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Book Review: A Marriage in Middlebury by Anita Higman

Years ago, Charlotte Rose Hill and Sam Wilder fell in love. Unfortunately, others conspired against them and Charlotte turned down Sam’s marriage proposal. Now he’s back in town and she wonders if there might be a second chance for them…until she meets the one person who threatens to keep them apart.

cover: a marriage in middlebury

A Marriage in Middlebury is a stand-alone novel from Anita Higman and takes place in a small, south Texas town. Charlotte Rose Hill is the flower around whom all the bees and butterflies flutter, but this is actually a three-in-one romance as three couples attempt to sort through their feelings and come to the happily-ever-after moment.

Charlotte is a thirty-something, still single woman who runs a popular tearoom in town. It’s a place where people from nine to senior-nine congregate for her unusual teas, delicious food, and the latest gossip. Charlotte Rose Hill is relatively happy until one day…

…not only does the love of her life show up in the tearoom, but just as she thinks “Maybe…,” he introduces his fiancée. Said fiancée then asks Charlotte to cater the wedding reception. Really?! Let me answer for her. “No!” But then I’m not as nice as Charlotte. To top it off, said love of her life informs her his dying father has asked to see her, the very man who ruined her happiness. Ugh! What a day! No wonder she goes into her broom closet to pray.

Sam Wilder left Middlebury after Charlotte rejected his marriage proposal well over a decade earlier. The impending death of his father, a hardhearted man, brings Sam back home, which stirs feelings for Charlotte he thought were long gone. Now Sam’s in a pickle. What does he do with his fiancée? In walks…well, it gets complicated. 

Here’s an excerpt I found fun. It’s a conversation between Sam and another man.

“You know in a novel when the hero is flawed and he keeps ruining everything,” the man went on to say, “but somehow you still want to root for him because there’s this one thing about him you like? This one redeeming part of him that makes you cheer for him no matter what? Well, do you have that one thing?”

Sam racked his brain, searching for qualities in his character that would give anyone a reason to cheer him on. All his life he’d sought to be a good and honorable man, and yet he didn’t feel it. Not now. “No, I guess not.”

…”Only men of great character can admit failure.”

And that, my friends, is a beautiful sampling of Sam.

I enjoyed this book, but frankly, I found the most interesting romance of the three was between Pastor Wally and “Cricket.” They’re an exuberant couple who remain conscious of his standing in the community, yet don’t let his position interfere with falling in love and having fun while doing it.

There’s a lot going on in this story, and it’s a sweet take on people trying to do what is right, fair, honorable, and love inspired. Enjoy!

Disclosure of Material Connection: This book came to me free from the author with the hope that I would mention it on this blog. There was no requirement for me to write a positive review and the opinions I have expressed above are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

As an author of heartwarming historical and contemporary romance, Sandra Ardoin engages readers with page-turning stories of love and faith. Rarely out of reach of a book, she's also an armchair sports enthusiast, country music listener, and seldom says no to eating out.

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