The Reluctant Widow
by Georgette Heyer
Mass Market Paperback:
Publisher: Berkley Medallion Books
Released: 1946, 1972
Note: I couldn't find a cover picture for the version I have, but it was similar to this one.
Source: Bought through Half.com
Book Description, Modified from Goodreads:
When Elinor Rochdale boards the wrong coach, she ends up not at her prospective employer's home but at the estate of Eustace Cheviot, a dissipated and ruined young man on the verge of death.
His cousin, Lord Carlyon, persuades Elinor to marry Eustace as a simple business arrangement. By morning, Elinor is not only a widow but finds herself embroiled with an international spy ring, housebreakers, uninvited guests, and murder. And Lord Carlyon won't let her leave ...
The Reluctant Widow is a humorous historical novel set in Regency England. The details about daily life (funerals, housekeeping, etc.) and politics were woven into the story. The hero and heroine were well suited for each other in temperament. However, they spent very little time together, and the heroine filled most of that time by complaining at the hero (with valid concerns). The declaration of love occurred at the very end with little indication that it was coming.
Most of the story revolved around Elinor restoring an old manor into good order while at the same time having a number of unexpected visitors (including the housebreaking type). The mystery was about where Eustace put the papers that the visitors were looking for and the puzzle of which visitors were working for England and which were working against it. An imperfectly trained dog and his young, adventurous master provide the main humor and stole the story, in my opinion.
There was some explicit bad language. There was no sex. Overall, I'd recommend this amusing and enjoyable story.
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.
Excerpt: Read an excerpt using Google Preview.