Once Upon a DukeErica Ridley

Once Upon a Duke

4 star

Total 1,355 Ratings

Once Upon a Duke by Erica Ridley Book Summary

A heartwarming, second chances, reunion romance from a New York Times bestselling author: 

Due to the terms of an estranged relative's will, the Duke of Silkridge must revisit the cold, unforgiving mountains where he lost everything he once loved. As soon as he restores his family legacy, he'll return to London where he belongs. He definitely won't rekindle the forbidden spark crackling between him and the irresistible spitfire he'd left behind...

Noelle Pratchett is immune to charming scoundrels like the arrogant duke. He stole her heart, stole a kiss, and then stole away one night never to return. Now he's back—and they both know he won't stay. But how can she maintain her icy shields when every heated glance melts her to her core?

The 12 Dukes of Christmas is a laugh-out-loud historical romance series of heartwarming Regency romps nestled in a picturesque snow-covered village. After all, nothing heats up a winter night quite like finding oneself in the arms of a duke!


1. Once Upon a Duke
2. Kiss of a Duke
3. Wish Upon a Duke
4. Never Say Duke
5. Dukes, Actually
6. The Duke's Bride
7. The Duke's Embrace
8. The Duke's Desire
9. Dawn with a Duke
10. One Night with a Duke
11. Ten Days with a Duke
12. Forever Your Duke

Once Upon a Duke (Erica Ridley) Book Reviews

Once Upon a DukeDon’t judge the series by Once Upon a Duke. I’ve read four other books in the series and am thankful that I did not read it first as I don’t believe I would have read any other books in the series. I loved Kiss of a Duke, #2 and Never Say Duke, #4. They are happy, lovely books from page 1 to the very last page. I do not recommend book #1..Score: 3/5

Cute Christmas RomanceIt was pretty good book, probably would be better to read nearer to Christmas than 4th of July, but that’s life. The author did a fabulous job of mixing the spirit of Christmas into Cressmouth. Which honestly it took me quite a few chapters to realize that they were pronounced similarly. Not much else to comment on, although the ending is kinda cliche, but it’s a Christmas romance. They’re all terribly cliche. As other reviewers mentioned, parts of the Christmas Tale, are mentioned or alluded to. I do think there are parts where it’s not alluding to or similar to other books, there are parts where it’s unique. Tiny Tim, is definitely the best character, but I’m biased I used to show goats, and they actually do only drink warm/room temperature water especially in the winter. Pygmy goats often do get dehydrated and can get very sick, so I was extremely surprised to see honest animal care in a romance book. Very nice job done. 9/10 would be better in December.Score: 5/5

It’s JanuaryOnce Upon a Duke takes place in Cressmouth, a beautiful little village in the far northern part of England where Christmas is celebrated year-round. Benjamin, Duke of Silkridge, hates Cressmouth and Christmas, the place and time he lost his parents. He left five years ago, fed up his grandfather, Cressmouth, and Christmas. He has returned for one reason, to hear his grandfather’s will and receive his mother’s locket. It would be a short stay. Hear the will, get the locket, leave for good. Easy, right? It might have been if there wasn’t a ridiculous condition for receiving his locket, and if he didn’t have to be close to Noelle Pratchett, the girl he kissed and left (no why or goodbye). A festive setting and a quirky cast of characters led by Ben and Noelle make this a charming Christmas tale (even if it is January). Fuzzy Wig, the clerk; Tiny Tim, the pigmy goat; and a partridge in a pear tree are some of the humorous, not-so-subtle allusions to some favorite characters and stories. Ben is a perfect Scrooge, and Noelle is Christmas Spirit(s) personified. The story is full of wit and romance. Ben and Noelle get a second chance for love. Will they take it? This is a delightful story and a wonderful start for the new series. I enjoyed it and look forward to the next one..Score: 5/5

Once Upon a DukeDelightful! Easy to read, flowing storyline. The hero is exasperating and seems like a typical dense male at times but he perseveres and overcomes his many foibles. The heroine is smart and accomplished but lonely despite all of her strengths. And, in the end love conquers all!!.Score: 5/5

Wonderful storyPleasure to read. Loved this!.Score: 5/5

Loved it!I enjoyed this book very much. It’s a quick fun Christmas romance and I’m looking forward to reading the next book..Score: 5/5

A nice short storyA nice short romance set in a fantastic sounding village..Score: 3/5

Wonderful story to start the season.I love the idea of a town that celebrates Christmas everyday of the year. Of course there is a Duke that is a bit of a broken hearted Scrooge and a the women in his past he can’t forget. Their paths cross again after 5 years for the reading of his Grandfather will. The only reason he showed up was to retrieve and family heirloom that his Grandfather stole from him. The sooner the better as they say, but his Grandfather had other ideas. Sweet story, enjoyable read..Score: 5/5

A great storyThe story revolves around Benjamin, the Duke of Silkridge, who is returning to his grandfather’s castle in order to retrieve his mother’s locket, which is the only picture he has of her before she died. He has no intentions of staying any longer than it takes to hear his grandfather’s will read and then retrieve the locket. Parts of the book run parallel to the Christmas Carol and Benjamin is definitely Scrooge. The last time he was here he kissed Noelle and then abruptly left without telling Her why. He lives such a preorganized life that she had no place in it. There is a HEA but a lot happens before that comes about, especially his realizing he needs her in his life. The book is a great read and I would highly recommend it..Score: 5/5

