With themes of PTSD, courage, resilience and deep abiding love, this is a marriage in trouble story with a realistic and hopeful happy ending. The arranged, convenient and forced marriages in contemporary romance novels offer a slightly different experience for the reader, but they all share unwritten agreements between the hero and heroine, the high emotions of being in close quarters and the promise of falling in love. My only quibble with the book was some really bad proofing & editing (more than once, Aarons used the construction, “Theo and I’s”—as in “Theo and I’s house”)—if you can handle that, the book is a good, weepy one. Julia Quinn's beloved Bridgerton series follows the siblings of a sprawling family in Regency England. Should they get married, or at least pledge themselves to each other? The Marriage Bargain by Jennifer Probst. —Annie’s Wild Ride by Alina Adams, about two highly competitive personalities with communication issues. Romance romance flourishes quickly, and the two get married on a short holiday. This is what happened when I attempted to read something in small font from my phone, first thing out of bed! You know the ones: with the cover featuring a scantily clad lady and a Greek god slowly tearing her dress off her shoulder. Once a Ferrara Wife... by Sarah Morgan 7. --Sheri Meyers, a marriage and family therapist in Los Angeles Get "Make Love Last A Lifetime" by Barbara De Angelis This lovely Valentine’s themed novella by Kelly Jensen explores the changes that happen naturally in long term partnerships and how to rekindle the romance that brings people together in the first place. Beyond Duty by SJD Peterson Fictional or not it doesn't matter. Ravishing the Heiress is so good – and a little different from her other books, I think. This novella is very nice exploration of both their romance and the connection that has kept it alive and stable for so long, but this short sequel is definitely better if read after the couple’s first story, Before Jamaica Lane. A lot of this book has a retro fifties vibe – the working husbands and secretary mistresses, the ‘be a lady’ sexual mores drilled into Vicki by her grandmother, Caleb’s dark secret that really isn’t a big deal – but in a way that works. Stranded With Her Ex by Jill Sorenson 4. Their different ways of handling that grief contributed to the breakdown of their marriage. Both Vicki and Caleb are nice people,they work maturely and methodically through their issues and seek to become more honest and open with each other. The Slightest Provocation by Pam Rosenthal, 9. If you want to vote for the Marriage in Trouble Romance, go to the Goodreads list. In Shana Galen’s extremely charming spy drama, Lord Adrian Smythe’s cover as the world’s most proper, boring gentleman is blown when his wife, the adventure-seeking fellow spy Lady Sophia, discovers that her dull husband is actually anything but. Thanks for the recommendation! This is the ultimate love story because it isn’t about immediate attraction or falling in lust with the good-looking stranger across the room, but is about the real happily ever after. On this list of romance writing prompts, I've tried to include ideas that could work for paranormal romance, fantasy, young adult, romantic suspense, contemporary romance, and more. This is the kind of book I want Sherry Thomas to write more of. 4.7 out of 5 stars 5 ratings. Contemporary Arranged Marriage Romance Novels A Princess in Theory by Alyssa Cole. This is a very angsty, emotionally charged read that won’t appeal to everyone, but it’s a journey worth travelling. My very favorite in the series is Earth Bound and this is probably my #2. Do Philippa and Lymond count in Dunnett’s Lymond Chronicles? This is the story of two ordinary people attempting to save their marriage in the face of real-life problems, and nobody has ever done it better, before or since. A couple split apart by years of lies and betrayal have to find their way back together in this sexy,  action-packed instalment in the Darkest London series. We like those stories. It was very well written. The resolution, which takes place over the last 25% of the book, is one of the best endings to a romance I’ve read. I just read a really enjoyable marriage in trouble story – A Passionate Reunion in Fiji by Michelle Smart. A fifteen year committed relationship for Evan and Paul is on the rocks as they’ve fallen into a rut (as many couples do) with no clear sense of how to get out of it. Love it? If you want to vote for the Marriage in Trouble Romance, go to the Goodreads list: Trouble: Marriage on the Rocks Romance. 1. I just re-read her whole back catalog over the summer and enjoyed every single book. They’ve been separated for a year and a half when Kurt surprises Kai by arriving at her cabin just as snow starts to fall. Rend is heart-breaking and deeply emotional but also uplifting, and quite, quite beautiful. Cheating is a big turn off for me. I don’t know what happened—she hasn’t published anything since 2017 and someone said she shut down all of her social media accounts too. Making It Last is the actual, realistic epilogue, a novella sequel to How to Misbehave (which you should read first). She is an author I don’t know. Sigh. There were a few things to recommend it: the working-class ethos, that stays working-class, and the marriage-in-trouble trope, which is a rarity and yet should appear more often in contemporary romance. This story is sensitive to the stresses infertility can put on a marriage, but readers looking for a true infertility story will probably want to skip the epilogue. All three are wonderful examples of the authors ability to overcome seemingly insurmountable obstacles in a ‘bad’ marriage and deliver believable, romantic, and unique happily ever afters. Loathe it? But Quinn is determined to win his wife back, and to replace their mechanical, conception-focused sex life with the scorching fantasies he never had the nerve to voice. After years of infertility and misunderstandings, Libby McKay sought a trial separation from her husband Quinn. Like delicate flowers, relationships have a way of dying if not cared for properly. Erm… I think I’ll be waiting for it to go on sale. Find helpful customer reviews and review ratings for Unfinished Seductions: A billionaire bad boy marriage in trouble romance (Bad Boy Capital Book 2) at Amazon.com. In this AAR DIK, divorced Rand Waddell persuades his ex-wife Kat to let him move into the basement apartment of their British Columbia house to be their children’s new nanny. Apologies in advance if either of these appeared on the original Marriages in Trouble list: Katie Porter’s HARD WAY, part of her Vegas Top Guns series, is about a couple, married for eight years, on the verge of divorce. Getting the Love You Want: A Guide for Couples by Harville Hendricks, PhD This is arguably the … Kora Oliver, Tony-winning actress turned director, and Tariq Evans, NFL star turned financial advisor, have known each other for over two decades. His at Night is a wonderful novel, with some very funny moments as well as some really emotional ones. Most romance novels are about characters falling in love with each other for the first time. Turning Up the Heat and Snow-Kissed by Laura Florand, 5. It’s a great series and they are all quick reads. And finally, Jennifer Crusie’s “Maybe This Time” where the hero and heroine reunite 10 years after their divorce when she seeks him out to return all the alimony checks he’s sent, and ends up taking the job he offers as caretaker of two orphaned children living in a haunted house. It’s different. is a Regency romance that is out of the common way. Kira Weston left Ethan Rourke because their relationship had plenty of physical intimacy, but Ethan kept himself emotionally closed off and distracted with work. Some other troubled marriages that I thought were good: —Play by Karina Bliss, a novella in her Rock Solid series. The Unwanted Wife book. They are each others’ best friend and closest confidante, and also their greatest lover (yes, they’re sleeping together). But Adele is manipulative, devious, clever, and determined to thrive, all of which make her a match for Malloryn, our hero. Unfinished Seductions: A billionaire bad boy marriage in trouble romance (Bad Boy Capital Book 2) 4.5 out of 5 stars (13) Kindle Edition . 3. Sherry Thomas has written some wonderful romances with the theme of troubled marriages. Laura Drake’s, The Sweet Spot, is about a couple already divorced. ... Read about the Marriage in Trouble Romance. Separated for a year and on the verge of divorce, Connor and Victoria get a kick-start to their marriage when a night at a party they both attend reveals hidden desires and shatters their illusions of each other. Read honest and unbiased product reviews from our users. This is a story that doesn’t underplay the difficulties of a broken relationship, nor does it rush its characters into resolving it. They’re brought back together when they become guardians of the children of hero’s brother. The readers decide! I hope she’s ok. The Marriage in Trouble Trope. To me, this book was essentially the hero’s journey to understanding the role he has played in the mess his marriage has become and the steps he must take to repair it. Once a Ferrara Wife... by Sarah Morgan, 10. I miss her too. She’s a very popular Harlequin Presents author and she does a great job here of showing two characters who are both flawed and need to make some compromises to get their happy ending. Miley Cyrus' New Romance, Reese Witherspoon's Marriage Trouble, And This Weekend's Gossip G Griffin Matis; 1:00 pm, January 11, 2021. Read 3 580 reviews from the world's largest community for readers. Amber and Tony have ten, eight, and six year old boys, financial troubles, and not enough time for each other. No problem! I read romance novels and many other genres. I was reading the review for the book after it (Sarah McLean’s) and mistook it for Ruthie Knox’s book. And the sympathy you feel for both of them. I’d have private emailed about the typo but Suburban Renewal is remembered as a favorite and thought this a good opportunity to rep it. In short, this novel isn’t just about a failing marriage, it’s the OG portrait of the failure of the midcentury American Dream. What they aren’t is a couple, at least not in the conventional sense. She has explored the tensions between couples who work through misunderstandings and antagonism toward forced marriages or marriages of convenience, His at Night is a personal favorite in this category, a book that abounds with so much hostility as well as sexual tension. A fun as heck take on True Lies in which our – formerly retired – hero and heroine spies unite (and compete) to foil the bad-guys while at the same time starting to forge a new appreciation for each other. The list sounds really interesting and I was all set to buy it – then I looked it up at Amazon and they want 10 quid for the Kindle version. But when their daughter announces she’s getting married, they agree to keep the situation quiet so as not to spoil her big day, and to act the happy, loving couple they have always been – and along the way they start to remember why they fell for each other in the first place. In a troubled marriage or troubled relationship story, these characters were in love at some point in the past, but now they’ve hit rough waters. I think it’s her best book. Angie: My favorite marriage is in trouble book is The Ground Rules by Roya Carmen, or really any of the books in this trilogy (The Rule Breakers). Off to look for it! Another book that I liked, was Anne Calhoun’s, The List. I’m the one who put it on the list and I was momentarily panicked that I misrepresented it. 2. The resolution of this troubled marriage novella is gorgeous, moving, and utterly believable. Their story is a gem, full of mistrust that, grudgingly, turns to trust and lust that turns to lust AND love. They’re on the original list linked to in the introduction!!!!! Never Let Go: A Marriage In Trouble Romance (The Storm Inside Book 4) Kindle Edition by Alexis Anne (Author) Format: Kindle Edition. What happens when a quickie marriage gets to the ‘for worse’ part of the vows? I really enjoyed Florand’s, Snow-Kissed. Oh the angst as they find their way. Thanks for all the interesting recs – both blog and comments. There was no magic fix (as there shouldn’t be) to their problems but a willingness to communicate and try again leads them in the right direction. This is a tale involving cheating, which will make it a no-no for many readers, but the author redeems the hero with considerable aplomb and those who take a chance on it will find a well-written, passionate and insightful story, full of heartbreak, hope, redemption and love lost and won. Seconding Zoe York’s “Love in a Small Town” and would recommend these as well (sorry if they’re already on one of the lists and I just missed them): “Back to You” by Jessica Scott where the Army wife heroine files for divorce because she discovers that the hero lied and voluntarily signed up for continued deployment, leaving her home alone with two small children. The Rules of Marriage (1986) by Sheila Bishop; The Emerald Necklace (1981) by Diana Brown (B+ at AAR) April Lady (1957) by Georgette Heyer; Frivolous Pretence (1990) by Anthea Malcolm; A Regency Charade (1981) by Elizabeth Mansfield; The Duke’s Double (1988) by Anita Mills (B- at AAR) The Major’s Mistake (2000) by Andrea Pickens (B+ at AAR) While the cause Georgie and Thom’s separation is a bit simple, the action-adventure and teamwork in this novella are top-notch. Are you an