The Husband Campaign (The Master Matchmakers #3) by Regina Scott
I found John a fascinating character if somewhat underdeveloped.
We come to know him through his horses and his treatment of them rather than through himself. In fact his knowledge of horse, his commitment to them is awesome.
If only he could transfer that knowing to his marital self. I felt very impatient with him in his behaviour towards Amelia.
We do see that he is an honourable man, albeit damaged and lacking self confidence in relationships. I know, he was forced into marrying Amelia. Maybe he should have left her in the barn in the first place, but he was acting out of concern and with integrity. And let's not forget the era.
Amelia is rather a lovely person who has been disappointed constantly by family and then by John.
She works unerringly to overcome John's coolness towards her. I hate that she has to keep proving herself time and again.
All the aspects are here. Brooding misunderstood hero, whimsical heroic wife, capricious sister-in-law, a dastardly villain, an unloving father.
I loved the staff at their house. How they supported the pair of them in small ways.
Yes, it had it all, including the biblical quotes that directed our main characters actions and helped us readers to reflect on their actions over against the biblical injunctions. Amelia is certainly forbearing and both she and to some extent John do acknowledge their source of spiritual sustenance and work to have that direct their lives.
To me, some of the scriptural verses seemed forced into the story. Amelia's behaviour and reactions implicitly expressed her faith perspective. Indeed the description of John's room with it's well worn bible is a fine example of such implicitness. Moments such as these are strong statements by themselves that need no further embellishment.
I truly felt for Amelia's predicament and her attempts to show John that she is a worthy wife, a pearl to be treasured, a jewel. Indeed in a latter scene he realizes this. That scene tenderly closes the journey that has been theirs thus far. The door for a more fulfilling life together has opened.
A NetGalley ARC