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Marian's Christmas Wish

Marian's Christmas Wish

4.4 12
by Carla Kelly

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Miss Marian Wynswich is a rather unconventional young lady. She plays chess, reads Greek, and is as educated as any young man. And she's certain falling in love is a ridiculous endeavor and vows never to do such a thing. But everything changes when she receives a Christmas visit from someone unexpected—a young and handsome English lord.

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Marian's Christmas Wish 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 12 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved everything about this story: great character development and absorbing storyline. I had warm fuzzies all through the reading. I don't really like series, but I got to like all the characters so much this time it would be fun to follow.
MKReviews More than 1 year ago
A Reader's Opinion: Marian Wynswich is determined to have a wonderful Christmas, because it just might be her last in the home she's always known. I delighted in this book! It did start off just a few paces slower for me, but then pulled me at about page four and I was hooked. Marian Wynswich is an intelligent and outspoken sixteen year old young lady (almost seventeen as she likes to tell us). Over Christmas pudding, she makes a Christmas wish. Though she has vowed never fall in love or marry, her plans turn in another direction when she meets Lord Ingraham. I delighted in Lord Ingraham (Gilbert or Gil to Marian) as well. He's damaged with a few scars, but when in Marian's company, he becomes a dashing and charming man I fell a little in love with more than once during the story. Marian isn't the only one with a Christmas wish and Gilbert spends most of the book hoping and dreaming for his, and yet at the same time, he treads carefully--out of fear perhaps? You'll have to read it to find out. The setting is wonderful and the secondary characters are marvelous. Alistair made me laugh on numerous occasion and the other family members added just enough to the story to make the family seem like a genuine, and delightfully fun, family. The author did a wonderful job with the main characters. Marian is written true to her age, but also has an air of maturity about her--the kind of maturity that comes from the weight of responsibility to one's family and the desire to see and experience more of life and the world. Gilbert's relationship with Marian is a charming development and my mind kept urging them onward to the only inevitable conclusion--lasting love. (Possible spoiler, but not really!) Now, there was a review about this book that mentioned the hero's time in London, towards the end of the book, and how that time away and the . . . shall I say his duty to his country . . . was a less than stellar action on the part of any romantic hero. I could understand it from that reviewer's point of view, however if one takes in the context of the era, the hero's position, and the story as a whole, coupled with Marian's amazingly generous and understanding mind and heart, the hero gets a pass. I still delight in his character. I would recommend this book to anyone--it's a wonderful read and clean too!
SaraO More than 1 year ago
This is the sweetest Christmas Romance. It falls into a category of Romance classification called Traditional. An adult Romance read without any overt sex. it reads just like a trashy romance…without the trashy bits. I think the best way to show my love for this book is to breakdown all the bits that worked for me. The Clean Romance. It’s not exactly a secret that I like my romances trashy. I love the buildup to a bedroom scene…extra points if it happens somewhere other than a bedroom, the garden perhaps? the stables? It’s all lovely in my book. Which is why I had a bit of trepidation in learning that this book was Traditional…and squeaky clean. Uh oh, I was a bit nervous to leave the tried and true path of the trashy romance… I should have worried not. This book was wonderful. The romance between Marian and Gil built quickly. There were plenty of sweet moments, and a few slightly sensual. It’s obvious Gil is a man who knows what he’s doing even if Marian is pure as snow. Watching him fall for such a naive girl was thrilling. As a reader you know what must be going through his head, you know exactly when Marian catches his eye and exactly when he falls in love…even if Marian is a little slower on the uptake. Marian’s age. I’ve mentioned that Marian is a bit naive. She’s also a bit immature at the start of this book. I’ll even admit there were times when I was wincing at her reactions. You see, Gil, the very hunky spy, is about 13 years her senior. I’ll give you a moment to ‘ick’ before we put this all in the perspective of Regency England where poor Marian could have potentially married someone old enough to be her father…or grandfather. So beyond the massive [by modern standards] age gap Marian’s youth served the story well. It forced the relationship to move a little slower. And it was fun watching Marian mature under Gil’s instruction and stolen kisses. You can see the potential in Marian from the beginning…But the woman you find at the end of the story is worthy of any full-blooded Regency Romance. Marian’s Brain. Oh, my, does her intelligence get her in trouble! The last place an intelligent woman was desired was a Regency dining table. True, we’re reading a story about a man who falls for this witty woman, it’s what we love as a reader. But Kelly bars no punches when Marian speaks out of turn. Most of the time Marian is right. All of the time it amuses Gil and endears her to his love. And Marian is still struck down every time. It’s fun to watch her speak her mind, score little points with the reader and with Gil. But Kelly never lets these slips of the tongue endear her to anyother character. And rightfully so. If we’re introducing the correct age gap between marriageable couples…we’re going to keep the society rules too. I love an author who sticks to her guns and who gives me a smart character to boot. Gil aka Lord Ingraham. He’s hunky, he’s mysterious, he’s sweet, he’s amusing, and he’s a spy. I. Love. This. Man. How he plays puppet master behind the scenes for so much of the book. It was so much fun to watch his plans come to fruition. Then, when Marion goes and saves him herself…*sigh*…so wonderful to see the two of them support each other. Because, as much as Marian obviously needs a bit of help growing into a woman…Gil needs as much help rectifying the choices he’s made as an adult. Together their romance is oh, so, sweet. Christmas. Is there anything better than a Regency England Christma
