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Posted April 5, 2013
Do Not Miss Out on The Arrangement! I love love love this class
Do Not Miss Out on The Arrangement!
I love love love this classic keeper, have read it many times and passed it around many an office group of readers who became Joan Wolf fans. My poor but beloved paperback copy has so many cracks in the spine that you can barely read the title, so Hooray for E-readers!
This wonderful romance begins with the arrival of the Raoul, Earl of Savile at the home of our heroine, Gail Saunders, in a wild snowstorm. Gail is a widow with a young son, Nicky, and earns her living by running her own riding school. The earl has arrived to bring Gail to the reading of his cousin George’s will because she somehow figures in it. Savile assumes that Gail had a prior relationship with George, Lord Devane, whom she actually despised. The earl makes some other unsavory suppositions about her life that get their relationship off to a rocky start. They are far apart in terms of class and wealth. But the snow forces a stayover with Gail and Nicky that opens Raoul’s eyes to Gail’s inner strength and ability to build a life in meager circumstances. As they become better acquainted, the strong attraction between them is bolstered by their genuine admiration and respect for each other.
The reading of the will is as wonderfully dramatic a scene as the reader could hope. The cast of supporting characters is introduced: George’s sullen widow and her wealthy industrialist father are suspicious and contemptuous of Gail; Roger, the new Lord Devane, is a sharp-tongued, aristocratic fribble. They contribute a great deal to the antagonistic, witty, and often funny drawing-room conversation.
Gail and Raoul’s love story is rapturous. Joan Wolf doesn’t do bodice-rippers, but the romance, the characterizations, and the surprise plot twists provide plenty of excitement. The characters are distinct and real (even the horses), emotions are deeply felt, and life is not always kind. An engrossing, satisfying read—and reread!
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