It’s a testament to Jan Romes’ writing that after downloading Married To Maggie, I intended to have a little peek and four hours later I was still reading. Married To Maggie is the best kind of romance, fun, witty and pure escapism.
With a plot that would rival Shakespeare, Married To Maggie hinges on secret schemes, double crosses, an arch-villain and nothing being as it seems. When Maggie Gray loses her job as a nurse, she is tempted into accepting an offer from billionaire oil tycoon Loy Vincent, to marry his grandson Ty. In a quirky twist of fate, Ty also hires Maggie to pose as his wife, in order to get his grandfather off his case. The novel takes place over the seven days from Maggie and Ty’s meeting to their wedding day and what a seven days it is.
The heart of the story is Maggie Gray herself, who is a terrific combination of vulnerability and grit. A dedicated cardiac nurse in her late twenties, she has a full life; helping at shelters for the homeless and dogs as well as belly dancing and socialising with her best friend Nancy. She’s not a woman to be pushed around and has no problem in standing up to the ferocious Loy Vincent and Ty’s snobby friends but at heart she is kind and caring. It doesn’t take long for her to regret becoming embroiled in the madcap scheme as her feelings for Ty are genuine and real.
Ty is also a likeable character, a man trying to live up to the reputation of his imposing lineage whilst making his own mark. There are lots of other engaging characters, most notably Ty’s mother Ellen and my own personal favourite, the paparazzi photographer Chaz Rosston. Romes’ skill as a writer is evident in her ability to bring her characters to life which makes her readers believe in them and care about them.
Married To Maggie makes no pretence to be anything other than what it is, a light hearted rom-com. However, it does touch on serious issues. Romes uses her novel to explore grief and how people deal with it differently. Ty is grieving for his father who died in a car accident and, because he has not really processed what happened, he suffers from debilitating panic attacks. Maggie has lost her own mother and her grief is manifested in a quiet sadness. At the same time we see how families can have a negative impact on each other when relationships become controlling rather than accepting.
Married To Maggie is the first novel in the Texas Boys Falling Fast series and one of the things I enjoyed was looking out for other characters who may be featured in future stories. I’m holding out hope for Sam Bright, the bar owner. All in all, I really enjoyed this novel and if you like a story that puts a smile on your face and a spring in your step then I think this will be a great choice for you.