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Mary Balogh's Slightly Married and question re the series

 
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mirole



Joined: 06 Aug 2010
Posts: 278
Location: Toronto, Ontario

PostPosted: Sat Jun 23, 2012 12:28 am    Post subject: Mary Balogh's Slightly Married and question re the series Reply with quote

I just finished reading Slightly Marred for the first time. Balogh is my favourite historical romance writer after Heyer.

I absolutely loved the book for about one third, or until the H and h started sleeping together. This was not a problem for me at all. Though it was a marriage of convenience, they were both young and farely attractive people so it seemed quite natural. But what seemed quite unnatural for me was their insistence, and especially that of the hero, that after they separate, they would never ever ever EVER see each other again. I could understand it very easily if they had not slept together (and especially not proceeded to do so for a full week sleeping whole nights together and making love repeatedly during each night).

I would think that the most natural thing to say in their situation (when they both knew they were bound togeer for life), that oh, at least I will see you briefly during your next leave.

Also I decided that I am not a big fan of romance action packed with many supporting characters from family members, like here it was a cast of two foster children, great aunt, governess with a child and a housekeeper. I longed for the h/H's more intimate interaction at times.

Yet, in spite of all of this, I liked/loved it a lot. It was way better than 80% of historical romance I've read recently and I would like to read more of the series.

I have two books with the sisters' stories. I am not interested in Ralph's and Alleyne's stories based on the blurbs but I am very intrigued by Wulf, of course, and would like to know every detail about him.

Is it possible to skip brothers' books without sacrificing too much of Wulf's story or should I buy their books and just skim through them for his story. I am especially interested to read about his reaction to his mistress's death.

Any answers will be much appreciated.
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willaful



Joined: 02 Jan 2008
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 23, 2012 2:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think Slightly Married and Slightly Dangerous are fantastic bookends on an otherwise fairly meh series. Freya's book is funny, but none of them is as good as the first and last. I think you could skip them without missing much.
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Holly Bush



Joined: 23 Dec 2011
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Location: Lancaster County, Pennsylvania

PostPosted: Sat Jun 23, 2012 6:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Slightly Married and Slightly Dangerous are two of my favorite all time books. Although the 'bookends' are to me the superior books, I would still read the others.

The culmination of knowledge of family members gained through each sibling's book made Slightly Dangerous an exceptional read for me. I felt intimately acquainted with the family, and understood the dynamics between family members and their husbands or wives. Morgan's story was my least favorite but I'm not sure why.

I haven't reread Slightly Married for sometime and will have to do so in light of your comments about the hero's insistence that they separate permenently. The hero's motivation in most of his actions was to be honorable, or so I remember it.

Regardless, I find Balogh's writing superior and her stories emotional and resonant. Hope you read and enjoy them all!
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Tee



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
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Location: Detroit Metro

PostPosted: Sat Jun 23, 2012 6:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

willaful wrote:
I think Slightly Married and Slightly Dangerous are fantastic bookends on an otherwise fairly meh series. Freya's book is funny, but none of them is as good as the first and last. I think you could skip them without missing much.

I agree 100 percent with willaful on this series. First and last were good--skip the others and spend your time on more worthwhile stories. For me, they were DNFs, with the exception of the first and last ones.

However, not all will agree. I think there are different threads all along the Forum here that discuss these books and you may end up not having the same feeling about them that we do.
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PatW



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 639
Location: Gulf coast Florida

PostPosted: Sat Jun 23, 2012 9:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Agree with many about first and last.

Did not like Morgan's story(forgotten most of it), despised Rannulf's story (really dislike hero), thought Freya's story was hilarious and liked it a lot for the humor. If humor isn't your thing you don't need to read it. Allyene's story has an amnesia plot which is a hot button for some, AND lots of secondary characters.

I agree that you do not need to read the middle ones to enjoy Slightly Dangerous which is on my top ten list.
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Manda



Joined: 23 Apr 2007
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 23, 2012 10:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree with most of what everyone else said. I ADORE Slightly Married and Slightly Dangerous and agree they're the best of the series. The other brothers' books were pretty much standard Balogh fare. And I was never a huge fan of Freya's.

Where I differ is Morgan's book. I thought the first half of the story while Morgan was in Brussels was WONDERFUL. But I think part of what made it wonderful was that while I was reading it I thought SPOILER Allain was really dead--which was probably naive of me, but I was a more trusting reader then. Anyway, the whole Waterloo sequence was great, the relationship seemed heady, but then when the action moved back to England it was standard Balogh fare again.

But I'll go on the record as saying that Aidan Bedwyn is one of my favorite heroes of all time.
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Holly Bush



Joined: 23 Dec 2011
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 23, 2012 10:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Manda wrote:


But I'll go on the record as saying that Aidan Bedwyn is one of my favorite heroes of all time.


I agree. There was something about his quiet determination to do the right thing that really got me.
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MEK



Joined: 09 Dec 2010
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 23, 2012 11:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Slightly Married made me cry! I didn't even expect to, but when Aiden made his big decision at the end, I bawled. Loved it.
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Holly Bush



Joined: 23 Dec 2011
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 23, 2012 11:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

MEK wrote:
Slightly Married made me cry! I didn't even expect to, but when Aiden made his big decision at the end, I bawled. Loved it.


I know exactly what you're talking about! I've read this book 3 times and everytime I get to that part (SPOILER-at the river) I start crying and can't stop. I thought I was the only one!
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LFL



Joined: 05 May 2007
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 23, 2012 11:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree that the first and last books in the series are the best, but I think that Morgan's book (Slightly Tempted) is worth reading as well for the terrific first half that Manda describes. Also, there is a poignant scene later in that book that beautifully showcases Wulfric's humanity and which made a great lead in to his book.

Freya's book (Slightly Scandalous) wasn't bad, you can read it or not, whatever you prefer, but I would absolutely skip Slightly Wicked (Ralf) and especially Slightly Sinful (Alleyne). Slightly Sinful was one of her weakest books IMO.
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Rosie



Joined: 01 Apr 2007
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 23, 2012 1:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I am not interested in Ralph's and Alleyne's stories based on the blurbs


Coincidentally, those are the books I skipped and I don't feel like I missed too much.

My favorite is Freya's book, Slightly Scandalous. I really ended up liking Freya a lot, and I loved her hero, Joshua. Those two had me grinning from ear to ear at the end -- always a sign that I loved the book.

Slightly Married and Slightly Dangerous were definitely tied for second place. Loved them both. Slightly Tempted, Morgan's story, was just "eh" for me, but I did finish it.
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dick



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 23, 2012 5:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree that the series is uneven. But...I think this series in particular should be read in its entirety. It's like a long single novel, in which the major character--the Bedwins in toto--are represented in each book by one of the members. Without reading the entire series, one misses that.
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mirole



Joined: 06 Aug 2010
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Location: Toronto, Ontario

PostPosted: Sat Jun 23, 2012 7:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wow, so many replies, thank you, everyone!

I think I will go with the opinion of the majority and skip the middle brothers' books but read the sisters' books (and I already have them, too). Although I did not like Freya in The Summer to Remember, I started liking her in Slightly Married - she changed from being haughty to genuine and friendly after she saw that Eve could stand up to Bedwyns.

PatW: though generally I prefer angsty romance, I do enjoy humorous ones too from time to time so I am looking forward to Freya's story.
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