Tuesday, February 16, 2021

MARRIAGE BY PROXY - Not Just a Romance Novel Marriage of Convenience Device By Kathleen Lawless @kathleenlawless

 As an avid reader, I loved Marriage of Convenience stories even before I knew MOC was a trope.  These days, the popular story line continues to strike a chord with readers because these weddings still happen for any number of reasons. 

Started in Europe in the Middle Ages, Proxy Marriages also continue to take place today.  The Proxy Marriage is a wedding where one or both individuals are not physically present, with the absent bride or groom represented by someone else.  Generations ago, this ceremony provided protection for any bride traveling some distance to meet her new husband, for their marriage was already a done deal.  The groom couldn’t meet her face-to-face and change his mind or send her back. 

Proxy Weddings enjoyed a resurgence during the First and Second World Wars, offering a soldier serving overseas the opportunity to marry his sweetheart back home.  Currently, a handful of states still honor proxy marriages formed within their boundaries.

I’ve written a number of mail-order bride books, so it was an interesting stretch to come up with a plot for a Proxy Bride story.  I’m excited to share A BRIDE FOR SHANE with my readers.  Watch for it in May as part of the popular Proxy Brides Series.


Her brother’s bad-boy best friend needs a wife!

American heiress and champion horse breeder, Lacey has always been in love with her brother’s rough-and-tumble, bad boy best friend.  She doesn’t care if Shane is a pauper and a convicted thief, so when she learns he is sentenced to death, his only reprieve hinging on a proxy marriage, she doesn’t hesitate to sign the papers, ship her horses, and head West.   

Proud and fiercely independent, Shane hates being beholden to anyone almost as much as he hated being in prison.  Years ago, his best friend’s twin sister threw herself at him, a temptation that drove him West to seek his fortune.  Now it seems someone wants to take that fortune away from him.  Why else was he tried and found guilty for a crime he didn’t commit? 

Aware he owes Lacey his life, Shane guards his secrets, determined to find out who framed him so he can prove his innocence and annul the marriage.  Then a dead body shows up on their ranch, making it obvious that Shane’s goals clash with whoever wants him out of the picture permanently. 

Lacey has no intention of accepting an annulment, and schemes to make their marriage binding in every way.  A move Shane finds impossible to resist, even though it means putting them both in harm’s way, and possibly landing him back in jail.  Lacey’s move to solidify their union pits the couple against the villain and reveals the secret Shane is hiding.  Why has he deceived her?  What else is he keeping from her?  And how will it affect their future?

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Julie Lence said...

Such an interesting subject, and that sounds like a juicy read, Kathleen!!! Hugs.

Liz Flaherty said...

I'm anxious to read this one. I've always been a fan of MOC and this adds a different element. I love that cover!

Kara O'Neal said...

I can't imagine marrying someone without seeing them. Very scary but also a set-up for some wonderful conflict and romance. Those who married this way during WWI and II -- that just makes my heart squeeze with love for them. I hope they got to be together after the wars.

Marcia King-Gamble said...

Can't wait for the release. Intriguing topic! I just learned something new about proxy marriages. I am addicted to the reality show Married at First Sight, especially the Australian version, and the hunky men. Do you watch?