Bryony Asquith is a bit unconventional. She’s a surgeon. She also isn’t real outgoing though she’d love to be which is why when Leo Marsden turned his eye her way she was flattered, flustered and proposed to him within weeks. She wanted what he seemed to have and hoped that she would get it once they were married.
Leo Marsden has loved Bryony since he was a child. Though younger than she, he felt that if he tried hard enough and was smart enough, he might be worthy of her regard. Finally, he has a chance with her only sometime between the time they decided to get married and the marriage something has gone horribly wrong. In short order, Bryony requests an annulment which she gets.
Now, three years later Leo has been asked by Bryony’s sister to find her in a remote part of India due to their father’s failing health. Leo agrees finding Bryony living in a tent several days from the nearest large town or British outpost. As they travel south towards transportation to take Bryony back to England, they learn more about each other than they expected. Can they start over? Is it possible for Bryony to forgive Leo for whatever transgression he did? Better still, is it forgivable?
Set in the 1890s this story brings this time to life. The social aspects are done well with upper class expectations apparent and social unrest stirring. Though the characters live within the constraints of their time and class, they also stretch those restrictions to their limits without becoming modern. Sex is normal between married couples but what happens when you’re not married any more and the sex you had when you were married wasn’t that great but you’re still drawn to each other but society says that what you’re feeling isn’t proper? It makes for an interesting dilemma.
The title of this book intrigued me……Not Quite a Husband. Well, if he wasn’t a husband what was he? I couldn’t wait to find out. The first few chapters gave me pause as I got use to each main character reflecting on their shared past and their individual pasts. These reflections gave a better understanding to each characters motives and actions. They also made the characters more real. In very short order, I was sympathetic to Bryony and Leo’s problems and wanted so much for them to really communicate, something they had problems doing when they were married. As they traveled literally, they also traveled figuratively towards an end they weren’t sure of.
The actually history that is the background for this story was well researched and presented in a natural way. Everything from what someone in that era would take with them to the remote reaches of India to native uprisings to London hospitals to Cambridge houses was incorporated into the story giving the reader the feeling of knowing the era.
Excellent historical with real bits of history, fantastic characters and a love story that deserved to be told.
Sherry Thomas is one of the hottest new voices in historical romance, garnering the highest praise from today’s bestselling writers (“Entrancing.” —Mary Balogh; “Ravishingly sinful, intelligent and addictive.” —Eloisa James). Now Sherry delivers this powerful story of a remarkable woman and the love she thought she’d never find—with the man she thought she’d lost forever.…
Their marriage lasted only slightly longer than the honeymoon—to no one’s surprise, not even Bryony Asquith’s. A man as talented, handsome, and sought after by society as Leo Marsden couldn't possibly want to spend his entire life with a woman who rebelled against propriety by becoming a doctor. Why, then, three years after their annulment and half a world away, does he track her down at her clinic in the remotest corner of India?
Leo has no reason to think Bryony could ever forgive him for the way he treated her, but he won’t rest until he’s delivered an urgent message from her sister—and fulfilled his duty by escorting her safely back to England. But as they risk their lives for each other on the journey home, will the biggest danger be the treacherous war around them—or their rekindling passion?