Monday, January 13, 2014

Book Review: The Accidental Marriage

Today I'm excited to be part of a blog tour and to tell you about a book called, The Accidental Marriage.  When I first picked it up I thought I would be getting a fluffy romance (mostly because I think the cover gives that impression).  There is romance in it, but it's much more than that.  It's a gritty look at a marriage between two people from very different backgrounds, set in the 70s, when women's roles and rights were being explored.

I really enjoyed the heroine of the story, Nina Rushforth.  She's been given everything her entire life and incredible opportunities to really find her strength.  She's tall, great at tennis, and her dad wants her to be an attorney.  While she's on study abroad in Scotland, she meets a young LDS missionary named Elliott Spencer after warning him and his companion away from a hostile crowd.  There's a connection between them, but they wisely wait to explore it until he's home from his mission.

They have so many ups and downs to their courtship and marriage.  I loved how torn Nina seemed between being accepted and being in love.  To do what she wants instead of what the people around her want her to do.  The contrast in their families and the impact both sets of in-laws made on them was so real and raw.  I loved the subjects the author delves into between these families because I think it's a reality that most couples face.  Everyone has quirks to their families and subjects that are never brought up and we all have to find ways to compromise and reconcile what each person's background brings into a marriage.

This book had a very literary style to it and the description was almost lyrical. The author does a wonderful job in portraying the nitty gritty to "happily ever after" and that in order to have that sort of ending you have to work for it.  (Although I did wish for a tiny bit more closure to the ending because I like happy bows, but there was still enough to make me feel satisfied.)

So, if you want a story that has great characters and romance mixed with reality in the 70s era, this is one to put on your to-read list.

Here's the back copy:

Nina Rushforth was born with a silver spoon caught in her throat. She and her father have mapped out a future that includes a brilliant legal career, a marriage to an equally stellar attorney or Wall Street whiz kid, and eventually the production of three perfect children. A semester at St. Andrew's University in Scotland, was part of the plan, but falling in love with a handsome missionary was not.

Six months later, after Elliot returns from his mission and after a tumultuous courtship, Nina finds herself teaching at a junior high school, learning to keep house in a minuscule apartment, and living with a man who doesn't know any more about being married than she does. Intimacy, cooking, laundry, lesson plans, and a tug-of-war with a possessive mother-in-law prove to be more overwhelming than Nina can successfully manage. The newlyweds awaken to realize the head on the adjacent pillow belongs to a stranger.

This novel captures the heartbreak of young love caught in the turbulent social crosscurrents of the 70's, at a time when brave women struggled to find dignity and equality in the workplace, as well as peace at home.

Publication Date: December 10, 2013
ISBN: 9781462113743
Publisher: Cedar Fort Publishing

Buy links:


“A thoughtful, heartbreaking, and often laugh-out-loud romp… Annette Haws explores the interesting question: What keeps a marriage together?”

--Terrell Dougan, a columnist for the Huffington Post and the author of That Went Well: Adventures in Caring for my Sister

“Haws delivers a story that makes you want to rush to the end to find out what happens and prose that makes you want to slow down and savor it.”

--Karey White, author of For What It’s Worth, Gifted, and My Own Mr. Darcy

“If you want a story with plot, character and real, deep meaning that will leave you thinking long after you’re done, this is the book for you.”

--Shannon Guymon, author of Do Over

About Annette: Annette Haws’s literary strengths are based upon her experiences in the classroom. She began her teaching career as a junior high teacher in Richmond, Utah and ended it teaching Sophomore English at Murray High School in Salt Lake City. However, her favorite assignment was a five year period at Logan High School teaching English, coaching debate and mock trial, and watching the antics of her own three children who were also students in the same school.

Her first novel, Waiting for the Light to Change, won Best of State in 2009, A Whitney Award for Best Fiction, and the Diamond Quill Award for Best Published Fiction in 2009 from the League of Utah Writers. In July of 2008, the Midwest Book Review selected it as a Top Pick for Community Library Fiction Collections.

Social Media Links:

1 comment:

Debra Erfert said...

This sounds like an interesting book. Thanks for reviewing it!