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REVIEW: The Duke’s Tattoo by Miranda Davis

The Duke’s Tattoo by Miranda Davis

Dear Ms. Davis:

Kaetrin of Dear Author alerted me to The Duke’s Tattoo after I had bemoaned the lack of tattooed dicks in the romance genre. Boy was I glad she did, because reading this book was crack in its purest form. Read this blurb and you’ll see what I mean.

After being grievously wounded at Waterloo, Jeremy Maubrey returns from war to find his new life as the tenth Duke of Ainsworth painful, dull and full of obligations. That is, until he wakes to find himself indelibly decorated in a mortifying place and mocking manner.

Though he cannot recall much of the hellish night when he was abducted and tattooed, he cannot forget the waif-like villainess responsible or her haunting eyes. Ducal duties must wait till he finds the culprit and takes his revenge.

Miss Prudence Haversham, Bath’s only female apothecary, knows she has a problem. A big, broad shouldered problem. At least she will have, if the tenth Duke of Ainsworth ever discovers she is to blame for tattooing him. Unfortunately, she meant to have tattooed the previous Duke of Ainsworth, who tried to debauch her and disgraced her with his lies. Worse yet, she learns this duke is one of four infamously implacable cavalry officers known as ‘The Horsemen of the Apocalypse.’

No sooner has the vengeful duke traced his abductress to Bath, than Prudence Haversham overturns the duke’s every expectation and intention. In turn, the duke proves himself an honorable and surprisingly forgiving man who earns the wary apothecary’s love.

YOU GUYS. This might’ve been the first blurb that caused me to click “buy” without reading the excerpt. The heroine is so pissed that she wants to dole out vengeance by tattooing her enemy’s dick. Points for originality. Except, you know, she ends up tattooing the WRONG DICK. How, you might be wondering, is that possible? The answer is just the beginning of the complete ridiculousness that the book spurts. Heh.

Our witless heroine, Prudence Haversham, is ruined in society’s eyes when the Evil Bro of the hero gropes her and then blames her for their skanky tryst. Asshole. Prudence’s douchey brother then forces her to live a quiet life in Bath, where she decides to set up an apothecary with two loyal employees. She then seethes and plots against Evil Bro (aka ninth Duke of Ainsworth) for the next nine years. Yep. You heard me. NINE FRICKING YEARS. So much for the kick-ass heroine I expected from the blurb.  In the same amount of time that How I Met Your Mother aired, all Prudence and her coherts do is talk about the gruesome tattoos ideas they want to imprint on Evil Bro’s dick. And just like HIMYM, Prudence’s plan of revenge ends in a complete disaster.

See, Prudence was really just talking-the-talk when she wishfully imagined mutilating Evil Bro’s dick. However, her employees actually take her seriously and kidnap a drunk Duke of Ainsworth. The problem? They kidnapped the WRONG Duke of Ainsworth, who happens to be the younger brother of the recently deceased Evil Bro AND one of the Four Horseman of the Apocalypse (this group of ex-army buddies). Nice going, guys. Why doesn’t Prudence interfere? Well, this might answer that question.

“Mrs. Mason and Murphy barred Prudence from the room while they stripped the man and Mr. Hsieh shaved his lower belly bare and plied it with needles and ink.”

What. The. FUCK!!?? She isn’t even in the same ROOM while the revenge is taking place? What, is she suddenly too lady-like and gentile to witness the horrific act? Please pause while I snort mockingly in derision. Of course, when she finally realizes her awful mistake, Prudence is stricken with guilt and fear. But mostly fear. Apparently any guilt she may have about injuring some random dude is forgotten in the panic that she might be punished for her awful misdeeds. UM, HELLO! You deserved to be punished, lady! If you were dumb enough to tattoo a dick without checking the owner’s face to make sure it checks out, boo fricking hoo. But instead of falling to their feet and begging for forgiveness, Prudence and company dump Ainsworth in his garden and scamper back to the apothecary. Oh, and she also leaves a bottle of salve with him from her trusty apothecary.

Jeremy Maubrey, tenth Duke of Ainsworth and owner of many dogs, wakes up with a hangover and a throbbing, tattooed dick. All he remembers from the night before is a beautiful woman and her eyes. Lord, does he remember her haunting eyes. It only comes up every other page when he’s banging some chick and he thinks of this woman’s eyes mid-coitus. I was mostly impressed by the fact that he was capable of humping so many girls with his tender cock. Does anyone reading this know how long it takes a tattoo to stop hurting? I’m in pain just thinking about it.

