The Marriage Agreement (Charity House #9) by Renee Ryan

The Marriage Agreement (Charity House #9) by Renee Ryan

Promoted to Wife?

Always the dutiful daughter, Fanny Mitchell surprised everyone when she broke her engagement. Now she’s working at the fancy Hotel Dupree—and falling for the mysterious, handsome owner, Jonathon Hawkins. But when she and her boss are caught in an unexpected kiss at a ball, will her reputation be tarnished forever?

The son of a woman of ill repute, Jonathon knows that gossip can destroy lives in an instant. And he won’t allow sweet, lovely Fanny to suffer the consequences. When he proposes a marriage of convenience, Jonathon believes he can keep his heart to himself. But the more time he spends with Fanny, the more he realises he may just be in love—with his wife…

The Marriage Agreement (Charity House #9) by Renee Ryan

It’s really interesting how different publishers take on a similar era! I have to agree with the Christian romance lines here: even if religion doesn’t thrill me, at least it forces their characters to actually act like people from the nineteenth century! I continue to read these books for the more historically accurate attitudes, and just skip over anything too preachy.

This is the ninth book in a series (which I have not read). There were a gazillion side characters and there was lots of backstory, but I thought the author did an admirable job of explaining it to new readers.

I always enjoy the surprises of books set at the opposite end of the century to the Jane Austen era. Technology came a long, long way that century, and it’s a nice to surprise to see characters using things like elevators and telegrams!

The Marriage Agreement runs on a very overused and silly premise, but I liked the writing and the characters enough to overlook it. I was wondering how the restrictions (no sex!) of a Christian line would allow this story to happen as the characters marry before the end. The cliché of the man who loves the woman but refuses to father children because of a dark past is… never one I can even begin to believe. It’s preposterous!

However, I thought the author took some risks here, working through the minefield that is the rulebook of Christian publishing. She got away with some dark themes, and her characters managed to talk their way around sex in a way I didn’t think Harlequin would allow. So I liked how adventurous that aspect of the storyline was.

However, clearly a bit less in the way of Bible-based sex education might have helped our hopeless hero. If you’ve been sleeping with your wife for three months, it’s a little late to announce you don’t want children!

Oh, and as popular a name as Fanny was back in the day, considering its meaning these days (particularly its much ruder meaning outside US English), it might not have been the best choice…

In the end this was a simple book with a simple story. However, I liked the characters and the almost total lack of preaching, and I thought it was one of the better Christian romances I have read.

Review copy provided by NetGalley.

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One thought on “The Marriage Agreement (Charity House #9) by Renee Ryan

  1. Pingback: The Week: 6th – 12th July | Sonya's Stuff

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