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!Free Kindle ⚖ His Convict Wife ♸ From The Author Of The Convict S Bounty Bride Comes A New Australian Historical About A Free Settler And The Wife He Chooses From A WorkhouseFor Irish Convict Colleen Malone, Being Framed, Transported To Australia And Forced Into Prostitution Seemed Like The Worst That Life Could Throw At Her Then She Fell Pregnant To A Client And Was Sent Back To Prison By Her Cruel Owner Now, Her Only Hope Of A Decent Life For Her And Her Baby Is To Find Someone To MarryWidower And Former London Businessman Samuel Biggs Arrived In Australia Hoping To Put His Grief Behind Him When James Hunter Offers Him A Job On His Parramatta Farm, He Accepts Eagerly He Ll Put His Back Into His New Work, And Bury Any Thoughts Of New Love And Marriage In The Rich Earth Of His New Home However, All Plans Are Compromised When Samuel Is Manipulated Into Visiting A Workhouse To Choose A New Housekeeper, And Colleen Seizes Her Chance Literally Grabbing Samuel And Begging For Her Life The Only Way Samuel Can Oblige Is By Marrying Her, But On One Thing He Stands Firm There Is No Way He Will Fall In Love Interesting premise, but the story was rushed, making it hard to connect with any of the characters It needed a good editing too. Find this and other reviews at try not to jump into any series midstream, but I slip up from time to time Thankfully, Lena Dowling s His Convict Wife is a standalone sequel so I wasn t at much of a disadvantage jumping into book two of the series Not having read much Australian fiction, I found I really enjoyed the setting of this piece, as well as the convoluted backgrounds Dowling crafted for her cast Taking her cues directly from the continent s colonial history, the narrative boasts an authentic atmospheric quality that held genuine appeal for this particular reader A light romance, His Convict Wife is an amusing, if predictable, beach read. This could have been such an awesome book with better editing and aclosed up and drawn out ending It ended in a strange place to me, with the previous couple fighting about an issue that happened prior to their marriage I mean they were no longer sleeping together because of the fight, leaving it up in the air was weird to me Saying your sorry is one thing, but actions speak louder than words and James could have done actions to show how sorry he really was As far as editing, I wasn t sure who was speaking at any given time, I would have to get into the sentence to figure out who was talking I want to see what happens to Nell, so we will see Beware this isn t a pretty series, this is about Australia as a penal colony and the prisoners were shipped there Especially what happened to the women at the prison I hope Danny dances at the end of a rope. I am glad I didn t read the first bookThis book tied into the first book novella in a very awful way I am not sure how I feel about what I just read except to say very conflicted I am not sure I liked the H or h and I was loving James and Thea from the first book but then that tie in part totally squicked me out And it never really has a resolution for their problems or the main characters either It just ended So I just have to say I gave it three stars but I might go back and lower it I am going to read the other one about the sister and maybe I will find closure I just don t know Odd storyline and not wonderful characters. Okay but the writing didn t draw me in very deeply. The Deal After seven years spent as a virtual slave in an Australian brothel, Irish convict Colleen Malone was sent back to jail when the brothel s owner realized she had gotten pregnant Colleen is desperate to find a way to save herself, and her child, and she knows the only viable way is to find someone who would marry her Women as scarce, after all, and marriage can very well get her out of the prison Sam Briggs left London and moved to Australian taking a job as an overseer in a large farm and he does not want a wife, but he does need a housekeeper, and he lets himself be convinced to take one of the female inmates as such He doesn t expect to have a woman, Colleen, beg him to help her or that the fact that she s such a low inmate make it necessary for them to marry, rather than her just getting a work permit My Thoughts Well, I hoped this story would be emotional and interesting and intriguing, but it never quite worked out His Convict Wife is a very short story and things quite never develop, and everything feels a bit rushed from start to finish Colleen and her cousin are in Australia, presumably, because Colleen s cousin got tangled with someone above her station but we are never really told why Sam is grieving and everything but I never felt like I got to know him or believed that he would fall in love with Colleen It just wasn t a very romantic story and it definitely wasn t a romance novel, even though it s being marketed as one Is not a bad read per se, but it would have benefited a lot from havingpage time to develop. I haven t read a romance set in Australia about the convicts for many years and I really enjoyed this one the harshness of being framed and sent to Australia and then ending up in a bawdy house against your wishes is a hard life but when Samuel Biggs comes along and needs a housewife Colleen is very thankful but already pregnant she needs to get Mr Biggs to change their arragement But as Samuel is recently widowed he does not think falling in love with his convict wife is a good idea or that it will happen but Colleen is full of life and strong Their journey