Like all the Bedwyn men, Aidan has a reputation for cool arrogance. But this proud nobleman also possesses a loyal, passionate heart-and it is this fierce loyalty that has brought Colonel Lord Aidan to Ringwood Manor to honor a dying soldier's request. Having promised to comfort and protect the man's sister, Aidan never expected to find a headstrong, fiercely independent woman who wants no part of his protection, nor did he expect the feelings this beguiling creature would ignite in his guarded heart. And when a relative threatens to turn Eve out of her home, Aidan gallantly makes her an offer she can't refuse: marry him . . . if only to save her home. And now, as all of London breathlessly awaits the transformation of the new Lady Aidan Bedwyn, the strangest thing happens: With one touch, one searing embrace, Aidan and Eve's "business arrangement" is about to be transformed into something slightly surprising.
When it comes to reading a book by Mary Balogh, one can expect a hero or heroine that strive to stand out from common historical romance characters. I’m sorry to say that Almost Married did not give me that vibe.
The premise of the story was promising and it truly did start off great. The heartbreaking news that the reader finds out before the heroine makes for such great drama, however, it was the less than stellar characters themselves that found me wanting more. Overall, yes, I could enjoy this story. I finished it just out of curiosity and closure that I needed. There were some interesting aspects in regards to marriage of convenience. Although, not my favorite trope in romance, just because of the lack of erm…romance, I can appreciate the drama that it can bring.
I just could not like Aidan. Stuffy and boring, he just was not endearing. Could it have been because of the narrator who made every male character sound like an old gruff man? Maybe. He went on and on about honor, but I really did not see the honor in marrying a woman that you felt duty bound to do, only to want to leave her for good later. (Not to mention the fact that he still wanted to sleep with her and if she got pregnant: good. If not: whatever).
Eve was just okay. Headstrong and stubborn is a good characterization of her, and I loved her defying Aidan’s relatives. She was in the same boat Aidan was in terms of their marriage. The “I want all the detached aspects of a loveless marriage, except for the sex part.” By the way, even the love scenes were just wam bam thank you ma’am.
The narrator, Rosalyn Landor, did a good job overall with the various accents and female voices. But the male voices were just too stodgy for my taste.
I was really hoping to like this one more. Since this is the first book in the series, I might give the others a try, since the other Bedwyn’s seemed more interesting.