The Unclaimed Duchess
Avon, Aug 31 2010, $7.99
In 1796 six year old Anne Danvers meets her betrothed since her birth, Rhys Carlisle when he intercedes with an incident with a bullying boy. Anne knew that he was the love of her life though she was a child. Years later in 1816 Anne and Rhys marry in what the Ton assume is a love match. However, a few weeks Later Rhys vanishes without a word to his spouse.
Rhys believed all his life with pride that he was a Waverly. Now he knows the truth that the man who raised him and whose ducal title is his is not his biological father. Instead, he is just another one of the ton of illegitimate sired by the Duke of Billington. Fuming, he left home to rusticate. However, Anne follows on a mission to learn what changed her loving husband into a mocking beast. As her love brings him back into the light, he conceals his secret shame even as a blackmailer threatens to expose him.
The key to this strong Regency romance is the lead couple as Rhys who was always arrogantly proud of one day becoming a duke learns the truth about his birth while Anne proves her strength by being at his side even when he tells her to leave. They make a great couple as his inability to talk to her about what troubles him disturbs her, but she refuses to quit on the love of her life. Jenna Peterson provides a strong character driven historical.