The Match of the Century is the first full length book in Cathy Maxwell's new "Marrying the Duke" series. There was a prequel to this book, A Little Thing Called Love, that showcased the parents of the heroine, Elin, in this book. Fyclan (Elin's father) fully believes in a prophecy that his only daughter will bear a duke for a son. So he and his wife agree to an arranged marriage between a future duke and their only daughter.
Elin was brought up her whole life knowing she would one day be married to Gavin, the future Duke. However, she develops a relationship with his younger brother, Benedict, that leads confusion for Elin and a quick trip to the military for Ben. Many years pass. On the eve of the announcement of Gavin and Elin's engagement, Elin is struggling with holding back her past from her future husband. Then in storms in Ben confusing the whole situation further.
I don't want to go to much farther into the plot so that I don't spoil anything. There is so much more that happens though, murder and bar fights just to name a couple! Ben was a wonderful hero who had his flaws. I loved that about him. His character development was very well done. Elin came off annoying at times to me, but she was going through a lot of hardships. She would change her mind quickly which seemed unnatural.
The romance is steamy and very damsel in distress which I enjoyed. I didn't like what the story showed of Fyclan and Jennifer from the prequel. They changed so much and their happily ever after wasn't as happy as I wanted it to be. I did like the relationship between the two brothers which changed throughout the story. The book gives you insight into the feelings and thoughts of Gavin, which made me want him to find a happy ending, too. I'm excited to see what else Cathy Maxwell has up her sleeve for the rest of this series!
**ARC provided by Publisher**