The Duke's Cursed Charm

Alt title: Maseongui Gongjangnimeun Jam Mot Irugo

Ch: 80
2021 - 2023
3.696 out of 5 from 604 votes
Rank #18,848
The Duke's Cursed Charm

Duke Carhel Luave is known as the devilish duke due to his uncontrollable magical ability to charm every single person who lays their eyes on him. But this is more of a curse than a blessing with several noble houses plotting to drive him out of power. Having no one he can genuinely like or trust, Carhel wonders if he will ever be able to feel the warmth of another human being. One day, after raiding the estate of one of his enemies, Carhel mistakenly has Lena, the house’s maid, captured in the aftermath. But when he tries to use his charming powers to give her a painless death, something unexpected happens. For some reason, Carhel’s powers have no effect on Lena!

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Usually, when they create a tragic backstory for the ML, they're the standard political intrigue and competition for the throne. Their mothers are concubines and they either raise the ML with little to no affection while vying for a position of power or they are slaughtered for being out of place within the palace. This is the first that I've read with a backstory that made me feel bad for the ML, only because this is something outside of anyone else's control. He grows up with the ability to make anyone fall in love with him. Like Maybelline, he was born with it. The power to seduce others, man or woman, thrums underneath his skin and he has to cast magic on himself to ensure that others do not fall under the spell. Unfortunately, this only works to his detriment; people are afraid of him and have shunned him from social circles for fear of what he can do them. As a child, he was sexually harassed by adults who thirsted for him and then ostracized him when they realized that the spell pushed them to take action - leading to a very lonely childhood and even lonelier adulthood. The ML only wants to live a normal life. Enter the FL. Somehow, through a strange turn of events, he discovers that she is invulnerable to his magic and doesn't feel its pressure, regardless of whether he wields it or not. We have yet to come across the actual explanation but I like how the story progresses because of her. Plot-wise, I feel like they're slowly building the motivations of each of the main characters as well as the political setting that will be brought into motion. The antagonists of this story seem to be worthwhile opponents and they might actually make the story more engaging because they provide the much-needed tension to bring about character development. They have the history and the cunning to enact vengeance on the main characters. Should you read this? Yes, if you're into a wholesome slow-build romance and good world-building. Reviewed at Chapter 18.

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