author? There’s no cheating – did someone say there was? This list goes out all loving partnerships that bend and cradle. Her best in this trope (IMO) is still Not Quite a Husband. Rhys and Derek have been married for fifteen years, but are getting divorced after Rhys cheated in a one-night-stand. (Probably written by men.) Lawyers Nate and Live Sawyer were happily married, but are hitting a major rut in their relationship and decide to take a second honeymoon to recharge their batteries. Seconding this! Carrie Aarons’s DOWN WE’LL COME, BABY involves a married but separated couple who have struggled with infertility (CW/TW) and miscarriage, along with the fact that the heroine is from a very wealthy family and the hero is a Nantucket “townie” construction worker. Despite what anyone says romance novels are just chick flicks in print. I am a total sucker for marriage in trouble trope in romance books. I love this series. The husband has multiple jobs and a difficult mother; the wife feels lost in her husband’s home town and at loose ends job- and family-wise. I want to re-read it now, and I should also give Not Quite a Husband another try. It’s not hero/heroine meets hero/heroine, flirt, court, say I love you. Jenna, a midwife on location in a transit camp in Turkey, meets Canadian soldier Sean. I thought this was a very moving story about a couple who divorced after the loss of child. North American Wordcat: Romance Reader Reviewer, Romance List Maker.Twitter @Catsbookrom, Cat's Books Romance Novel Theme Park catsbooks.net Facebook https://www.facebook.com/pages/Cats-Books-Romance/. Calhoun excelled at writing complicated characters; I wish she were still writing. Are you tired of epilogues in which couple blissfully picnic surrounded by tooth-meltingly cute offspring, gazing into each other’s eyes as if they’re in that Doctor Who episode where statues will get you if you blink? I like reading about what happens when the first blush of excitement and “getting together” fades/has faded. And two that might fall out of category as the hero and heroine are already divorced: “Fallen” by Leslie Tentler where the cop hero and trauma surgeon heroine divorced after the death of their child but are still drawn to each other and via their jobs also come in contact again when someone starts targeting cops. In this steampunk novella from the Iron Seas series, Georgiana Thomas’s husband Thom returns from the sea with a bullet wound and a single gold coin. Note: This blog post updates AAR’s Troubled Marriages llst, which is a great place to start for lovers of this trope. He suggests a marriage in name only to solve both problems—one of the oldest romance tropes in the book! What will they do to keep busy? It has to have a lot of yearning, grovelling and pining. A very realistic look at how outside family pressures, along with internal issues (such as infertility), can tear down what appears to be a strong, stable partnership. For some readers, Cyrus’s controlling and manipulative behavior will make this book a DNF. Despite thinking I don’t really have favorite tropes (see other blog post), I think this might be one of mine. It’s topical and true, after all, and way more believable than ye olde fake relationship. He wants to prove he’s changed and win back his family; she’s skeptical and wants to avoid raising false hopes in their two kids. $4.99 . It’s a short novella, but one of the best-handled versions of this trope I’ve ever read is “A Midnight Feast” by Emma Barry and Genevieve Turner. I found myself not knowing who I wanted Mirella to end up with, her husband or the guy she was having an affair with. Also, as opposed to the couple in Cara McKenna’s WILLING VICTIM/BRUTAL GAME duet (always my benchmark for consensual rape role-play scenarios) who are crystal-clear about the line between fantasy and reality, the couple in HARD WAY don’t always know where one ends and the other begins, sometimes reality provokes fantasy. I too hope is doing well. Should they tell their family and friends about their gay relationship? I was interested in the review here on AAR of An Infamous Marriage by Susanna Fraser enough to order it. The Fourth Child by C. J. Carmichael 3. Both have been keeping secrets that kept them at arm’s length in their marriage and Connor won’t sign any divorce papers until they explore them at length. Our hero has, for much of this series, been engaged to a young woman he feels trapped him into marriage, and in the previous book, married her. 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