Meet the Bedwyns…six brothers and sisters--men and women of passion and privilege, daring and sensuality…Enter their dazzling world of high society and breathtaking seduction…where each will seek love, fight temptation, and court scandal…and where Aidan Bedwyn, the marriage-shy second son, discovers that matrimony may be the most seductive act of all.…
Historical romance maven Balogh (A Summer to Remember, etc.) falls back on the oft-used marriage of convenience formula for her first Bedwyn family installment, but what this whimsical Regency-era romance lacks in originality, it more than makes up for in character and execution. Having promised a dying officer that he'll protect the man's sister "no matter what," Col. Aidan Bedwyn calls on Eve Morris to offer his condolences and aid. Still in mourning over the death of her coal miner father a year earlier, Eve now stands to be turned out onto the street due to a peculiar condition of her father's will. Only by marrying can she save her home, which she shares with several orphans, an impoverished aunt and a staff composed mainly of outcasts. Ever one to honor his promises, Aidan proposes, and Eve accepts. The two plan to separate after saying their vows, but Aidan's eldest brother, the Duke of Bewcastle, insists that Eve be presented to the queen. To Aidan's amazement, Eve proves she has the mettle to stand up to his haughty family. Believable complications and an intriguing clash of personalities ensure the story never grows stale, and Balogh's quirky supporting characters-including Eve's gutsy housekeeper and Aidan's formidable aunt-sprinkle the tale with homespun humor. (Apr. 1) Forecast: As part of Bantam's "Get Connected" program, the next two books in Balogh's series (Slightly Wicked and Slightly Scandalous) will be released consecutively in May and June. Sales will soar simply because Balogh is a well-respected hardcover author who hasn't published a mass market original in several years, but the books'clever timing should also boost the hype surrounding her "homecoming." Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information. -- PUBLISHERS WEEKLY.
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1 . Very Good!
Posted January 14, 2011 by Diane , RomeI am really loving this series and cant wait to read the next one. Very wonderfully written.
March 31, 2003
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Excerpt from Slightly Married by Mary Balogh
There was a shady dell slicing through the woods on the western side of the park at Ringwood Manor in Oxfordshire. The water of the brook gurgling over its rocky bed joined up eventually with a larger river that formed the boundary of the park and flowed through the nearby village of Heybridge. The dell was always secluded and lovely. However, on this particular morning in May it was breathtakingly beautiful. The bluebells, which did not usually bloom until June, had been seduced by a mild spring into making an early appearance. The azaleas were in flower too, so that the sloping banks were carpeted in blue and pink. Bright sunbeams slanted through the dark-leafed branches of tall cypress trees and dappled the ground with brightness and shadow while sparkling off the bubbling water of the brook.
Eve Morris was knee-deep in bluebells. She had decided that it was too glorious a morning to be spent in any of the usual activities about the house and farm or in the village. The bluebells were in bloom for such a short time, and picking them for the house had always been one of her favorite springtime activities. She was not alone. She had persuaded Thelma Rice, the governess, to cancel classes for a few hours and bring her two pupils and her infant son out flower picking. Even Aunt Mari had come despite her arthritic knees and frequent shortness of breath. Indeed, it had been her idea to turn the occasion into an impromptu picnic. She was sitting now on the sturdy chair Charlie had carried down for her, her knitting needles clicking steadily, a large basket of food and drink at her side.
Eve straightened up to stretch her back. A pile of long-stemmed flowers lay along the basket over her arm. With her free hand she pressed her ancient, floppy straw hat more firmly onto her head, even though the wide gray ribbon attached to its crown and brim was securely fastened beneath her chin. The ribbon matched her dress, a simply styled, high-waisted, short-sleeved cotton garment ideal for a morning in the country when no company was expected. She savored a conscious feeling of well-being. All of the summer stretched ahead, a summer unmarred by anxiety for the first time in many years. Well, almost unmarred. There was, of course, the continuing question of what was keeping John away. He had expected to be home by March, or April at the latest. But he would come as soon as he was able. Of that she was certain. In the meantime, she viewed her surroundings and her companions with placid contentment.