DNF Review: Duels and Deception by Cindy Anstey

“She quite enjoyed the intensity of the stranger’s gaze whenever their eyes met, and her sudden shortness of breath was not in the least alarming.”
Thank you very much to Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group, Swoon Reads, and Netgalley for providing a copy of the novel in exchange for an honest review.

This is my first DNF review! I feel a little bad writing this because I usually try my hardest to finish a disappointing book, but I’m trying something a little different this year.

DNF @ 34%

I very much wanted to like this book.

I was utterly charmed by Cindy Anstey’s Love, Lies and Spies and was expecting another whimsical, Pride and Prejudice-esque type novel. Instead, I was sorely disappointed.

The novel follows Miss Lydia Whitfield, heiress to a large family fortune who has her entire future planned out accordingly: she will run the family estate, marry a sensible young man, and become the perfect wife. She even tasks her new law clerk, Robert Newton, with arranging the marriage contract. Everything will be perfect. That is until Lydia – and Robert – is kidnapped. Lydia discovers that someone is after her fortune and is determined to destroy her to get their hands on it. With Robert’s help, Lydia tries to expose the villain determined to ruin her. But the more time they spend together, the more Lydia starts to wonder whether her carefully planned future is something she truly wants after all.

For all intents and purposes, I really expected to like this book. A Regency-set novel, a headstrong heroine, and a handsome and sweet love interest – it has my name written all over it! So what was the problem?

This book was hella boooooooooorrrrrrrrrring.

I’m not talking a British classic-type boring (which sometimes can be fun). I mean like a Lord of the Rings boring (no offence to LOR): I’m reading the words, but then my eyes blur and my brain starts thinking of something else and before I know it, I’m reading the same sentence over and over again, but nothing is penetrating.

The characters were very one-dimensional and there was a little insta-love going on. Just a little, but it still irritated me. The plot was also very cliche and, without knowing the ending, I am like 98% sure I know who is trying to steal her fortune. Sorry, Anstey, but it’s pretty obvious.

This book also put me in a massive reading slump – so much so that it is mid-April and I haven’t even read one book this month. Not one!!

Look, I very well might read this book one day, and I may even enjoy it, but at the moment, I am not feeling this novel. I have decided that this year I am not going to push myself to continue reading books that I am not enjoying – I have far too much work to do with my Master’s. I’m will try to come back to this book once I read and review the stack of other novels I have, courtesy of Netgalley, but no promises.

(No star-rating because it’s a DNF)

8 thoughts on “DNF Review: Duels and Deception by Cindy Anstey

  1. Anj @ seaweed books says:

    Ooh interesting. I’ve read two reviews of this book today and both seem to have enjoyed it. I totally understand that feeling when you just read the same sentence over and over again! 🙈 Anyways, hoping that I get to this book soon to see what I feel about it!

    Liked by 1 person

    • thebookcorps says:

      I’ve seen quite a few good reviews and quite a few DNFs! It’s just a strange book, I guess. I’m disappointed, because I really expected to like it! I hope I get the chance to read it one day! Oh, I hope you like it!! 😀

      Liked by 1 person

    • thebookcorps says:

      I decided to take a page out of your book and just DNF it. I was just super bored and didn’t want to waste anymore time reading it, when I have a Netgalley list piling up! When I get a chance, I hope I return to it, but atm, I’m too busy.
      Thank you!!! 😀


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