Monday, February 27, 2012

Father Christmas

Father Christmas ~ Barbara Metzger
Publisher ~ Ballantine (print)
                ~ Untreed Reads (ebook)
Published ~ 1995
                ~ 2011

My Rating ~ 4 out of 5

Mrs. Graceanne Warrington is a widow with three-yr-old rambunctious identical twins. Her husband, Major Anthony Warrington, was killed by an infection after being injured in battle on the Pennisula. Unfortunately, Tony was the Duke of Ware’s cousin and heir since, even after having been married twice, he had no sons to pass the title to. Now, with no heir, the Duke, Leland Warrington, at age 31, had to brave the matchmaking mamas and their simpering misses and find himself another wife.

His friend, The Honorable Crosby Fanshaw, suggested a different idea. Leland’s cousin had died leaving two sons behind. The proverbial heir and a spare. Why not simply claim the eldest and name him heir? Tosh, said the Duke. What a ridiculous idea! Except, after a night of enduring Almack’s and getting quite sloshed, he penned a letter to his cousin’s widow stating his intention to take the eldest boy as his heir. When his very efficient staff sent the letter before he could function properly the next day he realized he had to go to the country and apologize. Thus begins a journey of miscommunication, misconceptions, working at cross purposes, hilarity and general upheaval for the libertine Duke and the widow who was raised a vicar’s daughter.

I quite enjoyed this story. Graceanne was no simpering miss. She had backbone to spare and wasn’t afraid to wield it. Of her sister, Prudence, the cause of a lot of her troubles, can I say how much I wanted to take a paddle and beat her behind raw? And her father? I’d have strangled him if I could’ve done it without getting caught.

The Duke was a decent guy who sometimes did stupid things, but then he was a guy who was used to people doing what he expected. Graceanne didn’t do anything he expected, but it all works out in the end when he finally pulls his head out of his butt. And I mean that in a good way since I actually liked him. LOL All-in-all a great read and I’m looking forward to reading more by Barbara Metzger.

*The publisher provided a copy of this book for me to review. Please see disclaimer page.

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