Series: Girl Meets Duke #3
Genres: Historical Romance
Setting: London, UK
Source: ARC, Edelweiss
They call him the Duke of Ruin.
To an undaunted wallflower, he's just the beast next door.
Wealthy and ruthless, Gabriel Duke clawed his way from the lowliest slums to the pinnacle of high society—and now he wants to get even.
Loyal and passionate, Lady Penelope Campion never met a lost or wounded creature she wouldn’t take into her home and her heart.
When her imposing—and attractive—new neighbor demands she clear out the rescued animals, Penny sets him a challenge. She will part with her precious charges, if he can find them loving homes.
Done, Gabriel says. How hard can it be to find homes for a few kittens?
And a two-legged dog.
And a foul-mouthed parrot.
And a goat, an otter, a hedgehog . . .
Easier said than done, for a cold-blooded bastard who wouldn’t know a loving home from a workhouse. Soon he’s covered in cat hair, knee-deep in adorable, and bewitched by a shyly pretty spinster who defies his every attempt to resist. Now she’s set her mind and heart on saving him.
Not if he ruins her first.
The Wallflower Wager by Tessa Dare has one of the most delightful heroines I’ve read in a long time. Penny has the kindest heart and it simply shines from her every pore. She is considered a spinster at 26 and she is enjoying her life in London with her house full of abandoned animals. She takes in all creatures in need and they provide her with the love missing from her life. I loved her devotion to all the animals she took in. Her detailed notes on how to care for them were adorable!
Gabe Duke is scoundrel by the ton’s standards. He has ruined families by finding their financial weaknesses and exploiting them. He grew up poor and hates the aristocracy. However, he is intrigued by Penny. The strange daughter of an earl is ruining his plan of getting new money buys for the house next door. When Penny needs his help in order to stay in London, he agrees.
These two are classic opposites attract and I am here for it! Gabe is hardened and cold and Penny is warm and loving. These two were perfect for each other. Penny is the star of the story though. Her backstory is heartbreaking and she is so lonely. Her friends are great, but they are married and having kids and busy. So, she takes in needy animals and my heart melted. As Penny and Gabe get to know each other, Gabe begins to soften and its so swoony! The Wallflower Wager is an enchanting story of bucking societal norms and finding true love!
- POV: 3rd
- Tears: yes
- Trope: opposites attract, regency
- Triggers: View Spoiler »Penny was molested as a child by a family friend « Hide Spoiler
- Series/Standalone: standalone within an interconnected series
- Cliffhanger: View Spoiler »no « Hide Spoiler
- HEA: View Spoiler »yes with epilogue « Hide Spoiler