Prudence is a seamstress whose illegitimacy has meant she lives on the margins of society. When she meets the Duke of St. Cyres, she thinks he is wonderful - but of course a seamstress is nothing to an aristocrat. However, when Prudence discovers she is
an heiress due an amazing sum of money, she begins to wonder if she could have him. Rhys de Winter, the duke, has
also learned that Prudence is an heiress, yet he thinks the only way to get her to marry him is to woo her the traditional way.
If she thinks him a fortune hunter, she won't marry him, so he pretends that he doesn't know. Of course, building lies upon lies is always likely to cause a problem in the end...
The Wicked Ways of a Duke is an enjoyable and readable story set in the time of Queen Victoria. Prudence
is a great character, a self-contained and yet also romantic girl whose motives are good and whose opportunities in life suddenly become so much greater. St. Cyres is a typical rake who is hiding a terrible family secret, but he sees in Prudence a chance for love and a woman
whom he can settle down with. Historicity is reasonable in this novel, although the dialogue occasionally slips into modern American words and phrases, which
is rather jarring. There is nothing particularly new in The Wicked Ways of a Duke, but it is a pleasant enough read.