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The Bargain Bride (Signet Eclipse) Mass Market Paperback – November 3, 2009

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Product Details

  • Series: Signet Eclipse
  • Mass Market Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Signet; Original edition (November 3, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0451228456
  • ISBN-13: 978-0451228451
  • Product Dimensions: 4.5 x 0.9 x 6.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,751,125 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

This well-constructed Regency features smoldering love scenes and chapter headers from an imaginary account of arranged marriages that add a touch of charm to the entertainment. Viscount Kendall West Westmoreland and Persephone Penny Goldthwaite finally and reluctantly wed after a 13-year engagement engineered by Penny's family. When West is delayed while traveling, Penny must take up all the duties of a newly minted viscountess; protect West's careless wastrel brother from her own swindling stepbrother; fend off West's jealous and wealthy former lover and plan a grand ball even as she wonders whether her husband will return home in time to attend. Metzger (The Wicked Ways of a True Hero) takes some interesting chances with her story, populating it with well-drawn and often idiosyncratic characters and keeping it sweet without being sappy. (Nov.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Persephone “Penny” Goldwaite was perfectly happy with her life as a bookish spinster. Which is why when her fiancé, Kendall Westmoreland, Viscount Westfield, suddenly turns up in Little Falls 13 years after their betrothal, Penny tries to throw West out of her house, and when that doesn’t work, she throws a punch at him. Although Penny might want out of her engagement, her banker father insists he has a contract with West, which means as far as the wedding goes, the sooner the better. Maneuvered into marrying a man who seems to bring out the worst in her, Penny insists on adding a few clauses of her own to the wedding contract, leaving West to discover that his bargain bride might not be such a bargain after all. Metzger’s deft combination of delightfully original characters, sizzlingly sexy chemistry, and elegant, witty writing work its usual magic in this irresistibly entertaining romance. --John Charles

Customer Reviews

I am 200 pages into this book and I simply can't read on.
Debbie Smith
In typical Metzger fashion, their differences are explored with great humor.
I usually enjoy Barbara Metzger's novels, but not this one.
Tracy Dunn

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Susan Smith on November 24, 2009
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Barbara Metzger is the queen of the comical regency - she has been writing them for many years and nearly always with the assurance of a seasoned hand. She has a clever and polished style of writing that is always a joy to read and an ability to create scenarios that are funny but poignant and populated by a range of cleverly drawn characters.

In this story, we have a comical though sometimes painful dissection of an arranged marriage of convenience. This marriage is set up for the usual reasons of advancement and money and will cross quite serious class divides. However, our heroine, the daughter of a rich and ambitious cit, has taken umbrage at being kept waiting for 13 years and is ready to kick over the traces. Our hero, originally the younger son, finds himself inheriting his father's title and, suddenly, his life needs to undergo some serious change - no longer in the Army, no longer living the life of a young buck in London, he needs to set up his nursery with a willing wife.

There are the usual coterie of oddball servants and relatives in this one; watch out for Marcel, her grandpa's valet, and a pretty unusual pug dog who needs the kiss of life every now and then. Add in some annoying stepsisters, a bit of a mystery and an abduction and you have one of the author's funny and harum scarum set-ups.

I particularly liked the homage to the late Edith Layton that appears in the chapter headings purporting to be from a tome on arranged marriages; some terrific one-liners here - worth the price of the book in my view.

I really liked this and had several hours of real reading pleasure. Highly recommended to her fans but also to those who like regencies, like comedy and appreciate talented, well crafted prose.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Harriet Klausner #1 HALL OF FAME on November 7, 2009
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Their fathers arranged their marriage when she was thirteen and he was about to go fight against Napoleon. However, Persephone Goldthwaite has spent half her life waiting to tie the knot with Viscount Kendall Westmoreland. Both want to end their betrothal so he goes see her serendipitously to gain her concurrence.

However, West changes his mind upon meeting the beautiful effervescent Penny. Her father suggests Penny marry her stepbrother Nigel, son of his second wife. Instead West invokes the agreement, but his former lover and her odious step-sibling have other abduction plans for the pair that ignores West and Penny falling in love.

THE BARGAIN BRIDE is a humorous Regency romance filled with an eccentric cast that seems to have escaped from bedlam as their chaotic antics are fun to follow; but centered and owned by the lead couple. Fans will relish this fine historical as the battle for who marries Penny shapes into a zany free for all in which Penny must determine whom she can trust with her life. Topped by citations from the chronicles of "By Arrangement" heading each chapter, this is an amusing entertaining tale with a suspense subplot enhancing the jocularity; as Barbara Metzger is at the top of her game.

Harriet Klausner
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By E. A. Montgomery on December 21, 2009
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I agree with another review who said the short chapter notes written as a tribute to Edith Layton are worth seeking out. Those are amusing, very much in keeping with the late author's style, and fun.

But this is also the first Barbara Metzger I haven't finished. On my second try, I made it just over halfway. I'll probably give it a third try at some point, but since Metzger is in my top five must buy list, The Bargain Bride has to go down in the disappointment category. It has all the elements I love - the self capable heroine, the repentant hero, the arranged marriage (I'm a sucker for those), the positive view of male relationships, but it fails to come together. There's too much farce and not enough friction. Penny is angry, West is resigned, but why are they together? He's ready to make the best of it, she's decided she must fight him at all costs or we'd lack a plot. I mean, or her heart will be broken again. There are typically wonderful touches - Penny's book of adolescent poetry is as dreadful as it should be, West understands her reluctance to be seduced - but it never gains enough speed to lift all the baggage it carries.

I'm absolutely buying the author's next book, but this one just wasn't for me.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By statengirl on November 29, 2009
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Miss Penny Goldwaite and Viscount Westfield ("West") were betrothed years ago by an arrangement between their respective fathers. Penny's wealthy banker father got the promise of an aristocratic husband for his daughter, and in return West's sire got much-needed money from Mr. Goldwaite. At first, Penny - aged 13 - was too young to marry, then she was in mourning for her mother, and then West was away in the army. But West has been back in London these past four years, and has never once contacted Penny.

Penny meanwhile has been living for years with her grandfather in the country, where she was sent after her father remarried. She has been unable to consider other marriage proposals because of her engagement, all while reading of West's womanizing in the gossip pages. She once thought him a knight in shining armor, but he has completely failed her and broken her heart in the process. Penny is now 26 years of age and wants nothing to do with West. The only feeling she has towards him is EXTREME anger. Then her father forces West to honor his commitment, and she has no choice but to wed him. However, she insists they get to know each other before their marriage is consummated, hoping to stall him as long as possible to inflict some deserved pain on her now eager suitor. What Penny is surprised to discover is her own pain and longing from their forced estrangement.

Overall this was an entertaining, lighthearted read. The author made good use of humor, the supporting cast was quirky and fun, and the story's "full speed ahead" pace was often exhilarating. In fact, the humor and storyline - a kind of farce involving the couple's odd assemblage of friends and relatives - was much stronger than the romance itself.
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