The Mésalliance

Rated 5.00/5 based on 2 reviews
The Duke of Rockliffe is thirty-six years old, head of his house and responsible for his young sister. He is therefore under some pressure to choose a suitable bride. Unfortunately, due mainly to her dreadful relatives, the only lady he feels at all inclined to share his life with is not suitable at all. But will he choose to make a mésalliance? More

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About Stella Riley

B.R.A.G. Medallion honoree and Readers' Favorite award-winning author Stella Riley trained as a teacher in London and now lives in Kent. She enjoys theatre, dancing, reading and travel. She is fascinated by the English Civil Wars and has written six books set in that period. She loves the extravagant fashions of the mid-Georgian period, likes men with long hair and her current passion is for Baroque harpsichord music.

The first 5 books of the Rockliffe series (recommended in The Times newspaper!) are also available in audio, narrated by Alex Wyndham. And Rockliffe Book Six - CADENZA - is newly-published.

Visit Stella at for all the latest information on her books and her 'Who's Who' and Extras pages.
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About the Series: Rockliffe
Set in London during the 1770's, characters and lives intertwine throughout the series.

Also in Series: Rockliffe

Also by This Author


Laura E reviewed on Oct. 17, 2012

Wonderful! I've been checking back for weeks, awaiting this release. I was completely intrigued by Rockliffe's character in the prequel and thrilled to discover that he had his own book. 'The Mesalliance' was actually quite a surprise to me, not what I expected for some reason, but by no means a disappointment. I had to read the book in one sitting and was eagerly anticipating the ending, which proved to be wonderful. Stella Riley's novels are as engaging to me as those of Georgette Heyer, which is one of the highest compliments I can give, having grown up with the latter.
(reviewed 22 days after purchase)
Bellcanto reviewed on Sep. 30, 2012

When I heard this book was coming, I looked forward to it so much I wondered if it might prove a disappointment. I needn’t have worried. In my opinion, Stella Riley never fails to hit the mark. The story-line may not be hugely original but it is extremely engaging and moves along easily and at just the right pace to keep you turning pages. But the areas where, as always, Ms Riley really shines are in characterisation and dialogue. The writing throughout is extremely stylish, the dialogue is natural, often witty and the characters are so well-drawn you feel you know them personally.
As for Rockliffe – where do I start? Wow! As far as romantic leads go, he is outstanding. Charming, attractive and clever – but also fair-minded, possessed of a strong sense of humour and, above all, kind. This is a man who could probably get any girl he wanted but, though he knows he can seduce Adeline, he is by no means sure he can win her heart – a quality that I found particularly endearing. During the course of the book, we get to know him really well. The scene between him and Joanna, Adeline’s mother, was particularly touching. However, best of all, in the last chapter, we finally see him completely unravel. Everything he’s felt and thought for months comes pouring out in a torrent of emotion – and, if I have a favourite bit, this was probably it. Truthfully, I haven’t fallen this hard for a hero since Alex Deveril in ‘The Marigold Chain’.
There is a great deal of sexual tension in the book and, though the sex scene itself is by no means explicit, it still creates a frisson or two. I get the impression that Ms Riley works on the assumption that, since we all know how it works, we don’t need a manual.
All the other characters are extremely believable. You understand why Adeline behaves the way she does; you want to give Diana a slap and wish Rockliffe knew the truth so he could kill the wicked uncle. The two big set-piece scenes are also brilliant; first the Franklin ball which turns into a farce and then, in the penultimate chapter, the Queensberry ball where everything finally comes to a head. The latter is fairly gut-wrenching but what an ending!
Apparently ‘A Splendid Defiance’ is coming next – and, though I haven’t come across a copy in years, I remember Justin Ambrose. Will I love him more than Rockliffe? It’s a tough call but one I look forward to making.
Please keep them coming Ms Riley. You’re making this reader very happy.
(reviewed 4 days after purchase)

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