Series Review: Is this series worth your time? Does it get better as the novels progress? Or does it get worse? Find out below:
Castles Ever After Series
Synopsis for Romancing the Duke (from Goodreads):
As the daughter of a famed author, Isolde Ophelia Goodnight grew up on tales of brave knights and fair maidens. She never doubted romance would be in her future, too. The storybooks offered endless possibilities.
And as she grew older, Izzy crossed them off. One by one by one.
Ugly duckling turned swan?
Abducted by handsome highwayman?
Rescued from drudgery by charming prince?
No, no, and… Heh.
Now Izzy’s given up yearning for romance. She’ll settle for a roof over her head. What fairy tales are left over for an impoverished twenty-six year-old woman who’s never even been kissed?
SERIESous’ Top Book Series: Must Read/Favourite Author
Series: Castles Ever After
This series crosses over with the Spindle Cove Series in book #4, Do You Want to Start a Scandal
Author: Tessa Dare
# of Books: 4 (Full Reading Order Here)
Book Order: Connected – Same Universe
Genre: Romance, Historical, Regency
Heat Rating: Toasty
Point of View: Third Person, Alternating
Publication Dates: January 2014 – September 2016
Source & Format: Public Library–eBooks; Audiobook (#4)
**This post was originally posted as a Fresh Friday review of the first book of the series. It has now been updated to include the newest publications in the series.**
Romancing the Duke, Book #1:
When I read a Tessa Dare book I know that I am going to get three things: great romantic leads, humour and an entertaining plot line. After reading two of her other awesome series, I was eagerly awaiting this new one!
I really enjoyed this book despite not really knowing to expect plot wise from the vague plotline. But the plot was a lot of fun and interesting and there were aspects to it there weren’t like anything I have read in this genre before. It did remind me a lot A Night to Surrender in the setup but each story has its unique aspects to it and they really are different.
As expected, I smiled and chuckled to myself as I read–which is always a bonus. Ms Dare’s characters are always a great blend of wit and fun and always a joy to read. I always appreciate her female characters in particular. They are always strong leads who are more than able to take care of themselves despite the somewhat extraordinary situations they find themselves in.
The sexual tension between Izzy and Ransom was awesome to watch unfold. I loved their connection and their interactions with each other.
Note About Series Order:
These books aren’t connected by characters, rather they are connected by the idea that the leads inherit an old castle. So don’t expect any crossover of characters or a sequel book about one character from the previous novel. The only exception is with Book #4 Do You Want to Start a Scandal. It features a particular character from Say Yes to the Marquess (#2).
–March 14, 2015– Book #2: Say Yes to the Marquess
I FINALLY managed to read Say Yes to the Marquess! I’ve had my name on my library’s hold list since September 2014, where I was in position 100–when the book’s release date wasn’t until December 2014! I guess people know a good thing when they see it!
There is a reason why Tessa Dare is the only historical romance reader I still follow continuously. Her works are always so consistent in what they deliver but I never feel like I am reading a regurgitation of her previous works or another historical romance. Say Yes to the Marquess was everything I thought it was going to be (based on the synopsis). It was really cute, fun and sweet which was exactly what I needed to read. It was a great follow-up to Romancing the Duke.
I’m super, super excited to read When a Scot Ties the Knot. I think it is going to be my favourite of the series based on the synopsis. It looks like it is going to be a lot of fun and I can’t wait!
–April 25, 2017– Book #3: When a Scot Ties the Knot
I knew I wouldn’t be disappointed when my favourite historical author (Tessa Dare) created a highlander (my guilty pleasure romance genre) hero.
This book was just perfect! It was funny, sweet and ultimately charming.
It helps that the premise is just so ridiculous, it’s fun! The whole notion is so entertaining to watch unfold. These two try their best to outmaneuver the other but end up learning more about themselves and what it means to be in a relationship.
What really shone for me was the romance itself. They have this great chemistry from the start. Too often you see characters compromise who they are for their partner–especially in highlander romances. But these two establish this great relationship of understanding and mutual respect that’s just a joy to watch.
I can’t wait to reread this one in the years to come!
–October 1, 2019– Book #4: Do You Want to Start a Scandal
It should have been a no brainer to me that I would absolutely love an audiobook production of a Tessa Dare novel but it took me until now to give it a try.
OMG — I loved every minute of this book. It was the perfect blend of two fantastic series (Castles Ever After and Spindle Cove) and wraps up both series perfectly. I had been dying to read this book I wasn’t disappointed in any way by the plot, chemistry, romance or characters. FABULOUS!
Series Rating: 4/5
Romancing the Duke 4/5 | Say Yes to the Marquess 4/5 | When a Scot Ties the Knot 5/5 | Do You Want to Start a Scandal 5/5
Simply put: this is a fun, light-hearted read that Tessa Dare fans will love and new readers will enjoy!
Read if You Like: historical romances, strong heroines, fun
Avoid if You: dislike characters appearing over multiple instalments
- A Night to Surrender by Tessa Dare (Spindle Cove Series #1)
- In Bed with a Highlander by Maya Banks (McCabe Trilogy #1)