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Posted January 1, 2013
NetGalley free read...
It wasn't terrible, but it wasn't good. I can say I didn't hate reading it. But it felt incomplete in a way, a bit jumbled. Example is when Abby first goes to the Villa in order to ask Dante for the money for her grandmother. She internally says she will guard her heart against him. Of course before she even sees him she starts to waver. She's immediately jealous when she finally does see him only to have him wrapped around a woman, who turns out to be his best friend and a lesbian. But I digress.
Soon after this initial meeting and Dantes negotiation attempts, she goes from, "I can do this for my grandmother," to "I can make him love me." Where's the hardship? How can she be so blind that a man who would pick her out of all the women he could have, because as she says, he commands attention just walking down the street, that he doesn't care for her.
I don't get the back and forth. First she says he has to giver her time, then less than a day later, she's sleeping with him. Then he's trying to give her space but this is when she's all in love again. I just couldn't keep up with their inner workings.
The author also seems to jump around without explanation. It's not terrible, there's just no break in the book like a line or something to show that we are on to a new topic. Example is where they talk about going on a honeymoon, the next line they are there. There are other times this happens.
I also wasn't happy with Dante's response to Abby's medical issues. I knew right away from reading the description of the book that she would have issue conceiving. I think it should be more of a surprise. But that being said, he conned her into staying married to him without knowing his medical history and that he could potentially get sick and die at an early age. The fact that Abby wanted to wait until after her procedure should have been taken into consideration. But I guess being an Alpha, macho, Italian man precluded him from having a conscience. It was okay for him to keep secrets and not her. And to be that young and hear that news has to be devastating. But he couldn't think about that until it was too late.
Also, how were they able to use Abby's eggs when one ovary burst and they had to remove the other one because it was so damaged? That wasn't explained at all since the writer says that it's their biological child.
Not terrible, just not for me.
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Posted June 25, 2013
I loved the book. I think the issue of endometriosis was handled well.
AND it's not her ovaries that burst. It was Abby's fallopian tube. Her ovaries were fine, hence the ability to harvest eggs for surrogacy.
Posted January 27, 2013
The Reluctant Wife is a sweet and relevant bargain marriage story. Abby married Dante for love. Dante married Abby for a baby. With the disparity in reasons, Abby fled the marriage only to return to save her Grandmother from dying. So, the bargain is struck: her grandmother has life saving surgery and Abby and Dante have a marriage and children. When other issues make for even more misunderstandings, Abby and Dante have to fight for their love and their marriage.
Abby and Dante are both well drawn characters though the secondary characters are a nowhere near as finely drawn. It is easy to empathize with them as they struggle through their journey.
The story is certainly never boring; there is always something getting in the way of their final happiness, though the epilogue is a lovely tribute to the final issue. All in all, this is a well-done contemporary category romance that works on every level.
REVIEWED BY: Monique Neaves,My Book Addiction Reviews
Posted December 23, 2012
At first I had mixed feelings about this novel. However, I was certain of one thing…Dante is a jerk, but a sexy jerk non-the-less. I liked the scenario that Abby and Dante find themselves in, and that neither of them are willing to admit their feelings (Abby was before she left, but Dante never could). Now, what got me was that Dante was 29 and Abby was 19 when they married. That freaked me out. Which, I also guess is why I understood why Abby left. She freaked out because Dante was ready for more…he was ready for a family. I’m not 100% sure how I feel about that yet because that is a ten year age gap and Abby was barely an adult when she married, barely even an adult when she comes back. But, I could put that aside and focus on the story. I also could somewhat understand why Dante distanced himself emotionally as well…although I think his reason was just stupid considering he’s a Catholic and family man. The reason why he distanced himself (his father dying young and his mother being devastated) and being a catholic and loyal family man didn’t really seem to be characteristics that would fit together, so I wasn’t really feeling that part. However, the romance between them was hot…hot…HOT. There are many moments that made me smile, made my toes curl, and even made me giggle. That’s right giggle. And then there were many serious moments and I found that the ending to this novel really fit it wasn’t the standard fairy-tale, but a fairy-tale non-the-less. A modern day fairy-tale I guess. Bronwen Evans’ novel is a easy reading sizzling romance that will pull on your heart strings.
Abby—dedicated to her family and an independent woman who made a name for herself.
Dante—Cocky, loyal, and determined. Love the combination.
Some things about the characters didn’t really seem to fit together.
Overall (Writing style, story line, and general):
Overall the story was an easy read. I never had to re-read something and found that I could really get into the novel. I loved the feisty characters and loved the way the book ended.