Sunday, July 20, 2008

The Marriage Spell

Although I have been having a really fun summer (more on that later), I have been in a really pissy mood (again, more on that later), that I knew I needed to read a fun trashy romance novel. I headed over to my local library to see if I could find anything that would catch my fancy. I knew I wanted to try a different author since I feel Johanna Lindsey has become stale, but it’s so hard to find a gem in this genre.

And then I came across Mary Jo Putney’s, The Marriage Spell. The premise sounded kinda cheesy, but out of all the authors I picked up, I kept returning to her. The story involves magic, wizards and spells, the dork in me just couldn’t resist!

The tale takes place in England, as all good romance novels should. It’s the early 1800’s and we meet Abigail Barton a gifted wizard and healer. Having magical abilities is a great gift, but is not accepted by general society and the upper crust. Luckily for Abby, she lives in an area where her and her father are respected healers.

As a young boy Jack Langdon, Lord Frayne, was sent to Stonebridge Academy where they beat the propensity of young gentlemen that either have magical talents or are far too interested in magic. After leaving the Academy, Jack has a strong distaste for anything magical.

Until he suffers a life-threatening riding accident where Abby uses her special healing powers to restore his health in exchange for his hand in marriage. Jack must accept the fact that he is married to a powerful wizard and that he may himself have strong magical powers.

With Abby’s help, Jack learns to accept his true nature and overcome his fears toward magic. He respects her and has tremendous pride in his new wife. Slowly you see them fall in love with each other and its really sweet. Instead of each other being the obstacle towards true love, they confront his evil stepfather together, and in doing so brings them closer.

I really enjoyed reading this book and I’m glad I picked it up. It was nice and refreshing that there wasn’t a cat and mouse game with Abby chasing after Jack or vice versa. Instead they got married early into the book and you got to see their relationship develop from mere strangers, to friends and then to lovers.

Although I have this labeled as a trashy romance novel, there wasn’t enough graphic sex to my liking, but what are ya gonna do? This books wasn’t trashy at all, but a very nice well developed love story. I liked how Putney made love magical and that there is real power between two people who are in love. As Jack states, “Together we can face anything Scranton can throw at us.’ This was the magical spell created by marriage he realized. Together they were greater than the sum of their individual parts.”

The Marriage Spell was a nice and easy read and to me wasn’t a cookie cutter romance novel. I liked that the characters did not fight their feelings for each other and instead learned to embrace themselves and grow with one another. I may have found a new go to in the romance genre.

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