Saturday, November 22, 2014

Strangers at the Altar by @MargueriteKaye Review @HarlequinBooks

Strangers at the Altar
Release date: November 18, 2014
Publisher: Harlequin
Genre: Historical Romance

The secrets behind the wedding veil

For penniless widow Ainsley McBrayne, marriage is the only solution. She's vulnerable yet fiercely independent, so shackling herself to another man seems horrifying! Until handsome stranger Innes Drummond tempts Ainsley to become his temporary wife.

Once married, Ainsley hardly recognizes the rugged Highlander Innes transforms into! He sets her long-dormant pulse racing, and she's soon craving the enticing delights of their marriage bed. She has until Hogmanay to show Innes that their fake marriage could be for real…

My Rating: 4 Roses

A sweet romance about two people who didn't want a true marriage, but fell for each other anyway, Strangers at the Altar was a lovely read. It was an enjoyable romance and I liked it.

Ainsley was a great heroine. She had some interesting growth throughout the book. During her first marriage, she was timid and afraid to express an opinion that she knew her husband wouldn't listen to anyway. At the start of the book, she was done with bowing to another's wishes and she showed that she could be strong-willed. But, as the book went on, she struggled with falling back into old habits, even though she knew that Innes would listen to her advice if she chose to give it. But, she got better at asserting herself and ended up as a stronger character. I thought she was lovely and I liked her.

Innes was wonderful as well. He was sweet and a fair-minded man. When it came to both his wife and his tenants, he wasn't too proud to listen to advice and really tried to do what was best for his estate. He was great and I liked him as well.

The romance was good. Ainsley and Innes were smitten with each other from when they first met, but neither of them could admit it. As their feelings grew deeper, they still couldn't admit it to each other, until they both finally realized that they were just making themselves miserable by not accepting their feelings. They were great together, the kind of couple that made each other better. I thought they were a lovely couple.

I had 2 main issues with the book that knocked it down a peg. 1) Though I did think that Ainsley and Innes were a good couple, their stubbornness was a little frustrating. Particularly with how they kept going on about how their marriage wasn't real. It was totally legal and all they had to do was decide to make it a full marriage and it would have been so. It just seemed like the used that as an excuse to hide their feelings, which was rather annoying. 2) The whole reveal of what happened to make Innes think he didn't deserve happiness was properly dramatic. However, I never got to actually see the resolution of it. I wanted to see Innes face his past fully. Without it, I felt underwhelmed because this whole drama was revealed but the resolution for it was just a few pages long. Other than that, though, I liked the rest of the book.

The plot moved quickly and I was engaged the entire way through. I really enjoyed the story and the ending was perfect.

Strangers at the Altar was a lovely historical romance that I really liked. Romance lovers, this is a book worth check out.

*I received a complimentary copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

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