- Series: Daughters of Fortune (Book 2)
- Mass Market Paperback: 384 pages
- Publisher: Avon; mass market edition (September 3, 2002)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 9780380817429
- ISBN-13: 978-0380817429
- ASIN: 038081742X
- Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1 x 6.8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 70 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #477,953 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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To Marry an Heiress (Daughters of Fortune) Mass Market Paperback – September 3, 2002
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From Publishers Weekly
Often in Heath's novels (A Rogue in Texas, etc.), English aristocrats head to the Wild West to find love and make a fresh start, but this time around, an American heiress heads to Victorian London and winds up getting married. Devon Sheridan, a widowed earl and father with a deteriorating estate, seeks to replenish his empty coffers by marrying Georgina Pierce, the plain, stubborn daughter of wealthy American Nathaniel Pierce. In exchange for unlimited access to Nathaniel's funds, Devon agrees to woo Georgina and provide her with the one thing she desires most children. Georgina quickly sees through the charade but marries him to please her father, who dies shortly after the wedding, having gambled away his fortune. With the help of his unconventional wife, however, Devon comes to realize that he can be wealthy without riches. The clash between Georgina's lack of inhibitions and Devon's strict adherence to society's rules serves as a source of comedy, but Devon is an unlikely character for the period despite his English starchiness. Not only does he work his own fields (a "no-no" for the aristocracy), but he fails to make a proper marriage settlement before entering into the union. Still, Heath's vivacious heroine shines, and she plays well off her proud and proper counterpart.
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.
About the Author
Lorraine Heath always dreamed of being a writer. After graduating from the University of Texas, she wrote training manuals, press releases, articles, and computer code, but something was always missing. When she read a romance novel, she not only became hooked on the genre, but quickly realized what her writing lacked: rebels, scoundrels, and rogues. She’s been writing about them ever since. Her work has been recognized with numerous industry awards, including RWA’s prestigious RITA®. Her novels have appeared on the USA Today and New York Times bestseller lists.
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What made the book go downhill for me was the hero, Devon. At the beginning I thought I was going to love him - as I usually do with HR heroes. He was staid, serious, and kind of uptight, which provides many laughable and enjoyable encounters between him and Gina, since they are so different. However around halfway through the book, he started doing/thinking/saying things that really got on my nerves. I found it extremely annoying to always hear about his first wife, Margaret - especially since she seems to have been an extremely selfish woman, who was snobbish, arrogant, and basically all-around unpleasant. I found it disconcerting that even after she shows her true colors when they're in such financial straits, he continues to love her.
Worse than that, though, was Devon's whole view on the situation - his father has squandered their fortune so once he inherits, there's basically nothing to support the estates and the tenants living there. Disaster, of course, so while Margaret elegantly withers away in her despair of not being able to buy more ballgowns, he goes out to work in the field - causing her to disdain him and him to feel shame. I was so sick of him going on and on about how the aristocracy should be doing X and they shouldn't be doing Y and ____ is appropriate of our station while ____ is not. Okay, we got it already! I know the whole "beauty" of the ending is he realizes he shouldn't be ashamed of having to work alongside the tenants and not being able to afford the lifestyle of a nobleman, but it was just waaaaaaaay too long in coming. For the second half of the book I basically wanted to slap him out of his pity party and shake some sense into him - both common sense and a sense of equality, so he would stop going on about his rank and what was or was not appropriate.
Oh, and the ending (not the epilogue, but the declaration-of-love scene) was so corny I could hardly handle it; it was kind of sickly sweet and had me rolling my eyes and wanting to skim over. So basically, I loved his kids and I loved Gina - I just wish Devon in the second half of the book could be improved on.
P.S. Plus, what is up with Devon not even telling Gina before they get married that he already has two children?? In this case it's not a bad thing because Gina loves kids, but, ummmm, I don't know ... offspring might be one of those things that you mention to your betrothed *before* you say your vows. Just a thought.
The storyline is very basic, and while I liked Chetwyn, I had problems liking Meredith. I was bored a couple times, but it's such a small book it was over fast regardless. Generally a sweet story, and watching certain characters unpleasant sides be revealed was nice. Take that ! You dastardly person, you ! Anyway, light and predictable, okay, but not great.
This is a short, well written story with strong characters and a fun plot. I very much enjoyed it and recommend it to historical romance lovers.