by Karen L. King

August 2002
ISBN: 0-8217-7413-1
Reviewer Graphic Button Zebra Books
Mass Market Paperback

Mr. Keene Davies had challenged his best friend, Victor, to a duel to defend the name and honor of their other best friend George. Victor had seduced Georgeís wife, Amelia, before they were married, and she had given birth to a child, that was Victorís not Georgeís. So Keene, took it upon himself to defend his friendís honor. What Keene didnít count on though, was his father finding out about the duel, and threatening to cut him out of his inheritance, if he didnít marry and settle down and stop his dangerous ways. The woman his father has picked for Keene to marry is a distant cousin, named Sophie Farthing. Keene hasnít seen Sophie in many years. In fact, the last time he had seen her, she was a little hellion, bent on driving him to distraction with all of her stunts and carelessness.

Keene agrees to his fatherís demands, and goes to the Farthing estate to ask for her hand in marriage. When he arrives at the estate, the last thing he expected to see was his intended bride, crawling out of her bedroom window and crawling out onto the ledge. Had news of his proposal been so unwanted that she would jump rather than marry him? She hasnít changed at all, still hell bent on causing trouble.

But Sophie didnít know that Keene was even coming. She was running away from an admirer who just wouldnít take no for an answer. When she climbs off of the ledge and learns that Keene has asked for her hand, sheís very excited. She has always been a little in love with Keene, ever since she was a child. But why her and not someone else?

What follows is a strange and funny story of misunderstandings and misconceptions that will keep your head spinning. When Keeneís proposal is accepted, he leaves for London to return in four weeks time to marry Sophie. But when he returns, itís to find that his bride is ill, his soon-to-be father-in-law is very anxious to have this wedding over with, and it seems that everyone is in on something that he should know about, but doesnít. What exactly happened in the weeks he was gone?

This was a fun tale. I read it in about 4 hours. The characters are very well written and nothing is missing when trying to keep everything that is happening at one time, in your head, without giving you a major headache. :) I love books like this. They keep you riveted to the pages and make you not want to put the book down, for fear of missing something!

Reviewed in July 2002 by Debbie.

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