Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Two Wrongs Make a Marriage by Christine Merrill

Two Wrongs Make a Marriage
Lord Kenton is surprisingly happy to be lured to a moonlit gazebo, held at gunpoint by the delectable Cynthia Banester and forced to marry her. The only finger he's had to lift is the one that's caressed the neckline of her dress. She's claimed a title—he's secured a fortune. There are just two problems—he's not the real Lord Kenton, and she's not rich!Bound by their own deceptions, Cynthia and Jack decide to make the best of a bad deal. They may not have two coins to rub together, but consummating their vows proves deliciously satisfying….

I've read a couple of Christine Merrill's books and I've loved each one, so I assumed that I would like Two Wrongs Make a Marriage.
And it didn't disappoint. This book was so good. It hooks you in immediately and doesn't let you go.

I liked the premise of this book. It's a new one. You don't often see the heroine forcing the hero to marry her at gun point. And it was very well done.

I had mixed feeling about Cynthia, and they were my one problem with this book. My first impression of her was good. She was tough enough to use gun force to get what she wanted. But, then it went awry. Cynthia places huge importance in honesty and that's admirable. But she was self-righteous about it, and that bothered me. For example, she gets all angry when she finds out that Lord Kenton isn't really Lord Kenton, but she also lied-she lied about her family's financial state to avoid losing his hand in marriage. Doesn't that seem a little hypocritical. And she gets all stuck up about lying to the antagonist even though it's to get her family's money back. I understand morals, but I don't like it when a person is self-righteous and condescending to those her don't share his or her morals. It really irritates me. And that whole thing caused her to be quite mean to Jack throughout the book, but I didn't think he deserved it. And she looks down on her mother because she used to be an actress. Parts of it were understandable, but not as far as Cynthia took it.

Does that mean I hated her? No. Because, towards the end, she has a change of heart. She becomes more likable. I still didn't go crazy over her character, but it did keep me from disliking her. So, she turned out to be an okay character.

But everything else in this book was wonderful.

Jack was amazing. He was very sweet and hilarious. Despite all his attempts to convince himself otherwise, you can really tell how much he cares about his "father", the Earl of Spayne, and Cynthia. He was utterly charming, and I totally fell for it.

All the other characters were great. Cynthia's mother was interesting. She was always fun to have on the page. Just because the actress left the theater, doesn't mean the theater left her. The Earl of Spayne was surprisingly deep for a secondary character. He has secrets that he's kept from almost everyone, and each one is surprising. He was a nice character. The antagonist De Warde, was thoroughly villainous. I had fun hating his guts.

The plot held several interesting twists. The book literally starts with Cynthia holding a gun at Jack's head, and that level of interest continues right to the end. The ending was perfect. It had a little twist to it. The ending actually managed to surprise me.

Two Wrongs Make a Marriage is excellent. Other than one problem, I loved it. I would recommend it to any lover of historical romance.


Thanks to Netgalley for a copy!

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