Narrator: Karen Chilton
Title: A Duke by Default
(Reluctant Royals #2)
Genre: Romance, Contemporary, Fiction
Published: July 31st 2018
Where I Got It: My shelf (Audible)
Summary: New York City socialite and perpetual hot mess Portia Hobbs is tired of disappointing her family, friends, and—most importantly—herself. An apprenticeship with a struggling swordmaker in Scotland is a chance to use her expertise and discover what she’s capable of. Turns out she excels at aggravating her gruff silver fox boss…when she’s not having inappropriate fantasies about his sexy Scottish burr.
Tavish McKenzie doesn’t need a rich, spoiled American telling him how to run his armory…even if she is infuriatingly good at it. Tav tries to rebuff his apprentice, and his attraction to her, but when Portia accidentally discovers that he’s the secret son of a duke, rough-around-the-edges Tav becomes her newest makeover project.
Forging metal into weapons and armor is one thing, but when desire burns out of control and the media spotlight gets too hot to bear, can a commoner turned duke and his posh apprentice find lasting love?
Book 2! I was a little worried about starting this because I wasn't a fan of Portia in the first book. However, I believe in second chances and I wanted to get to know her and see her find love. Andddd being set in Scotland certainly helps ;)
The story follows Portia who is done disappointing everyone and herself. She accepts an apprenticeship with a swordmaker in Scotland. She has stopped drinking and having sex so she can find the real her. She did not expect that her gruff and sexy boss would get under her skin. Tavish doesn't need or want the spoiled American telling him how to improve his armory even though all the points she makes seem legit. He tries to rebuff her and ignore the growing attraction, but when she discovers that his absent father is a duke? Well...they will need each other during this whirlwind of change.
Okay..I was wrong about my opinions on Portia. I AM SORRY! I actually adore her. Sighs. She got under my skin. I felt so bad for her when we get to dig into her thinking and feelings and her family life. Screw her parents. They suck. >_> I want to throttle them. Maybe we'll get some more closure with them when we read Portia's sister's little novella. IDK but I feel so bad for Portia.
I liked Tav the moment he and his grumpy-ass came onto the scene. LOL He was a big jerk, but I liked him. He is rough around the edges, but he is very sweet in his own way. It took him a bit to really come around to anything and everything, but Portia is equally stubborn. It took foreverrrrr and a day for the two to find out they needed and loved each other. I wanted to kick both of them, but it makes sense it took so long. Lots of hurdles and issues to get around.
This was really good. I think I liked it a hair better than book 1. Shocker! I know!
I think what really made me appreciate this was the very serious issues underlining a lot of the story. Racism and anti-immigrant issues. It made me sad, but it made the story feel more realistic. I am so glad Tav will have a chance (in this fictional world) to make a difference. He is such a good guy.
The narrator was good. Her Scottish accent was a lil hit or miss if I am, to be honest. Everything else worked okay. I did have some moments when I had to rewind so I knew who was speaking. Some of her voices for some characters were very similar to each other, so I would forget who was speaking. Her old lady British Queen accent was SO on point though! loved it. She pulled that off so well. I hope she can use that voice more ;)
Overall, I really, really liked this. Maybe even a touch more than book 1! I am glad my opinion on Portia was flipped. I actually adored her. Tav was awesome too. I'll give this 4 stars.