A marriage of convenience; it was a logical way to escape from the petticoat line. And Lo4rd Wyse found the fresh-fased Rose Lambe a willing partner in the deception, though he hadn't counted on the sweet Rose having thorns .. or a mind of her own.
This book is basically a rewrite of My Dear Duchess (Marion Chesney, 1987). The plot similarities are simply too much.
I realise that in genre set in a particular culture in a particular time, there are only so many possible plot devices around. But this was too much.
Essential wife - marquess marries dressmaker - marriage of convenience, they barely know each other. He doesn't want to marry the "suitable" girl.
Dear Duchess - duke marries companion - marriage of convenience. He was (is?) in love with her employer, who dumped him.
Essential wife - heir tries to prevent marriage from succeeding in order to prevent a son from being born.
Dear duchess - heir tries to prevent marriage from succeeding in order to prevent son from being born.
I mean, really? Yes, I can understand wanting to murder someone to get the inheritance, but to ruin their marriage to prevent progeny? Puhlease.
How do they go about it?
In each case, "other lady" works with heir. They make hero believe wife is messing around.
OK, by this point the books were really similar, but, I thought, surely the ending will be different....
In both books:
Wife get lured to gambling house / brothel - letter saying "your husband will be there bla bla bla". She arrives.
Husband gets told by scheming hussy that wife is in brothel. He arrives.
He is mad. Letter disappears, she has no proof.
He sends her to the country, starts thinking of divorce.
Madam picks up letter and takes it to husband, getting paid of course, he realises he was wrong, rushes off to country etc.
Only the last few pages, what happens in the country, are different, and even then not that much.
In both, wife has to fend for herself.
Someone gets locked in ice house in both.
So, all in all, I could not enjoy this book. Perhaps I would have enjoyed it more had I not read Dear Duchess first. Of course, DD ticked me off anyway, cause after he treats her like dirt she just falls into his arms. At least in this book he rescues her at the end.