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The Inconvenient Marriage of Charlotte Beck: A Novel
The Inconvenient Marriage of Charlotte Beck: A Novel by Kathleen Y’Barbo
My rating: 1 of 5 stars

It’s tough wading through all the long flowery dialog without getting tired after a few chapters. I thought this would be fun read with a lot of light-hearted moments, but the jokes fell flat for me.

The plot seemed simple enough: independent and business-minded Charlotte wants nothing to do with marriage but ends up having no choice but to marry… until the marriage of convenience becomes irresistibly inconvenient.

But once I started reading, I couldn’t find what was so inescapable about the marriage. I was confused as to why Charlotte and Alex felt they had no other choice. Plus, they were obviously already attracted to each other, so what gives? The premise just didn’t feel very believable.

Charlotte’s Papa, the one who proposed the marriage, appeared to me more manipulative than loving, despite his apparent affection for his daughter. I just can’t understand why he’s so bent on making his daughter marry when she expressed a desire to stay single and focus on her career.

And the way it was all resolved was terribly rushed. Charlotte suddenly realizing, in the space of one paragraph, her true reason for refusing marriage–honestly, that’s such a stretch. It pertained to Charlotte’s mother, who was barely mentioned throughout the book, only to be resurrected in the end as the central motivation.

Meanwhile, Papa’s big revelation just came out of nowhere to tie all the lose ends neatly. And the resolution between Charlotte and Alex was weak–after years of animosity, suddenly you can just switch on the romance? If I was Alex, I’d be suspicious Charlotte had something up her sleeve, yet again.

Even with the hasty happily-ever-after, some issues were left dangling, like the question of Charlotte’s faith. Her papa and husband raised the issue of her dwindling faith, and she admitted it was shaky, but after the big happy ending there wasn’t a question of it anymore.

What I would’ve liked to see is Charlotte coming to terms with what it means to be a wife, to realize the beauty of God’s design.

For what it’s worth, I did read the book to the end. I could easily predict the ending but I wanted to see how it would unfold.

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