Pretty soon he figures out that Mysterious Chick must be responsible for threatening his manhood and vows eternal hatred. He’s determined to find this wench and “make her rue the day she raised a hand against him.” Nice. It’s kind of like the opposite of The Little Mermaid. There, Ariel saves Eric’s life, Eric can only remember her gorgeous voice, and he is left with the desire to marry Pretty Voice Girl. Here, Prudence marks Ainsworth’s dick (and not in a good way), Ainsworth can only remember her haunting eyes, and he is left with the desire to metaphorically strangle Mysterious Chick. Goal of connecting this crackalious novel to a Disney film? Check.

I actually had a lot of sympathy for Ainsworth. Note the usage of past tense. That sympathy dwindled when I realized he wasn’t doing shit to find Mysterious Chick. Seriously. The most eventful thing that happened was that he got the reputation of the “Mayfair Stallion” for his supernatural loving powers. Clearly the tattoo didn’t affect his virility (even though he never let any of the women actually see his decorated length of passion). He only figured out Mysterious Chick’s identity when someone told him about Prudence’s amazing salves. Ainsworth’s genius brain connected the dots: ‘Oh, here’s a woman who owns an apothecary with salves. Hey, wasn’t there a salve with me the day after I saw Mysterious Chick?’ A real Einstein, our Ainsworth. It’s also hard to have sympathy for Ainsworth when he thinks of stuff like this:

“He wondered if Miss Haversham feared large dogs. If so, he should bring Attila. On second thought, all the ladies in his acquaintance found Attila terrifying. So, he concluded with an evil chortle, Attila must come.”

Screw you, Ainsworth.

Anyway, Ainsworth decides to enact his revenge. His grand plan is to buy the building where Prudence’s apothecary operates so that she will have to move out. He goes to Bath (where Prudence lives) and the rest is history. Boy meets girl, boy hates girl for tattooing his dick, girl hates boy for ruining her business, boy and girl both think the other is really attractive, sparks fly, conflict, some separation, eventual HEA, yada yada yada. I don’t want to spoil any of the shenanigans that takes place later in the novel. Trust me, it is as crackalicious as the first 20% of the novel.

Before I proceed, I do have a disclaimer to make. If you are the type of reader that would’ve thrown their kindle in frustration by the shenanigans I’ve just described, don’t buy this book. You can’t think too deeply about anyone’s actions or how stupid everyone is. Like that Adam Sandler/Jennifer Aniston movie, you have to Just Go With It. If you follow that advice, you will enjoy this book. It is a pretty entertaining read if you ignore all the annoying voices of reason in your head. Plus, I will fully admit my bias since I picked up this book with the sole intention of crack (tattooed dick, guys. I’m so easy). I love books that are bad for me. I’m masochistic that way. Also, this book is full of prose that makes a gal go WTF.

Presenting Exhibit A:

“Actually, he hadn’t felt much like himself since his metamorphosis into the ‘colorful’ Duke of Ainsworth, et cetera. Almost daily he had cause to regret leaving behind his carefree, caterpillar’s life as second son and devil-take-the-hindmost cavalry officer.”

I’m going to give you guys a minute to process this. See you in a bit.

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Are you ready yet? I don’t think so.

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Okay, boys and girls (but mostly girls), time to shut your gaping mouths. There are so many things to say that I’m not sure where to start. Wait, I do know. WHAT THE FUCK!?! Since when do the words caterpillar, carefree, and cavalry officer go together? Is this a way to incorporate alliteration? Remember those quizzes you took in second grade? The ones where there were a list of words and you had to pick out the one that didn’t fit? Here’s a tip to not failing: if there is a list containing the words caterpillar, cavalry officer, horse, and war, CATERPILLAR IS THE RIGHT ANSWER. In no universe would there ever be an option where ‘caterpillar’ and ‘cavalry officer’ belong in the same list. I dare you guys to come up with such a list.

This is a caterpillar.

This is a caterpillar.

 

This is a cavalry officer (Prussian, but who cares)

This is a cavalry officer (Prussian, but who cares)

 

Now what the fuck do they have in common?

Okay, calm down, Divya. Maybe this is just the continuation of the metaphor from the earlier sentence (“the metamorphosis”). Which doesn’t even make sense. Ainsworth doesn’t like being the duke. The dukedom is the butterfly. I don’t understand why he doesn’t want to be a butterfly. No one wants to be a caterpillar. Not even a caterpillar wants to be a caterpillar. Trust me, the only memories I have of caterpillars are the brief ones before my male cousin stomped on them when we were kids. The point that I am trying to make is that the caterpillar’s only dream is to transform into a butterfly.

Well, okay, maybe this is a subtle reference to the fact that the tattoo is a butterfly (it isn’t. We don’t find out until the end what the tattoo actually is. It’s one of the reasons why I couldn’t DNF this hilarious book. Smart move by the author). And butterfly tattoos can be tramp stamps. Oh God. I’m really reaching, aren’t I? To the person who can come up with a reasonable explanation, I would love you for life.

You might be thinking, “Gosh, Divya. It’s only one sentence out of thousands. Don’t be such a snarky bitch. Why waste paragraphs in writing?” Well, this “one sentence” jerked me out of my reading and made me stare at it for twenty minutes. It was that spectacular. And the best part is that the entire book was full of stuff like this! I shit you not. The prose was confusing, slow, baffling, wonderful, and completely inane at times. Like there was this huge space devoted to how Ainsworth procured all his dogs. I think I shed a tear. I’d also like to point out that the tattoo’s description was hardly mentioned in the entire book (and when it was, it was really short). Forget the dogs. There should’ve been an entire CHAPTER about the tattoo’s colored glory. BTW, I refuse to spoiler the tattoo. If you wanna know that bad, buy the book. Or bribe me. Either option will work.

…In fact, I’ll make it a contest. Everyone, toss out your best guess in the comments. Since I’m broke, your reward will have to be the satisfaction of being the smartest kid on the block. Anyone who has read this book is excluded (sorry, guys).

Despite the occasional baffling chapter sentence word, the author did a great job of instilling imagery in my head.

Presenting Exhibit B:

“Excepting Smeeth, who fussed over his hair and person like a mother baboon nitpicking her young, the rest of the duke’s staff understood implicitly they should not dwell upon his infirmity.”

GUYS. Is there anything more poetic or moving than picturing a valet as a mother baboon? I’m telling you, my imagination was stretched for the better here. I could go on – oh, yes, I could – but unfortunately I must stop before writing something that would rival War and Peace and Gone With the Wind combined.

Despite my “Just Go With It” mentality, there were still two niggles out of MANY (I can’t list them all) that managed to probe my drug-addled brain.

1)    So when Ainsworth finds out that Evil Bro groped Prudence, he’s just like, “Yo. Evil Bro probs made a mistake. I bet you anything that he only touched your boob ‘cause he thought you were some slutty French maid. He didn’t know you were this precious gentile flower.” Like what the fuck? Did lower-class chicks in the 1800s come with a sign that said, “Grope me, salacious rapist! It’s socially accepted and encouraged!” Boy am I lucky that I didn’t live in those groping times. Then, like the fucking icing on the cake, they name their first born after Evil Bro. Argh.

2)    Prudence is tiny and dainty while Ainsworth is gigantic, broad-shouldered, and manly. I get it. The adjectives every other page weren’t necessary and not even my state of crack could get past it.

So what should my final grade be? Well, I will admit that the set up was damn amazing. Tattooed dick. I still can’t believe it. Execution was a C-. Entertainment value was a straight A for my masochistic soul. So I think I am going to compromise on C+/B-. Thanks again to Kaetrin, whom/who (I suck at grammar) I blame my lack of sleep on.

Best Regards,

Divya

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74 Comments

  1. Zoe York
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 12:16:35

    This is the most entertaining review I’ve read all year. I need to know what the tattoo is…I’m hoping it’s something that changes depending on the state of his member, is that asking too much?

  2. jas
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 12:20:57

    Wow. Just wow.

  3. Rei Scar
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 12:30:21

    OH MAN I REMEMBER THIS BOOK. It was available as a free Kindle download last year and looked interesting, so I picked it up and…yeah. Wow. Wowee. SUCH A BOOK.

    As far as I remember the tattoo wasn’t even that bad. I mean, any tattoo is probably not a great tattoo in that time period, but if you’re going to tattoo someone in revenge I don’t see why you’d pick the design she did. She should’ve picked something less flattering. Like a slug.

  4. LeeF
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 12:32:22

    If ever a book needed a companion graphic novel, this is it.

  5. Divya
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 12:33:09

    @Zoe York:

    Zoe, you have to guess before I tell you the answer. I will give you a hint. At the beginning, Prudence is like, “This tattoo is so embarrassing!”. I was expecting a tattoo of a dick or a female fertility symbol. Maybe the American flag. Frankly, when I found out the truth, I thought it was the most manly/apt tattoo that Ainsworth could have. Hell, if I was Ainsworth, I would WANT that tattoo on my dick. I don’t really understand why he was so angry at Prudence. He should’ve kissed the ground that she walked on.

    And thank you! It’s only April, so there’s plenty of time to read more entertaining reviews before 2014 ends. :)

    Also, when I reread my review, I discovered the most awesomesauce typo. STAMP TRAMP. Oh my gosh, am I dumb. It should be “tramp stamp”. The more I wrote, the more incoherent I got. :P

  6. Julia
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 12:37:35

    This really does sound crackalicious and hilarious. I was betting the tattoo was words of warning or something a la The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo… but I guess not?

  7. Jane Lovering
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 12:41:00

    Was it a horse? Oh, please let it be a horse… Then he could say ‘hey, ladies, wanna come and pet my horse?’

    And the heroine could call it ‘My Little Pony’…

  8. Rose
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 12:41:53

    This wrong-dick tattooing situation must have been in a Dan Savage column once, right? Right?

    If not, it should be.

  9. marjorie
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 12:42:32

    THIS REVIEW IS BETTER THAN WAR AND PEACE.

    War and Peace would have been better with more dick tattoos, though.

    (The tattoo was a blue french horn, right? Or the Very Hungry Caterpillar? Kosher symbol? Warhol banana?)

  10. Jane
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 12:43:30

    @Divya: Sorry! I just changed it.

  11. Divya
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 12:44:00

    @Jane Lovering:

    Not a horse. Though, omg, that would’ve been perfect since his nickname was the “Mayfair Stallion.” Damn. Now I really wish it had been a horse!

  12. Divya
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 12:50:41

    @marjorie:

    I think everything is better than WAR AND PEACE, but thank you anyway. :) Love your guesses (especially the HIMYM reference). Remember Ted’s butterfly tattoo in season 3? I was actually convinced it was a butterfly/caterpillar for the majority of the book because of that wonderful quote.

    Also, I think we need to get a thread going about our favorite heroes and hypothetical dick tattoos. Like, if they had a dick tattoo, what should it be?

    @Jane:

    No problem! I laughed when I read it again! Though, really, what is a stamp tramp? :P

  13. Rose
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 12:50:58

    @marjorie:
    Oh yes, a horn, that allows for possibilities on par with a horse (though of a different nature).

  14. Andrea D
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 12:58:59

    LOL. That sounds like some serious crazysauce. Could not stop laughing about the caterpillar. And I picture his valet picking lice out of his hair and eating it. Thanks for the review.

  15. MaryK
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 13:03:11

    Oh man, I’m so tempted. I don’t really want to pay for something that might inspire kindle throwing though. And to think it was free at one point. Too bad I decided to be discriminating in my downloading of free books. I can’t have read the blurb, or I’d have gotten it for sure.

  16. marjorie
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 13:05:30

    Dick Tattoos of Romance Novel Heroes:

    Butch from Black Dagger Brotherhood: bottle of Lagavulin
    V from Black Dagger Brotherhood: bottle of Goose (and then they could SWORD FIGHT! you know they want to. and GOD when they pound their Scotch instead of savoring it I want to punch them in the dicks anyway.)
    Jervaulx from Flowers from the Storm: beam of Inner Light
    Iron Duke: A TOWER DUH

    ….

  17. Cathy
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 13:07:46

    Oh! Please tell me it was a tattoo of the Sword of Damocles or some other famous saber. That would just make it exponentially more awesome. LOL

  18. MaryK
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 13:08:32

    It has 61 five star reviews at Amazon! What does that even mean?!

