When Lady Tremaine petitions her husband for an end to their civil but loveless marriage, Lord Camden agrees on one scandalous condition - she must give him an heir within a year. Their early attempts to fulfill this delicate arrangement are marred by cold detachment, but soon sparks of passion and long-forgotten lust begin to be kindled anew.
©2008 Sherry Thomas; (P)2009 Recorded Books, LLC
Mom of 3 and a book lover.
At first I just thought there's nothing new in the plot, but still I gave it a try and I surprised how the story amazed me till the end. My first with the author and the narrator I love them both. I'll venture another title from both of them.
This author is an absolute delight...the topnotch narration adds much to a well crafted plot delivered with humour...laughed out loud. Great phrasing and language, steamy love scenes and super character development puts this author in a superior class of romance writers...tough to put down!
I enjoy supernatural romances and fantasy!
After listening to Delicious, I was looking forward to this other book by Sherry Thomas, and hoping for another enjoyable book! In this, I was not disappointed.
Ms. Thomas' use of flashbacks is very well incoporated into the story line and her characters have depth. The descriptions are vividly portrayed and the characters, with all their foibles, are truly brought to life.
I don't want to live in a world without books!
Be aware that I'm breaking with my usual No Spoilers Rule, and revealing a bit of the plot. I'm doing it because I believe that some of the less than stellar reviews that this book has been given are unfair. The characters are not unlikeable, as some infer. They are emotionally complex, and at times sad and resentful. Just because this isn't a simple love story, doesn't mean it's not a good one.
Private Arrangements is about two very stubborn A type personalities, who meet and fall deeply in love when they're too young and inexperienced to handle the emotion. It doesn't help that they are hampered both by pride and insecurity.
Gigi has passion, brains and a sharp mind to match -- and she's incredibly rich. Used to getting what she wants, she's also accustomed to fending off fortune hunters. She's 19 years old and inexperienced.
Camden is a newly minted heir to a neighboring Dukedom, one that didn't come with any money. He's used to that. He's lived most of his life in other peoples houses because his aristocratic, but poor parents, couldn't afford a home of their own. Sweet and idealistic, he has always taken care of his family. He has a bit of a savior complex.
One day the idealistic boy and the cynical girl meet and fall in love, hard.
There's only one sticky wicket: another girl. Camden has, at least in his mind, given himself to a girl who has had as hard and unsettled a life as he has. Even though he doesn't love her, he intends to marry her, save her, and give her a home. Gigi has met the girl, and she knows if he marries her, he will be miserable. Falling hard for the first time in her life, Gigi can't let him go, and instead she does something awful to break them up. When Camden finds out what she did, he feels betrayed and manipulated, and it drives them apart for years.
Sherry Thomas is smart, and she's given us a very intriguing trail of bread crumbs to follow through the more difficult parts of the story. Each chapter illuminates events, moving from 1882, the year they meet and marry, to 1893, the year he comes back into her life. Point and counter-point, we see how they got into the mess they are in, and how it has made them who they are.
Camden's anger is a big pill, however, as he refuses to acknowledge his part in the tragedy, and by the end of Part 1, I wanted to stop reading because of him. The 4 star rating is because of how close I came to giving up. It all seemed such a waste. But I'd already invested 5 hours of my life in this story and I had to keep going. Fortunately, almost from the beginning of Part 2, the whole plot came together in a satisfying and lovely way. I almost want to give that 5th star back!
This is not an easy, or light read. This one will make you feel things, push some buttons, make you sad or angry. (I haven't seen protagonists like this since Scarlett and Rhett). However, the payoff at the end makes it more than worth the journey. In the end, it all makes sense, and what more can you ask for in a story like this?
I am amazed I'd never read anything by Sherry Thomas before, but after finishing this book, I bought two more read by Kate Reading.
Speaking of 'read by,' Virginia Leishman is incredible here. This is a very, very nuanced book, with emotions running rampant. In the hands of a more ham fisted reader, this could have been a hot mess. Ms. Leishman is a master craftswoman, and she plays the material like a violin. I will happily seek out more books read by her. She's a marvel.
Highly Recommended, at least for those who don't mind having to work a little for the HEA.
Audio-fiction ADDICT !
This is my first book for this author. And I am greatly discouraged by it. I would not read for this author again ! It's not the narration, actually it was acceptable. The problem with this book is the writing style that confused me and disappointed me ! The author keeps gong back and forth in time !!!!! Maybe some people like such style. But for me , it was so annoying. When I listen to romance audiobooks, I expect smoothness and flow that soothes me yet should entice me ! Going back and forth in time in the book creates a constant disconnect between my min and the book !
I really do not recommend that book at all !
I have listened to over 85 audiobooks in the past 18 months from audible. I am happy if the audiobooks entertain me - they do not have to be fabulous works of art. However, this is absolutely the worst one I have ever encountered.
It took me sometime to get through this listen. The story drags and the premise has such promise but the execution of the idea is a disappointment.
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