Sunday 13 January 2013

A Marriage of Convenience

Next book - available 18th January 2013
'A Marriage of Convenience' was published by Robert Hale in 2005 under the title 'The Unconventional Miss Walters'. This book was the first of nine that I sold to Robert Hale and it is the only one of my books that received the accolade of "editor's choice" in the Historical Novels Review. Here it is: it remains my favourite review as it was my first and my best.
"19-year-old Eleanor Walters is obliged by the terms of her guardian's will to marry an older man, her cousin Lord Leo Upminster, whose uncontrolled temper and rapid changes of mood she finds both bewildering and frightening. However, his dark, handsome looks are undeniably attractive.Ellie is certain that Leo has married purely out of a sense of duty and therefore she insists on a marriage of convenience, denying any intimacy to her husband. Frustration and a series of  misunderstandings cause mounting tension, despite Eleanor's growing affection for Leo. However, she is forced to run away from him after becoming the unwitting victim of malicious gossip. She decides to take refuge in a lonely country estate with near disastrous results following the outbreak of riots in the area.
Miller's detailed picture of the social unrest that followed the Napoleonic wars, and the appalling hardship in the country caused by lack of employment, absentee landlords and unscrupulous agents provides a realistic background to the story. Eleanor's dilemma, her growing maturity, and social consciousness are sensitively portrayed; moreover, the limitations imposed on her actions, including her plans to renovate dilapidated housing on the estate, reflect the social realities of the period. The author clearly has a detailed knowledge of fashion history, fabrics, interior furnishings, and other items everyday use and I was particularly fascinated by these minor details that add special colour and interest. Miller's characterisation is wholly convincing, making the novel a particularly engaging and entertaining read that I thoroughly recommend."
I hope this is enough to encourage you to download the book when it is available later in the month.

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