Cover Image: An Engagement of Sorts

An Engagement of Sorts

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Member Reviews

I was pleasantly surprised with all the twists and turns in this debut novel of Alene Wecker.  The plot kept me on my toes and I loved the characters' flaws that gave them distinct personalities.  Her intelligent writing flowed well and I enjoyed the wit! 

I received a complimentary copy of this book.  All opinions expressed are completely my own.
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I would give this book 10 stars if I could! I LOVED the characters in this story and the banter had me in stitches half the time. Such a fun and easy read - I wanted to know how it ended and literally read the story in a day. Grab this one and enjoy! It’s a clean romantic fiction story - no steam and no language that is off-putting. The way Alene describes the characters and the setting are impeccable and I literally found myself so entrenched with the story that I zoned out and felt like I was a part of it. A lively and fun read!
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I loved this debut book Alene Wecker. The characters are engaging and relatable. The dialogue is witty and fun, especially between Thomas and Anne. The plot was interesting and I found the whole book thoroughly enjoyable. I would highly recommend this book to all who love a well written sweet romance.
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An Engagement of Sorts by Alene Wecker, 215 pages. Covenant Communications, 2021. $15.
Language: G (0 swears, 0 “f”); Mature Content: PG13; Violence: PG
Anne is desperate to get away from both Will, her childhood friend trying to marry her, and Mr. Smith, a customer of her father’s who is trying to take advantage of her. She ends up in London with her widowed sister but still can’t avoid the men. With reputations on the line, Anne is willing to do whatever it takes to protect herself and her loved ones.
All the twists and turns of Anne’s story are reminiscent of a Shakespeare comedy, encouraging me to both laugh and roll my eyes as I say of course that happened! The aforementioned complications strike a balance of being over-the-top and authentic for the characters, which made it feel fun and not simply cheesy as Anne takes part in ridiculous plans to first save herself and then her loved ones from ruined reputations. The mature content rating is for innuendo and sexual harassment.
Reviewer: Carolina Herdegen
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As a bit of a Regency newbie I stick pretty closely to the recommendations of my regency-obsessed bestie. So when she told me this one was good I immediately requested a copy and I’m glad I did! 
This was all the things I love in a regency, charming hero, feisty heroine, wit, banter, and of course romance! 
The verbal sparring between Anne and Thomas was completely perfect and hilarious! They spoke their minds and held nothing back and I was absolutely here for it! 
I loved Anne’s “wildness” and the way she just embraced who she was and Thomas’s appreciation of the very thing everyone else criticized was the most beautiful thing. 
The author did a great job with not only writing characters you could love but also ones that were so easy to despise!
All in all this was a fantastic read and I’m looking forward to what the author has next!
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What a great book! I absolutely love that the author uses her own ancestors to write the book. Alene does a fantastic job with each character, both real and fictional. I loved the inner battle that  Anne had between relief and jealousy with William. I love that she stuck true to who she was and refused to change to please the ton.
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This was my first experience with a book by Arlene Wecker. I enjoyed the story line. There were times when some of the interactions seems long winded, sometimes forced, and sometimes not needed.  But overall, I enjoyed the story and would love to read more of her works.  I also enjoyed that, while this story is a work of fiction, some of her character were real people. 

Anne Fletcher is her own woman, if only her mother would see her for who she is. Being forced into a loveless engagement/marriage with a longtime friend and vicar (Will), Anne insists on traveling to London. While there, she concocts a pretend engagement with Thomas (a dandy of the worst sort) to end her mother's instance on her marrying Will.  However, the last thing Anne expected was to actually fall in love.
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I found this book completely enchanting. It made me laugh out loud. A lot. I really liked the side saddle scene. The characters were well portrayed and mostly likable. I found it fortuitous that the rouse turned out to be real, and it was probably expected but in a great book a slight detour in a well traveled path adds a lot to the narrative. 
Thank you to NetGalley and Covenant Communications for an advance reader copy in exchange for a fair review.
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Well, shoot! Alene is REALLY good at writing sweet and romantic scenes. Oh my word! I got sooo many butterflies with the love letter scene, their kiss in the garden, and the proposal. I may or may not be in love with Thomas. **swoon**

There were some things I wasn’t a fan of. And not to discredit this novel because it was very well written. I struggle with any reference to rape as a trigger for myself and wish that there was some disclaimer in the synopsis to let me know what I was getting into. I’m grateful nothing went too far, but I am not used to reading books that mention rape or put so much emphasis on a large bust and physical lust between couples. I’m also not a fan of dreams being explained in books because I tend to lose interest. Could be because I rarely dream myself and can’t relate. 

