Duartes Child By Lynne Graham

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I am little surprised at the number of highly starred reviews.

I love Lynne Graham's heroines usually. They are usually soft-hearted and romantic, but can still have the alpha romero heroes running in circles trying to catch up to the fact that they love their duck out of water heroines. Ellen almost falls under this category, but just misses by being the biggest doormat ever. She was probably born with Welcome stamped on her behind.

Who doesn't she let stomp all over her? The hero? No, he's mean and abusive even though he has a magic penis. Don't they all. Her awful mother and father? Nope. She runs home and they pretty much kick her out. Her evil and condescending sisters. Nope, not them either. Her husband's ex-MIL who tells tall tales and has a plethora of pictures of her dead daughter, the H's apparently gorgeous and perfect first wife? Nah. The evil OW. Heck no. She got the ball rolling not too mention encourages her to dress like a fluorescent carrot. The scene where she picks out a new outfit is pretty funny. About the only character that doesn't push her around his her infant son, and Ellen can see that he is just like the H so guess where that's going when he hits puberty.

Ellen eventually gets a grip and lays down the line to her H, and , but I seriously wanted to see more of smackdown with some of these characters. I don't know what it is about romances or perhaps Harlequins specifically, but these little lower case h's never really get mad or tell anyone off. WHY NOT?

Anyhoo, the hero, oh yeah, Duarte finally finds out the truth and feels appropriately horrible. For whatever reason, I did not feel the romance. Perhaps too much to overcome. Mass Market Paperback

Not only is this story written by one of my fav fav Mills & Boon authors but the story is set in PORTUGAL (where I was born!!!) and the hero is PORTUGUESE!!!!!!!!! Duarte de Monteiro
Finally, a Portuguese hero…after loads of Greeks, French, Italian, South American…...I am, naturally
Okay, stopping my jumping up and down right now and getting down to what this really fabulous tale is all about!!!
Emily is a rather mousy English girl, whose family treats her really SHABBILY. She meets the fabulously rich and gorgeous Duarte, when working in his English stately home’s stables. She can’t believe it….but he asks her to marry him (wow…within a few days of him meeting her….me…I would have been a bit suspicious….!!)….and even when he tells her he does not love her…WHAT DOES SHE DO???? YES….she agrees to his proposal…after all, she loves him…really she does…and she believes he will eventually fall in love with her…..RIGHT!!!!! Of course it happens, doesn’t it????
Anyway, Duarte takes her away from her rather drab and dreary life to his fabulous mansion in Sintra, Portugal……..let me faint here, right now!!! Sintra, a beautiful place just outside Lisbon…what more can a girl ask for????? Never mind that it comes with some baggage…….huge fotos hanging all over of his beyond beautiful but now dead ex-wife…but with the ex-wife’s mother, who runs the mansion…..talk about Mrs Danvers (remember her from Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier????...what, you haven’t read that book!!!! Get it now, and read it…..you just have to…it’s one of those TO BE READ ones!!!) lookalike
Then there’s Duarte’s sexy PA…what a conniving bitch….and how stupid was Emily in believing anything she did and told her!!!! Is it possible for anyone to be that daft????? But yes, Emily was!!! And before she knows it…things go horribly wrong…yes, Duarte has still not fallen in love with her, even though Emily is pregnant with his heir….wow…we know how much these alphas love having heirs!!!!
So, Emily runs back to England…six months pregs and all……because????? She’s been told that once the heir is born, Duarte will discard her and keep the babe!!!!!! Now, wouldn’t any woman do what she does???? No, not me!!!! But hey, I’m not Emily.
Her family is not interested in helping her……..geez…..are there people out there like that?????
Anyway, Emily is on the run from Duarte, because she knows how rich and powerful he is….and all the time I am sharing all her troubles …..I kept thinking…..
You gave up living in a place like
to living like THIS?????
But Emily can’t hide from Duarte forever….he eventually tracks her down – there’s a really funny scene when he discovers where she’s been working….I knew all along he would find her…after all, he’s got lots and lots of money and power!!!
I loved the chase scene……here’s Duarte in his super, duper car
chasing Emily and the baby heir, in her wreck pulling her caravan home….not forgetting his bodyguards chasing her as well…
There’s no escape for Emily.
Soon, she and baby heir and Duarte and the bodyguards are winging their way, on Duarte’s private jet, back to Portugal!!!!
Now, I was dreading the idea of Emily continuing being the downtrodden and ignored wife….I had this idea of strangling her if she did not take a stand. And wow……before long, Emily takes charge!!! No more the quiet and mousy woman……….she finally WAKES UP!!!! And starts kicking some ass…..
. I did like that she wasn’t mean about it though….she still retained her soft heart…but did I love seeing Duarte groveling….yes, he did a lot of that
By the end….I was like
Finally…..together, Duarte & Emily and little baby heir having their HEA….of course, that’s no spoiler because we all know………THERE’S ALWAYS A HAPPY ENDING!!!!
I so enjoyed reading this…..and if you love HEA’s….get this book and start reading!!!
Mass Market Paperback Reread on the last night of 2020. I needed a sure thing. :)

Still five stars.

I've had a string of bad reads in a row, so I decided to re-read a LG I gave 5 stars. This is still a dramatic angst-fest. (Love the opening with heroine running away and the bee sting) And the OW and OM in cahoots is still a nice mystery to solve, but I think LG missed a few opportunities:

she shouldn't have killed off the hero's dog (off page).
she basically dropped the kid with the nanny and there was no family time depicted.
she needed more hero-defending-the-heroine-scenes - especially with her own family.

But those are quibbles. If you like a cruel hero and heroine who eventually finds her voice, you'll like this one.

