A Practical Arrangement by Nadja Notariani
ASIN: B0096DXERS (Kindle)
Publication date: September 6, 2012
Practical plans go awry when prim sensibilities unwittingly capture the heart of a scandalous seducer.
۩ A Practical Arrangement, Nadja Notariani ۩
Miss Evangeline Grey, intelligent and sensible, has no desire to marry, her reluctance born from the dire warnings of her overly emotional mother. Her father has other ideas, however, and decrees that unless she weds by the spring, he will choose a husband for her.
Prim and proper Evangeline accepts her father's issue with little more than mild alarm. Knowing herself plain of face and sharp of tongue, she believes herself capable of warding off any perspective suitor. Her plan goes awry when the scandalous seducer, Mr. Thomas Masterson, visits her family's home, for Thomas has learned that he must procure a wife to receive his full inheritance.
When he discovers Evangeline's predicament matches his own, Thomas determines to orchestrate a practical arrangement. A war of wit and word results, and Thomas finds himself ever more beguiled by the soft heart he discovers under Miss Grey's stern, inhibited exterior. Patiently, he endeavors to gain her respect and awaken her passions. As tenuous trust blooms between the rake and the reluctant, unfortunate events – and Thomas' past reputation – threaten to destroy the peace and happiness he has found within the bonds of his Practical Arrangement.
Evangeline Grey is a woman out-of-step with society. At a time when women are supposed to be quiet, shy and retiring, she is intelligent, educated and doesn't fear showing her intelligence. Unfortunately she lives during a time when a woman of her stature is expected to get married and that is a problem. Evangeline has a problem with intimacy of any kind and has no desire to get married. She has seen the emotional perils of marriage through her parents' marriage. Her sister, Melody - a young widow, insists that marriage and the intimacy found there is nothing to be feared and is highly desirable, but Evangeline finds this hard to believe. Her hopes for living a single life are dashed when her father presents her with an ultimatum, choose a husband by spring or else.
Thomas Masterson is considered a rake by societal standards. He is well known for sowing his oats and he has no shame regarding his activities. He is accepted into the Grey household because he is a man of wealth, status and his aunt and uncle are great friends to the Greys. When he is presented with his own ultimatum, marry or else, he is in a quandary. He doesn't wish to marry any of the tittering young women he's met at balls, etc., and yearns for simple companionship. After speaking with Evangeline Grey during a recent visit to her parents' home, he finds himself attracted to her acerbic wit and intelligence. The more he becomes attracted to her the more he realizes the only way he can get her to marry him is through trickery and the end result is an engagement and marriage.
A Practical Arrangement hints at the practical necessity of marriage that is forced on both Evangeline and Thomas. Their relationship begins on extremely shaky footing and progresses to one of mutual respect and admiration. Thomas may have been considered a rake, but he isn't as bad as some make him out to be. He takes great pains and care with Evangeline and her feelings. I found it difficult to understand Evangeline's feelings and fears about intimacy (including her desire not to be touched even by her family) until the very end. This lack of clarity on this issue made the story seem a bit far-fetched while reading it but eventually made a bit more sense after additional information was provided. A Practical Arrangement is a quick historical romance read that is sure to delight.
Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book for free from the author via Full Moon Bites Blog Tours. I was not paid, required or otherwise obligated to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."
About the author:
Nadja Notariani was born in Rochester, Pennsylvania. Her upbringing included very diverse environments, affording wide and varied richness of ethnic and religious tradition. Raised in both an Italian/Mediterranean American home and a traditional German household, Nadja gleaned the unique benefits of viewing the world through two widely different lenses.
Nadja resides in Northeastern Pennsylvania, ever embracing new adventures with her husband, three sons, and faithful German Shepherd. She also boasts two daughters, who have flown the nest to pursue their own adventures.
Within her titles, readers can find romance and adventure, from contemporary to paranormal to historical, always with a happily-ever-after. Nadja enjoys hearing from readers and can be found at her website, on Facebook, Goodreads, and at Romance Novel Center. Readers are welcome to contact her via email.
This biography was provided by the author or their representative.