I received an arc of this book from the publishers via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
The Madam Catches Her Duke is the 3rd book in Christina McKnight’s Craven House Series. t can be read as a standalone.
Marce Davenport’s life changed dramatically when as a small child her father died and her half-brother threw her family out. Her mother supported her children the only way she knew how, by opening a brothel. Rowan Delconti, the new Duke of Harwich discovers in the prologue that he now owns Craven House he storms over there intent on throwing out the woman he blames her for ruining his parents’ marriage. Disconcerted to find she has died he strikes a bargain with her daughter. Marce must act as Rowan’s wife in front of his mother or her and her siblings will be thrown out of their home again.
The story picks up eight years later and Marce has determined to end their bargain after one last visit to the Duchess. Rowan finds himself developing unwanted feelings for Marce and is unexpectantly jealous of her friendship with his best friend.
Rowan is pretty unlikeable for most of the book but insights into his childhood give an understanding of his bitterness toward the people who ‘stole’ his father. Marce is a strong independent woman who strives to help those around her. She is willing to sacrifice her own happiness for her siblings.
This book was an enjoyable read. The story was compelling and the characters were interesting. The secondary characters really heightened the story.