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A Christmas Promise

3.73 of 5 stars 3.73  ·  rating details  ·  1,429 ratings  ·  193 reviews
A love that cannot be bought or sold proves to be the greatest gift of all, in this heartwarming classic that demonstrates once again why New York Times bestselling author Mary Balogh is among the most celebrated authors of historical romance.

Weddings are supposed to be joyous occasions—especially when a couple seems as well matched as Randolph Pierce, Earl of Falloden, a
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Kindle Edition, 304 pages
Published by Signet (first published 1992)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,345)
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Caz
I’m not someone who specifically seeks out Christmas-themed books to read around this time of year, but I’ve had this on my TBR pile for a while now, and it caught my eye when I was scrolling through my Kindle looking for my next read - so I thought, “why not?”

A Christmas Promise pushes two of my favourite buttons – the arranged marriage and a nice dollop of angst before we get to the HEA – as our two protagonists, an impoverished earl and the daughter of a wealthy coal merchant, enter into a ha
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Tiffany Reisz
I couldn't put this one down. Read it one sitting. I found the sex and emotional conflict surprisingly gritty for a Christmas-themed romance. But I'm a sucker for a marriage of convenience story especially if the hero and heroine are having sex as total strangers. Basically I'm a pervert. A Christmas pervert.
Crista
This one was a difficult read for me. I can say that Mary Balogh certainly isn't afraid to "push the limits" of romancelandia, and she certainly does so with A Christmas Promise.

This marriage does not start out good...at all. It is an arranged marriage. Randolph will marry for money in order to get out of debts, and in return, Eleanor will become a member of the peerage. They have an intense dislike, even hate, for each other right off the bat.

******Warning****** for those that hate cheating in
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Lady Wesley
Mar 17, 2012 Lady Wesley rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Lady Wesley by: DearAuthor.com
Shelves: favorites, amz-rev
I generally don't care for Christmas-related romances, but Mary Balogh overcame all of my prejudices with this one. I'm surprised at myself, but this truly deserves five stars.

Eleanor Transome is a cit, the daughter of a fabulously wealthy coal merchant. Although she has been educated to be a proper lady, she has no desire to elevate her social standing and yearns only to marry her second cousin Wilfred. He, however, is a mere clerk and has told her that he cannot marry her as he has no prospect
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Miranda Davis
First, Mary Balogh is just so darn easy to read. (I have a recent re-issue so the cover is different.) Lovely delineation of characters and their conflict. In this case, an extorted, arranged marriage brings together a cit's proud, pugnacious daughter honoring her father's dying wish and an honorable earl who inherits crushing debts from his predecessor. Both have every reason to dislike the other but they marry because each must.

Neither understands the other, each believing the worst interpret
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Julie
This book started out very, very slowly. Overall, it was a difficult read because of all the internal monologues. As a writer and a reader, I'm a fan of dialogue, so all the introspection didn't exactly work for me. I also think it was hard to read because of all the animosity between Randolph and Ellie, and all the repetition of "But they're from different classes! And they hate each other! And it's a marriage of convenience!" But as soon as Randolph and Ellie go to the country for Christmas, a ...more
Virginia
As a reissue, this book is about 100 pages shorter than current romances. However, despite fewer pages to get us into the story, I never missed them. The narrative voice of this book is lonely, wistful, and somewhat aloof - like both protagonists.

What I loved most about this story is the coming together of two extremely lonely, prickly individuals who start off, due to misunderstanding and desperation, truly detesting one another. But after an arranged marriage and the requisite growth, they co
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TJ
I absolutely LOVE Mary Balogh's writing. Whether I like a particular story or not, I can always be assured I won't be able to put the book down.

In this instance, I had trouble liking either Eleanor or Randolph (H/h). Both spent the majority of the book being cold and nasty to each other rather than finding a way to make the best of an unwanted arranged marriage. Of course it's Mary Balogh, though, so the HEA is satisfying and the reader is left happy as the last page is turned...
Booklover
Such a wonderful read,Randolph-Eleanor both are forced to marry,both despise each other there's misunderstanding between then which leads them to think worse of each other but as time passes by these two start to understand each other,respect each other and fall in love with each other but then still there's the misunderstanding and the persons whom they thought they loved but then they realise it was not love just attraction/infactuation

