Reunited love, fate, and mistrust are all central themes of When Marrying a Scoundrel. I enjoyed the tension of the book but not necessarily some of the actions of the characters. The leads have a terrible tendency to believe they know what the other is thinking and usually they are wrong in their assessments.
Sadie Moon reads tea leaves for the wealthy and aristocratic in London and even though she can see the fates of others she is unable or perhaps unwilling to read her own fate (or even remembering it from a past reading). She is therefore unprepared to encounter her estranged husband Jack at a soiree. She is astounded to see him after a ten year absence.
Jack is also surprised. He is in London to oversee some investments and he is deeply moved when he sees his wife. Both characters are mistrustful of the other. Jack left Sadie to seek a fortune and after he departed Sadie left their home too. Both feel abandoned and in the right and neither really listens to the other person, in fact, they have a tendency to talk past each other. They do not have a big misunderstanding, more of miscommunications as they listen and empathize with the other person.
Sadie is emotional and angry but she seemsto be oblivious about her own personality quirks. She realizes she is still attracted to Jack and this disturbs her equilibrium. They bicker but not to the point of being maddening to the reader. Sadie surprisingly is loyal to Jack when others cast aspirations upon him.
Jack knows his heart much more than Sadie does, he is willing to make a go of their marriage but convincing Sadie is another matter all together. I liked Jack, probably more than I did Sadie. Both have been faithful to each other and Jack is a romantic at heart. Their physical relationship is strong and passionate, almost a refuge for them in some very trying circumstances.
This is almost a four star read. The story was interesting but Sadie's stubbornness was a little too much for too long, especially for a woman who believes in fate. Several times friends try to clue Sadie in about her feelings for Jack and her own fears but Sadie doesn't listen that well. Jack's romantic nature was wonderful though.