Audio Review: First Comes Marriage (Huxtable Quintet, Book 1) by Mary Balogh

Narrator: I am on an audio book kick. I loved this narrator. Anne Flosnik is great! She makes the book come alive. It’s like listening to a movie with all of her voices. I wanted to drive more around town just for the opportunity to get further in the book!

Heroine: Vanessa Dew is the widowed second daughter of the Huxtable family. She liked her previous marriage, despite its hardships (a young dying husband from the get-go). To save her sister from a loveless match, and to get back into a marriage bed (which she has little experience with but enjoyed) she proposes to the most eligible bachelor in London. She promises to make him happy in bed and out. Can a man resist such an offer?

Hero: Elliott Wallace, the Darcy-like Viscount Lyngate, accepts the unorthodox proposal from the upstart widow. After all, he’s not looking for a love-match, just a monogamous one. He’s surprised by how much he’s attracted to the little plain thing, but her happy optimistic self is irresistible to a man as staid and reserved as himself. Wedded bliss was more than he expected, and Elliott isn’t about to give it up!

Review: The marriage of convenience premise was a little weak, considering Elliott starts the book with a well-bred mistress. Also for as much regret as he appeared to hold in the beginning about agreeing to wed Vanessa, I find his reasons to remain faithful to the marriage odd – I would have found it more reasonable had he finally got why his own father/grandfather had cheated – but then again, Elliott doesn’t believe in love matches – so perhaps his reasoning isn’t so bad, just unexpected.

Some of my favorite scenes are at the beginning with Vanessa proposing and Elliott catching her at her bragging and also on their honeymoon and the field of flowers! I love how she gets him to pick an entire houseful of them. I love Vanessa’s character, she’s wonderfully drawn and inspires a lot of laughs and smiles as you listen to the story. She’s very forthright and this helps smooth over rough patches and turns potential big misunderstandings into adult conversations fast! If you like reasonableness in your heroes and heroines you’ll like this story!


First Comes Marriage

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