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Marian's Christmas Wish

4.04  ·  Rating Details  ·  945 Ratings  ·  176 Reviews
Miss Marian Wynswich is a rather unconventional young lady. She plays chess, reads Greek, and is as educated as any young man. And she’s certain falling in love is a ridiculous endeavor and vows never to do such a thing. But everything changes when she receives a Christmas visit from someone unexpected—a young and handsome English lord.
Kindle Edition, 304 pages
Published (first published December 5th 1989)
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(showing 1-30 of 1,885)
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For me Carla Kelly is The Queen of Regency Romance, she doesn't use Dukes, tons of balls or the everyday like of the ton read so much about in this period. Her characters are just your avenge everyday person, with everyday problems. Marian's Christmas Wish is one of Carla Kelly's gems.

Miss Marian Wynswich is not your everyday miss. Taught by her father to use her smarts and the glue that holds her family together after her father's death leaves a huge debt amount behind causing the family no e
Dec 05, 2011 Cindy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
This was such a charming Christmas story. I curled up in bed and was swept away with Marian and her wishing story. Marian and her family are on the verge of ruination, due to her fathers untimely death, gambling habits amongst other things. Percy her eldest brother has kept them afloat for so long but the end is drawing near for them. Percy and his mother Lady Wynswich decide it is time to marry off Ariadne the oldest daughter to the richest man. However her heart belongs to another and she want ...more
I have a confession to make. I really love Carla Kelly romances. I fell in love with her style when I read Marrying the Captain, and the other two books in her Channel Fleet trilogy, The Surgeon's Lady and Marrying the Royal Marine. There is something really simple about how she just tells a story, with minimal stylistic flourishes or silly misunderstandings, and how she writes about men and women and their relationships, that I just really enjoy. Other authors may have me sighing or crying, and ...more
This is a thoroughly charming and heartwarming story. Marian Wynswich is sixteen-going-on-seventeen, but nonetheless has shouldered much of the responsibility for her household since the death of her profligate father the year before.

She loves her family dearly, but they don’t make life all that easy for Marian or for themselves. Her younger brother Alistair is sent down from Eton and her elder brother Percy is often away. Her sister Ariadne, though beautiful, will not say ‘boo’ to a goose and h
Dec 14, 2011 TJ rated it really liked it
Awwwwww... Sweet and clean and Christmas! What a nice diversion during a hectic season. While the situations were a little far fetched and hurdling an amazingly grown-up sixteen year old heroine was a stretch, one couldn't help but love the indomitable spirit of Marian, nor the long-suffering sweetness of Gil. This is a story that teenage girls will gobble up and women can relax, escape and giggle at.
Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽
Marian's Christmas Wish was an enjoyable Regency read with a holiday setting. The main character, Marian, is a spunky 16 year old girl who has shouldered a lot of the burden of taking care of her family. Her family is in severe financial straits since their profligate father died a year ago. In the hope that Marian's older sister, Ariadne, will marry well and save the family home, their brother Percy brings home two friends for Christmas: Sir William and Gilbert Collinwood, Lord Ingraham. Unfort ...more
Dec 19, 2011 Sandy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of Georgette Heyer
4.5 out of 5 stars

I love a spunky heroine. I love a girl who will get in and out of scrapes, volley some witty banter at the handsome man we're dying for her to kiss, and beat him at chess to boot. And you know what else I love? Carla Kelly's writing. I read Marian's Christmas Wish not knowing what to expect and ended up spending the next three days reading three Carla Kelly books because I couldn't get enough of her writing. I immediately bought my own copy of Marian's Christmas Wish as soon as
Marian's Christmas Wish is a sweet and tender book, that shows how the life of two families changed during Christmas holidays. Marian's family has been struggling ever since the passing of her father who left them in debt. The only solution to their problems seems to be a marriage with a rich man for Marian's elder and beautiful sister, Ariadne. Ariadne though is in love with the village's priest and detests the idea. A few days before Christmas, Percy, their elder brother who works for the dipl ...more
Jul 03, 2012 Christopher rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kathy ~ Bookworm Nation
This was just okay for me, I wanted to like it more than I did. I liked the idea of the story and the mystery thrown in at the end. I didn't care for the age differences between Marian and Gilbert (she's 16 and he's 28). I thought he treated her like a little kid a lot of the time, and I don't like mean nicknames like "brat", which he called her a lot. I'm sure he meant it as a term of endearment, but I like nice names. The story takes place during Christmas and it had a nice holiday feel to it. ...more
Katie W
Marian is a young woman (16 years old) who is quite full of spunk. Her family is almost ruined financially, since her father's death a year earlier, and their only hope is for the oldest sister, Ariadne, to marry well. Unfortunately, Ariadne is in love with the poor vicar, which won't help their case at all. Her brother brings home two friends for Christmas--Sir William (hoping to become engaged to Ariadne) and Lord Ingraham, whom Marian finds herself falling for.

