The Wallflower Wager

The Wallflower Wager

They call him the Duke of Ruin.To an undaunted wallflower, he's just the beast next door. Wealthy and ruthless, Gabriel Duke clawed his way from the lowliest slums to the pinnacle of high society—and now he wants to get even.Loyal and passionate, Lady Penelope Campion never met a lost or wounded creature she wouldn’t take into her home and her heart.When her imposing—and...

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Title:The Wallflower Wager
Author:Tessa Dare
Rating:
Edition Language:English

The Wallflower Wager Reviews

  • Pavlina Read more sleep less blog❤❤

    ❤5 STARS❤

    I'm so in love with The Wallflower Wager, this is the best!I fall in love with everything and esecially the characters!I couldn't get enough of them.I laughed,I swooned and I melted with these two.Tessa Dare delivers a sweet,heartwarming and steamy romance!

    Penny and Gabe are my favorite couple.I love their banter, they have an amazing chemistry.I laughed a lot with these two.Their dialogues were fun,entairten and sweet.There were some really hot and intense moments too to make you swoon

    ❤️5 STARS❤️

    I'm so in love with The Wallflower Wager, this is the best!I fall in love with everything and esecially the characters!I couldn't get enough of them.I laughed,I swooned and I melted with these two.Tessa Dare delivers a sweet,heartwarming and steamy romance!

    Penny and Gabe are my favorite couple.I love their banter, they have an amazing chemistry.I laughed a lot with these two.Their dialogues were fun,entairten and sweet.There were some really hot and intense moments too to make you swoon. Penny is such a sweetheart, I loved her so much.She was kind,sweet and so lovely.Gabe is sexy, handsome and I loved how he felt for her.

    This one has all the sweet feels.I highly recommend it!After the Duchess Deal this is my new favorite in the series!

     

  • Lana ❇✾Dirty Girl Romance❇✾

    See that pile of satisfied reader goo in the corner? The one clutching her kindle to her chest and making moon eyes at the sky? That, my friends, is this girl after downright binging on the absolute perfection that was this story.

    I don't know how it's possible for Tessa Dare to outdo herself with each book in this series, but my GOD does she. I loved the first book and th

    See that pile of satisfied reader goo in the corner? The one clutching her kindle to her chest and making moon eyes at the sky? That, my friends, is this girl after downright binging on the absolute perfection that was this story.

    I don't know how it's possible for Tessa Dare to outdo herself with each book in this series, but my GOD does she. I loved the first book and thought nothing can top it, then I felt the same about the second book. And now reading the third, I'm convinced that this author is a mythical unicorn that farts rainbows and creates pure swoony magic with her stories. Yes, I realize most likely it's immense skill and talent, but just go with me here. I'm still on cloud nine after finishing this phenomenal romance.

    Now let's talk about this story and everything that it had.

    First, the third wallflower that gives the word eccentric a whole new meaning. A spinster by choice and an animal lover by nature, Penelope has an innate ability to find the weak and wounded and nurse them back to health. And over the years, she's developed quite the collection of animals.

    But Penny's skill of attracting the wounded and lost doesn't just stop with animals. Enter Gabriel Duke, or the Duke of Ruin as he's known to the lot.

    I say this every time I read a book from this series, but I swear Gabe was my favorite hero to date. Broody, tortured, and hiding a heart of gold, this man absolutely stole mine. There's something so vulnerable to his intensity. Beyond the ruthless and cold demeanor there's a boyish charm to him that you can't help but gravitate towards.

    Then there's Tessa's signature brand of banter that will leave a goofy smile on your face and completely incapable to set the book down.

    Penelope has made a deal with the devil when she agrees to allow the Duke of Ruin to help her meet the terms she's promised to her aunt in order to not be forced to go back to her brother and eventually be forced to marry. Those terms? Finding a loving home for her beloved animals while letting the Duke introduce her back to the ton as something more than the quirky spinster.

    The story is full of lovable secondary characters, including past favorites, and some of the most memorable and funny animals to grace the pages of a book. I couldn't get enough of this!

    Did I also mention the cameos?

    This book was everything I've come to expect from the amazing Tessa Dare and so much more. It was romantic and heart warming. It had a tortured and protective hero. It had a quirky heroine with an understated inner strength that you can't help but connect to. And it had the most swoony romance full of laughs that you never want to end. In a word? PERFECTION. An absolute must read for any historical romance fans out there!

  • chan ☆

    penny has the

    darling

  • Ⓐlleskelle - teamSøren♗ ⊲I like big b00ks⊳

    I'm now looking at craiglist for possible parrots rescues, lol!

