The Reluctant Bride

Written by Beverley Eikli
Review by Barbara Goldie

Set in the period after the French Revolution, this novel tells the story of Emily, who has no option but to marry Angus, if she is to escape from poverty. She does, however, feel disloyal to her dead fiancé, Jack. Angus, although he is in love with Emily, and is tormented by his dead mistress, Jessamine, is determined to atone for his past. Emily has to learn how to love Angus.

It is a fast-paced story of finding love, with detailed storylines and intricate plots, which is very well researched and full of surprises. The descriptions are delicate and dialogue believable, with nice long chapter lengths for total immersion in the story. There is some mystery, suspense and action as well in this page-turning historical romance, which comes complete with English and French spies.

The characters are well drawn with a charismatic Angus, believable Andreas and although Emily can be a bit frustrating initially she grew on me as the book developed.

Eikli creates a enchanting sense of time and place, real emotional conflict and lots of drama. I loved the cover of the book; it attracted me immediately and would stand out on a bookshelf. A great read for history lovers, romance lovers and those who like a bit of mystery and suspense.