Geek Girls Don’t Date Dukes by Gina Lamm

DUKE
Geek Girls Don’t Date Dukes by Gina Lamm
Publisher: Sourcebooks
Genre: Contemporary, Historical, Sci-Fi/Fantasy
Length: Full Length (305 pgs)
Heat Level: Spicy
Rating: 4 Stars
Reviewed by Xeranthemum

The Royal Treatment

All Leah wanted was a little gallantry. But in this day and age, chivalry was most definitely dead. If only there were a way to travel back in time and snag her very own duke…

Avery Russell was polishing some boots when a woman fell through the bedchamber mirror into his arms. All he could make out from her breathless babbling was some nonsense about “my one true love, Your Grace.” Clearly the chit was mad if she couldn’t tell a valet from a duke!

As much as Avery wanted to give in and give her a good tumble, he knew it wouldn’t be proper. No, he’d take as long as necessary to convince Leah that sometimes a duke just won’t do.

This is a cute story that proves keeping an open mind brings untold happiness but jumping to conclusions, assumptions and blinded by expectations will lead a person on a merry chase indeed.

The story is basically about the heroine’s pursuit of her dream; the perfect guy, her perfect picture of happiness and her illusion of how easy it’s going to be to obtain. Thing is, it’s based on what someone else has, it’s based on a fantasy version of how she imagines the courting will occur and she’s cocky enough to believe it’s going to be smooth sailing. Nothing could be farther from the truth.

Leah gets a crash course on what it’s like to be a servant when she gets thrust back in time to find her hero, the eventual love of her life. The author went into great detail on how miserable and oppressive and frustrating being a servant in a nobleman’s household can be. For avid historical romance fans who thrive on realism to make a story come alive, this book has the details to back up the heroine’s sudden confusion and resultant culture shock. I found it a bit overwhelming and dare I say, depressing. Reading about Leah’s exploits, seeing how she has to deal with prejudice and strict moral codes, not to mention how moronically easy it was back then for a female to lose her good reputation, was very maddening and it made me very glad I’m living in the here and now.

Avery is a man of his time. He’s a likable hero who’s in a horrid fix. When he meets the heroine, he doesn’t know whether to kick her out or revel in her sheer unusualness. Eventually, as with all good heroes who encounter a modern woman out of her element, her differences enchant, amaze, astound and drive him up a wall to the point he finds himself doing, thinking and saying the craziest things. All the better to stir the plot and tease their relationship into a frenzied level of sensual frustration so a reader will enjoy every clandestine encounter.

I wasn’t enamored of the plot conflict between Avery and Prachett. While reading about the things that Avery had to endure, I felt like I was reading with a straightjacket on. It made me claustrophobic because every time the hero turned around, some puppet master was pulling his strings. His strength came from the fact that they never crushed his spirit and he remained a good man. I just had a real hard time seeing him as 100% hero when oftentimes he came across as a victim. I think Leah was a true heroine because in essence, she saved her man.

Geek Girls Don’t Date Dukes is a nice story with a complete happy ending. This novel is sugar and spice, a pinch of arsenic and some things not nice. It’s an appealing and well written summer read and an enjoyable way to pass the time.

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