to a HEA is filled with ups and downs and conflicts a very good story I really enjoyed. I have a real affinity for books set in the Penal Colony Days of Australia I like the interesting historical dynamics of this moment and what it might mean to start anew Here we have a female convict who does not escape the horrors of being a woman in a penal state controlled by men and does her time on her back This book is not graphic but it isn t shy about the harshness of what it would have been like to be in this situation Our hero is a widower who has undergone a physical transformation into a muchmuscular and active man due to the labor required of him on his journey from England He is a free settler looking to start over We have a lovely marriage of connivence plot which is complicated by some very real and compelling factors The conflicts are spot on and well done and the love story that develops is a touching one The historical details are finely wrought.Overall, I enjoyed this book but I didn t love it Here is whyI didn t need the heroine to be falsely accused She could be there wrongly but I didn t like how much the hero cared that she hadn t done it If I had read the first book in the series which I haven t , I think I would really dislike this book The hero and heroine from that book are very featured in this one but we get no alone time with them or anything for their point of view I don t like much of what the hero says about his wife nor how his wife is in many moments Also, the hero from the last book has some past actions that come to light that aren t good, let s say And we don t really process those and in fact the couple ends up separated over it What the hero did, in the past, was wrong It made him really unlikeable to me as there is never an acknowledgment of how and why it was wrong The plot was too fast The love story needtime to develop However, it was still a good read and I will try this writer again.I was given this book for my honest review So, there you have it. I reviewed His Convict Life for Heroes and Heartbreakers, link here A meaty angsty marriage of convenience historical is right up my alley but never have I written a First Look that cuts so close to the bone, because of my family of origin Nor do I usually read historical romances that have so many strikes against an ultimate HEA from the git go My great grandmother, Rebecca Alexander, was born in what is now Northern Ireland She immigrated to the United States and became a nursery maid for the Von Stade household in New York City, the Von Stades being a socially prominent New Jersey family which included generations of yachtsmen, bankers, polo players and other Establishmentarians and in our generation, opera singer Frederica Von Stade New York Observer, 2010 My mother said that try as she might to get her grandmother to speak of her past, she was never successful People came to the New World to get a new life, better than the one they left behind.In Lena Dowling sHis Convict Wife, you can imagine that you are a young Irishwoman, an upstairs maid in an aristocratic Irish household, falsely convicted and sentenced to a long sentence in Australia It gets worse our heroine, Colleen and her cousin Nellie arrive in Australia after an endless sea voyage A fellow Irishman says he ll bring them to a boarding house but unfortunately, it s a bawdy house, O Shanes The pain of her loss of freedom is stark That night they were auctioned off to the highest bidder They clung to each other, half out of their wits But it was the easiest night of their lives compared to what came after They only had one customer each Every night since, Colleen had seen five or six men In many historicals I have read working in a brothel is glossed over prostitutes have liveslike than of courtesans, with a modicum of control over the men they choose to lay with and how they spend their days Not so inHis Convict Bride Colleen is a sex slave, plain and simple, and it is only because she becomes pregnant that she is sent back to the prison known as The Factory A horrific beginning to a story indeed.Is there a hero to the rescue Yes, there is, butthan a hero, Samuel Biggs, newly arrived in Australia, is a man with a complicated back story and issues He s a recent widower, and during the long sea voyage from England to Australia, he physically transforms himself from a pudgy businessman, a man of numbers, to a strong, capable man of many parts as able to be a competent sailor as to add up a column of figures Samuel, a man looking for a new way of life, accepts a job offer from James Hunter, an old friend and employer, to become his overseer James s wife, Lady Thea, the daughter of an English earl, is determined that Samuel will marry one of her convict women prot g es and Samuel is equally resolved that he will only hire a housekeeper Samuel s loyalty to his dead wife Amelia makes him ambivalent about looking for romance again, but he had noticed and was quite enjoying the attention that he was receiving from women Lady Hunter takes Samuel to The Factory where Colleen and Samuel have the very opposite of a meet cute Colleen is inexpertly hitting stones and Samuel shows her the best way to hold her hammer Colleen, realizing that Samuel is probably in the market for a convict bride, grasps his hand and begs him to choose her This is an earthy book, the reader smells the sweat and fear pouring off the convict women laborers and hears the crack and crunch of the stones Samuel s mother, after she became a widow, ended up in an English workhouse and Samuel sees his mother s fear and