    GAH! I couldn't love this book more!

    This was such a real treat to read, delightful in every respect.

    was incredibly hilarious, charming and hot, SO, so hot! I’m talking positively scalding steam here!

    If you’re looking for a pick-me-up, call off the search, this is the book you’ve been looking for!

    A neighbors to lovers/ pauper and the princess trope / beast and the wallflow

    I'm now looking at craiglist for possible parrots rescues, lol!

    GAH! I couldn't love this book more!

    This was such a real treat to read, delightful in every respect.

    was incredibly hilarious, charming and hot, SO, so hot! I’m talking positively scalding steam here!

    If you’re looking for a pick-me-up, call off the search, this is the book you’ve been looking for!

    A neighbors to lovers/ pauper and the princess trope / beast and the wallflower...

    I just can't get enough of Tessa Dare's sassy and quirky heroines entangling themselves with prickly, roguish men!

    Lady Penelope Campion —or— Penny, had me howling with laughter all throughout!

    She might be my favorite heroine from this series thus far! (I know I could have said "so far" but after reading a historical romance, one is compelled to employ words like "thus", "atop", "drawers" or "column of arousal"… you know, the usual. LOL!)

    From the previous books we knew Penny would be fun and eccentric, but I hadn't expected all the layers from her character. She's such a lovable heroine, she's got the sass, the brain, the biggest heart and doesn't shy from her feelings... even if it means poking at the beastly man next door!

    This book has got to have the most entertaining and perfect meet-cute ever! Not even 5% in and I was already full-on guffawing all the while worshipping at the altar that was the potent chemistry between Gabriel and Penny on their first encounter.

    Gabriel Duke knows better than reaching for what isn't for him, or so he's been taught over and over again during his upbringing. One look at Lady Penelope Campion is enough to confirm she's not for the likes of him. Self-made man, ruthless business man, definetly not a gentleman. He didn’t earn his Duke of Ruin’s title for nothing. I flat out fell in lust/love—and everything that follows, with Gabriel Duke. I felt seen and understood after reading that simply put but oh so effective first description of him by Penelope:

    Yes, I’m shallow like that. But you know what? He’s proven himself to be more than just that perfect body, a man with integrity and intense sense of care and loyalty, definitely a hero to swoon over.

    On the pretense to protect his business interests selling the house he’s just renovated next door to Penny, he’s agreed to save Penny’s whole animal rescue/menagerie. Both she and Gabriel are on a mission to find them good homes so Penny’s reputation as a lady can be restored in the eyes of her own brother.

    They’re so different from each other, yet their differences made them so perfect together.

    The instant attraction between Penny and Gabe and the resulting tension without a doubt commanded my full attention. Something that clearly stood out for me reading

    , was the focus on the positive sex scenes between Penny and Gabe. Ravishing roguish man yes, but consent on the pages. Wallflower of a woman, yes, but taking her pleasure and not shying away from exploring her desire. The power exchange and respect interspersed during those scenes made the romance even more special in this historical context.

    I don't believe I've laughed this hard before reading a historical, Penny fighting tooth and nails to protect her animals' well-being, the whole crew from the previous books defending Penny from the big bad Duke of Ruin, Gabriel efforts to reason Penny... Everything was brilliantly orchestrated to deliver the perfect heartfelt romance story.

    I've been well and truly ruined by Gabriel Duke! Penny decidedly got herself the best Duke of them all!

  • Sara Reads (mostly) LOTS of Romance

    8/20/2019

    AAAANDDD TRYNA START MY COME BACK FROM BOOK-DEATH WITH A BANGGG

    What better way to ease my way back into reading than a Tessa Dare novel?

    Here goes

    Oops. Guess who did it again?

    Tessa FUCKIN Dare. That's Who.

    You know the one thing I love about her books is that they're feel good, don't take themselves too seriously with the perfect amount of romance, passion and emotion. Her men are... all the same lol. But! It's not like them old highland novel

    8/20/2019

    AAAANDDD TRYNA START MY COME BACK FROM BOOK-DEATH WITH A BANGGG

    What better way to ease my way back into reading than a Tessa Dare novel?

    Here goes

    Oops. Guess who did it again?

    Tessa FUCKIN Dare. That's Who.

