A ELABORATE HOAX: You Can Fool Some of the People,…


Elaborate Hoax coverSeries: Gentlemen of Worth (Book 5)

by Shirley Marks
Paperback: 232 pages
Publisher: Montlake Romance (June 2, 2015)

E-Galley provided by publisher for review. No remuneration was exchanged and all opinions presented herein are my own except as noted.

Now that she’s seen her three nieces-daughters of the Duke of Faraday-successfully married off, Mrs. Penelope “Penny” Parker finds herself adrift. But the lovely widow is not without purpose for long.
Wealthy bachelor David Cavanaugh is in desperate need of a pretend wife- and he’s convinced that Penny would be perfect for the role.
Risking scandal and her good reputation, Penny agrees to accompany David to the country and play the part of his blushing bride in order to make his grandmother’s final days more restful. She vows to do anything to appear part of a loving couple-even if that means going along with David’s seven-year ruse about his fictional family.
But Penny and David’s game of make-believe starts feeling all too real Has Penny found a match of her very own? Or will she and David be parted forever once the curtain comes down on their show of romance?


My Take Oblong Shaped


I finished reading this over the weekend and while I enjoyed the amusement factor I had a lot of issues.
So, the romantic interest, David Cavanaugh’s grandmother is on her deathbed, and has been often until he buoys her spirits by giving her what she wants – him married, then him married with a family.

It’s like a situation comedy or an old movie from the 1970s or 80s.

The plot ignores important points that would be considered immediately:

The ton is a small world and the scandal isn’t going to stay in the country (it’s not Las Vegas).  When Penny becomes known to be David’s wife – there’s no way out of the ruse.  The fact that this wouldn’t have been seen ahead of time, and that the ruse didn’t come with an offer of marriage is just silly. Regardless of any other consideration, this was over-riding, and like seeing your parents having sex, it cannot be undone. 

Also the the poor grandmother wasn’t allowed to eat anything but broth for at least a week, suffers from an undisclosed illness.Even during the Regency they would have given it some name.

And, that the couple depends on two borrowed children to keep a secret is essentially ridiculous.  Have you ever found two children under seven able to keep a secret about their identity and parentage; who wouldn’t slip-up?

Other considerations were a mind-numbingly slow pace and a questionably unwarranted overturn in both love interests feelings toward each other made this book hard to finish.

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PUBLISHER/Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Elaborate-Hoax-Gentlemen-Worth/dp/1477830332
AUTHOR: http://www.shirleymarks.com/books/gmen.htm
B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/an-elaborate-hoax-shirley-marks/1121014259?ean=9781477830338