Great one.Really enjoyed this one. It was surprisingly emotional for me. But I loved the honesty and heart..Score: 5/5

Once upon a dukeNoelle has always felt she wasn’t enough. Shes afraid of being abandoned again,so she makes herself very useful. Benjamin is afraid of attachment and love. He has had great loss in his life. Both thinking they are safe from heartache if they don’t give up on the way of life they know. When they are brought together again fate has other ideas..Score: 3/5

Once upon a jokeHappy fun read. Friendly family loving without too much trauma and a happy ending..Score: 4/5

Once Upon a DukeGreat read! Kept me wondering what the Duke would do next!.Score: 5/5

ReviewThe story is cute, but it really drags on and on and on and on... Basic storyline: Benjamin’s mother died shortly after his birth. His father died around the time Benjamin became an adult. While visiting his maternal grandfather, his wealthy grandfather stole Benjamin’s necklace with the only portrait of his mother. (If he was that wealthy, he would have had at least one portrait of his daughter. This makes no sense.) He met Noelle during this time and kissed her. His grandfather threw him out of the castle after stealing the necklace. His grandfather was verbally abusive to him. Benjamin comes back after his grandfather’s death to get his necklace and falls in love. Also, what doesn’t make sense is why Benjamin didn’t report the theft to the authorities. He is a powerful Duke and a friend of the royal family. He acted like he couldn’t get the necklace back, but since it was stolen, he could have gotten it back at any time. There really needed to be more to the story. I kept hoping the story would get more interesting, but it didn’t. I wouldn’t want to read it again..Score: 3/5

Wonderful holiday romanceWow I loved this holiday Romance. Ridley is a fantastic author. Once Upon a Duke by Erica Ridley is part of the 12 Dukes of Christmas historical romance series. I felt drawn to the heroine Noelle Pratchett. She lives in a snowy mountain village called Cressmouth in the northern part of England. Benjamin Ward, the fifth Duke of Silkridge, returns for the probate of his grandfather’s will. He and Noelle had a brief romance in the past. When old feelings are stirred, is it possible for something to sprig to life again or has too much time past? Truly enjoyed this work..Score: 5/5

Great read!Fast paced, believable and fun!.Score: 5/5

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Charming, and funny, and utterly irreverentBefore you crack open this book, have the tissues handy. I’m probably admitting to being a giant ball of marshmallow fluff, but this story made me bawl like baby – full out ugly crying. The circumstances that separated and have kept Benjamin and Noelle apart are completely tragic. (See the note about ugly crying above.) The village of Christmas/Cressmouth is charming, and funny, and utterly irreverent as it and all its residents work their magic to bring this star-crossed pair back together. I can’t wait to see which of the unique characters make return engagements in future books. I received a complimentary advanced copy of this book..Score: 5/5

InterestingI really enjoyed this book from start to finish, I cannot wait to continue the series..Score: 5/5

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Once upon a DukeI love the way you have celebrated the spirit of Christmas and the love that sustains it, reawakening a cold heart to hope and joy The splendor of Cressmouth/Christmas as it celebrates a year long festive season creates a great backdrop to the central love story I loved reading the book John.Score: 5/5

A great read for some ‘me’ timeOnce upon a Duke This is the first book in a new series by Erica. The town of Cressmouth has changed its name to Christmas in order to reinvigorate the area. It’s a year round Christmas feast. Although I love the anticipation of Christmas only being once a year, this is a fun concept for a series. With a mix of the Twelve days of Christmas and a Christmas Carol (poetic license on the date), there are a wealth of characters to encounter. Many of the minor characters in this book will probably get their own time to shine in the coming stories. In this story we meet Benjamin, Duke of Silkridge, and Noelle. Each of these characters have abandonment issues: Noelle was left in a basket on a doorstep as a baby and Benjamin lost both of his parents during the Christmas season. Because of this loss Benjamin is a Christmas humbug. “...In a world where nothing lasted, it was better not to try, not to be disappointed, not to get hurt...” (Excerpt) Noelle, however, “...had strived to be an indispensable part of her community. Not just to be needed, to be wanted, ... to ensure she would never again be left behind.” (Excerpt) They have known each other for many years, really belong together, but think it is impossible. Benjamin returns to Cressmouth for the reading of his Grandfather’s will and rekindles his relationship with Noelle. The story is light, fun and full of hope and positivity. There is a character that speaks in bird analogies and lone Pygmy goat. It is the perfect pick-me-up. I look forward to getting the same feeling from the other books in the series on the lead up to Christmas. The writing is very descriptive, allowing the reader to visualise the scenery with ease, such as, “...the endless gray skies above had begun to clot with heavy clouds.” (Excerpt). This story is a wonderful way to spend some ‘me’ time..Score: 4/5

Once upon a dukeIt’s good I like it cause it’s mentions my dogs name duke.Score: 5/5

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Great titleGood to read.Score: 4/5

Second ChanceA sweet tale of a Duke allowing love into his life. In the past he has closed himself off from all emotion, due to the loss of his parents but a return to the village of Cressmouth, better known as Christmas, reunites him with the one woman who breaks through his icy exterior. I voluntarily read and reviewed a giveaway copy of this book, gifted by the author. All thoughts and opinions are my own..Score: 4/5

Not greatSo many better books out there..Score: 2/5

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Once Upon A Duke
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