ARC Review: Discouraging the Duke by Alexa Aston

About the Book:

Title: Discouraging the Duke

Author: Alexa Aston

Series: Dukes Done Wrong

Page Length: 230

Publication Date: July 16, 2021

Publisher: Dragonblade Publishing

Synopsis: Welcome to the new world from Alexa Aston—Dukes Done Wrong.

Accused of something they never did. Five boys banished from their homes in disgrace, to the place where they find the brothers of their heart—and build new family ties that will last a lifetime.

A lonely army captain who suddenly finds himself a duke. A gentleman’s daughter running an estate because her father no longer can. Two lonely souls whose sparks are undeniable . . .

Miles Notley returns home as the new Duke of Winslow after being sent away for accidentally killing his younger brother when he was ten years old, an act his older brother committed—and denied. With his brother’s death, Miles finds himself in unfamiliar waters. He has no idea how to run an estate, much less be a duke. Until he meets an intriguing young woman.

Emery Jenson came to Wildwood ten years ago with her parents, hired to be the estate’s steward and housekeeper. She has taken on more responsibility as her father’s mind grows weak and now runs the ducal country seat. When the new duke shows up, she schemes to hide her father’s deficiencies, believing the Duke of Winslow won’t remain long since the Season is in full swing and he will need to claim a bride and provide an heir.

But Miles isn’t going anywhere. He becomes captivated not only by Emery’s charm and confidence but admires her skills in making Wildwood a profitable estate. Miles decides no one but Emery can be his duchess—and he is up for the challenge, ready to convince the blunt beauty in the battle of wills that they can both come up winners—if she will only say yes.

Will Emery, who thinks she has found her place in the world and urges Miles to now find his, discover that the best place she can be is at the Duke of Winslow’s side?

LINKS:     Goodreads    |      Amazon   

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My Review:

The first book in the Dukes Done Wrong series, Discouraging the Duke follows Miles Notley, an army captain who was banished from his home as a young boy after being falsely accused of killing his younger brother. Fourteen years later, Miles must leave his fulfilling military career and return home to take over the dukedom. It is there where he meets Emery Jenson.

Emery’s parents work for the duke, and she spends most of her time dutifully assisting them. When Miles asks for her assistance in learning all about his new responsibilities, Emery readily agrees. The more time they spend together, the more she is drawn to Miles, but she believes their different social statuses will keep them apart. Can Miles convince Emery to be his duchess?

I love Miles. He is such a good and fair man, and he has a generous and loyal heart. His story is quite compelling and a little heartbreaking, especially what happened to him as a child. I like that the story has flashbacks to his childhood. It definitely explains a lot about his family dynamics and how he became one of the “Five Terrors” when he went to Turner Academy. Banished there at ten years old, Miles befriends four other boys who were banished for similar reasons, and the boys form a life-long bond. This found family, which includes the Terrors and teachers at the academy defines Miles.

Honorable, capable, and caring, Miles wants to do a good job which is why he enlists Emery’s help. She knows more about the estate than anyone, and Miles is pleased to be able to spend so much time with her. This gives him more opportunities to show her how well-suited they are. They are instantly attracted to each other, and their chemistry is great!

Emery and Miles might be instantly attracted to each other, but many obstacles stand in their way, the biggest being their social status. But Miles never gives up on Emery. I think the more time Emery spends with Miles, the more she falls in love with him. However, Emery has her own burdens, including a father whose health is deteriorating. Fearful that he might lose his job and home if the duke becomes aware of her father’s failing health, Emery tries to compensate by taking over most of his responsibilities. I like how Emery slowly learns to trust Miles and herself.

This is a great start to Alexa Aston’s Dukes Done Wrong series, and I look forward to finding out more about the four other “Terrors” in future books. Thanks so much to NetGalley, Alexa Aston, and Dragonblade Publishing for a copy of the book in exchange for my honest review.


Favorite Parts:

  • The romance!
  • The use of art to show one’s feelings.

Favorite Lines:

A society where laws are passed by men of priveledge, you are held to a different standard.

Servants seem to know more of what occurs in a household than those who actually own and reside in it.


This is a good story for readers who enjoy historical romance!

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