Two Wrongs Make a Marriage
by Christine Merrill
Everything revolves around one Henry de Warde, the younger brother of the Earl of Spayne. De Warde has been blackmailing his brother over Spayne's homosexuality, and has also swindled Thea's father out of his fortune. It's not that de Warde doesn't have money, he just wants everything, especially Thea--on her back. The Earl did once have a son but he died when he was very young while Spayne and his wife were abroad. Spayne never told anyone of his son's death; continuing to let everyone believe his son was living abroad with his wife. When de Warde starts questioning the heir's existence, Spayne hires actor Jack Briggs to portray his son, Lord Kenton.
With the family money lost, Thea needs to make a quick marriage to a wealthy, titled gentleman, while Jack needs to make a quick marriage to a wealthy heiress. Thea lures Jack out to the gazebo and pulls a gun on him, and Jack is thinking that his luck couldn't get any better - a quick compromise and he didn't even have to do any wooing. Imagine his surprise, when after the wedding, instead of discussing Thea's dowry with her father, Jack is instead handed a pile of bills to pay. Needless to say, their wedding night was a little strained, and very lonely. Now the actor and the straight-laced miss need to put on the performance of their lives in order to out-swindle the swindler.
Two Wrongs Make a Marriage has a rather interesting premise, and I thought it was cute. Jack's charm and his-devil-may-care confidence just oozed right off the pages. I wasn't always as enamored of Thea, because while she kept blaming Jack for lying to her, she conveniently forgets that she also did her fair share of lying to him. Christine Merrill though, made me like Thea by the end of the book, and she is so very good at making readers like unlikeable characters.
Thea did her best to keep Jack at arm's length because it was always the plan for him to suddenly, and conveniently, "die" after the scheme was done (hopefully with a pregnant Thea) but, that Jack is a charmer, and the two did fall in love. There was a surprise in the end which I didn't expect, and made me like Jack's character even more.
All in all, Two Wrongs Make a Marriage is a cute little story that is fun to curl up with as the weather starts to turn.
Reviewed by: Valarie Pelissero
“A deception with benefits.”
October 2012, 283 pages
Lord Kenton is surprisingly happy to be lured to a moonlit gazebo, held at gunpoint by the delectable Cynthia Banester and forced to marry her. The only finger he's had to lift is the one that's caressed the neckline of her dress. She's claimed a title—he's secured a fortune. There are just two problems—he's not the real Lord Kenton, and she's not rich!
Bound by their own deceptions, Cynthia and Jack decide to make the best of a bad deal. They may not have two coins to rub together, but consummating their vows proves deliciously satisfying….