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While you were sleeping...
With her brother Thomas injured on the battlefront in the Colonies, orphaned Cecilia Harcourt has two unbearable choices: move in with a maiden aunt or marry a scheming cousin. Instead, she chooses option three and travels across the Atlantic, determined to nurse her brother back to health. But after a week of searching, she finds not her brother but his best friend, the handsome officer Edward Rokesby. He's unconscious and in desperate need of her care, and Cecilia vows that she will save this soldier's life, even if staying by his side means telling one little lie...
I told everyone I was your wife
When Edward comes to, he's more than a little confused. The blow to his head knocked out six months of his memory, but surely he would recall getting married. He knows who Cecilia Harcourt is—even if he does not recall her face—and with everyone calling her his wife, he decides it must be true, even though he'd always assumed he'd marry his neighbor back in England.
If only it were true...
Cecilia risks her entire future by giving herself—completely—to the man she loves. But when the truth comes out, Edward may have a few surprises of his own for the new Mrs. Rokesby.
ARC received for review purposes in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Good gosh this book. THIS BOOK. I had a really lovely experience with it, and I can’t tell you how much I ended up loving The Girl with the Make-Believe Husband. It’s poignant, emotional, and heartbreaking in its utter gorgeousness. I’m not up to date with all of Julia Quinn’s books, but for me, this is the best story that she has ever crafted.
With any romance that involves amnesia and one person lying about the nature of their relationship, there’s this fear that it will lead to unnecessary drama and deceit. So of course, I was a little bit nervous going in, but I shouldn’t have doubted that Julia Quinn is a pro at what she does. She handled the plot so beautifully and tactfully, that despite the deceit, I only wished for the best for both these characters. Cecilia was a lovely character. She’s bold, brave, and truly sweet girl who wants nothing but the best for the people that she loves. She doesn’t set out with the intentions of lying to Edward, but her circumstances forced her to. It would have been very easy for her character to have to be seen as manipulative and reckless, but Julia Quinn wrote Cecilia’s character with multiple strokes. She was complex, layered, and most importantly, the author makes you understand her deceit. Throughout The Girl with the Make-Believe Husband, she battles with the guilt that she experiences over her lying, but she also slowly finds herself falling for Edward, and wanting just a few extra moments with him. My heart broke for her, and I wanted nothing more than for her to find the happily ever after she deserved.
Just as heartbreaking was Edward’s character. He wakes up with amnesia, but he doesn’t let that taint his whole life. He tries his best to find a way to recollect what exactly happened to him in Cecilia’s brother, but he also continues to live his life. I fell so hard for this man, and his kindness and his utter blinded devotion to Cecilia, despite the fact that he has no proof they were married. I was hopelessly in love with Edward’s character throughout most of this book, but his reaction to finding out about Cecilia’s deceit, was what had me melting into a puddle in happiness. His reaction was just so unexpected, but absolutely perfect.
Going in, I thought for sure that Cecilia’s lies would loom over the romance throughout the whole book, but Julia Quinn actually made me momentarily forget about it. It’s a truly beautiful romance that develops between the two, emotional, angsty, and totally packs a punch. I was honestly breathless at every romantic scene in The Girl with the Make-Believe Husband, and believe me there are lots and lots of those. The romance had so much soul to it, it was alive. We also get to see the nature of their relationship before Edward’s amnesia, that developed through Cecilia’s letters to her brother. The letters were funny and heart-warming and added an extra something to the story. There’s also a minor mystery plot-line pertaining to what happened to Edward and Cecilia’s brother. I honestly saw the resolution coming, but it didn’t detract from my enjoyment of the story.
The Girl with the Make-Believe Husband is one of the best books I’ve read in 2017. You can probably tell how enamored I was with this swoony and achy story. This is a book that I highly recommend to fans of historical romances. Trust me, you’ll be wowed!