One good thing that comes from my Kindle (well, there are many but this one is the important one for this post) is that I browse and get recommended some long lost titles. :)
And there are definitely some noticeable differences between this romance novel and the ones that came later. And the main character being a rake isn't one of them. :)
I'd say she drew on Pride and Prejudice when starting this novel. The main character, being a duke, is very, ha, can't say egotistic because he is not intentionally mean, but being an extremely handsome and intelligent man (and a duke!) he can do and get pretty much anything he wants and love is not a word he recognizes as part of his vocabulary.
Honestly, he comes off so high-handedly aloof that I wondered how was SL going to show us he can fall in love. Because that's what all good rakes do. First they gather enough sexual experience to last them a dozen lifetimes and then they fall in love with intelligent beauties and are forever their loving husbands.
In the meantime, you get a lot of easy, fun banter and steamy sex scenes.
Only, this time around, there are no steamy sex scenes in this novel. And that is the main difference between this novel and later works by Stephanie Laurens.
Not that I find the book lacking because of it, quite the contrary, it made me tear up due to emotion (which doesn't happen when steamy scenes are involved for some reason). :)
P.S. One of the families visiting is called Darcys. :D