Simon, is the Duke of Trent and that position comes with much responsibility. Three years previous he fell in love with Sarah, a woman who was raised along side with his siblings. Now she is a maid, having been the gardeners daughter. Sarah Osborne, has always known the wide gulf that separates herself and Simon from each other. Even though she cares for Simon more than anyone knows, she also knows that they have no future together. She is merely a maid, and Simon a Duke. When Simon's mother disappears, all of them are frantic, trying to find a trace of her and find none. When Sarah was young, Simon's mother took her in and loved her and Sarah would do anything to find her. As Simon and his brothers start to investigate, they find a variety of clues to their mother's disappearance, and Simon and Sarah start a affair even knowing it can't go anywhere. But then when Simon starts to come to the realization on his feelings for Sarah and willing to sacrifice everything for her, he ends up being blackmailed. Now he will have to make a choice save his family from the largest scandal known to the Ton or sacrifice everything for his love for Sarah.
The Duchess Hunt is the first in the House of Trent series, and I have always liked this author. I have never had a problem becoming engaged in her stories and her style of writing is addictive and draws in the reader from the beginning. After reading The Duchess Hunt I was impressed by this story, my favorite of her books so far. As the first in the series, The Duchess Hunt introduces us to the Trent family. It begins with a charming beginning of when Simon and Sarah first meet and finding Sarah hurt Simon brings her home to his mother, who immediately takes a liking to Sarah even though she is the gardeners daughter. So she does what any Duchess would do right? Have Sarah learn alongside with her own children. Having grown up in a loving atmosphere where despite her rank and birth, she feels accepted, but deep down she knows she will never be good enough for Simon.One of my favorite parts of this story was the way the Trent family accepts her. The relationship that forms between Simon and Sarah is tender and sweet and passionate. Both Simon and Sarah have shared intimate feelings with each other but haven't given into them until now. With the disappearance of Simon's mother, there is a mystery to be solved. But when Simon ends up being blackmailed into marrying a woman he barely knows and sees him as the Duke to be have at all costs, he knows he is making a mistake and hurting the one woman he loves more than life.
The Duchess Hunt is a story that engages the reader until the very end. I had the hardest time putting this one down and I would highly recommend this one to anyone that loves a stimulating historical romance. There is such a unbridled emotion portrayed in this story, the characters so vividly written it makes them come alive for the reader. I did feel like there could have been a bit more emphasis on the missing mother, but I did like the "Blackmail" theme to the story. I do love a strong conflict especially when it seems like unbeatable odds for the couple involved to stay together. The side characters were lively and fascinating and I just fell in love with the siblings of Simon. The bickering and bantering between them reminded me of my own family, and I love a series that involves a big family, so I can hardly wait to read the next book in the series.The aspect of the unorthodox Trent family was intriguing, and I enjoyed seeing the varying degrees of originality between each member of the family.
I think that overall, The Duchess Hunt was a charming story of a couple that have loved each other but live on different sides of the tracks. The love story was well done and the plot was thick with intrigue and mystery and conflict. Richly filled characters, and a witty enough read to charm your socks off. A Sensational story with enough zest and sensuality to make you fall in love from beginning to end.