    You know the one thing I love about her books is that they're feel good, don't take themselves too seriously with the perfect amount of romance, passion and emotion. Her men are... all the same lol. But! It's not like them old highland novels where all the men are just like grunt and point. Her men have humor which is honestly all I can ask for when using the same formula for all your heroes. Her heroines on the other hand, are what MAKE all the novels. I love how she definitely improved here from the Governess Game. The last book in the series was rushed and I was annoyed on how she completely brushed over the heroine's hobbies and career. It was supposedly a big part of her life but wasn't even discussed. Here I absolutely loved Penelope and her dedication to animals, and how aware of herself.

    Not gonna lie, Gabriel wasn't that special, however they had wonderful chemistry and he was so so sweet and funny. I loved the humor, I definitely laughed out loud several times. The sex. well, can't complain can I. The plot was cute and fun, and not too heavy.

    Now if you're looking for a realistic historical, lol you won't find it here. The year is 2019. The audience is mostly middle aged women with MANY sexual fantasies lmao. Therefore, if you're looking for a realistic, very non-independent, non-sexually empowered victorian heroine, you will most definitely not find it here.

    Read the book, read all her books, know what you're signing up for and don't take it too seriously!!

    That's all folks! xxx

    Another Tessa Dare novel? ABOUT AN ECCENTRIC SPINSTER ANIMAL LOVER WITH A HOT GRUMPY ENGLISH PEER WE HAVE SEEN AGAIN AND AGAIN IN ALL OF HER BOOKS WHO DOESN'T HAVE A JOB BUT HAS ABS AND IS GREAT AT SEX???

    COUNT ME THE FUCK IN BABY

    OH MY GOooOOOoOD THAT COVER. FUC ME COVER. OH LORDY THATS A BEAUT COVER HOLY SHITE GAH I JUST WANT A MAN TO LOOK AT ME SWEETLY N DO THAT WITH ME

    LITERALLY CRYING RN K BYE

    ^^me looking at dat cover while im single in the lib procrastinating on my essay wearing an oversized graphic tee eating 4 bars of chocolate

  • Anovelqueen

    ***4.5*** STARS

    Tessa Dare has proven once again why she is one of the BEST historical romance writers of all time....consistency. I cannot say a bad thing about any of her books and this one ranks top too.

    Lady Penelope loves animals...specifically wounded and abandoned animals. Her love of animals leads her into a rather sexy introduction to our hero Gabriel Duke. Gabriel has dragged himself from the gutters of London and he has become what we would consider today a real estate mogul. But he als

    ***4.5*** STARS

    Tessa Dare has proven once again why she is one of the BEST historical romance writers of all time....consistency. I cannot say a bad thing about any of her books and this one ranks top too.

    Lady Penelope loves animals...specifically wounded and abandoned animals. Her love of animals leads her into a rather sexy introduction to our hero Gabriel Duke. Gabriel has dragged himself from the gutters of London and he has become what we would consider today a real estate mogul. But he also takes pleasure in bringing the hated aristocracy to their knees financially. When he meets Penny he presents as very hard and serious, but he has a soft side that he has kept hidden for fear of vulnerability.

    I loved the romance between Penny and Gabe. Talk about serious laugh out loud moments especially with Gabe’s interaction with the animals and the guys interaction with each other (true bro moments). I was in stitches. And the steam factor was off the charts. They truly had odds to overcome but you as the reader are pulling for them hard.

    Tessa Dare has a way with words and her stories flow fast. I read this in one sitting and my attention was glued to my IPAD. Her use of dialogue makes the story come to life and develops the characters magnificently. My only real complaint, if you can call it that, is I wish the Epilogue was longer and more in depth. I wanted to hear about some babies.

    Readers, so far the historical romance writers are coming out fully loaded and ready with some awesome books this summer. They are bringing some heat to the often overlooked genre of historical romance and I for one say HEAR HEAR.

    Add this one to the pile ladies and don’t wait to read...it is part of a serIes and you will definitely want to read the others to understand fully Chase and Ash.

    HIGHLY RECOMMEND

  • Alba and Her Secrets..♥

    And Tessa Dare does it again, people! I am completely in love with this series and this new novel is absolutely no exception! Of course, since I adored the other two books, I had high expectations for this one and I was not disappointed. I mean, who does not get curious when you read words like “Duke of Ruin”? I did not even need to start the novel to want to dive right in the whole thing. I literally devour

    And Tessa Dare does it again, people! I am completely in love with this series and this new novel is absolutely no exception! Of course, since I adored the other two books, I had high expectations for this one and I was not disappointed. I mean, who does not get curious when you read words like “Duke of Ruin”? I did not even need to start the novel to want to dive right in the whole thing. I literally devoured it in just a few hours!

    is the third installment in Tessa Dare’s

    series, which follows the love stories of a peculiar group of female friends. It was now time for Lady Penelope Campion, the loyal and passionate wallflower who cares deeply for her friends and her beloved animals. She happens to have a new neighbor, the wealthy and ruthless Duke of Ruin (Gabriel Duke), who wants to sell the house he renewed. But that happens to be a problem when you have an enticing pretty wallflower next door who lives with a very singular group of animals she does not want to let go..