This story is a sweet, regency,
Nov 22, 2011 Colette rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle, 2011
This book surprised me! I was expecting a nice love story with a Christmas backdrop, and I ended up enjoying rich characters, fun dialogue, and even a little intrigue. Set in the Regency time period, Marian is a spunky girl whose family is nearing financial ruin. Their only hopeful prospect is marrying off her elder sister (who is madly in love with the poor but kind vicar) to a wealthy suitor. Without spoiling anything, I will just say that fans of the Janes (Jane Austen and Jane Eyre) will lov ...more
Angie Cornelison
I couldn't stop giggling through the book. It was wonderful. Marian and her family where a hoot! Oh, and of course Lord Ingraham. Such a charming soul. Wonderful story line! This one will keep you smiling.
( Clean romance).
Nov 25, 2011 Crystal rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love Marian, she is such a fun character. She's not afraid of much and she says what comes to mind and it makes her a delight to read, she is definitely not a shrinking wall flower of a girl. And in addition, the entire Wynswich family is a delight as well, even the stuffier members of the family turn out to be quite fun and likable.

I haven't read Regency romance in awhile and I forgot what I was missing in the really good ones, and Marian's Christmas Wish is one of the ones that really stand
I did end up enjoying this book. Mostly because I liked the main characters, Marian and Lord Ingraham. (view spoiler) ...more
Carla Kelly is a talented writer and I've rarely been disappointed in anything she's written. However, I was more than a little disappointed in Marian's Christmas Wish, at least in parts of it.

The book starts out as a mostly light-hearted book with an impish heroine, a likeable hero and a decent cast of supporting characters. Marian was a mixture of childish innocence and beyond-her-years wisdom. Gil was a jaded government diplomat who winds up at Marian's family estate for Christmas. The reader
Dec 28, 2011 Julie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is one Christmas story you should definitely pick up. Carla Kelly brings to life a story of love and family and Christmas in a regency romance and then mixes it with intrigue and diplomacy and attempted murder that made this a book I could not put down.

We are introduced to Marian Wynswich, the girl who is trying to hold her family together after the untimely death of their father. He has left them with lots of debts and when big brother Percy comes home for the holidays, he brings with him
Lisa  (Bookworm Lisa)
I really needed a read that made me laugh, smile, and entertained me.

Marian is a spunky 16 year old who is a misfit for her time period. She doesn't conform to a docile lady. She has so much personality and says what she really thinks. Sometimes that honesty gets her into a bit of a bind, but I think it was refreshing. It also caught the eye of the Gilbert Collinwood.

She is in the middle of a plan to foil the unwanted attention of a wealthy suitor for her older sister, Ariandne. Her sister is in
Oct 29, 2011 Janga rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Like all of Carla Kelly’s romances, this one is filled with characters who come alive for the reader. Marian is young, not yet seventeen, with a candor that makes her seem even younger at times. But she has intelligence, a loving heart, and an irrepressible sense of humor. Gil is a wonderful hero—understanding, great-hearted, and surprisingly unlordly for so high ranking an aristocrat—and with all the appeal of a man who combines tenderness with an understated charm. Despite the differences in a ...more
Dec 12, 2012 Alisa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: christmas
Marian Wynswich is 16 and wants to have the best Christmas ever. That's not too much to ask for, is it? She doesn't want any reminders that they are about to lose their beautiful home because of all the debts her father left them when he died a year earlier. She wants her older sister Ariadne to be able to marry the man she loves, Sam, who is a poor, poor vicar (and has no means to help them out of their financial mess).

