#Repost from @theromancelibrarian with @regram.app ... Next on the board for #romanceopoly is a free choice Library square. I read A Duke by Default, the second book in Alyssa Cole's Reluctant Royals series as a #buddyread with one of my library colleagues. We both found it to be a really fun read, and there was a lot to like. I loved the heroine Portia, who we meet as Ledi's hot mess friend in book 1 of the series. The book opens as Portia arrives in Edinburgh for an internship with a swordmaker. This is part of 'Project New Portia' in which she gets organized, is a better friend, and doesn't use drinking & sleeping around as an emotional crutch. As someone with an attention disorder diagnosis, it was great reading about her journey and her ADHD. I have a lot of tools I use to stay on track, but I wished the Hot Mess Helper was real! Our hero Tavish McKenzie is a grumpy yet hot Scot with an amazing body and gray hair who inspires the hashtag #swordbae. He is Portia's boss, but the internship was his brother's idea. Tav sees the beautiful Portia as a distraction he doesn't need, until she brings him around with her around with her impressive competence and their attraction is too strong to ignore. Then, curveball: she discovers he is the heir to a Dukedom. My work friend and I agreed the book is funny, has a delightfully diverse cast of characters, lots of fun nerdy references, and we were rooting for Portia & Tav. A cameo by a romance loving librarian is a nice bonus. We both tore through the book, but thought the ending was a bit abrupt. Also, buyer beware: if it's gonna ruin the book for you that Tav is the Duke of Edinburgh, and that apparently his parents weren't married, this is not the book for you. This book takes place in an alternate universe where there is an African nation named Thesolo, so I rolled with it, but I would have liked it to be set up a little more clearly that the rules of this world are different than ours.
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