    Gah! This book was so freaking good! My heart simply melted with Penny and Gabe’s love story. I laughed, I swooned, I cried and I loved every single second of it. Tessa Dare writes brilliant pieces of historical romance and I love them so much because they have a bit of everything: unique characters, lots of banter and sweetness, sexual tension, feelings and a couple with burning chemistry. It’s impossible not to fall in love with Penny and Gabe because together they just click. They are so different and they come from very different environments but their connection is so special and heartwarming. This book just melted my heart with the sweet, hilarious and sexy moments between this wonderful couple!

    Therefore, my rating for

    is 5 STARS because, as you can see, I literally devoured this beautiful love story. I could not stop reading because Penny and Gabe just melted my heart with their connection and explosive chemistry. I love Tessa Dare’s historical romances and I cannot wait to read more from hers, especially the fourth book in this series (which sounds, of course, SO good!). Also, it was great to catch up with the rest of the group too since I adored the other two books too (especially

    ). Guys, if you love this type of romance, I cannot recommend this series enough times!

  • Addie H

    4.5 stars!!

    I’ve been on a pretty lousy romance reading path lately, so last night I bought Tessa Dare’s latest as I needed a “sure thing”. And boy did it deliver. I started it this morning and read it in one sitting.

    It’s got adorable, charming, and rude animals, hilarious revisits and interaction with characters from book 1 and 2, amusing dialogue that made me laugh out loud, plus plenty of

    4.5 stars!!

    I’ve been on a pretty lousy romance reading path lately, so last night I bought Tessa Dare’s latest as I needed a “sure thing”. And boy did it deliver. I started it this morning and read it in one sitting.

    It’s got adorable, charming, and rude animals, hilarious revisits and interaction with characters from book 1 and 2, amusing dialogue that made me laugh out loud, plus plenty of hot, sweet, sexy, and tender moments.

    There is also a couple of punches to this book which will be surprising, but it adds very good value to the story and just shows what a brilliant writer TD is.

    This book had it all.

    *****

    *****

    Quick plot: When Gabriel Duke is finishing his new house for sale to make more profit to his already vast fortune, he is not prepared for the continuous challenges presented by his pretty neighbour and her brood of animals.

    It becomes quite clear that these two will butt heads. Repeatedly.

    But there is no denying they have noticed each other.

    It's a good thing they have such a like for animals in common.

    And it doesn’t take long for Gabriel to expose his soft underbelly.

    And they get along swimmingly.

    (it’s not)

    *****

  • JenReadsRomance

    Hm. Well. I'm going to be working through some things here and this is 100% spoiler-filled and without tags. Enter at your own risk. This is really rough and I will probably continue to edit at will. So forewarned is forearmed. These are first thoughts.

    CONTENT WARNINGS: Childhood sexual assault.

    As always, there is some delightful banter and if that's your jam, then that will be pleasing in this book. Penny is a likable heroine, of course!-- but I have some real concerns about her character deve

    Hm. Well. I'm going to be working through some things here and this is 100% spoiler-filled and without tags. Enter at your own risk. This is really rough and I will probably continue to edit at will. So forewarned is forearmed. These are first thoughts.

    CONTENT WARNINGS: Childhood sexual assault.

    As always, there is some delightful banter and if that's your jam, then that will be pleasing in this book. Penny is a likable heroine, of course!-- but I have some real concerns about her character development. I think this book has some very big structural problems that undermine it entirely.

    Listen, can you just tell readers a few times that the hero is a villain without showing your work? There's very little to work with here. In the first 2/3 of the book, we only see Gabe when he arrives to do something with Penny. The entire "I need to make money off flipping this house" plot really doesn't make any sense, sorry. And even if it did---he never interacts with another human outside of the people introduced by Penny or in the setting. Are you really that dastardly of a villain without any people around you? He doesn't even have a valet, a man of affairs, a banker, a lawyer, a henchman?

    I have struggled in the past when a character has no people, but this is pretty extreme. He doesn't even seem to have his own interests. Somehow anything he had in process just comes to a grinding halt to deal with Penny, her menagerie, and selling this house. I guess.

