Associate Professor Joanna Ruocco’s newest book is a Victorian historical romance, The Duke Undone, penned under the name Joanna Lowell and published by Berkley Books, an imprint of Penguin Random House.
About the novel Kirkus writes, “Lowell’s prose is vivid and evocative, and issues such as class inequity, women’s rights, and alcohol addiction complement the intense on-page evolution of the love story…those looking for a happy-ever-after for complex and passionate characters will be very satisfied here. A new voice in historical romance that will keep readers riveted.”
Prof. Ruocco teaches fiction workshops in the English department’s Creative Writing Program. Her previous books include the collections and novels Dan, Another Governess/The Least Blacksmith, The Week, and Field Glass, co-written with Joanna Howard.
ABOUT THE DUKE UNDONE (From the Publisher):
An artist stumbles upon a naked duke and an unlikely love story begins in this captivating Victorian historical romance.
When Royal Academy painting student Lucy Coover trips over a naked man passed out in an East End alley, she does the decent thing. She covers him up and fetches help. Trouble is, she can’t banish his muscular form from her dreams as easily. Compelled to capture every detail, she creates a stunning portrait but is forced to sell it when the rent comes due. What could be worse than surrendering the very picture of your desire? Meeting the man himself.
Anthony Philby, Duke of Weston, is nobody’s muse. Upon discovering the scandalous likeness, he springs into action. His infamous family has been torn apart by shame and secrets, and he can’t afford more gossip. Even a whisper may jeopardize his inheritance and his chance at independence. His plan is simple: burn the painting, confront the artist. Or rather, it’s simple until he meets Lucy and decides to offer the bewitching young artist a devil’s bargain. He’ll help save her foreclosed home, if she’ll help repair his family’s brutal legacy.
An irresistible passion ignites between them, but when danger strikes, Lucy and Anthony must risk everything… for a love that might destroy them both.