Melanie Milburne on Marriage Of Convenience Stories
‘I could kill for a glass of wine.’
He gave her a wry look. ‘You could get killed for having it.’
I’ve lost count of the number of marriage of convenience stories I’ve done. Usually one party wants the marriage for financial gain/revenge/blackmail while the other resists.
But this time I wanted both of my characters to resist. And I wanted the stakes to be extremely high. You can’t get much higher than life and death, can you?
Angelique Marchand is murderously angry with Remy Caffarelli, the bad boy younger brother of Those Scandalous Caffarellis, as he has won her late mother’s ancestral home off her father in a Vegas poker game. She tracks him down in the ancient and ultra conservative desert province of Dharbiri and hides in his room at the palace so she can have a private showdown with him.
Remy comes back to his room after a dinner function with the Crown Prince and has no idea he has a stowaway!
Angelique is hiding behind his clothes in the closet, listening to every word as Remy opens the door to a palace official….
‘As you are well aware, Monsieur Caffarelli, the dictates of our province state that no single woman must be unchaperoned with a man unless she is his sister or his wife. We have reason to believe you have someone in your room who does not fit either of those categories.’
‘Are you out of your mind?’ Remy sounded incredulous. ‘I know the rules. I’ve been coming here long enough. I would never do anything to insult Sheikh Muhtadi. Surely his officials-including you- know that?’
‘A junior member of our housekeeping staff has tearfully confessed to allowing a young woman access to your room,’ the official said. ‘We wish to check whether this is true or not.’
‘Go on. Check.’ Remy sounded supremely, arrogantly confident. ‘You won’t find anyone in here but me.’
Poor Remy! He was so unprepared to find Angelique springing out of his closet like a bikini clad girl out of a birthday cake.
He is the family rebel, the bad boy wild child of the Caffarelli clan. But he has more than met his match in Angelique. Being forced to marry each other to get out of the province alive makes for a roller coaster ride of sharp tongues and quick wits battling it out for a winner takes all showdown.
I had so much fun writing this book. There were times when I felt Remy and Angelique took turns to come into my office and watch over my shoulder. Remy would lean indolently against the doorjamb and smile in that arrogantly confident way.
Angelique would perch on the corner of my desk, lean right into my face and demand to know if I’d got Remy to give her back her house yet.
I hope you enjoy Never Gamble With A Caffarelli. I have a signed copy for a reader who answers this question: What do you love most about Marriage of Convenience stories?
Giveaway! One reader will get a signed copy of Never Gamble With A Caffarelli by answering the above question in the comments. Contest will close at at 11:59 pm on Novemeber 24, and winner by random draw will be selected on the 25. Open to residents of US and Canada. For full giveaway rules, click here.
Update: This contest is now closed.