Overall, I enjoyed it! I think the second half of the book saved it for me because there was so much going on that I fell into the “one more chapter” trance. I really hope this will be a series because I want to know what happens with Charlotte, Angel, Mr. Kehr, and Colonel Thoroton. I still had some questions at the end and I hope those will be answered in the next book, if it is a series. 

I received a complementary advanced readers copy in exchange for my honest review. This in no way affected my opinion or my review. Thank you, Alene Wecker!
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Thank you net galley for the advance reader copy of this novel.   This was a regency era fiction.   Main characters, Anne and Thomas, enter into a false engagement to stop another engagement of friends.   The story was slow at first but picked up.   The plot was very transparent throughout, Anne and Thomas fall in love during the time of their fake engagement.   This story kind of reminded me of Eden Brooke but not as well written.   Great clean read overall!
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**I received a free copy of this ebook from the publisher via NetGalley. My words and review are my own, as always.***

Glory, this was so much fun to read! I had to stop myself from racing through so I could enjoy the set up for each bit of dialogue and setting. The humor was spot on for me and the characters so enjoyably paired. I definitely felt like I was reading something similar to Julianne Donaldson's Edenbrooke, but the author's voice and story were distinct enough to stand strong on its own.
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Anne Fletcher can ride a horse with the best of them. In fact she can do a lot of things a boy can. Her mother is disgusted with this. How is she to marry her daughter to a man of means if she is a tomboy and not a lady.
Anne has a different idea, hopefully one that will give her the best of both worlds.
Great book
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I really enjoyed this story. I liked the banter and teasing between Anne and Thomas. I loved that Thomas could see morally wrong behavior and chose to attempt to right it. And I always enjoy a woman who is willing to be herself instead of molding into society's expectations. That is the best ever. And I love it when children stand up to their overbearing and horrible parents so that was awesome as well.

I didn't like the hot and cold from Thomas and wondered a little at some of the word choices for the way he looked at Anne. I don't think he is a creepy person but some verbiage sounded that way. I think it was supposed to be teasing but it was unclear to me. And though Anne was known for being unconventional, I really didn't believe she would choose to go visit a man in her night clothes even if she is covered in a coat. That was too much, even for her. An obvious disaster waiting to happen.

Overall this was an enjoyable read. It appears to be a debut novel and is well written.

Sex: Kisses, some passionate, sexual assault
Language: no
Violence: sexual assault - not too graphic
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"An Engagement of Sorts" is a Regency romance. Unfortunately, the book wasn't what I expected from the description, and I didn't find it believable due to the inaccuracies. For example, an explosion that threw people away from a fireplace and toward the window also shattered the window, yet somehow the glass shards ended up all over the floor inside the room. A lot of odd things about that scene, like this bomb-like explosion occurred in a powder horn that her father was wearing, yet he didn't even suffer a flesh wound? Anyway.

Anne didn't defy convention so much as she was willfully ignorant of etiquette and propriety to a degree that just didn't seem believable. Granted, multiple times she deliberately tuned out what other people said then later realized it would've been good if she had listened to them. However, she seriously didn't seem to realize that there would be any problem with her wandering about a village at dawn in her nightgown and then demanding that the vicar allow her inside a room alone with him. Worse, he knew the possible consequences and didn't want to marry her, yet he let her in? All to create another scrape for her to get out of.

Anyway, Anne had an abusive family where everyone criticized her every behavior and called her silly and stupid, so she's drawn to the one man who loves her willful, bold, rude, and unpredictable behavior. She feels like every man ogles her bust or leers at her. The villain repeatedly tried to rape her, including in her own home (with plenty of people about) and in outdoor areas where he could be spotted. She's traumatized by these attacks and has nightmares, but the few people she tells either don't believe her or say that her behavior rather invites that sort of aggressive response. The whole story was about her trying to find someone who won't abuse her and will help her stop this villain from hurting other women.

I liked that the author tried to make complex characters, like a hero so disgusted with his father's behavior that he acted the exact opposite of him even though it didn't really achieve anything. But the numerous inaccuracies drained any realistic feel from the story. While I appreciated how the hero believed and supported Anne, he actually went too far with this by saying that she shouldn't change anything about herself. Is it really a good thing to discourage Anne from improving her flaws (like her temper and impulsiveness now that she finally realizes that actions have consequences)? Anyway, this was clearly not a story suited to me. While there was attempted rape, there were no sex scenes. There was no modern bad language.
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Anne Fletcher is tired of her mother constantly trying to shape her into a woman she isn't. She is too loud and too outspoken and her mother wants her married. Anne is able to escape to London to avoid an arranged marriage and there she meets the flirtatious Mr. Thomas Paling. I found this book a fun easy read full of humor and wit but also some heavy topics. I liked that Anne was able to realize how strong she was and that she didn't need to change herself to make others happy. I think that is an important lesson for all young kids to learn. Again fun read and would recommend to anyone looking for a clean romance book
#AnEngagementofSorts #NetGalley
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I am so pleased to have been able to read and review this debut novel by Alene Wecker. It was such a joy to read!

