Mary Balogh: A Summer to Remember

Lauren Edgeworth should have been married to her childhood friend a year ago, but she was abandoned at the altar. Since then, she has always been a paragon of good manners and ladylike behavior. Now her friends and family urge her to reenter the social circles she should belong to, but all she really wants is to live a quiet life on her own. After some dramatic events in his past, and the untimely death of his older brother, Kit Butler, Viscount Ravensberg, is now the heir to his family's estate. His father wants him to get married and has even chosen his bride. Kit reacts by finding a bride of his own - Lauren, who agrees to act as his fiancée for one summer, provided he shows her a good time. But will these two really be able to part when the summer is over?

First of all, compliments to Ms Balogh's writing style. It's utterly compelling, and it took me only one day to read the book. (It helped that I didn't have to work on this day though). I'm usually not prone to flowery expressions and comparisons, but this book reminded me a lot of an impressionist painting - especially the scenes at the pond at Kit's family estate. And I love impressionist paintings. The story itself and the characters are nothing new and inventive, but I don't always have to have something new and inventive in my books to enjoy myself. The only thing that marred my enjoyment of this book - a little - is Lauren's hard-headed insistence that she and Kit must go their separate ways, when there really isn't an entirely plausible reason why they should. This is a "good" book (Grade B)