Randolph thinks Eleanor is cold marble who does'nt feels a
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Nell
I am a Mary Balogh fan but not of this book. It's a dismal Christmas story. A wealthy middle class father arranges a marriage for his daughter with an aristocrat drowning in inherited debts. It's hate at first sight. Each stereotypes and believes the worst of the other. They marry and the father dies the next day. One thing I found implausible was that the daughter, Ellie, believes that her father who had doted on her and been devoted to her would arrange a marriage with someone as dissolute as ...more
Patrisha
Non potevo non dare cinque stelle a questo romanzo, che pur senza pretese, ha conquistato il mio cuore in punta di piedi, pagina dopo pagina. L'atmosfera natalizia in costume, il calore e l'affetto della chiassosa e allegra famiglia Transome, l'ambientazione di una dimora di campagna e soprattutto due protagonisti così forti caratterialmente e così contrastati, in cerca di amore e terrorizzati all'idea di mostrare le loro fragilità ed emozionalità in una situazione inizialmente sfavorevole, mi h ...more
Joy
Re-release of an old Signet Regency . A wealthy, dying merchant arranges the marriage of his daughter and an impoverished, debt-ridden Lord. The hero thinks the heroine is only trying to improve her social status; she thinks he's a wastrel. The truth is much more complicated. The book starts off with them loathing each other; the wedding night scene was actually kind of rough to read. Yet as they go to his estate for Christmas, the relaxed setting and the presence of the heroine's large, gregari ...more
FlibBityFLooB
If I had to make a complaint about this book, it would be the number of characters introduced for a Christmas weeklong gathering at the Earl's. I have enough trouble with characters' names as is, but 25 was a bit much ;)
Anna D.
Really enjoyable Christmas story :)
Megan
I haven't read many Mary Balogh books, but I've been trying to make my way through the ones I do have when I get a chance. Christmas is a good time, as she has written many Christmas books. It seems I either love or dislike her books, typically no middle ground. I was delighted to realize at the end of this story that I simply adored it!

This is an (almost) arranged marriage regency. The new Earl of Falloden, Randolph Pierce, has inherited from his cousin, unfortunately he also inherited a mount
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Linda
Closer to 3.5 stars

Anger. Everyone knows what resentment does to a person when there is no outlet. It festers, rankles, develops into a slow burn, exasperates, starts to become a fury and, lastly, it rages. Now imagine starting a marriage with this feeling: deep anger almost to the point of hatred. It becomes a hardship to be in the same room. You talk but only when necessary. You touch but only when it is unavoidable. You see what you want to see.

And this is the way Randolph Pierce's, the Earl
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Megan
I'm not really sure how I feel about this story. On the one hand it's Christmas, yay! I did enjoy the H/H Randolph aka Randy and Eleanor aka Ellie...except for those times when I hated them. This was a story chock FULL of Big Misunderstandings and it became very old, very fast.

That is really my one and only complaint though. When Randolph and Ellie were allowing themselves to be open to each other and not defensive at every turn, they had an obvious accord and the potential for great love. Elli
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Francy
Da http://leggerefantastico.blogspot.com
Il padre di Eleanor Transome è un ricco commerciante di carbone ormai giunto alla fine della propria vita. La malattia lo sta gradualmente consumando e prima di andarsene vorrebbe vedere la sua graziosa fanciulla maritata con un uomo d' onore, fiero e leale. La scelta ricade sul giovane conte Randolph Falloden, finito sull' orlo del lastrico a causa dei debiti che il cugino lasciò lui in eredità prima di morire. Il matrimonio combinato potrebbe rivelarsi u
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Sharyn
It is fun to read these old Regency's that have all been reprinted. I know my reviews are not so insightful as some. I just like people to know what they are getting if they read a book, and if I liked it. "A Christmas promise is another lovely story about an Earl in debt and a Coal merchant father who wants his daughter to be happy. He buys up the debt and forgives it if the Earl will marry his daughter. Once again misunderstandings abound. She thinks he ran up the debt and he thinks she wants ...more
Regan Walker
A Currier & Ives Christmas with Angst

Set in the Regency, this is a story of an aristocrat and a commoner and the arranged marriage neither wanted.

Eleanor (“Ellie”) Transome loved her father, a coal merchant who worked hard all his life to leave a legacy of comfortable wealth for his only daughter. She would not deny his dying wish for her to marry Randolph, the Earl of Falloden, who she’s never met but who has agreed to marry her and give her his title because he needs her father’s money to
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Kathleen
4.5 for this republished Regency, in digital format. Eleanor's dying father, who made his fortune in coal, bought a penniless peer for her. Elenear immediately realizes she must marry said peer, to give papa peace of mind. A death-bed wedding ensues. The newlyweds instantly dislike each other. He thinks her cold and grasping. She thinks him a lofty wastrel.

To keep her "Christmas Promise" to her dying da, Eleaor must celebrate the holiday. In part because she is lonely and sad (deeply missing he
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Hannah
A Christmas Promise takes familiar tropes and themes and presents them in a way that feels totally new and unique. I've heard Balogh's books referred to as "high concept" and after reading several of them, I understand why.

