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The Five-Minute Marriage (1979)

The Five-Minute Marriage (1979)

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3.81 of 5 Votes: 1
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0446846821 (ISBN13: 9780446846820)
warner books (ny)

About book The Five-Minute Marriage (1979)

A charming story of suspense and intrigue in Regency England, this is probably my favorite Joan Aiken novel read to date. What I find so interesting about reading her books is that they do not feel like "make-believe"...they have a very realistic and truthful component which results in an "anything can happen" anticipation of the outcome. While many other gothic suspense romantic novels require the reader to temporarily "suspend belief", Aiken tells stories that could very well have happened...and that makes one very nervous while reading because a happy ending is not always the outcome of one of her novels...(in one I read, the heroine actually died...that was another, a little girl, a leading character, dies drowning in the ocean in a grand climactic sad and so unexpected!) I am not giving away any spoilers in connection with this particular novel by telling you about those others, but you get a better picture of Aiken's style of suspense writing. Read at your own heart thumping, pulse accelerating risk!!

I got The Five-Minute Marriage from PaperbackSwap because I remembered having enjoyed it when I read it in high school. And it seemed like it might be good plane reading for my trip to Italy. It WAS good plane reading, except that I finished it too quickly. It's not a long book – just a fairly straightforward, light, regency romance in Heyer style. Joan Aiken, the author, adds her own brand of humorous shenanigans and over-the-top villainy. Which is fine with me. Just really fun reading.

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This is the first adult Joan Aiken book I've read all the way thru. (I've read many many of her children's books.) I was worried it would be a difficult book with a lot of tragedy in it, as the only other adult book by Joan Aiken I had tried reading was tragic and too emotionally gruelling for me so I didn't finish it. I don't remember what it was called. But this one has a happy ending, and is even somewhat cliche, but I didn't mind that. I really enjoyed it and got into it and identified with the heroine.It's sort of like a cross between a Jane Austen, a Mary Stewart, and a Georgette Heyer, with Aiken's own twist of humor occassionally added in.

Its true they keep it in the family *ahem* in many old regencies. I even considered adding a shelf for couples that are related :PI still want to read this though..

Overall this was a delightful book. While the writing style and, what I'm assuming is the language of the time period, made me stumble at times, the characters were interesting. The author put in plenty of believable twists and included a happy ending. The storyline includes LOTS of crazy family history which sometimes got confusing, but only formed the overall picture of why this family was the way it was, so I didn't have to focus on getting all the people right in order to follow the main plot. Largely clean, although it hints at much common to life, I think it's really the characters that drew me in and kept me reading.
—Carrie Daws

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