*Original review*
This is a marriage in trouble story with the Portuguese business tycoon hero finally tracking down his shy, English Rose wife and six month-old son. Heroine has been living in a caravan and making her living giving riding lessons. The opening is both angsty and turns a bit comical as the hero has to explain himself after the stable owner calls the police. The heroine is thwarted from her runaway by a bee sting and the hero has to take her to the emergency room. It's a good way for the reader to see that he really cares about the heroine because for the next few chapters he gives her a hard time for her cheating and for depriving him of his child for the first six months of his life.

The heroine does feel guilty - not because she cheated - but because she didn't push the artist OM fast enough or stand up for herself when the hero discovered them. She also feels bad about leaving, but she was terrified he would take her baby once he was born because the hero's PA (the wanna be OW) gave her a heads up that he was consulting his lawyer in how to get rid of the heroine and keep the baby.

The heroine is bundled back to Portugal and their points of contention are resolved one by one:

I liked the Cinderella heroine - she did grow and change in this story - as did the hero. The hero was no smooth-talking seducer. He really was clueless about what was going on in his own house. The OW was truly evil, the H/h had enough good moments in the middle of their drama that the reader is convinced they will have a happy marriage now that the misunderstandings are cleared up.
Justice was done and the OW's misdeeds were rubbed in her face. I loved it. Mass Market Paperback 3,5 stars Mass Market Paperback This is an original book because it is the heroine who cheated on the hero. She feels neglected by her husband and when a charming painter takes an interest in her she is dazzled and excited. Her husband sees them kissing and the heroine who is also pregnant is afraid her husband will take the baby away from her so she flees. Of course the hero never had such an intention but the evil OW made the heroine believe the hero was out for revenge.

I have issues with cheating even if it is mostly emotional thus I couldn't enjoy this book. Plus the heroine was so self centered and immature I couldn't care about her plight. Mass Market Paperback

Only days before she was about to give birth, Emily left her husband, Duarte de Monteiro. She'd heard from a friend that he wanted to keep their baby—but not his wife....

Now Duarte has traced Emily and his baby son and brought them back to Portugal. He's proud; he wants to keep his wife—especially as he can still possess her with the slightest touch....

Emily still loves Duarte, but has he brought her back because he loves her—or because he loves his son?

Duartes Child


A plot-heavy, Cinderella romance featuring a heroine who manages to win the man of her choice while also growing a backbone. Hallelujah! There's also enough angst, betrayal, drama and misunderstandings to make the ride to the HEA a bumpy one.

Emily was a sympathetic heroine who was sweet, shy, and clueless about fashion. She also cracked me up with how much she mooned over Duarte's hotness! LOL Anyway, Emily was so sweet that it made her suspectible to the vile machinations of others. She did eventually snap out of it, and once that shift happened events rapidly progressed in Emily's favor.

Duarte was initially clueless about his feelings for Emily and only realized the truth after she left. Here's a clue to the nature of these feelings. Like Emily, Duarte was also manipulated . Thank god the viper was finally outed at the end, forcing Duarte to realize Emily had been innocent of the crime he'd accused her of. Mass Market Paperback I thought the RV/Caravan - Limo chase scene was comical - the visual in my head made me laugh. Easy and fast read. Glad the h finally communicated her thoughts and insecurities. H kind of clueless (a little hard for me to understand why.) 3.5 stars. Mass Market Paperback 2.75 stars

I can see how it ticked so many boxes for people-angst, second chance, marriage reconciliation, a wronged hero who realises eventually that his heroine was innocent, evil OW etc however, it was just too soap opera ie for me. The h was too doormattie.

I did like that the h had growth towards the end though. Mass Market Paperback The lack of communication and the doormat heroine was the major drawback of the book. The heroine just taking the blame for everything and feeling guilty all of the time. It's downright irritating. I guess expecting from a very young heroine to be mature is a lot to ask. But after the separation time, the heroine got a grip on her and started to fight for herself. And the hero was a typical Alpha HP male. I can understand his behaviour towards heroine cause he saw the heroine was kissing another man and then later heroine was apologizing for her deed. But his cold behaviour and negligence towards heroine were just as bad as other HP heroes. Giving 3 stars cause the hero was celibate the time of their separation. The plot was engaging and full of drama.

The book was safe. The book was full of OM/OW drama. Mass Market Paperback 3.5 stars actually. Good Old Fashioned Lynne Graham from when her formula wasn't as set in stone as it is these days. You have the destitute, caravan-residing, not a single talent to speak of h falling in love with the sexy, banker alpha H after a whirlwind romance that involved a dog (his, not hers for a change).

Emily and Duarte part over a misunderstanding (reminiscent of the Veranchetti Marriage which was incidentally much better written than this one) and reunite after 11 months of separation during which the h gives birth to their child Jaimie. They then set about trying to repair their marriage but not without some strange interference in the form of an off-balance PA called Bliss, whose side profession is to dream up scenarios in which she's in a relationship with her boss. Any boss. To help her in her nefarious schemes, she enlists the help of her hapless cousin to seduce the Boss H's wife - who instead, finds himself falling in love with his target.

Nonetheless, even with all these issues, the h and H find their happily ever after with a decent amount of passion and persuasion. The H was your typical M&B alpha and I had no issues with him. The h though, as with most of LG's female protagonists' was more of a doormat who couldn't stand up to anybody (not even to declare her own innocence) than a poor innocent with a heart of gold. Too much of a ditz in my own opinion. And yes, she made very questionable fashion choices - an issue that doesn't get resolved within the story.

So why the 3.5 stars? possibly because this was one of the last books where LG actually presented a plot line with dialogues and situations that didn't feel like it was dialled in. phew! Mass Market Paperback