    Some of Penny's pets have more character development than Gabe, and most of the heavy lifting about his character is done in chapter 21 when he decides to deliver a baby goat. Maybe I'm just real churlish, but an entire chapter devoted to baby goat delivery at the 70% mark as the primary way of convincing your readers that he's really loves her and is a really good guy? I wish you could see my face.

    I have a lot of feelings about this reveal. First of all, I want to say that I think survivors deserve HEAs but I also think survivors deserve to see their stories told with dignity and respect, and not as a plot twist. This big reveal really comes out of nowhere, and it felt to me like a craft mistake. OF COURSE women who have been molested keep secrets, but they also presumably develop a set of very finely honed defenses for how to cope with their feelings when they come up. For example, it could have been done when she thought about her brother and extended family, when she embarked upon a sexual relationship with Gabe, when she thought about her past and her life as a spinster. ANY NUMBER OF PLACES.

    Instead, given there was almost no forecasting of her past, this reveal came out of fucking NOWHERE. It's just air-dropped in, and it made ME feel as a reader feel like the message is: women who are molested just turn into lovable old kooks.

    And you know what, that did not feel great.

    From a craft perspective: if an author is going to introduce a big, hidden secret...Then do the work. As a reader, I am very interested in the ways in which characters reveal their truths to others. Here is a story that Penny has kept to herself for most of her life. Now she is going to tell someone. How exactly did she do that? We get the story she tells herself about what happened, but we don't get the way in which she tells it to Gabe. (This is also true later in the book when she tells her friends and then her aunt and finally her brother). It's all internal, and so for me as a reader, it didn't feel real. I had to reread the scene several times: what did she actually TELL him. The only way we know it took a Long time is because she got thirsty. Could this be an attempt on the author's part to show that she's trying to keep an emotional distance? I guess, but it just felt like a scene that needed a lot more work.

    Even Gabe's response in this moment is entirely passive:

    Part of me doesn't mind this passivity, it is after all, Penny's story. But this becomes a problem when later in the book, Gabe explodes into fucking action in the worst way. How are we to believe that the man who apparently SAT AND LISTENED, DIDN'T ASK A SINGLE QUESTION, DIDN'T MAKE A SINGLE SOUND, DOESN'T REVEAL A SINGLE FEELING then later jumps straight to dueling? And I found myself feeling like this was honestly, an emotional cheat. Why is this moment, which should be an emotionally weighty scene, the scene of the most important emotional connection between these two characters---why is this scene less carefully developed then a scene where Gabe delivers a baby goat?

    If this chapter and this plot point disappeared from the book, would it change who Penny is? Would it change who they are? I'd say no. Literally NOTHING about the first 23 chapters would have to change at all if chapter 24 were gone, and that is very damning, because that means it's not a real part of her character.

    These two big reveals about their childhood traumas felt clumsy and ill-conceived. I hated that the molester appears again at the end, how convenient! She's successfully avoided him for how fucking long, but there he is again! The aunt suddenly appears to save the day. I guess I'd call it all deus ex machina, but honestly, is the last third of the book even thematically related to the first 2/3? It's not god in the machine. It's a new machine.

    A book with virtually no conflict for the first 2/3 then turns into a huge amount of buried conflict, which is just as easily swept away. I was disappointed.

    I don't read historical romance because I care about history. So, for example, I don't really care that Penny walks herself down the aisle and says she is her own person and wants to give herself away.

    But I don't think that an author can have it both ways. Penny embraces a very modern sensibility about her body and her identity, but it is paired with a **very old fashioned** type of belief about why/when she should disclose her past to her family. She thinks that she should only disclose the abuse if her brother happened to have girls, so thank god he had boys. This did not sit well with me AT ALL and in a way I am very much struggling to describe.

    I'm including the actual language here, which I'm hiding behind a spoiler tag bc I feel like it has the potential to be very triggering:

    What does it mean for an author to completely flout social mores of the time period for which she's writing to make her character an ardent feminist, AND SIMULTANEOUSLY ground that character in the worst kind of old-fashioned thinking in another?

    Can I also say that the more I think about this line, the more I would like to talk about ALICE-- Who is never a part of the conversation. SHE NEVER EVEN APPEARS ON PAGE. It's all about what would Bradford think about Penny, but as a reader, I keep thinking about Alice? Does no one here ever wonder about her? ARG. The more I think about all of this, the more upsetting it is.

    How do we carefully unpack something that seems so carelessly done?

  • Diem

    'Lady Penelope Campion has a heart for wild and wounded creatures … but this Duke won’t be tamed.' (found on Tessa Dare's website)

    *cackles for 5 minutes straight*

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