Tuesday, February 18, 2014

A Heartfelt and Intriguing Romance

It Takes Two to Tangle is my first foray into reading author Theresa Romain’s books.  It Takes Two to Tangle is overall a good book but, while I liked the book, I didn’t love it and I will spell out my reasons why. 
Henry Middlebrook has returned from the Napoleonic Wars, wounded with a lost soul. The loss of his right arm has left him unable to resume the simple pleasure he had before leaving for the war. As a way for him to gain a bit of his previous peaceful life, Henry begins to seek a wife. He soon sets his cap on Lady Caroline Stratton. In order to pursue Lady Caroline, Henry enlists the aid of her companion and cousin Frances Whittier. Frances is no stranger to the war wounded, having lost her own husband in the war.  Frances has a sharp wit and an equally sharp tongue and for as content as she is in her role in life, secretly her heart yearns for more.  At a chance meeting Frances secretly begins to pen letters to Henry in her cousin’s name, which offers him the confidence that her cousin is interested in his pursuit.  When Henry learns that without the use of his right arm, he has difficulties replying to the letters and thus enlists Frances’ aid when it comes to replying to the letters.
Both Henry and Frances are very interesting characters. They both are very intelligent and intriguing characters. The problem I ran into when reading this book is that it took over half the book for Henry to take notice of Frances in a romantic light.  Once his notice is taken book moves quickly, and is very heartfelt. It is obvious that these characters belong together from the beginning but it takes a bit longer than I would have liked for them to mesh. 
Theresa Romain has written and enjoyable troupe with both vibrant first and secondary characters. This book is not your typical quick feel good read as it takes time building up to those tradition feel good moments. It explores Henry’s grief and Frances’ losses and their attempts at rebuilding their lives. It explores the impact on the families involved with war wounded soldier. The book hooked me from the start, and it kept me until the midway spot. At that point I was quite invested in Henry as a character and wanted to continue in order to see what was to come. The book regains its speed after the half way point and holds until the emotional end.
Would I recommend this book? But of course, but I would also make it clear that is not the typical light fluffy romance that many readers seem to enjoy. It is heavy on the emotions and delight by the end. That said I cannot wait to delve into Lady Caroline’s story, which is sure to come.
Arc provided by Sourcebooks
4 Stars

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