About the Book:
Title: A Wolf in Duke’s Clothing
Author: Susanna Allen
Series: Shapeshifters of the Beau Monde – Book 1
Page Length: 352
Publication Date: April 27, 2021
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Synopsis: Alfred Blakesley, Duke of Lowell, has long been an enigma. No one dares to give a man of his stature the cut direct, but there’s simply something not quite right about him. What would the society mamas say if they learned that the something they sensed was the fact that Alfred is a wolf shifter…? He’s been looking for his mate for a long time, but not just any young lady will do for him, or for his pack.
Felicity Templeton has one goal: to remain unmarried. If she can manage that until her twenty-fifth birthday, she stands to inherit a large fortune. But when she meets Alfred, the dashing duke is determined to have her for his very own…and a wolf who’s a duke can be very persuasive…
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Alfred Blakesley, the Duke of Lowell is a wolf shifter looking for his mate. An alpha male who has been searching for years across the world, Alfred is stunned to find her in a ballroom near his home. He also realizes that his mate is human and knows nothing about shifters, but he won’t be deterred.
In the hopes of convincing Felicity Templeton that he is her future, Alfred kidnaps her and attempts to woo her. Poor Alfred! Not only does he have to hide his shifter world from Felicity, but he’s also clueless when it comes to courting a human woman! This part of the story reminded me so much of Beauty and the Beast. Alfred, much like the beast, is eager to please but bumbling and awkward in his execution. It made for some humorous and endearing scenes.
I like Felicity’s character and her determination to have some independence. Her involvement in the horse trade is unique for the time period and something that connects her to her deceased mother and is an interesting part of the story. Felicity has a way with animals, which is good considering she’s mated to a wolf shifter!
Knowing that she must remain single until she can claim her inheritance, Felicity purposely makes herself less attractive and avoids potential suitors as much as she can. Hiding behind plants, avoiding eye contact, and wearing unflattering clothing are just some of the clever ways she stays out of the spotlight, much to her uncle and cousins’ irritation. Felicity is strong-willed and feisty, and I like that she challenges Alfred, who is a bit stubborn at times.
The chemistry between Felicity and Alfred is strong, and it is clear that they are attracted to each other from their very first dance. Some of my favorite scenes are when Felicity talks to Alfred while he is in wolf form. It is then that Felicity lets her guard down, and Alfred gets to really understand her. These are touching moments in their love story.
I do wish that Felicity had a bit more choice in her future, and this got in the way of the romance for me at times. It feels like, though Felicity does everything she can to maintain a modicum of independence, the men in her life, especially her uncle and cousins, continually take that from her. Even Alfred, who had good intentions, takes her freedom of choice away when he kidnaps her and thus tarnishes her reputation. Though Alfred is driven by the mating call, it’s a selfish way to start a relationship.
Overall, this is a good story with romance, mystery, supernatural elements, and vicious antagonists. I liked reading about the growing relationship between Felicity and Alfred and how Felicity slowly learns about Alfred and the shifter world that he leads. I also like that the story twines Regency and paranormal romance, though I did feel that it was a bit unevenly paced. Thanks so much to NetGalley, Sourcebooks Casablanca, and the author for a copy of the book in exchange for my honest review.
We shall find a balance, one which includes choice, despite the necessity of bowing to society’s dictates and our own.
This story will appeal to readers who enjoy historical/paranormal romance with wolf shifters and a strong female protagonist.