  19. Lynne Connolly
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 13:11:12

    Such a great review! But it doesn’t tempt me to hit the buy button.
    They’re non-Jewish? Or did you mean genteel?
    It only added to the crackaliciousness. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that it’s Puff the Magic Dragon, the best dick tattoo in the history of dick tattoos.
    Guys, this link is so not safe for work, I can’t tell you.
    http://dragontattooist.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/Dragon%20Tattoo%20Genital%2005.jpg – but it’s real, and the man who had it done, John, was famous in his day.
    Having just come off the most crackalicious Harlequin Presents I’ve read for ages, where the author brought out all the exclamation marks she’d been saving for years, maybe the return of the crack is with us?

  20. Divya
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 13:22:12

    @marjorie:
    I love you.
    Curran, from the Kate Daniels series: A lion. DUH.
    Roarke: a button. (Eve’s button)
    Anthony Bridgerton (The Viscount Who Loved Me): A Pall Mall mallet

    Someone else please add to this list. I’m laughing too hard and I need a break.

    @Lynne Connolly:

    You are absolutely correct! I mean, yes, they are non-Jewish, but it was like 2 AM when I was typing this and I meant to say “genteel.” :D Thanks for pointing it out!

    @MaryK:

    I mean, I do understand the attraction. It’s cheap, reasonably edited for grammar, and the storyline is fun if ridiculous. I just think it varies from reader to reader (ie your tolerance to hijinks) if you can roll your eyes and accept the fantastical storyline.

  21. Divya
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 13:23:55

    I just made a comment and it says it’s waiting for moderation. Could someone fish it out? Thank you!

  22. Lada
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 13:38:11

    OMG this was perfect anti-gloomy day reading. My co-workers of course wanted to know why I was laughing so damn hard and I couldn’t explain the caterpillar so had them read it themselves.

    I’m going with the obvious sword/saber dick tattoo based on the hint you gave as well as the fact that this author sounds like she wouldn’t be able to resist a “drawing my sword” or “I’m going to lance you on my sword” a time or two.

  23. Divya
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 13:41:18

    Okay, all the sword/saber guesses are warm. It’s a weapon, but not really. You guys are getting close!

  24. Jackie Barbosa
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 13:44:53

    @Divya: Though, really, what is a stamp tramp? :P

    Clearly, a stamp tramp is a philatelist who will have sex for stamps. (And why isn’t this a book already?)

  25. Bamaclm
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 13:46:39

    Old Latin Teacher (reviewer at Amazon) liked The Duke’s Tattoo, so I now own it because OLT rules! :-)

    I would have gotten it anyway, if only for the abused penis, lol. I foresee some really snarky dialogue.

  26. Rose
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 13:48:14

    @Jackie Barbosa:
    I’d read that book. Well, if it’s well-written. I do have standards.

    I will not read The Duke’s Tattoo, however.

  27. AlexaB
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 13:50:23

    “Stamp tramp” NOUN (informal): A person in search of work or a vagrant or beggar who travels from place to place by hitching rides on U.S. Post Office vehicles (with apologies to oxforddictionaries.com).

    Also? BEST. REVIEW. EVER (with additional apologies to the review of Pregnesia at SBTB).

    I have no real guesses re: tattoo design. First I thought ribbons, so every day can be May Day and the raising of the maypole – but that might be too flattering. Then I thought pencil, but that might not be flattering enough.

    So I got nothing.

  28. Divya
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 13:53:45

    @AlexaB:

    This site is so educational. I learn something new every day.

    Also, to all of you who won’t buy this book: I totally don’t blame you! Save yourself the agony/time if you aren’t a crack lover like me. I hope you enjoyed my review, though.

  29. Jane
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 13:55:33

    I’m going to guess it says “Wanker”. Who handled his dick for the tattooing? I understand you gotta stretch that skin when you’re inking it. Does it take a helper?

    Jack from Smooth Talking Stranger – Fishing Pole (he’s an outdoorsman)
    Gage from the first one title I can’t remember – Private Jet
    Hardy from Blue Eyed Devil – he’d get Haven’s name

  30. Divya
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 13:59:39

    @Jane:

    Jane, I cannot believe I didn’t mention this outrage in my review. WHY was the heroine not involved in the actual tattooing? If I were her, I would’ve taken those nine years to become a goddamn tattooing expert. But no. She waited in another room while her two employees and some Chinese tattooing expert handled the actual job.

    And, no, it’s not wanker. Though that would be totally appropriate.

  31. Sirius
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 14:12:05

    Could you please write more reviews ? Pretty please? Hilarious, thank you so much.