When her younger brother, Alistair returns home sooner than he is expected b
Nov 30, 2011 L_manning rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Marian Wynswich and her family are in a bad way. Their father recently died, leaving them with debts they cannot pay. When Marian's older brother comes with a potential suitor for her older sister, Marian takes it upon herself to keep her sister out of a marriage just for money. What Marian doesn't realize is her life is about to take a new turn in the form of a friend her older brother brought home. He's able to see past Marian's eccentricities, and Marian might be falling for him. If only she ...more
Dec 21, 2014 Anne rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What a cute love story! I enjoyed the plot and the characters. Marian is a fiesty girl but so likeable. I was just hoping she'd somehow end up with Gil. I found the writing to be a little difficult to follow in some parts though.
Lynne Tull
Mar 01, 2015 Lynne Tull rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: regency-romance
There has to be a category somewhere between 'Really liked it" and "It was amazing". I am voting for "I loved it". Carla Kelly has a way with words. This book is fun, thoughtful, poignant, mysterious, and suspenseful. There were a couple of scenes in this play that were not really believable. However, overlooking those scenes, I smiled or laughed through most of the book and got 'teary-eyed' when it was appropriate. You can't beat Carla Kelly for more traditional dialog of the period (not quite ...more
Teya Peck
Dec 05, 2015 Teya Peck rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I rather enjoyed this book. It did have a slow moment and I kind of got confused at another moment. Having said that I enjoyed it. I loved Marian's character. Strong and not going to take crap from nobody. I like nice nicknames better brat seems like a brotherly nickname, but it was endearing to him. I've had a few endearing weird nicknames said to me and I said to someone else so that didn't bother me to much. Gil was off and on for me but it went with the story so it was great. I just liked th ...more
Lisa Shambrook
I read this book within my book club, so my copy was borrowed. It is a sweet regency/Napoleonic romance, but too formulaic for my taste. I often wish period romances would have less cliché and more originality.

Marian’s (beautiful, but shy) sister is about to be married off to a rich oaf, in return for saving the family home, at risk after her father died having gambled away their money. Marian has no plans to marry and sites both her plain appearance and her tenacity as reasons why she might no
Apr 14, 2015 Rainpasion rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
By God, this is a perfect book. Absolute perfection. I'm not saying that Marian can do no wrong, but what she does, she does with so much heart. The coming-of-age theme was so well-written and it just made her so tangent as a character and relatable regardless of her age. And Gil... dear lord, what a gorgeous human being he was. They both were. It's not quite right to label it as "love at first sight" or even a "slow burn" sort of romance... it was one of those romances where "I'm-gonna-marry-yo ...more
Megan Gee
This book made me want to vomit. It was so extremely predictable and the main character was ridiculous. She was spoiled and a total drama queen. She was stupid. If she was real, we would not be friends. It irritated me how oblivious she was to everything around her. The rest of the characters were solid and interesting except for her. She did't think through anything. She was 16 so that was probably part of the problem, but I think Gil could have done so much better than her. There were parts th ...more
Nov 10, 2011 Melissa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone!
Wow, I haven't enjoyed a book this much in a while! I think I have another favorite author! This was a clean, sweet, English romance and I fell in love with each character! I was worried that it wouldn't be well developed cause it's a short story but I got everything I wanted with this little book! This will be one I look to buy! I wanted to note that anyone could read this book it has no religion attached to it, I wouldn't even call it Christian fiction. Just a good CLEAN romance! 16 and up.
Mar 31, 2012 Li rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This had a lot more story than I expected - in a good way! I really liked this book.

The large age gap between the h/h bothered me slightly at first - or perhaps it was the age of the heroine (16 going on 17) - but I ended up going with it eventually, especially as you see Marian mature throughout the book. I loved the close relationship between Marian and her siblings as well.

A really wonderful Christmas romance - one that leaves you with that feel-good feeling.
Lady Wesley
Apr 13, 2012 Lady Wesley rated it really liked it
Shelves: lendable, amz-rev
Marian is a wonderful, and quite young, heroine: smart, outspoken, and brave, with a marvelously offbeat family. Gil, our hero, is older, a diplomat, and an earl. Their story takes many unexpected twists and turns; there's really a lot of plot here.

I love my smexy romances, but Carla Kelly writes them totally clean and that's okay; she's a wonderful writer. I expect to be working my way through her backlist as more becomes available on Kindle.
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Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the GoodReads database with this name.

Although Carla Kelly is well known among her readers as a writer of Regency romance, her main interest (and first writing success) is Western American fiction—more specifically, writing about America's Indian Wars. Although she had sold some of her work before, it was not until Carla began work in the National P
More about Carla Kelly...

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