I loved One Night With a Duke by Erica Ridley. I just loved it. If you adore Hallmark Christmas movies, you will love this book. In fact, I’m going to go find the rest in the series right now. Let’s dig in.
This is my first book by author Erica Ridley, and One Night With a Duke is the tenth book in her 12 Dukes of Christmas Series, which follows the townspeople of the fictional town of Cressmouth. It’s just what it sounds like. A village with a castle all dedicated to Christmas. All of you Hallmark movie lovers are with me now, right?
The Christmas setting, the castle, and array of incredible, village-y townspeople – it all had me reeled right in. I wanted more, and that’s what I love about a series. I love when you just want to immerse yourself in all the story has to offer.
Angelica, our Heroine
I was intrigued by this story because the heroine is Black. From my own study of history, I was immediately hooked, wondering where the author would set a Black heroine in 19th century England. I was blown away.
Angelica is a jeweler with her own shop in Cressmouth who sets out on a journey to prove herself after her father leaves the family jeweler shop to her brother. There is so much wrapped into that sentence that I adored. Angelica faced adversity right in her own home and rose above it to not just survive but plow a path for herself that was unique to her.
She is not a damsel in distress, she doesn’t need saving, and she doesn’t need anyone’s handouts. That’s what makes her so perfect for our hero.
He’s a Scot. (Insert swooning sigh here.) He’s a dashing complex hero like anyone would love, but what made him unique was how his story unfolded. He’s not exactly dark and brooding at the beginning only to be brought into the light by the heroine. His story unfolds piece by piece, which makes him tricky to pin down.
As the story unfolds, the reader uncovers a little more of his history bit by bit, and it’s nothing like you would expect. I don’t do spoilers here, so I’ll only say MacLean is not what you think.
He’s perfect for our heroine, because he wins the affections of others by offering handouts in the forms of piles of coins. As I mentioned before, Angelica doesn’t need or want a handout. Conflict and delicious tension ensue.
Just One Night With a Duke
MacLean is trapped in Cressmouth by a snowstorm and spends his time playing the part of “villager” as directed by Angelica. Dear readers, this is everything you want a cozy, romantic Christmas historical romance to be.
There’s hot chocolate and sledding and Yuletide and cheer. You will be utterly heartbroken when the snowstorm ends, and real life intrudes I truly didn’t want this story to end, and I will be reading the rest in the series. Grab your cup of hot cocoa, and join me.
**I received an advanced reader copy of this book through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.**