by Joan Aiken
Joan Aiken’s Wolves of Willoughby Chase is one of my all-time favorite books (soon to be reviewed, by the way… I’m reading it now!), and I have also enjoyed some of her Austen sequels (most recently, Jane Fairfax). However, this was the first time I read one of her historical fiction novels. I really enjoyed it!
In this story, our intrepid heroine has fallen on hard times. She and her widowed mother live in reduced circumstances in Regency England, because her mother was cut off from her family when she married. But with her mother’s health ever failing, Delphie finally sets aside her pride to visit her uncle in his country manor. When she arrives, Delphie finds herself backed into a corner, and given the option of either receiving nothing or receiving and annuity for her mother–provided she participates in a fake wedding ceremony with her cousin.
More appropriately titled “The Five-Minute Wedding,” the whole point of the book is that Delphie discovers that the wedding was not as fake as she–and her cousin–originally believed. Suspenseful, romantic, and even believable (most of the time), this book was an excellent read for those who enjoy classic Regency romance. 5/5.