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is my favorite Carla Kelly book. The writing was brilliant and I enjoyed every page of it. I laughed out loud many times and multiple times on just a single page. Very fun. I wish she had more like this one. It was wonderful.
RegencyAnn More than 1 year ago
Carla Kelly is one of best regency authors and Marian's Christmas is another hit. All the characters are interesting and the plot has new twists. Recommend to all her fans.
crystal_fulcher More than 1 year ago
I love Marian, she is such a fun character. She's not afraid of much and she says what comes to mind and it makes her a delight to read, she is definitely not a shrinking wall flower of a girl. And in addition, the entire Wynswich family is a delight as well, even the stuffier members of the family turn out to be quite fun and likable. I haven't read Regency romance in awhile and I forgot what I was missing in the really good ones, and Marian's Christmas Wish is one of the ones that really stands out. It has wonderful characters, starting with Marian and her witty comebacks and schemes. Her brother Alistair is a trouble-maker as well and rather amusing. Percy and Ariadne are the more proper ones in the family, but they are still interesting characters in their own right. Of course, the earl, Lord Ingraham is a fascinating character as well. Not much is known about him in the beginning, but I liked him from the start from the way he interacts and helps Marian get out of tough spots. He continues to shine through the rest of the book as well. The plot is great as well. The wonderful thing about historical romance is even though this was previously released back in 1989, it reads perfectly today. So those of us that missed this gem in 1989 get a chance to read it now and it does not seem dated in the least. There are several things going on in the plot that keep it moving and keep it interesting and of course there is the romance of Marian and Lord Ingraham front and center even though it comes about slowly through the whole book. The plot never lost my attention and I enjoyed every minute of my reading.
beckymmoe More than 1 year ago
Absolutely loved, loved, loved this one! It's so much better than the blurb makes it sound--not that there is anything at all wrong with the blurb, mind you--but there is so much more to the story than the blurb lets on. This book has it all. There's family drama, tragedy, and humor. There's an odious suitor to give Mr. Collins a run for his money. There's diplomats and peace treaties and a not-so-diplomatic chess game. There's French spies and English spies and the threat of a posting in--horrors!--the Americas. Throw in a despicable brother-in-law, a vicar who imbibed a wee bit too much in the name of courage, and a younger brother who nearly poisoned the hero, and you've got one book that is nearly impossible to put down! I read Carla Kelly's Channel Fleet books last year and enjoyed them very much, but have to say this one was even better. It really had the flavor of both Heyer and Austen, but with a dash more, well, *dash* added that is definitely all Kelly's creation. I've totally neglected things I was supposed to get done this weekend in order to finish reading this book--and plan on doing the same again in the future, because this one is definitely going on the "keeper" shelf!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
srbSH More than 1 year ago
Christmas stories really don’t work for me because of the way the ‘heartwarming’ events all seem to revolve around the pudding, the Yule log, the carols – the old-fashioned spirit of the holiday. The story was filled with the wonderful character of the very young Marian (will her wish come true?); her scapegrace brother Alistair and the much older scarred diplomat Gilbert, Lord Ingraham. But it didn’t affect me the way Kelly's other novels did. (And I REALLY like her writing). Napoleon is exiled and there are some evil spies afoot in England plotting to free him, even to the point where the lives of Marian and Alistair are at stake. Gilbert to the rescue. What a Christmas!
TheReadersCove More than 1 year ago
Christmas at 16 can be a magical time, but for Marian it may be the last one with joy. Her father left the Wynswich family deeply in debt at his death and the solicitors are threatening to take away their ancestral home. Set in the wet and dismal English countryside this is a delightful tale of family, friends and forgiveness. The story draws you in. The pages turn and your heart goes out to young Marian. Romance is in bloom, but for whom? The story is filled with surprising twists and turns that will make you laugh. However, the next corner is apt to bring danger and intrigue. It is a wonderful read for the winter season.
l_manning More than 1 year ago
Marian Wynswich and her family are in a bad way. Their father recently died, leaving them with debts they cannot pay. When Marian's older brother comes with a potential suitor for her older sister, Marian takes it upon herself to keep her sister out of a marriage just for money. What Marian doesn't realize is her life is about to take a new turn in the form of a friend her older brother brought home. He's able to see past Marian's eccentricities, and Marian might be falling for him. If only she could fall for him and solve her family's many issues all at once. I was so charmed by this book. I found myself staying up late just to see what happened next. Marian was one of those sweet, sincere characters that you just can't help but love. Marian's family was unconventional for the times, but very entertaining for me. Of course I also loved the romantic side of this story too. One thing in particular I thought was awesome was Marian's ability to be a strong young woman and just happen to fall in love at the same time. Marian was so smart, and she knew how to use her brain. She took care of things when she needed to. For Marian to find someone who could appreciate all the different aspects of her personality was great. This is the kind of romance I would want my daughters reading- a young woman who is capable, smart, and able to take care of herself while still falling for a handsome, sweet, and fun young man who completely respects her. This book was a period book written with modern sensibility, so that we as readers can still relate to the story. It's also full of Christmas cheer, and it made me want to snuggle up under a warm blanket and just enjoy this book. There were some twists and turns I did not see coming at all, and those just added to the love I had for this book. By the end of the book I was ready to read it again. This is one of those books I can see myself reading every year around the holiday season to just bask in the joy of it all. I highly recommend this book to anyone who likes period novels, light romance, fun heroines, and a lot of holiday cheer! Galley provided for review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago