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The Marigold Chain

4.03  ·  Rating Details ·  106 Ratings  ·  26 Reviews

Rather than pass another night in her dissolute brother's household, Chloe Ashton accepted the stranger who had won her at cards. But marriage to the charming Alex Deveril had more than its share of problems. Caught up in a dangerous political intrigue, still suffering from rejected love, Alex had little time to spare his unknown bride.

Hardcover, 318 pages
Published 1983 by Century
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I had a copy of this book in the early 1980s and remember it was one of my “go-to” reads. But it disappeared from my collection several years ago – I don’t know if I lent it to someone and didn't get it back, or inadvertently donated it to a local charity shop – but I’ve been looking to get another copy ever since. It’s been out of print, along with Stella Riley’s other titles, and second hand copies are few and far between and ridiculously expensive – so I was doing a happy dance when I discove ...more
Feb 16, 2016 Wendy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm delighted to have been pointed in the direction of Stella Riley by one of her biggest fans, and now I'm going to be on a SR binge as she has a lovely long, re-published list available on kindle. Any writer who can keep me awake into the early hours is worthy of great respect. How on earth did I miss her the first time around?

Alex Deveril - who by the way is utterly gorgeous - is out on a drinking spree one night, having been rejected by the woman he believes he loves. He and Chloe Herveaux
I’ve had time to digest this lovely novel and was finally able to put my finger on why exactly it needed “digesting” in the first place, as I'd mentioned

Basically, because it’s a sweet love story and from a talented writer, yet the same thing that might be its greatest appeal for others is the very thing that I needed to mull over to sort out mixed feelings. Because this is, at the core, a Francis Crawford of Lymond and Sevigny homage that, to me, wasn't done so well as it could've been.

Bailed at 25%. I have absolutely no idea what I just read. It was all a jumble of people and dialogue that didn't make a lick of sense. Am I missing something? I feel like there's part of a book missing here. The first two chapters had about as much coherency as a bunch of court jesters slapping each other with water weenies and farting glitter.
What if Dorothy Dunnett's Lymond and Philippa had a baby with Georgette Heyer's Friday's Child and that baby was set in Restoration England (does that sentence even make any sense? It does to me).

Seriously, this book is perfect. The gorgeous, enigmatic, quote-loving hero who keeps everyone at a distance and the pragmatic, smart, fierce heroine remind me of Lymond and Philippa (not as good as the originals, of course, but then who is) and the whole 'newly married couple adjust to each other while
Marguerite Kaye
This was a very difficult book to grade, but overall I think 3.5 stars.

First of all, what I really liked. Most importantly, the hero and heroine and the chemistry between Alex and Chloe, which was amazing. He was brilliantly done, and I really admired Ms Riley for having the guts to create such a very flawed man, and for sticking to her guns in keeping him true to his character right to the very end. Though underneath it all, unfailingly loyal, Alex could be arrogant, ignorant, hurtful, spiteful
Jan 04, 2013 Kit rated it it was amazing
Excellent, well-researched and intelligent romance set in the reign of Charles II (1660-1685). The hero is a brilliant but bitter man who wins the heroine in a dice game (but she, being present, agrees as she considers him a better bargain than the cousin who wagered her). The heroine is the only person who can match the hero in wit and repartee; their arguments range from delightful screwball to considerably more dark and cutting remarks.

The hero does resemble Frances Crawford of Lymond in many
Sep 29, 2012 Meg rated it it was amazing
As my copies of the out of print Marigold Chain by Stella Riley has long since crumbled away due to over-reading, I was overjoyed when I saw Ms Riley would be re-releasing it (and others from her back list) on kindle. I re-read the Marigold Chain this week and thoroughly enjoyed it all over again.

Set around the time of the great fire of London, the Marigold Chain tells the story of clever, determined and loyal Chloe, who is gambled away by her dissolute stepbrother. The man who wins her is Alex
Marsha Lambert
Sep 04, 2016 Marsha Lambert rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Marigold Chain by Stella Riley was recommended to me by a friend. The first book I have read by Riley but it certainly won't be my last. The story is set in the mid 1600's England and written splendidly by the author as to draw the reader in from page one. I was so engrossed in the tale that I read the book in one day.

The story line flowed seamlessly with well fleshed out characters. The main male character Alex Deveril is a man with flaws but nothing that can't be overcome with the love and
Fiona Ellwood
Apr 20, 2014 Fiona Ellwood rated it really liked it
Another re-read, I had the paperback edition then discovered it had been published on Kindle. I wanted to see if it had been revised as the other Stella Riley novels had.

I enjoyed it, it is nice to read something easy and familiar, and I do like the characters, even though they are obviously copies of Francis and Philippa (Lymond Chronicles). I'm waiting for "The King's Falcon" to come out later in the year, and I don't suppose that Stlla Riley is going to go back to this book, but I do wonder w
Lightning Review:

- Felt more Historical Fiction that Historical Romance -- although interestingly the romance is very much the center of the story

- Takes place during The Restoration, a period very much not explored in Hist-Rom

- Reckless, Brilliant, Angsty, hero Alex starts out kind of an asshole -- not in a Romance Novel Hero asshole way, just as a general asshole. But then he gets complex and has layers and you start thinking about him and you start to like him. Good, deep characterization wit
Kate Sherwood
Didn't do much for me. Too much political history (battles, etc.) for what I was expecting, but I like straight-up historical fiction usually, so I don't think it was the non-romance stuff that put me off.

Really, for me, it was the hero. I was warned about him (wherever I found this book mentioned said something about the hero being an asshole, but maybe it was okay b/c he was an asshole to everyone, not just the heroine), but he was still too much.

I just didn't think he had the redeeming charac
Jul 07, 2014 Jannah rated it really liked it
Again a historical romance read...the only reason i actually picked up this book was because it was free on my kindle store and i was glad i did. This book had an interesting storyline - where the heroine (chloe) is won because of a bet between her nonsical brother and the charning alex. Chloe is not one to twiddle her thumbs all day and decides to start her own business which i loved because it showed modern day aspects found in todays women (yes i know shes not real) and her headstrong feature ...more
Oct 30, 2012 Belcanto rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I first discovered this author when I picked up a copy of A Splendid Defiance back in 1985 and fell in love with Justin Ambrose. Then I found The Marigold Chain and again her magic worked but this time I discovered Alex. Wow!
The working in of the Second Dutch War to create the spy story was totally engrossing and I cried when Danny died. The chase through London was really exciting and brilliantly researched - I know 'cos I've got a map of 17th century London.
I just loved the whole book and am
I enjoyed this book. It helped that I read some reviews before I started it and therefore wasn't expecting a sweeping romantic tale. It was a complex tale, full of political intrigue, espionage, epic disasters , and a teeny bit of romance. And while the story obviously centers on the MCs, it didn't necessarily feel like their story was the most important part of this tale.

Stella Riley has a way of imparting historical details without sounding didactic. The broad strokes with which she painted t
Nov 19, 2016 kathie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 stars. I have now read all of Stella Riley's books available on Kindle & this would be my least favorite. Slightly above average but, for me, not as good as all the others. Based on other reviews, I already expected the hero to act like a jerk, at least initially. perhaps because I expected rude behavior, I didn't find him that offensive and for the most part, I liked him. I also liked the heroine Chloe. It was the story itself that bored me at times I guess. But it is Stella Riley, one ...more
lovely and lively romance novel set in 1666 england, obviously nodding at heyer (at convenient marriage at the very least, down to the choice of villains, and to civil contract) stylistically and plot-wise, with spying and shenanigans and the great london fire as a backdrop. chloe, a practical and reasonable half-french young woman, is staked by her asshole brother in a drunk dice game to the rich and depressed lord alex deveril and accepts, deciding him to be a lesser of two evils. from there o ...more
Barb in Maryland
4 1/2 Stars for this excellent story set in London during 1666.
So many plot points done so well--including (but not limited to) bride won during a dice game(!), marriage of inconvenience, hero with an attitude, bright heroine who copes, treason, the plague, the great fire, viperous mistress, loyal friends, sea battles, and court intrigue.

I loved our heroine Chloe, who was making the best of her marriage. She was bright, stood-up for herself when necessary, had a life of her own and made friends
Jun 30, 2012 Manda rated it it was ok
Alex and Chloe. It's an old school romance that reminded me a lot of The Secret. A lot of history and research went into this book and while I found it well done, I found myself skimming the navel battles and spy parts that aren't my style to read. It wasn't until part three when the romance really even began.
Also, I read this for kindle and there are a ton of mistakes. The punctuation was particularly bad. I know this happens when older books are converted, but if you are a stickler for these
Laura Thomas
Feb 17, 2016 Laura Thomas rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Restoration Era England

Savored this story,notes of her books Black Madonna and Mesalliance. Main and secondary characters marvelous,wonderful storyline,grateful I discovered her books.
Jun 09, 2012 imngrer rated it liked it
Hey, Amazon now has this available as an ebook. I hope that means new editions of Ms Riley's other books will soon be available in that format.
tasukiscool rated it it was amazing
Mar 06, 2016
Meggie rated it liked it
Sep 14, 2016
Jamie rated it liked it
Aug 08, 2015
Joe rated it really liked it
Aug 12, 2008
Rebecca rated it really liked it
Aug 29, 2016
Sarah Bain
Sarah Bain rated it it was amazing
Apr 08, 2013
Katmac rated it it was amazing
Mar 21, 2015
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Stella Riley trained as a teacher in London and now lives in Kent, England. She enjoys amateur dramatics, salsa,belly-dancing, reading and travel.
After a break in her writing career, she has now published her back-catalogue [or as much of it as she intends to re-release!] as e-books.
The Marigold Chain, The Parfit Knight, The Mesalliance, A Splendid Defiance, The Black Madonna, Garland of Straw
More about Stella Riley...

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