Isabelle Rackham knows she will not marry for love. Though arranged marriages have fallen out of fashion, hers has been settled for some time to combine the upper-middle-class wealth of her father’s coal mines with Alexander Osgood’s prospering Northern country textile mills. Though not a man prone to romantic gestures, Alexander is well-known as an eligible bachelor. His good looks have turned more than one head, so Isabelle is content to think of herself as Alexander’s wife.
However, her marriage is not what she expected. Northern England is nothing like her home farther west in the lake country. Cold, dreary, and dark, the soot from the textile mills creates a gray hue that seems to cling to everything in the city of Manchester. Alexander is distant and aloof, preferring to spend his time at the mill rather than with her at home. Their few conversations are brief, polite, and lacking any emotion, leaving Isabelle lonely and desperately homesick.
Sensing his wife’s unhappiness, Alexander suggests a trip to his country estate. Isabelle hopes this will be an opportunity to get to know her new husband without the distractions of his business. But the change of scenery doesn’t bring them any closer. While riding together on horses, Alexander is thrown from his and becomes paralyzed. Tragedy or destiny? The help and care that Alexander now needs is Isabelle’s opportunity to forge a connection and create a deep and romantic love where nothing else could.
My review of Isabelle and Alexander
Set in the era of England’s Industrial revolution, the book tells of how love can blossom despite adversity and against all odds.
Isabelle comes from a rich family, while Alexander is a self-made man who owns mills in Manchester. While he now has money, he’s not exactly at ease in social circles. Isabelle on the other hand is confident and used to social life. When a marriage is arranged for them, they seem to be at odds with each other. Isabelle finds it hard to draw Alexander out and their conversations are stilted and awkward.
As they seem to start getting to know each other, Alexander is injured in an accident that leaves him bedridden. Isabelle gets involved in his care and starts to make decisions about their home and business. It’s lovely to read of how this girl comes into her own and with the help of a good doctor and loyal staff, she manages to get Alexander on the road to recovery.
How they romance moves forward despite all the unfavourable circumstances makes for a sweet, clean romance.
Buy Isabelle And Alexander here.
Rebecca Anderson is a high school English teacher by day, writer by night (or very early morning), she loves hiking, Broadway shows, food, books, and movies. She is happily married and a mom to four above-average kids.
I received an ARC of the book from the publisher Shadow Mountain Publishing via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.