  32. JJPP
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 14:16:34

    @Cathy: I was thinking a sword, too! Though if I were ever going to forcibly tattoo someone’s dick, I don’t think I’d do a sword. Caterpillars and butterflies, or a slug were good ideas. Is it Hello Kitty? It sounds like the anachronism wouldn’t be that jarring in this book.

  33. JJPP
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 14:17:47

    @Divya: How about a lance?

  34. Emma
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 14:23:09

    It’s gotta be a sledgehammer. Right? (And if that’s wrong, I paid a high price for this guess because I’m going to be humming Peter Gabriel all day.)

  35. Divya
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 14:23:44

    @JJPP:

    A lance/sword/saber are all phallic in shape. The tattoo isn’t phallic. Second hint: what do you also bring to a swordfight?

  36. Jennavier Gilbert
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 14:26:08

    Ugh…. named firstborn after rapist brother…. ugh

  37. JJPP
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 14:32:48

    @Divya: A gun, if you really want to win. :)

    Or a doctor! Is it the face of a kindly old village doctor? “Hello, m’um! Don’t mind me, I’m just going to poke you gently… here, and see if this is sensitive!” (Sorry, was that too much? :))

  38. cleo
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 14:42:25

    @Divya: A shield?

    Dick tattoo for any HP romance hero – “you know you want me”

  39. Divya
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 14:48:59

    @cleo:

    Hot! Hot! Burning hot! Now think: what would be ON that shield?

  40. Rose
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 14:50:55

    @Divya:
    Please tell me it’s not something as obvious as a dragon?

    The Duke with the Dragon Tattoo would just be too much.

  41. Divya
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 14:53:23

    @Rose:

    lol, no. When I meant “on” the shield, I am talking about what would medieval kings or nobility would put on their shields. Like, what is that thing called (generally)? Am I making any sense at all?

  42. LSUReader
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 14:54:57

    His coat of arms would be on his shield.

  43. Cleo C.
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 14:55:59

    @Divya: A coat of arms?

  44. Jackie Barbosa
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 14:58:15

    @Divya: His family crest?

  45. Divya
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 15:00:31

    DING DING DING! You guys rock. :)

    To be more specific, it was his family’s coat of arms. It had a lion, stag, and an oak tree. Except the oak tree part was…you know.

    I was kinda pissed at this. Really? You tattoo a guy’s coat of arms for revenge? A coat of arms is like the equivalent of tattooing Lady Liberty or the Bald Eagle on Uncle Sam’s dick.

  46. Rose
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 15:06:17

    @Divya:
    That’s pathetic, even mine was better. Nine of years of plotting and that’s the best they can do?

  47. Divya
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 15:19:07

    @Rose:

    I KNOW!!! I can tell you right now what I would’ve tattooed If I were in Prudence’s shoes:

    DANGER: Herpes

    I’d like to see that groping bastard get laid after THAT.

  48. Jayne
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 15:54:13

    @Divya: Done.

  49. Karenmc
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 16:13:38

    My dull afternoon has been salvaged. Thanks, everyone!

  50. hapax
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 16:35:39

    I have to say, I kept thinking of this Far Side cartoon: http://media.noria.com/sites/archive_images/webexclusive_farside1.jpg

    and hoped for the simple elegance of a “THE DUKE’S DICK” tattoo.

  51. Janhavi
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 16:40:49

    @Divya, this was an absolutely hilarious review. I was almost crying with laughter at the caterpillars. And that the authors was smart to keep the tattoo a secret!

  52. marjorie
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 16:43:55

    @Divya:

    excellent bridgerton tattoo! it would have to be a PINK pall-mall mallet.

    hope it wouldn’t blend in too much.

  53. Divya
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 16:57:04

    @marjorie:

    *cries with laughter* It’s funny because I nearly put BLACK pall mall mallet on my original post. I’m so glad I didn’t bc pink is SO much better.

    Benedict: a paintbrush or Sophie’s glove from the masquerade
    Colin: the words “Lady Whistledown”

    But why limit yourself to romance heroes?

    Harry Potter: lightning scar. or a WAND.

    This is becoming the best game ever. The next time I see my sister, I’m definitely going to have a fun time with this. It’s kind of sad that there isn’t a female equivalent. I’m pretty sure you can’t tattoo a vagina.

