Review: Eleven Scandals to Start to Win a Duke’s Heart by Sarah MacLean

Filed in Review , Sarah MacLean , The HEA Lover Posted on March 31, 2011 @ 6:00 am 4 comments

Format Read: e-ARC provided by Netgalley
Number of Pages: 384 pages
Release Date: April 26th 2011
Publisher: HarperCollins
Formats Available: Paperback, Ebook
Purchasing Info: Author website, Goodreads, Amazon

Book Blurb:

She lives for passion

Bold, impulsive, and a magnet for trouble, Juliana Fiori is no simpering English miss. She refuses to play by society’s rules: she speaks her mind, cares nothing for the approval of the ton, and can throw a punch with remarkable accuracy. Her scandalous nature makes her a favorite subject of London’s most practiced gossips…and precisely the kind of woman the Duke of Leighton wants far far away from him.

He swears by reputation.

Scandal is the last thing Simon Pearson has room for in his well-ordered world. The Duke of Disdain is too focused on keeping his title untainted and his secrets unknown. But when he discovers Juliana hiding in his carriage late one evening–risking everything he holds dear–he swears to teach the reckless beauty a lesson in propriety.

She has other plans, however; she wants two weeks to prove that even an unflappable duke is not above passion.

My Thoughts:

Eleven Scandals to Start to Win a Duke’s Heart (we’ll call it Eleven Scandals), is the 3rd and final book in the Love By Numbers series. This is Juliana’s story with the very cold Duke of Leighton.  I really enjoyed the previous books in the series about the twin brothers, Nick and Gabriel and it was time their sister got her HEA. I couldn’t wait to read Juliana’s story. Ever since she met the mysterious and sexy man in the bookshop in the 1st book, and when we saw Simon in book 2…I was hoping he would be the hero of her book. So when I finally read the synopsis of Eleven Scandals I was in heaven! I might have squeed a little. *wink* 

Juliana is a passionate woman, you can’t miss that she is Italian and not English. I think what I loved the most about her is that she tried her best to be accepted by the Ton even though it went completely against her nature. She really tried but she doesn’t fit in a society that would want her to walk at a sedate pace, to keep her thoughts to herself and do ladylike activities. Juliana realized that she is NOT like the Tons, no matter what. They resent her for her mother’s scandals. Her half-brothers love her and they want more than anything to make her feel welcome in England.  But sadly, for society, Juliana is ‘just like her mother’, a scandal in waiting. And they are openly insulting her in ballrooms, as if she wasn’t there. Juliana has been abandoned by her scandalous mother and she is very afraid that the Ton is right…that she is just like her mother. Is she bound to be a scandal? Will she abandon her family too?  Juliana is a very proud and courageous woman but she questions herself too. 
When the story begins, Juliana is in a bad situation at a party. She must escape a man who is trying his best to ruin her, in her escape she ends up hiding in a carriage…in the Duke of Leighton’s carriage! Simon has been nicknamed the Duke of Disdain. If you’ve read the previous books in the series, you’ll remember him and his ruthlessness. Simon is the archetype of a Duke, he is cold, knows his responsibilities and his duties. He has been brought up to fit that mold. 
Simon has principles and he would do anything to protect his family and their good name. As you can imagine, he is everything Juliana hates in the English aristocracy. And Simon sees Juliana as a reckless and scandalous woman. It wasn’t always like that…when Simon met Juliana for the first time, he thought she was a foreign Aristocrat and he was attracted to her (see book 1), but then he learned that she was the daughter of a scandalous former Marchioness and an Italian merchant. From the start there are sparks between them. They both embodied what the other hated and they are both strong-minded. 

They both want to teach the other a lesson. Juliana wants to make him feel passion and he wants to prove her that one can live without passion. Simon  loses control around her and he resents her for making him act this way. He doesn’t want to want her, he doesn’t want to feel passion for her. Simon has his reasons for trying to protect his family’s name and associating with Juliana would put this in jeopardy. His duty to his family must come first, even if it breaks his heart in pieces. What a heart-wrenching love story! This impossible love had me both cheering and yelling at the book. The story has lots of twists and turns, and I felt exhausted by the end of the book. They deserved their HEA!

The story had me glued to the pages from start to end. It’s a fantastic and moving story. It doesn’t hurt that we see more of Nick and Gabriel too in this book *g*. Simon really grew on me, I loved how he fought his love for Juliana but couldn’t stop it from happening. I loved both Juliana and Simon as characters, which is not often the case. Eleven Scandals is a heart-wrenching love story about pride and prejudice and how love and passion always win in the end. I can’t recommend this book enough

I give Eleven Scandals to Start to Win a Duke’s Heart  5 Bookies

***FTC Disclaimer: Most books reviewed on this site have been provided free of charge by the publisher, author or publicist. Some books we have purchased with our own money and will be noted as such. Any links to places to purchase books are provided as a convenience, and do not serve as an endorsement by this blog. All reviews are the true and honest opinion of the blogger reviewing the book. The method of acquiring the book does not have a bearing on the content of the review.

About Caro The HEA Lover

Caroline is a HEA loving, yarn addicted French who's desperately hoping to get a HEA of her own. If she's not reading then she can be found knitting while listening to Audiobooks or watching Tv shows. Her secret addiction is reading websites that make fun at other people's expense (DYAC, Failbook)! Caroline also blogs at the Secret HEA Society with Susi.

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Join the Discussion
  • LSUReader March 31, 2011 at 2:35 pm

    I loved Sarah's two other books in this series and am so looking forward to reading this one. Thanks for the review. Do we get a bit of resolution for Simon's sister in Eleven Scandals?

  • Chelsea B. March 31, 2011 at 4:23 pm

    Haven't read this series but, um, yeah, I need to! Pride and Prejudice, you say? 😉

  • Sheree March 31, 2011 at 7:40 pm

    Aha! I knew Juliana was going to end up with Simon, just from the bookstore scene in the first book. I've been waiting for this one. I, too, want to find out about Simon's sister.

    Is it me or is the cover of this one a bit too bright? I suppose the color palette is going from light to dark? I adored the first cover and the second is pretty, but this one, I don't know. Is it a comment on Juliana's passionate nature or something?

  • pattepoilue April 1, 2011 at 2:01 am

    @LSUReader Well without spoiling I can just say, Yes we do get a bit of a resolution for her. =)

    @Chelsea B. Ohh this whole series is fantastic! The first one Nine Rules to Break is hilarious and so cute. Loved it.
    Yeah in this book, Juliana and the Duke are both prejudiced and proud and they both have to open their eyes (it did remind me of P&P in some points *g*)

    @Sheree Me too! When she met him in the Bookstore, I was sooooooooo excited and I was hoping he would be her HEA!
    Hehe, well all I can say is that you'll find out more about Simon's sister.
    Yeah the 1st cover was classy and elegant, in pale colors. The dress Juliana is wearing is in the book though. I guess the Pink/red is to represent her passion as you said. *shrug* Good thing the books are better than the covers 😉

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