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The Beauty Bride: 1 (Jewels of Kinfairlie) Paperback – Import, 20 January 2012
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More cherished than gold are the Jewels of Kinfairlie, and only the worthiest may fight for their love...The Laird of Kinfairlie has unmarried sisters, each a gem in her own right. And he has no choice but to see them all wed in haste.
Lady Madeline's heart is not for sale...especially not to a notorious outlaw like Rhys FitzHenry. Yet Madeline's hand has been sold, to none other than this battle-weary warrior with a price on his head. A more dutiful maiden might cede to the Laird's command and meekly accept her fate, but Madeline has never been obedient. She decides to run away, though she never dreams that Rhys will pursue her. She does not expect this taciturn man to woo her with fanciful stories, much less that each of his enthralling tales will reveal a scar upon his shielded soul. She never imagines that a man like Rhys could imperil her own heart while revealing so little of his own feelings. When Rhys's past threatens his future, Madeline takes a leap of faith. She dares to believe him innocent - and risks her own life to pursue a passion more priceless than the rarest gem.
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About the Author
- Publisher : Deborah A. Cooke (20 January 2012)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 298 pages
- ISBN-10 : 098783990X
- ISBN-13 : 978-0987839909
- Item Weight : 381 g
- Dimensions : 13.97 x 1.7 x 21.59 cm
- Country of Origin : India
- Customer Reviews:
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Rhys is the illegitimate son of a Welsh Lord, & he’s also being hunted by the English king for being a traitor. However, he’s determined to risk capture if it means he will become the heir of Caerwyn, his home & lands. Looking for his cousin leads him to
Ravensmuir, where Lord Tynan & his nephew of neighbouring Kinfairlie are auctioning off some family treasures.
Alexander & his aunt Rosamunde & uncle decide to invite suitable bachelors to Ravensmuir to bid for the eldest of the Kinfairlie sisters, Madeline’s hand. Her heart has been broken as her betrothed, James went off to France to fight & has been missing, probably dead, for a year. Not suspecting anything, she & her siblings attend the auction, to find she’s up for auction!
Although Rhys was not invited to the auction, he ends up successfully bidding for her hand. Madeline of course is furious, but she pretends to be demure & resigned to her fate, while planning to leave during the night. Rhys suspects her motives & is ready when she escapes. When she’s attacked on a remote path, it is Rhys who comes to her rescue & takes her to visit his aunt, the Abbess of an Abbey, & his friend Thomas who is a monk there. It is Thomas who helps them escape when they are pursued, possibly by the English king’s men out to capture Rhys.
Having married at the Abbey before fleeing, the couple make their way to back to his home in Wales, where Rhys hopes he & his new bride will be safe from the English. They are attracted to each other, & he knows that although she will be the perfect wife for him, she can never love him: she’s already given her heart to James. She knows he’s only married her to strengthen his claim on Caerwyn & for “sons”, & won’t hesitate to take a mistress should she fail.
This is a fast paced story with some predictable scenes. I did find it hard to believe Madeline’s sisters would ride out across the country accompanied by their aunt. I didn’t really like Alexander & was dismayed to learn from the excerpt of book 2 that he hadn’t learned his mistake of marrying off Madeline without consulting her. Fair enough he doesn’t auction off his second sister, Vivienne, but he agrees to & arranges for a man to enter her room to seduce her. Hardly the behaviour of a loving & concerned brother, or a gentleman! Thankfully his sisters manage to turn the tables on him in book 3 (according to the blurbs).
The story is about Madeline, the eldest of several sisters. Her brother Alexander has become head of the household since their mother and father died at sea. The same ship they died on, Madeline's betrothed, James, is said to have died as well. She has been in mourning ever since and has no intention of marrying any time soon. Alexander knows his younger sisters won't marry until the eldest is wed, but with her refusing to marry he begins to despair. Money is running low and he fears he won't be able to afford to look after all of his siblings and the estate. In his desperation he decides unbeknown to Madeline, to auction her off as a bride.
Rhys Fitzhenry is the man that wins the auction. He is wanted for treason against the king, but all he cares about is getting home to Wales and staking his claim on his home and land that he has finally come into. The one person that could possibly stop his claim is a woman, a second cousin of his whom he wants to marry in order to make sure the lands remain his. He traces the woman to Kinfairlie and to his utter surprise he finds her being auctioned off for marriage. He has a pocket full of coin, and he wins the fair lady fairly and squarely.
That is how our couple meet, and you can just imagine how upset Madeline is. Not only has her brother betrayed her, but she is supposed to marry a man wanted by the King. She is so displeased that during the early hours of the morning she runs away.....
Of course Rhys follows her and what follows is the story of how Rhys catches up with Madeline, and how they try to make it to Wales where Rhys will be safe from the King's men who they believe are chasing after them. Will Madeline fall for Rhys' charms, she certainly finds herself lusting after his body, and despite some very passionate love making, will a marriage between them work. She is still in love with her late fiance isn't she? And how can she love a man who has bought her? A ma that is keeping secrets and won't open up to her. What will she do when she finds out why he wants to marry her, and if she is indeed his cousin surely that kind of kinship will prevent marriage being proper. Will they make it to his castle safely and will Rhys finally claim it has his own or will forces conspire to never let that happen.
This book was an absolute joy to read, there is so much going on throughout it and it made me run the gamut of emotions from anger at some characters, to absolute joy with others. There are even some very sweet scenes with one of Madeline's younger sisters, Elizabeth, who can see fairies and watches as one works it's magic on people around her. Not always good magic either. I think we are going to see more of that fairies magic in other books in this series which I am definitely going to read and which I am sure I will love just as much as this one.
A delightful story with a feisty, bright, humorous and of course beautiful heroine in Madeleine paired with a dark, handsome, brooding and, necessarily, secretive hero in Rhys. In a desperate bid for much needed clan funds she is unwillingly auctioned off in marriage by her brother the new, young and inexperienced, Laird. Madeleine ends up being bought by Rhys - an 'outlaw' with a price on his head. She is livid at the indignity and not prepared to take it lying down. After extracting a promise from her brother, that he will not put their younger sisters through the same ordeal, she flees her home and prospective husband.
The story follows her on her adventures, away from the castle walls of her home for the first time. Rhys, of course, figures largely in those adventures. I particularly like that Rhys is doubtful about his own appeal not believing he has the ability to woo a woman outside the use of his charming little tales. The end is pleasing with all strands of the tale satisfyingly dealt with plus Madeleine's brother redeems himself.
Admittedly, at the start of the book I did wonder what I was getting into as a great many characters including a mischievous fairy were introduced at a rapid rate. However, everything and everyone soon slotted into place for a very enjoyable read. So if you too want an enjoyable read. Read this!
I was out of my comfort zone a little as this was based earlier than my usual Georgian era.
There was also the surprising addition of a little fairy jiggery-pokery written in.
I found it to be very lyrically written, and even the inclusion of the fairy seemed to work. In fact, I would love to have heard more of the mischief she could unleash.
The characters were believable and worth investing in, and I look forward to adding the others in the series to my wish list, and would even be prepared to pay for them.
This is not a book that I would have felt cheated if I'd actually paid good money for it rather than gathering it into my reading fold as a freebie, and it earner it's 4 stars well.