  54. hapax
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 19:38:50

    @Divya: Well, there’s “vajazzling”.

    (Iffen you don’t already know, do NOT google at work!)

  55. Mary
    Apr 03, 2014 @ 23:14:24

    Reading this before bed, can’t stop laughing at caterpillar shenanigans, have to read out loud to roommate, only encourages our current slap-happy state.
    I must read this book. Also must send this review to my best friend. Thanks for the laugh!

  56. Kaetrin
    Apr 04, 2014 @ 03:39:18

    @Divya thank you so much for taking one for the team! This book remains on my TBR and given the size of it, I don’t think it likely I will ever get to it (and now, I don’t have to! for extra bonus points even!)

    I’m mildy curious about what changes were made to the book after it was first uploaded. There was at least one update (for what reason I don’t know) after the file was uploaded.

    I think your Little Mermaid analogy was particularly inspired. I’m a big fan of comparing tattoeed dicks with Disney movies.

    Speaking of:

    Kristoff from Frozen would have a reindeer tattoo

    Back to romance heroes:
    Adam from Mercy Thompson would have a coyote paw print (of course)
    Horse from Reaper’s Property would have maybe a list of all the individual parts of a Harley or the lyrics to his favourite song, or the Reaper’s Rules. – maybe all three (it’s just THAT BIG)
    Dallas O’Kane – The O’Kane logo of course.

  57. Marianne McA
    Apr 04, 2014 @ 05:49:57

    I got this when it was free too – the title was entirely promising: ‘The Duke’s Tattoo: A Regency Romance of Love and Revenge, Though Not in That Order.” And the chapter headings also worked for me – “Chapter 5; In which our heroine begins the New Year with tea and apathy.”

    The book itself – dire – I’d deleted it off my Kindle, so had to fish it out of archived items to see how far I’d got – 12%. (And I finish most books, under some vague childhood ‘you’ve got to clear your plate’ compulsion.)

    Congratulations on your perseverance. I’m impressed.

  58. PeggyL
    Apr 04, 2014 @ 06:28:23

    Thanks for the laugh, and there are lots of them!
    Now, I just have to buy and read it, if only to see how much silliness I can put up with/endure. Hilarious review, Divya, and a great follow-up on the April Fools entry, too.

  59. Lada
    Apr 04, 2014 @ 07:15:32

    @hapax: I may have to hate you now but I know this is just moments from showing up in romance if it hasn’t already.

  60. Yvonne Rodriguez
    Apr 04, 2014 @ 08:24:42

    This review was freakin’ hilarious! I don’t think I’ll buy the book but if it was offered for free on Amazon last year chances are I already have it. I’ll check on it. Thanks for the laugh. :)

  61. Fallen Professor
    Apr 04, 2014 @ 09:03:54

    Wow! I might have to read that if it ever goes on super-sale/free.

    Since I don’t think anyone has answered your question: tattoos take a week to 10 days to heal. Granted mine are quite large, spanning most of my back, but I was told to keep them covered with plastic wrap and apply a special salve regularly for around 10 days, and not get it wet. And yes, it’s very tender, no matter what part of the body it’s on. So I’m not sure how the Duke got all that action, especially since during the healing process there’s enough risk of infection that you have to be very careful what it comes into contact with. But that’s modern germ theory etc., and a historical could get away with it. Still, the description totally made me cringe.

  62. Divya
    Apr 04, 2014 @ 09:47:24

    @Kaetrin:

    Since I only read the latest version, I have no clue what changes were made from the original. I’m not particularly motivated to find out! :D When I was in elementary school and I had to write different sentence structures for homework, I always made all of mine related to Disney (so I guess the theme stuck). Love your examples.

    @Fallen Professor:

    Thank you for your insight! I also have a feeling that it should take longer than ten days because 1) the method of tattooing back then probably wasn’t as safe/nice and b) hello, it was his dick. I don’t think he jumped into bed with anyone the next day or anything, but it was certainly in about a week’s time. I suppose it’s plausible, but I was mostly concerned for his health and well-being. :P

  63. Maria D.
    Apr 04, 2014 @ 10:30:53

    OMG! Best review I’ve read so far this year….you literally had me laughing while I read the whole thing…I almost want to buy the book….lol

  64. TheWednesdayWoman
    Apr 04, 2014 @ 10:59:04

  65. Divya
    Apr 04, 2014 @ 11:47:32

    Okay, I’d like to make a final comment. Thank you so much to Jane and everyone who read this review. It’s the first one I’ve ever written outside of an school setting and I’m still kinda astonished by the positive feedback.

