Caroline Warfield produces another amazing story in the Children of the Empire series with "The Reluctant Wife".
In this second installment we have a British soldier located in India. Captain Fred Wheatly is left with two children when their mother, who was his housekeeper and mistress dies. Faced with doing the right thing and protecting those who are vulnerable, he is demoted in his job for not doing as ordered. Feeling a failure most of his life, he struggles when faced with care of the girls and no job. Then in walks Clare Armbruster. Clare just wants to be independent and live a quiet life. But Fred's girls tug at her heart and she finds herself wanting to help since she has lost a child of her own.
The author brings the characters alive and makes you feel their emotions. Fred has such issues and comes across as harsh. As the story unfolds, there are many past hurts he has suffered and he guards himself against being vulnerable. Clare herself has not had it easy. As the two get to know each other, the story brings forth some truths. Take the journey with Fred and Clare and see what is in store for them. This is another wonderful book by Caroline Warfield and I cannot wait to read more. I will follow her stories anywhere!!!
Captain Fred Wheatly’s comfortable life on the fringes of Bengal comes crashing down around him when his mistress dies, leaving him with two children he never expected to have to raise. When he chooses justice over army regulations, he’s forced to resign his position, leaving him with no way to support his unexpected family. He’s already had enough failures in his life. The last thing he needs is an attractive, interfering woman bedeviling his steps, reminding him of his duties.
All widowed Clare Armbruster needs is her brother’s signature on a legal document to be free of her past. After a failed marriage, and still mourning the loss of a child, she’s had it up to her ears with the great lout of a captain who can’t figure out what to do with his daughters and the assumptions she doesn’t know how to take care of herself and what she needs is a husband. If only the frightened little girls didn’t need her help so badly.
Clare has made mistakes in the past. Can she trust Fred now? Can she trust herself? Captain Wheatly doesn’t need his aristocratic family; they’ve certainly never needed him. But with no more military career and two half-caste daughters to support, Fred must turn once more—as a failure—to the family he failed so often in the past. Can two hearts rise above past failures to forge a future together?