Luz Alana and James Evanston Sinclair are both in a pickle. Both are the children of distillers — she of a Dominican Republic rum family, he of Scotch whisky. Both are entitled to significant family wealth after the passing of their distilling parent. But each face a hurdle to claiming their wealth: they need to be married to inherit.
What are they do to do? Marry each other of course.
Fake marriages aren’t my favorite romance trope, but it mostly works in A Caribbean Heiress in Paris by Andriana Herrera. It’s also a book that adds to the ongoing, much needed shake up of historical romances, which have traditionally been very heterosexual and very white. The 1889 French international exposition, where the pair meet, was a real thing. As Herrera writes in a note at the end of the book, it was the first time the Dominican Republic attended, and they where there along with 13 other Latin countries. It’s implausible to believe they didn’t interact with white Europeans. And while Luz and James are straight, their circle of friends is not entirely so — just as would have happened in real life because gay people have always existed. The next book in the series, An Island Princess Starts a Scandal, has two heroines, who apparently meet in A Caribbean Heiress. It comes out in May.
I enjoyed it! With a quibble that I think it’s 50 page too long. I know word counts, especially for romance novels, are pretty rigid. I have the same complaint about Mary Balogh books (and a lot of movies). So maybe it’s me. I’ll probably eventually read the other books in the series still. So that quibble is very minor.
Nail polish: Alpaca My Bags by OPI.
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