the series, but this one was superior in my estimation. There is incredible chemistry between Gideon and Messalina from the beginning. Funny and gritty, I loved that these characters have to examine their expections of one another as they find common ground.

Gideon is a man who has lived in a morally ambiguous world. He has done bad things and owns them.  Gideon has been obsessed with Messalina for years — but from a distance because he knows that she is not for him. He is her despised uncle’s “fixer,” meaning that his low-class background (coming from St. Giles) allows him to do things that the Duke needs done but cannot sully his hands with. Unsurprisingly, Gideon has agreed to do things that are illegal…but never murder, which is what the Duke wants from him now. One thing that was powerful for me is that Gideon has finally managed to build up his own life enough that he can leave the Duke’s employ, but agrees to put himself, perhaps permanently, at the Duke’s mercy because the Duke offers Messalina to him.

In the beginning, Gideon sees Messalina more as a symbol than as a person. This book is really about Gideon discovering Messalina as a person — and Messalina doing the same as to Gideon.

The focus here is primarily on the romance, so the book spends a lot of time with their issues rather than on external plot issues. I prefer books this way as I am interested in the characters more than some other storyline.

Messalina finds her dreams shattered when she decides to agree to the marriage to save her sister. I loved that she was blocked, but she continued to plan and find a way to make a dream for herself — even if it wasn’t the original one. She definitely is not a woman who is going to submit to her fate. I liked that about her, but I especially enjoyed that she was thoughtful and willing to have her mind changed. As she discovers truths about Gideon, she is willing to reconsider her opinion of him.

This is a wonderful book which I greatly enjoyed!

WORTH MENTIONING: Fans of Hoyt can be assured that a dog appears in the book and has an important role.

CONNECTED BOOKS: WHEN A ROGUE MEETS HIS MATCH is the second book in the Greycourt series. Although there is a continuing storyline in the series, the romance here is a standalone and indeed this book can easily be read without the first in the series.

STAR RATING: I give this book 5 stars.

NOTE: I received an eARC of this book via Netgalley. I was not required to write a review or to write a positive review. All opinions contained herein are my own.



Review: Not the Duke’s Darling

I received this book for free from Netgalley in order to prepare an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: Not the Duke’s DarlingNot the Duke’s Darling (The Greycourt, #1) by Elizabeth Hoyt
Series: Greycourt
Published by Forever on December 18, 2018
Genres: Historical
Pages: 496

“Obviously he wasn’t used to being given orders by anyone — a woman least of all.

Too bad.”

FINAL DECISION: I absolutely loved the relationship between Freya and Christopher which I found passionate and combative and I loved how the two of them both have to consider their own expectations. This book begins a new series and has a lot of new characters and new situations to begin to explore so it feels that there are a lot of dangling ends…but the main story line between Freya and Christopher is complete.

THE STORY: “What had happened at Greycourt fifteen years ago would reverberate forever in their lives.” Freya de Moray is operating as a companion while working as a member of a secret group of women called the Wise Women who, among other things, protect and care for women who need help. When one of her missions places her in the path of Christopher Renshaw, the Duke of Harlowe, Freya’s mind turns to revenge. Harlowe caused the ruin of her family and Freya is not going to forget it.

OPINION: This book is breathtaking in its fierce passion. These characters are drawn together through pain and fury. I loved their relationship which is between two strong personalities.

“He was a man, both good and bad and everything in between.”

Christopher was simply an amazing hero. He is damaged and difficult and incredibly caring and passionate. From his protection of his deceased wife, to his acknowledgement of what Freya needs in order to feel heard. I loved his passion for Freya — and not primarily the sexual passion (although the relationship between Freya and Christopher is hot). He is strong and determined but I especially loved him at the moment that he put aside his own desires and instead considered what he could do for her — even if he didn’t agree with her.

Freya is a woman who has made her own way after the tragic events that destroyed her family. She has a strength and a determination that is especially admirable for the historical period. That strength and independence is something that Freya fears will be lost in a relationship with Christopher. I was interested in how Freya has to confront the risks a woman takes in choosing to join her life to a man at a time where a woman has no recourse against the malfeasance of her husband.

Together, Freya and Christopher sparkle on the page. The moments where they are together are passionate and frustrating and I was never bored for one moment. For me, the relationship is the central and most important part of the book and there was no disappointment for me here.

It is important to note that this book is part of a series where there is an overarching story line that is not resolved in this book. If danging threads bother you, consider that this story resolves the main plot points raised in this book, but there are things still to be uncovered in the remainder of the series.

Indeed, the weakness of this book, like many first books, is that there is much setup here of characters and situations which are clearly meant to be unraveled in the series. This book is one which expect might improve over time as the other stories are told and the promises in this book are fulfilled.

WORTH MENTIONING: I had to read this one twice. I was mildly disappointed on first read. I believe because it was so different than the Maiden Lane series which I adore that I really didn’t give the story a chance. On second read, I loved it and am excited about all the possibilities in this new series.

CONNECTED BOOKS: NOT THE DUKE’S DARLING is the first book in the Greycourt series.

STAR RATING: I give this book 4.5 stars.

NOTE: I received a copy of an ARC of this book from the author. I was not required to write a review or to write a positive review. All opinions contained herein are my own.