- File Size: 846 KB
- Print Length: 245 pages
- Publisher: Carina Press (July 27, 2015)
- Publication Date: July 27, 2015
- Sold by: Harlequin Digital Sales Corp.
- Language: English
- ASIN: B00XCZFU6Y
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Not Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #171,841 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
Harlequin Digital Sales Corp.
Price set by seller.
The Marriage Act Kindle Edition
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I don't want to spoil anything by telling much plot, but suffice it to say that the very young and immature h does something rather unforgivable and extremely stupid on their wedding night. The H, understandably upset, leaves her at his estate and takes off for 5 years on a diplomatic mission abroad. The h, daughter of a bigwig church bishop, doesn't want daddy to know about the marital problem and sends letters to her father pretending she's living abroad with the H.
When H finally arrives back in England, still understandably upset with the h (really, what she did was rather horrible), he doesn't want anything to do with her. But the h had just received news that her father is dying and wants to visit the father with the H and have them pretend that their marriage is all hunky-dory. He agrees and off they go.
Since it is a romance an HEA is expected, so the pretend will have to turn into real. That's the main story. Working out their problems: His distrust and hurt at her betrayal and her resentment of his coldness and disregard (but really, what on earth did she expect?) There will be side issues with a silly cousin of the h and a troubled half-brother of the H, but the author skillfully works this into the main issue of the H-h relationship and how they see each other.
This has some excellent moments when the couple are trying to work through their problems but also some very exasperating moments when they, after taking a step or two forward, manage to take a step or two back again. Pretending, lying, little white lies, and misinterpretation of behavior become a very important relationship issue and theme of the story.
One of the best things to be found here, besides the competent writing, is the chapter headers, which are quotes on marriage and love from Samuel Johnson.
I've found a new autobuy.
Normally, this kind of heroine would be enough to drive me away from finishing a book. But not this time. In part this is because of John, but I was also secretly hoping a certain someone was going to poison Caro in a fit of spiteful jealousy. Alas, that wish didn’t come true, but at least there was John.
Not that he’s perfect, mind. In fact John is stubborn and prideful and is a stickler for the rules, but he has so many very, very good reasons for the way he treats Caro – especially considering that most of his behavior is dictated by hers. He’s also capable of real sweetness, passion and kindness, and he deserves so much more than the wife he has. Especially as Caro is a compulsive liar and even when she knows she’s in the wrong refuses to acknowledge it and simply blames John all the more.
She is infuriating, and remains so throughout the book. The only saving graces – aside from John – are all the other characters, from John’s younger brother Ronnie to Caro’s lovely father, the Bishop of Essex. The plot itself is interesting too, about a very hasty marriage being heavily repented and the work that goes into making things right again. I just wish there had been more consequences for Caro’s constant lies and that she’d really been made to see that her behavior throughout was just plain wrong.
Nevertheless, I did enjoy this story. However, reader mileage will definitely vary depending on how much of Caro you can stomach. If you like a more serious hero with iron integrity and a stubborn loyalty to his heart (even when his heart’s choice is questionable at best) and you’re willing to put up with a childish, less than honest heroine, who is equally stubborn when it comes to her self-interest, then give this a try. It certainly has promise and I’m intrigued enough about it to try more of what this author has to offer.
(I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.)