Blog Tour Review: Duchess if You Dare by Annabelle Bryant

About the Book:

From the glittering ballrooms of the ton to the city’s grittiest corners, London has no shortage of wrongs in need of righting—and the Maidens of Mayhem are prepared for the challenge. United by secrecy and sisterhood, these daring women from all walks of life aim to fight injustice wherever it takes them—even into the arms of unexpected love… These Regency Robin Hoods from USA Today bestselling author Anabelle Bryant are destined to storm into readers’ hearts!

Scarlett Wynn’s tragic childhood taught her that life can be cruel to women with little power. So when a local seamstress disappears, Scarlett vows to find out why. Armed with a weapon and her courage, Scarlett scours London for clues—and crosses the unlikely path of Ambrose Cross, the Duke of Aylesford, at an unlikely place: an upscale brothel. The Duke is trying to solve a mystery of his own, and Scarlett is sure they can help each other—if she can resist the attraction that draws them together…

As Duke, Ambrose is duty-bound to protect his family name from scandal, no matter the cost. But Scarlett’s fearless spirit forces him to look beyond his world of privilege. Scarlett is as intoxicating as she is dangerous, igniting a fire in him like no other. But when the pair learn both mysteries they’re trying to solve are tied to a string of missing women, the tangled scheme they uncover may put their lives, and their growing love, in mortal danger—and lead them to search their hearts like never before… 

“A delightful historical romance with a liberal dash of adventure, plenty of sizzling heat, and a heart of pure gold. A superb start to Bryant’s new Maidens of Mayhem series”

–Lenora Bell, USA Today bestselling author

“Duchess if You Dare is a fantastic read that kept me up late and has me anxiously awaiting the next book in the series.”

–USA Today Bestselling Author Renee Ann Miller

Purchase Links:

US Links:

About the Author:

USA Today Bestselling author Anabelle Bryant began reading at age three and never stopped. Her passion for reading soon turned into a passion for writing and an author was born. Happy to grab her suitcase if it ensures a new adventure, Anabelle finds endless inspiration in travel; especially imaginary jaunts into romantic Regency England, a far cry from her home in New Jersey. Instead, her clever characters live out her daydreams because really, who wouldn’t want to dance with a handsome duke or kiss a wicked earl?

Anabelle’s books have been translated into several languages including Japanese and Russian, but writing isn’t all that keeps her busy. Building miniatures, baking and photography are other favorite pastimes. Often found with her nose in a book, Anabelle is just as happy in a room full of people. She enjoys meeting readers, attending conferences and book signings. She has earned her Master’s Degree and is ABD for her Doctorate Degree in education.

A firm believer in romance, Anabelle knows sometimes life doesn’t provide a happily ever after, but her novels always do. Visit her website at


My Review:

Scarlett is a Maiden of Mayhem and fights injustices she sees. So, when her seamstress goes missing, Scarlett determines to find out what happened to the woman. As she looks for clues, she falls upon an even bigger mystery of several missing brothel workers. Scarlett also meets and agrees to work with Ambrose, who is also trying to solve the mystery.

Duty-bound and determined to protect his family name, Ambrose is begrudgingly pulled into the mystery by his scandalous brother. However, he is irresistibly drawn to Scarlett. Ambrose admires and respects Scarlett’s bravery, strength, intellect, and independence. Can the pair solve the mystery of the missing women? And how will they reconcile their feelings when they know they can’t have a future together?

This is an action-packed historical romance with a great protagonist. Scarlett is fiercely independent, smart, and skilled, and I love that she rescues Ambrose during their sleuthing. She makes it clear that she does not need a man to defend and protect her, no matter how much he may want to. As a member of the Maidens of Mayhem, Scarlett has more skills and experience than Ambrose in these matters. He, however, has wealth and privilege on his side.

Ambrose is so regimented in ingratiated into societal norms, and he does not veer from his duties and others’ expectations. Bound by the confines of society, Ambrose doesn’t know how to handle his ever-growing feelings for Scarlett. There are so many rules to follow, and Ambrose can’t reconcile his responsibilities with his desires. Scarlett feels the same way.

Scarlett and Ambrose have the perfect opposites-attract romance. They are from completely different worlds and are so different from each other. Scarlett has had a difficult, grief-filled life and knows how it feels to struggle. Ambrose led a life of the elite and never wanted for anything. Ambrose’s brother explains their stark differences when he describes Scarlett as a shooting star and Ambrose as an ottoman. She is lively and awe-inspiring, and he is reliable and consistent. They are vastly different, and yet they fit together so well, except when Ambrose’s arrogance and Scarlett’s stubbornness gets in the way. Plus, their chemistry is off the charts!

Kidnappings, fights, missing women, fires, deadly secrets, and betrayal make for an engrossing read. A blend of mystery, action, and romance, the story also tackles issues like sex trafficking, abuse of power, the plight of the impoverished, and the inequities of social classes and genders. The story also shows the difficulties in invoking change, which is where the Maidens of Mayhem come in.

I’m curious to learn more about the Maidens of Mayhem. This unique female-only group fights injustices and protects the vulnerable. They are close friends and a makeshift family with a strong bond and implicit trust in each other. This book didn’t delve far into the Maidens of Mayhem, and I can’t wait to find out more about the group and the women who lead it in the next book!! Overall, this is a strong start to The Maidens of Mayhem Series, and I’m so grateful to Anabelle Bryant and Rachels Random Resources for a copy of the book in exchange for my honest review.


Favorite Parts:

  • The romance!!!
  • The Maidens of Mayhem
  • The mystery surrounding the missing women.

Favorite Lines:

Dependence on another posed a danger, a weakness, and thoughts like that broke one’s heart.

Experience had taught him the worst scars weren’t visible. Especially those carved into one’s heart.

How foolish you are to believe you are free of restraints when every act you take is another constriction of your title.

It is a firework, explosive and entertaining, but fleeting and destined to burn away before one realizes it’s full beauty.

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