Twelve years ago, Kathryn Bright Goodale shared an unforgettable kiss with Lord James Bennett. Unfortunately, she was married at the time, and James was one of her husband's best friends. Kate has carried the guilt of that kiss for years, and with it, the fantasies of Lord Bennett that kept stirring in her mind.
Now that her husband has passed away, Kate finds herself penniless. All the money went to his children, and Kate, as their stepmother, was left nothing. When she stumbles upon an invitation addressed to her late husband inviting him to participate in "The Great Centennial Race", she's intrigued, particularly since the winner is to receive the grand sum of fifty thousand dollars - a great deal of money in 1899.
But Kate realizes she can't embark on such an adventure on her own. Swallowing her pride, she approaches James, and asks for his help. He's known as a famous adventurer, and although his last expedition ended in his partner's death, James grudgingly accepts Kate's proposal. As the two of them set out to win the grand prize, the passion they shared so many years ago begins to resurface, and soon, Kate and James realize they're in for an experience that may result in a prize far more appealing than money.
Despite its rather misleading title, A WEDDING STORY is a fantastic adventure romance. The wedding itself only takes place in the last chapter, and even then it's mostly glossed over. As in all romances, the relationship between the hero and heroine is key, and it does culminate in marriage. However, the focus of the story is on "The Great Centennial Race", which is an adventure worthy of Indiana Jones.
It was refreshing to read about a heroine who was able to physically keep up with the hero through all the trials they had to experience as they embarked on the race. Kate is stubborn, determined, and she hates to lose - all traits that enable her to push herself to the limit of her abilities, and then somehow find the energy to push herself even further. James is wonderful in his role as adventurer, and the way he protects and cares for Kate is heartwarming.
Though the author does stumble a couple of times and calls James by the wrong name (Jake, which coincidentally is the name of the main character in one of her other books, "Marry Me"), the writing is beautifully descriptive and imaginative. Kate and James travel all over the world during their journey, and Susan Kay Law expertly describes the surroundings without making the reader feel overwhelmed, or detracting from the fast paced story.
If you like your historicals with a dash of adventure, and your romance on the steamy side, you'll love A WEDDING STORY.