This story had a lot more angst than other Christmas-themed romances I've read recently. I found that Ellie was more prickly than other "nouveau riche" heroines I've encountered. While this meant it took me a long time to warm up to her, in the end it made her seem more of a c
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Jultri
Far more angst than expected for a Christmas themed novel. H was an impoverished earl who struggled to repay debts that he inherited along with the earldom a year earlier. He was forced into a MOC with our heroine, an extremely wealthy heiress daughter of a self-made coal merchant. She had an unpleasant traumatic past encounter with members of the ton, and hence wanted no further part of their snobbish world. They both entered their marriage with prejudice and resentment which then fuelled furth ...more
Carrie
3.5*
Grade B/B-)

This was a mostly enjoyable, sometimes humorous, story of a marriage across the strict social divide of regency England. There are some similarities to Heyer's book, A Civil Contract, although A Christmas Promise is more light-hearted overall and with an HEA solidly planted in Romancelandia. One of the things I like about A Civil Contract is the believability of the emotions and the fact that, in the end there is a comfortable contentedness about the marriage. Here we get all the
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Molly
This truly is my favorite book from Mary Balogh. I read it a few weeks ago and it has stayed with me like no other. Don't get fooled by the Christmas team - this story is no sugary treat, but angst filled, emotional, tense, at times gut wrenching and ultimately romantic and satisfying ride. I can not recommend this book higher.
LuvGirl
This was a wonderful Christmas romance. I really enjoyed reading the Christmas theme this holiday, and I loved the fact that the author wasn’t afraid to touch on the REAL meaning of Christmas, [JESUS]. The story was also very interesting. You actually got to see the hero and heroine fall in love with each other. I cannot stand books where the hero and heroine fall in love with each other at the drop of a dime without you even knowing how it happened. You understood how these two came to love eac ...more
Barbara
Standard Marriage of Convenience story--she has money, but her father is a coal merchant. He has a title, but a ton of inherited debts. Her father engineers the match on his death bed. And so on. Eleanore and Randolph each bring a boat load of emotional baggage to this marriage, as well as definite prejudices about the other, based on the class differences.
Balogh pens a nicely sentimental romance, with most of the action taking place around Christmas.
I am not sure if I believe in the romance, bu
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Crystal
At the outset, I must say that I was excited to read this one after Christmas Beau and thought it would be heart warming. In a sense, it was towards the end. But there were a whole lot of facepalms from me before I got there.

Mostly it was because of Eleanor. Granted she knew nothing about Randolph and thought he married her for money, but she doesnt even bother to listen to him and not just be so prickly about everything. Even when Randolph is nice to her, she is mean at times for no reason at
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Robin
Randolph Pierce, the Earl of Falloden, is approached by businessman Joe Transome. Mr. Transome tells the Earl that he has bought all of Randolph's debt. Mr. Transome wants Randolph to marry his daughter, Eleanor, or he will demand payment of the notes. He only has a short time to live and wants to see his daughter settled and married to a man with a title. With no choice, the Earl agrees and soon finds himself married to Eleanor, a woman he believes cares only about herself. Eleanor agrees to th ...more
Anna Marie
I needed happy, and this came in (too-late for X-mess) at the library, and reading Mary Balogh is like being with a friend, so... I reached for Balogh, next.

Only... this was not her finest. It was a lot of cranky, and people behaving scathingly toward each other pretty much the whole time. She thought he was something he wasn't and so therefore treated him with prickles and sarcasm, and he thought she was something she wasn't, and so therefore was aloof and rude to her. Which only made things wo
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Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 1 Feb 19, 2015 05:48PM  
  • Once Upon a Christmas (Nobody, #2)
  • Marian's Christmas Wish
  • Fallen Angel
  • A Regency Christmas V
  • Regency Christmas Wishes
  • The Christmas Knight
  • Christmas Angel
  • A Historical Christmas Present
  • His Lordship's Mistress
  • A Countess by Christmas
  • His Christmas Pleasure (Scandals and Seductions, #4)
  • A Worthy Wife
  • Miss Jacobson's Journey (Rothschild Trilogy, #1)
  • In For a Penny
  • Tis the Season to Be Sinful
  • An Unexpected Gentleman
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Mary Jenkins was born on 1944 in Swansea, Wales, UK. After graduating from university, moved to Saskatchewan, Canada, to teach high-school English, on a two-year teaching contract in 1967. She married her Canadian husband, Robert Balogh, and had three children, Jacqueline, Christopher and Sian. When she's not writing, she enjoys reading, music and knitting. She also enjoys watching tennis and curl ...more
More about Mary Balogh...
Slightly Dangerous (Bedwyn Saga, #6) Slightly Married (Bedwyn Saga, #1) A Summer to Remember (Bedwyn Prequels, #2) First Comes Marriage (Huxtable Quintet #1) Slightly Scandalous (Bedwyn Saga, #3)

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“He loved me," she said, her voice leaden. "It is so easy to take love for granted when one has always had it. I knew he loved me as I loved him, but I did not realize perhaps how much until all love was removed.” 2 likes
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