Lynsay Sands has penned another charming historical tale, with a dear heroine females will take to her heart. As Avelyn faces her approaching wedding day, she is riddled with fears. Her wedding gown is suddenly a wee bit too "tight". Our lass is buxom lady, and used to her independence. She wants a husband, but doesn't "need" one. As the day approaches she nearly frets herself to death fearing her betrothed - Paen Gerville - will be repulsed by his pleasingly plumb bride. She tries to remake herself - hide those few extra pounds and pretend she is biddable. Only, Avelyn is too used to running her holding and doesn't believe she can be the perfect wife - think and he subservient. Paen wants just the opposite. To him the perfect wife is a full-figured lass who has a brain and mouth to match. He relished his new bride has something to cuddle and wants an equal, a helpmate, not a servant. In typical Sands style, Avelyn blunders along trying to force herself to be what she thinks is the perfect wife. Instead of winning the love of Paen, she causes Paen to think he's made a mistake in marrying her. Avelyn has to learn she can be loved just the way she is. It's a warm, gentle tell that reminds us all to be who we are!
THE PERFECT WIFE is another `perfect read' I have come to associate with anything Lynsay Sands puts her writing brilliance to. Having discovered Lynsay by way of her early medieval novels THE DEED, and THE KEY, I was thrilled to see her setting this story in that same medieval era.
In this story, the lead heroine is Avelyn, a well-rounded, buxom lass who is fast approaching her wedding day to Paen de Gerville, a young man returned from crusades. Having been betrothed in early childhood Avelyn hardly remembers him or what he looks like. Consequently, over the years she has been mercilessly taunted by her three cousins about her weight so much so that her self-esteem has hit a new low. Determined to lose weight before the wedding she instructs the seamstress to take in her wedding gown a few sizes smaller than her size! UNFORTUNATELY, her dieting efforts were about as successful as my own, and she does not fit into her wedding dress. From this begins a calamity of events that lead Paen (who truth be told was looking forward to a pleasingly plump bride to warm his bed) to believe his bride to be frail and accident prone. What follows are a plethora of comical misunderstandings, each funnier than the last, between the two leads that will leave you with a bellyache from laughter.
*** This was for me another laugh-out-loud hysterical read that seems to be the trademark of Ms. Sands. The heroine of Avelyn was simply delightful and one that most women can relate to, especially with weight related self-conscious issues. The reader will fall in love with Avelyn who after so many embarrassing incidents let's her natural optimism and kindness carry the day. Paen is also another darling character to love who after being away at war for so many years needed lessons in how to interact towards his wife and not pat her on the head as he would his hounds or his horse. In addition, Sands skillfully weaves in the subplot of someone trying to dispatch Avelyn to the great beyond which also had some lighter moments. The laughs were pretty much non-stop in this delightful story that was supported by secondary characters including both of their engaging lovable parents, a young bumbling squire, and the biggest surprise of all -- a little piglet that ends up as the hero of the day! Sands has been an auto-buy for me for years and continues to solidify that standing. Her books should all be stamped "Satisfaction - GUARANTEED"!
Marilyn Rondeau, RIO - Reviewers International Organization
Another great book from this lady. It's not often you find a book that you don't want to put down, but this is one of them. The brat, and love is blind, are just as good. Give them a try ,you won't be dissapointed.......
This book is so sweet! Avelyn and Paen have been betrothed since childhood. Paen went off on crusade and Avelyn went under training to become a wife. Years later Avelyn has blossomed into womanhood but has been badly bullied by her 3 cousins and so has no confidence in herself. Paen has come home from crusade with little understanding about women or emotions or anything that isn't practical. Coming home he now wants a soft woman to lay his battle weary head on. He hopes his betrothed is the woman he can do that with. Avelyn is unaware of what he likes and so tries to change her plump body to how she thinks it should be (skinny). After a while Paen and Avelyn start to get to know each other and learn to read each other, eventually falling in love. Full of tension both political and sexual including death threats this book is lovely. It's so cute I love it!