April 18, 2012

Review: Scotsmen Prefer Blondes

Scotsmen Prefer Blondes
Sara Ramsey
Muses of Mayfair #2
Genre: Historical Romance

Amelia, a spinster at 27 is secretly a published author. In order to pursue her dreams, she vowed never to marry. However when Amelia agreed to accompany her dear friend, Prudence to meet her potential fiance, she never expected to become the object of Lord Carnach's desire. In an unfortunate turn of events, Amelia finds herself in a tenuous situation. Marry Lord Carnach or be ruined in the eyes of the ton. Either way she has earned the ire of Prudence who is one of the three people who know Amelia's scandalous literary secret. 

Malcolm is a Scottish laird who desperately wants to save his clan and their home in the Highlands by joining the House of Lords. He seeks an obedient and simple wife in Prudence to help him reach his political aspirations without scandal.  However when he lays eyes on Amelia, he can't deny the magnetic attraction he feels towards her. Will he be able to tame her into the wife he needs or will their passion consume them both?

While I ate the majority of this book up there were a few things about it that irked me. After tearing through the first half like a mad woman, I started to notice a continuing pattern that at first presents an interesting twist to Malcolm and Amelia's romance, but becomes frustrating after the fourth or so repetition. The whole basis of this book's plot is that Amelia never wanted to be married, but now that she is, she is altogether the wrong kind of wife for Malcolm's political career. I very much enjoy the premise of an unlikely pair finding love and understand that this requires quite a bit of back and forth, "I love him, I hate him." However, instead of feelings and complications evolving over time, the two characters are stuck with the same issues throughout the entire book.  Plus, they spend very little time actually considering their situation and substituting actual relationship building for loads and loads of sex. It sort of goes like this...

Malcolm: Are you going to behave woman?
Amelia: Are you going to force me into subservience so that I will have no time to write my...letters?
Malcolm: (Gets distracted by her breasts) Um... letters? What could you possibly be writing to people about!? 
Amelia: You know... stuff, the Highlands, London stuff...
Malcolm: (Still distracted by her breasts) There's something she's not telling me... Oh well! Bend over darling!

Obviously that's only my abbreviated version of events, but you get the idea. This sort of thing happens over and over again. After half of the book I felt like the romance just wasn't developing and they were trading sex for avoidance of the real issues. Finally at 2/3 of the way through, it has to actually be stated point blank, "I think I'm in love with him/her" by each of them internally in order for you to get the gist that all this bumping and grinding hasn't been for nothing. I feel if the emotional side of the romance was better developed earlier on in the story, this would have been an excellent read for me. 

As it stands, this was still a good read, much better than many of the historical romance I've been indulging in lately. I enjoyed the premise of Amelia, who was determined for spinsterhood, lands herself in a marry or be ruined situation. The irony that she is stuck in a situation she would have written for one of her heroines was attractive and I loved reading about how the Highlands and Malcolm were inspiring her to be a better writer. Even though I didn't enjoy the constant back and forth I did appreciate the fact that there were no easy answers here. Everything doesn't magically fall into place and work out in the end. The characters have to work for their goals. 

Overall, I felt Scotsmen Prefer Blondes is an enjoyable read read for lovers of the genre and will likely charm less picky readers.  

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