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Jewel (Avon Historical Romance) by Beverly…
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Jewel (Avon Historical Romance)

by Beverly Jenkins

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http://nwhyte.livejournal.com/1231221.html

Browsing through LibraryThing one day, I noted that Beverly Jenkins, of whom I had not heard, was one of the highest rated authors by the owners of her books - not many, but enough to reassure me that this was not astroturfing. Her particular subgenre - African-American historical romance - is not one that I had ever considered sampling, but I thought, what the heck, and BookMooched a couple of her books.

Jewel is actually a rather nice book. I particularly appreciated the historical setting, a Black community in the northern USA (specifically, Cass County, Michigan) in the 1880s. It's not an environment I had ever thought much about, and Jenkins has clearly done her homework: the book is perhaps intended partly as a didactic device to educate readers about that period of Black history, especially the increasingly important role of journalism, and I was happy to be educated.

I'm not a connoisseur of romance novels so feel less qualified to judge the plot. I found the setup a bit implausible (the eponymous heroine, a 24-year-old virgin, agrees to pose as a friend's wife and then finds inevitably that the fiction becomes reality). But the execution was entertaining, with lots of sexy newlywed moments. There were no really nasty characters in the book except for the husband's ex-girlfriend, and she is suitably dealt with. An uplifting and cheering read. ( )
1 vote nwhyte | Jun 1, 2009 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0061161357, Mass Market Paperback)

A proposal she had no choice but to accept . . .

Though Eli Grayson is one of the most handsome, charming, and intelligent men in Grayson Grove, no one will take a chance on a confirmed bachelor. Unwilling to give up his dreams, Eli convinces his friend Jewel to pose as his wife. Their masquerade is to last just one night . . . but when word gets out, Eli and Jewel must tie the knot to save his career—and her reputation.

Became a love she never expected . . .

Angry at being forced to turn her life upside down, Jewel never imagined that a white-hot passion would consume her once she and Eli became husband and wife. Sharing a bed has turned their prim friendship into a sensuous love affair . . . but when a woman from Eli's past returns to stir up trouble, he and Jewel will learn just how far they'll go to protect the precious gem of their newfound passion.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:23:41 -0400)

Reluctantly agreeing to masquerade as his wife to help her friend Eli Grayson, Jewel suddenly finds herself in the position of a real marriage when their ruse is uncovered and discovers an unexpected passion in Eli's arms.

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