Sunday, May 1, 2016

I Thee Wed- Celeste Bradley

I Thee Wed (Wicked Worthingtons #4)- Celeste Bradley
Berkley Publishing Group
Release Date: May 3, 2016

Synopsis: Intelligent and driven, Orion Worthington aspired to be like his mentor, the acclaimed scientist Sir Geoffrey Blayne. Logically, Sir Geoffrey’s daughter would be Orion’s perfect match. So why can’t he keep his mind off the unruly girl who works in Sir Geoffrey’s lab?  Orphaned fire-cracker Francesca Penrose hopes that London is modern enough to accept her brilliant mind despite her womanhood. But she can’t help noticing Orion’s mind...or his body.  So they decide to run an experiment: if they give in to their passions, their attraction will simply fizzle out, with no impact on their hearts...right?

Although the 4th book in a series, this was the first Celeste Bradley book that I've read. While many of the supporting characters would have been enhanced by having read their stories first, I Thee Wed stood on its own as a fun book full of excellent characters.

Scientist Orion Worthington comes from a large and rather chaotic family.  All he dreams about is a quiet, orderly life where he can pursue his scientific investigations without interruption.  He plans things out in detail, rarely understands the people around him, and never acts spontaneously. He's a little like Temperance Brennan in Bones- great with scientific facts, not so much with understanding emotions- his or anyone else's.  Orion can't wait to get away from his family and work as assistant to the famous scientist Sir Geoffrey Blayne.  The path he and Blayne set out includes great scientific discoveries, Orion marrying Blayne's daughter Judith, being accepted into the top scientific communities, and eventually inheriting Blayne's house, labs, and work.  Sounds almost too good to be true . . . 

Real life hits Orion in the guise of an Italian whirlwind named Francesca.  Suddenly he has trouble focusing on anything but how much he wants her, and dealing with emotions he's never experienced before.  Francesca works hard to show him life can be a beautiful mix of emotion, science, and the senses.  In short- she's very much his opposite, very much like the rest of his family, and everything he's been trying to get away from!

Orion and Francesca are great characters: well written, three-dimensional people who's struggles and emotions come alive to the reader.  The Worthington clan reminds me of Candace Camp's Moreland family- full of vibrant, loving, and unconventional people who accept their own uniqueness without bowing to Society.  I loved how Orion went from being embarrassed by his "mad" relations to appreciating them and the familial love he's always taken for granted. Especially at the end, when he admits that in order to help plot a chaotic and wicked revenge one must go to the experts- his family. 

Full of humor, mad scientists, and rabbits, I Thee Wed is a great book, sure to be enjoyed by fans of Candace Camp and Julia Quinn.

I received an ARC of this book from NetGalley for an honest review.

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