Desperate Duchesses

Duchess by Night

Duchess in Love

This Duchess of Mine

A Duke of Her Own

Enchanting Pleasures

Fool For Love

A Kiss at Midnight

Much Ado About You

Pleasure for Pleasure

Potent Pleasures

The Taming of the Duke

When the Duke Returns

Your Wicked Ways

When Beauty Tamed the Beast
by Eloisa James
(Harper Collins, $7.99, PG-13) 978-0-06-202127-4
To be honest, when I received When Beauty Tamed the Beast, I wasnít excited about reading the book. The title alone seemed a bit corny and the cover art wasnít appealing, but I was pleasantly surprised and am happy I didnít pass this one by and judge the book by its cover.

Lady Linnet Thrynne finds herself ruined when all she did was kiss a prince. Due to an explainable sickness and a dress that is not so flattering in the midsection, the ton now believes her to be enceinte. But the public breakup by the prince already has the scandal spreading beyond repair. Linnetís dream of finding love and happily ever after is slipping through her fingers.

Linnetís father, Lord Sundon, and her Aunt Zenobia are now tasked with finding a solution to the unfortunate problem and Zenobia has the perfect plan. The Duke of Windebank has an only son, the Earl of Marchant, who is an injured man and has an insufferable personality that scares away most men, and undoubtedly women as well. The Duke is worried about the Earl producing an heir to continue his blood line so is desperate to find a suitable mate.

Piers Yelverton, Earl of Marchant, was injured as a small child by his opium addicted father who left him with a very painful leg requiring a cane to walk. Piers hasnít seen his father in 26 years and doesnít understand why the Duke insists on locating him a wife. Piers is a brilliant doctor who treats people from far away at his castle in Wales. Even though he has the most impersonal personality, he has a knack for diagnosing people that other local doctors could not.

When Piers and Linnet meet they both agree right away that marrying each other would not be ideal, but the Duke has just met his son for the first time in almost three decades, so Linnet agrees to stay and see if she changes her mind while the Duke tries to repair a broken relationship. Piers has definitely met his match with Linnet and she may just be the person needed to break his beast persona.

When Beauty Tamed the Beast is a sweet and romantic story about a man with a wall up to keep out any emotion and a woman who sees through that wall and tries her best to climb over it and maybe even tear it down. Linnet and Piers are both very strong characters. Even though Piers appears to be a hard and inhumane person, Linnet knows that he cares for his patients like no one else does Ė more by his actions than his verbal assaults.

From the very beginning, Piersí character was a dead ringer for Dr. House on the Fox TV show House. At the end of the book, the author writes a little bit about her inspirations and confirms using Dr. House as a muse for Piers. I found this very distracting because Eloisa James did such a good job copying the style and personality of Dr. House. Piersí physical description was very brief and lacking detail, so throughout the whole story, I was picturing Dr. House from the TV show, who is not the typical hot guy in romance novels.

I am rating When Beauty Tamed the Beast 4 hearts because it flows well, is entertaining, and the love story is enchanting. I didnít give it 5 hearts because of the Dr. House depiction.

--Nichole Howell

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