    Also, when I was rereading this, it occurred to me that I may seem like a n irrational caterpillar hater. :) I’m really not, but I do blame the influence of my third grade science teacher. When she was teaching us about the butterfly life cycle, she ended her presentation by saying, “And finally, the butterfly emerges from the pupa. And everyone’s happy!” I kid you not. We also decorated butterfly cookies and now I feel kinda bad that we neglected to pay attention to the caterpillar. If anything, this explains my preference for butterflies over caterpillars. :D

  66. autonomous
    Apr 04, 2014 @ 14:13:32

    Oh my. I’m late to the party as usual. Maybe I was on meds when I read this book? While I recognized that the writing was a little over the top, I didn’t process the more outlandish the way Divya has. I didn’t remember the caterpillar line AT ALL. LOL! Put this way, it does sound ridiculous. I just remember I was in the mood for humorous fluff and that’s essentially what I got. I also didn’t try to make too much sense of the plot the way I would for a more serious book. I liked the author’s voice (i.e., she didn’t sound like everyone else) and it was different (big plus in a genre where so many books and characters follow the same familiar pattern). It entertained me and was a bargain book to boot. I gave it a B/B- based purely on entertainment value.

  67. Maite
    Apr 04, 2014 @ 17:52:20

    Excellent review, kind of sorry I don’t own a Kindle or I would have gotten to experience the caterpillar line in its full glory without preparation.

    Soooo late to the party. And I was sure it was a rifle, for some reason.
    Though… I hope I never watch Frozen with my little cousins. You try explaining the reindeer jokes.

  68. Kaetrin
    Apr 04, 2014 @ 19:42:07

    @Divya I know another tattooed peen book! Party of Three by Daire St. Denis. I actually read this one – review here. http://www.kaetrinsmusings.com/2012/06/party-of-three-by-daire-st-denis.html

    This time it’s the villain who has the tattoo on his enormous (because of course) peen. I don’t recommend it.

  69. cead
    Apr 05, 2014 @ 12:38:32

    Divya, I really hope you write more reviews, because this is just the best thing.

  70. Janine
    Apr 07, 2014 @ 05:12:05

    I remember this book. Maili emailed a few of us DA reviewers to recommend it for its historical accuracy. I didn’t get that far partly because the set up seemed far fetched but even more so because I found the omniscient voice particularly distancing in it. Sunita liked it enough to finish it and was thinking of reviewing it when she discovered that the author kept revising the book *after* its publication using feedback from reader reviews. Sunita blogged about it here.

  71. autonomous
    Apr 07, 2014 @ 12:39:39

    @Janine, thanks for the link about the revisions. I didn’t know that about this book. It does color things. I read it back in early 2013, which was probably after some changes were made based on reader feedback.

  72. Divya
    Apr 07, 2014 @ 15:50:02

    @Janine:

    Oh, wow. I remember that post but I completely forgot that THE DUKE’S TATTOO was the book in question. Revising the book after publication for grammatical errors is one thing, but revising after reader feedback is not okay. I wouldn’t have reviewed this had I known. But thank you for the link, Janine.

  73. Janine
    Apr 07, 2014 @ 16:44:51

    @autonomous: You’re welcome. And BTW I believe Sunita and Maili liked the book before they found out about the revisions, so you are not alone.

    @Divya: I don’t know if the book was identified in Sunita’s post, although the author was identified in one of the bits Sunita quoted. So it’s totally understandable that you didn’t remember.

    Your review was highly entertaining; a lot of us enjoyed it. We don’t get 70+ comments in a review thread that often. So while I understand why you wouldn’t have reviewed this book had you known, there is a big silver lining to your decision to do that.

  74. Sunita
    Apr 07, 2014 @ 17:41:06

    @Divya: I’m glad you did review it, it was a terrific post! Now that so many authors are revising their works and uploading new versions, it’s become a losing battle to protest about it. But I stand by my initial annoyance, and I didn’t name the author because it was a more general point.

    I remember liking the first half of the book, despite all the crazy stuff, but then it both went off the rails AND became way more obvious in the second.

    I hope we can persuade you to review again. ;)

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