BECAUSE OF YOU by Cathy Maxwell

BECAUSE OF YOU by Cathy Maxwell
Because of You
by Cathy Maxwell

Published by HarperCollins Genres: Historical
Source: Publisher

Reviewed by Shayna

Is a reckless rogue worthy of thelove of an innocent enchantress? Pretty Samantha Northrup knows it isher duty to marry—but the chaste Englishvicar’s daughter secretly desires to be sweptoff her feet by a man whose kisses leave herbreathless. And when a seductive strangerarrives at her door one stormy night,Samantha’s neat and orderly life is turnedupside down—especially when she finds herself in a most compromising position . . .and is forced to marry a man she barely knows!Samantha is unaware that her mystery bridegroom is Yale Carderock, the dashing,disinherited rakehell son of a duke, banishedby his father years before. Now Lord Yalehas returned—wealthier but only somewhatreformed—and he is bewitched by his lovelynew bride’s awakening sensuality and innocentfire. But can this marriage of conveniencebe something more . . . and can a confirmedcad and society outcast truly change his ways enough to merit the lady’s tender love?

Since her father’s death, Samantha Northrup hasn’t quite fit in among the residents of the village of Sproule.  Though she’s a healer and the daughter of the now-deceased vicar, no one seems to know what to do with the unmarried Samantha.  Then a mysterious stranger practically falls into Samantha’s lap one night.  He calls himself Marvin Browne and after bringing him back from the brink of death, Samantha finds herself compromised and is forced to marry Marvin.  Samantha’s determined to make the best of her new life with Marvin the sailor.  There’s just one thing she doesn’t know…

Yale Carderock, the disinherited second son of a duke, has returned to England after years abroad to show his father that he has made a success of himself.  But Yale is met with the news that his father is dead and he himself is thought to be dead.  He has to see the graves himself in order to believe the news, so he races to Sproule and gives the villagers a fake name.  He never expects to be married under it!  What’s more, Yale is taken with his pretty bride and knows that his deception cannot last forever.  Can he untangle the mess he’s made?  And when he does, will Samantha want the man she married as much as the she does the man she thought him to be?

A pious woman, a formerly dissolute rake, deception, and a forced marriage are all well-known tropes in the historical romance genre.  Thankfully, even all put together they don’t feel overdone in Because of You.  Yale is a hard-working, kind man who’s a bit too stubborn for his own good.  I liked him, even with his flaws, because Cathy Maxwell made it impossible not to.  It’s also difficult not to adore Samantha, even though she does seem a bit too perfect at times.  The two of them make a good pair which makes Because of You a charming read.  I must admit though, Yale’s brother and sister-in-law almost stole the spotlight from Samantha and Yale in the latter half of the book.  Wayland and Marion are such a great couple that I am disappointed there is no book for them and I’m crossing my fingers that Ms. Maxwell changes that one day.

Ms. Maxwell always delivers a fast-paced, entertaining story and Because of You is no exception.  There are a few points where I was pulled out of the story – Samantha and Yale fall in love almost abruptly and there’s a plot twist at the end that seemed unnecessary – but overall I liked Because of You.  It may not be my favorite book of Ms. Maxwell’s, but that’s because Ms. Maxwell has delivered a number of delightful books.  Fans of classic Regency romance should be entertained by Yale and Samantha’s story.

Note: Because of You was first published in 1999 and was reissued in October of 2011.

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