The Convenient Marriage
by Georgette Heyer
Mass Market Paperback:
Released: 1934, 2000
Source: Bought through Half.com.
Book Description, Modified from Goodreads:
Horatia Winwood, a stammering girl barely out of the schoolroom, offers to take the place of her beautiful older sister (who is romantically involved elsewhere) in a marriage of convenience with the wealthy Earl of Rule. Horatia thinks that Rule loves another woman who is unsuitable to marry, so she tries to find her happiness in buying clothing and flirting with other men.
Rule is actually taken with his adorable new wife and is concerned about her behavior. Lord Lethbridge sees this as an opportunity to ruin Horatia as revenge against Rule for an earlier dispute between them. Little does he expect the mess that results due to Horatia's, her brother's, his friend's, and Rule's hilarious interference with his carefully laid plans.
The Convenient Marriage is a funny historical romance set in 1770's England. The hero, Rule, reminded me of The Scarlet Pimpernel - he seemed lazy and unconcerned yet he was a lot more aware and athletic than he outwardly appeared. Horatia was charming and very funny at the beginning, but then she behaved rather badly (though not so much so that I stopped liking her). Rule's old enemy and a previous mistress of Rule's did some shocking things to try to break up the marriage. The comic relief mainly came from Horatia's usually-drunk brother and his friend doing their bumbling best to prevent her actions from creating a scandal...and only making things worse.
There was a fair amount of historical detail--mainly about the clothing, though some about dueling, highway robbery, and such--woven into the story. I had a hard time putting the book down because of the bad scrapes Horatia and her brother kept getting into, some of them dangerous.
There was some explicit bad language. There was no sex. Overall, I'd recommend this funny novel.
If you've read this book, what do you think about it? I'd be honored if you wrote your own opinion of the book in the comments.
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