Thursday, January 7, 2016

Throwback Thursday: The Sheik's Arranged Marriage by Susan Mallery

Author: Susan Mallery
First published in 2000 by Silhouette

Shy American Heidi McKinley winced when the king himself insisted she marry, and make heirs with, his sinfully sexy royal son. For Prince Jamal was a legendary lover - whatever would he see in serious Heidi?

So, right after finishing The Sheik's Kidnapped Bride (my review), I picked up the send book, The Sheik's Arranged Marriage.  I'm not even sure what made me finish this book because, like the first one, it read like a bad 80s romance novel.  I can't say whether or not the author was trying to make it read like that  If so, she definitely succeeded.  

The premise of this one is so silly.  Heidi returns home after years at college and finishing school. The only place she feels at home is El Bahar.  The King was a close friend of her grandfather's and had taken care of her for years.  When she gets home she is informed that she has been set up in an arranged marriage for his middle son Jamal.  Feeling bad, she finally relents and marries him.  That isn't even the silly part.

Since this wasn't a love match, she is given some bad advice by her grandmother-in-law to dress up like someone else and pretend to be a potential mistress to entice Jamal into liking her wild side.  He, of course, figures out who she is but decides to play along. Really? Like a hair color rinse, different clothes and contacts would make a huge difference.  So, he ends up sleeping with her as a wife and as a mistress.  In the end she is upset, not because he was willingly sleeping with a mistress (OK not really) but because he didn't tell her early on that he knew who she was all along.  Seems convoluted and hilarious, right?  Yeah, I was laughing toward the end at the ridiculousness of the whole thing as well.  

Seems like a lot of spoilers, I know, but you will thank me in the end that I saved you from a wasted afternoon of reading.! I may give the third book a try, but I'm not holding out hope it will be any better than this one.  Thankfully, Ms. Mallery's writing has changed and grown since these books!

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