I always love a heroine who is a bit unconventional and does not appreciate being confined to the strictures of society.  Anne Fletcher doesn't want to be married off to the town vicar (who is like a brother to her) and is given the opportunity to go to London to try to find a husband of her own choosing. Enter Mr. Thomas Paling who is charming and fun and completely intrigued by Anne although also completely uninterested in love and marriage. Through a series of events put into motion by her rejection of the vicar, Anne must save her dear friend from a man she knows to be completely without morals anyway she can. Together her and Thomas join forces to try to bring this man to justice. 

Full of banter and chemistry, this debut novel completely won me over. I am so excited to find another great author that will be a solid go to for future reading.
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“Well that was a wild ride.”
The first thing I said after I finished reading, “An Engagement of Sorts.”
Anne, in an attempt to escape an engagement with her childhood friend, must find a London man who will propose to her before her first and only season ends. 

But when the heroine has no desire to get married and meets a man of a similar opinion, a rather convenient engagement (of sorts) is quickly reached. 

I have to admit I really struggled with this book in the beginning. The heroine was unlikeable, and there didn’t seem to be a single character that she considered a friend. Her mother hated her, her father was indifferent, her sister was jealous, every man she met seemed to “ogle” her or fall in love with her, or worse. 

In addition, there were suggestive comments that only served to further dampen my enjoyment. The first half just left me feeling somehow anxious and very confused. 

Yet, the wit and humour was refreshing and the plot still intriguing enough that I stuck it out.
And a book that in the first half was promising to be a 2 ⭐ book and regrettable read, somehow took a turn so much for the better, that I can actually say I loved it?

Anne became less aggravating. Thomas was adorable. Scoundrel though he promised to be, he was charming, thoughtful, completely in love and had a heartrending backstory and quickly won my heart. Yet, the author sprinkled in phrases describing his actions as ‘predatory’ and his eyes ‘roving’ over her, etc...that I neither appreciated, nor found romantic. (However, I fault these on the author and not on Thomas, so he’s still golden in my eyes🥰)

The plot that I earlier found confusing started to make sense and characters that served as antagonists slowly redeemed themselves. 

Also, there was the most adorable hug which it is no secret is my absolute weakness in romance books so that definitely helped. (Plis, that letter? Adorable😭🥰)

All in all, 3.6/5⭐ (rounded to 4) I truly disliked the first half and loved the second. Keep writing Alene Wecker, I just might keep reading😉  

“I would not have believed I would ever see a gentleman of the ton ride sidesaddle before today. Let us assume you have managed to stretch the breadth of my imagination.” 

TW: Attempted rape (not graphic)
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There are a lot of books about dandies and fops, but this story has an interesting motivation for Thomas to act the way he does. I have not read a story with quite the same motivation or with the same truthful elements. I loved how Alene Wecker took people from her family history and created a story that stayed true to some of the facts. I thought that made the story very diverting and kept my interest. I loved Thomas because of his motivations. It was refreshing to see a man in the London marriage mart who had more motivations for not marrying than just it was limiting and unnecessary. He was fun and interesting. Anne was an interesting heroine. She never lost her spirit even though people constantly tried to mold her into the person they thought she should be. 
This story is insightful and deals with some really horrible aspects of regency England. I knew of that aspect of that time period and it is horrible. This story deals with those issues considerately and delicately while also informing the reader.
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For a debut author, it's a good effort. However, it failed to really draw me into the period, mostly because there were too many tropes and unfinished details. For example, 1) a mean mother, 2) a perfect younger sister that is barely in the book, 3) a distant/married older sister, 4) a best male friend who loves her, but treats her poorly, 5) multiple sexual assaults and not being believed, and 6) a fake engagement. Whew! Too many tropes to be in the book, so that's down to poor editing and not enough meat in the story.

I appreciate that Anne was supposed to be an unconventional character, however, she wasn't consistent in the role. Half the time she was a complete ninny and other times, she was highly entertaining. Most of the writing felt as if the author was struggling to stick to the time period instead of the present day.

I was provided with an ARC of this book by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
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I absolutely loved this book. I am definitely going to read this again. It reminded me of a Jane Austen book..This author really made me feel like I was transported back into the regency era. The love story was beautiful and it also had mystery with depth. Great book.
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