anguish for her children mirrored in Colleen s soft brown eyes He saw it all again his mother s wild eyes, her mouth split in a gash of blood after taking a backhander to the face, fighting to keep him.A littleexposition is necessary to illustrate just how difficult a marriage this is from its inception The first lie Colleen does not tell Samuel that she is pregnant The second is that, Samuel s employer, James Hunter, is a former client of Colleen s True, he was unmarried at the time, but Colleen and James recognize each other at the wedding ceremony but say nothing, adding another layer of lies to the fledgling union Samuel Biggs s morals have made him someone who would never frequent a brothel, under any circumstances, whereas the less judgmental James paid money to sleep with women that he knew, on some level, were sexual slaves, permitted absolutely no freedom at all Colleen ponders, James hadn t just paid for her He had paid to have a woman who he knew very well was as good as a slave He might have been a convict himself but it didn t make it right Without money from men like James, Danny O Shane wouldn t have had a business.This nuanced story has very few villains, but lines are definitely drawn between those who would judge others by their actions and circumstances and here the landed gentry come off rather badly The tension between the owners, the overseer and his housekeeper wife, the servants and the convict laborers mounts as the story unfolds and is by no means resolved by the end Colleen is determined to try to pass off her unborn child as Samuel s by that I mean she wants him to believe he s the father so instead of being gratified that Samuel appears to have no sexual interest in her, she s frantic to have him consummate their union Colleen had seen plenty of men in her time in all shapes and sizes blubbery whales who were so revoltingly fat they barely fitted through the narrow corridor to the upstairs rooms, and just as bad, the skinflints that slithered around on top of you like a wet herring, but Mr Biggs was just right broad and handsome It s so awkward, she even asks him if he s a Molly I was impressed that Dowling doesn t shy away from Colleen s extensive knowledge of men as clients in a whorehouse but this graphic knowledge does not invade her soul She is actually quite hurt that Samuel thinks of her, partially, as what she has been rather than take the time to even ask about her background The book is full of blunt talk and sexually charged, almost salacious, situations Lady Hunter takes Colleen swimming after the two couples have dinner together and the somewhat prudish Samuel is horrified at the sight of two practically nude women, frolicking in the moonlit water of the pond As he says, hurtfully, to Colleen afterward, What Lady Hunter does is up to her husband, but in my opinion it s a vulgar recreation for a woman, only fitting a whore.Colleen cannot understand why he doesn t want to sleep with her, annoyed that he thinks of it as her having to service you, given I ve spent the last seven years with me legs in the air Is it because, she wonders, that Samuel is ashamed to have wed a lowly convict prostitute Over time, however, Samuel s respect and kindness and the space he gives her allow Colleen to see him very differently from other men At O Shanes she had looked through the customers She had taught herself to do it to preserve her soul but with Samuel it had been different She has seen him from the very beginning from the instant she had stared into those wonderful blue eyes that shimmered and sparkled like a mountain fed lake as the sun came up.Colleen and Samuel forge a union based on lust and admiration and a deep set yearning for family and love Fate had been cruel to both of them and for a time it seemed like they would not be able to put resentment and prejudice aside but eventually they did There are no lies between them at the end, with Samuel saying to Colleen, after she confesses that he is not the father of her unborn child,Just hear me out My mother remarried and her new husband, a widower, brought me up as if were his own, never making any distinction between me and his other children I m going to love this baby every bit as much as I love you These warm loving loyal souls were kindred spirits and the reader believes in their bright future One is left, however, pondering the meaning of loyalty and self respect because at its coreHis Convict Wife chronicles the story of Australia s convict class, the men and women whose blood, sweat, and indentured servitude provided the underpinnings of Australia s growth Their loyalty to each other, even and almost especially after they had served out the terms of their sentence, was a living thing As James puts it to Samuel, There s a brotherhood that exists among the convicts that I promise is bigger than all of this Mark my words, it s an esprit de corps on which this country that they re calling Australia is going to be built.Men like James Hunter regretted some actions they took when they were convicts themselves and that guilt fuels their cause Dowling examines the gap between wanting to help the convict class, as seen in the actions of Lady Hunter, and true acknowledgement of the humanity of former prisoners Convicts lived for the day when Emancipists would rise up and be the equals in Australian eyes to the Exclusives Colleen s horrific journey to respect and ultimately love from her husband was aided by the admiration of the convict class who knew full well what she had endured for the opportunity to be a beloved wife and mother.