Reviewing: The Governess Game by Tessa Dare

Content warnings: Frequent discussions of death, especially that of a parent.

My Rating: 4 out of 5 books


  • Does ‘it’s by Tessa Dare’ count as a highlight? 
  • So. Much. Sass. 
  • Excellent use of the ‘you have experience, I don’t, so teach me’ sexiness. 
  • The Duke of Ashbury is still amazing. 
  • Surprisingly great fictional children!

“I’m certain you’ll find someone else to fill the post.”

“The post has been filled. And vacated. And filled and vacated several times over. Sometimes multiple times in one day.”

I found this in a charity shop on my birthday, it was fate. As has probably become abundantly clear to you all, I love Tessa Dare books. Historical romance, swoonworthy sexiness and witty dialogue? Yes. Please. The second in the Girl Meets Duke  series, the first of which was the utterly wonderful The Duchess Deal, The Governess Game follows Emma’s friend Alexandra Mountbatten as she winds up a governess of all things for well known rake Chase Reynaud. Having found himself with custody of two orphaned wards determined to drive away every governess he employs – sometimes before he has time to formally employ them – Chase is struggling to maintain his household, his rakish lifestyle and raise children

You can see where this is going right? 

In the way of Dare’s books, this one has some excellent character building including children I can actually stand reading about. That’s right folks, I’ve hardly become Mary Poppins overnight but these kids were far less annoying than your average fictional child. The daily doll funerals really made me like these girls. Then there’s Alexandra and Chase, another couple after my own heart. There’s just something about the way that Tessa Dare writes dialogue and building relationships that just fills me with joy, and Alexandra’s backstory is wonderfully unique. I mean, she uses piracy to teach small children this is a cool lady right here. 

I liked this book a lot, but I didn’t quite like it as much as The Duchess Deal. There was a scene that kind of put me off with one of my ‘nope’ things in historicals – female pain during sex. Now I know it happened, and still happens, and that given the circumstances of the scene there wasn’t exactly ample opportunity to prepare and that it got better but still, it’s one of those things where I read it in a book and pull a face. The face, if you’d care to picture it, is essentially what happens if you say ‘YEEEEE’ in a very dramatic and over the top manner. 

Never fear though, Tessa Dare has not forsaken us. This book contains some truly excellent ‘rake teaches the innocent lady about sexy times’ and this rake is a giver, which I love a lot. Pretty sure he’s my first fictional rake actually, so I’m pretty glad I started with Chase because he’s wonderful. Get yourself a Duke who will throw himself into large bodies of water to impress you, then whisk you back to his den of debauchery. Get yourself a Chase. 

Overall I did really enjoy this book, I just find Dare’s writing so enjoyable and I cannot wait to read more of this series!

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