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Not Quite a Wife

(The Lost Lords #6)

3.64  ·  Rating details ·  2,564 ratings  ·  284 reviews

Marry in haste, repent at leisure.

James, Lord Kirkland, owns a shipping fleet, half a London gaming house, and is a ruthlessly effective spymaster. He is seldom self-indulgent. . .except when it comes to the gentle, indomitable beauty who was once his wife.

Laurel Herbert gave James her heart as an innocent young girl—until she saw him perform an act of shocking violen

Mass Market Paperback, 352 pages
Published August 26th 2014 by Zebra (first published May 1st 2014)
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Charlene The answer to your question is found in the latest book out, Not Always a Saint. The "failure" turns up a few times in the story, and I'm guessing the…moreThe answer to your question is found in the latest book out, Not Always a Saint. The "failure" turns up a few times in the story, and I'm guessing there will be a sequel that has him as the main character.(less)

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Average rating 3.64  · 
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May 15, 2014 rated it did not like it
as a big fan of mary jo, i'm saddened to report that i think this book is a real stinker. an assasin comes to your home to murder your husband - and since you're in the room, he'll murder you too. the assasin ends up dead by your husband's hand. so what do you do? why you LEAVE your husband because he's a "killer". she's a nitwit. sorry, mary jo!
Jul 22, 2014 rated it it was ok
I ended up giving this a C- at AAR (so 2.5 stars) - which killed me because - MJP! -but the book was a disappointment :(

This, the sixth book in Ms Putney’s Lost Lords series tells the story of a couple who have been estranged for over a decade. I’m a sucker for a good second-chance romance, so this book seemed as though it would be right up my alley – and while it did tick a few of my favourite boxes, there are some really big flaws that I found it impossible to ignore, and which kept pullin
This sixth book in Mary Jo Putney's "Lost Lords" series is different from the previous books as I recall. They all, of course, follow the men who were sent to a school for troubled boys in their childhood, who forged very strong bonds of friendship, loyalty and other virtues.

The author gives notes after the Epilogue which detail some factual events &/or social concerns of the time; these notes are short but helpful.

One thing, not included in the notes, that struck me about the heroine and her
May 28, 2014 rated it it was ok
I wanted to like this more. I really did. Some of the author's books have a place of pride on my keeper shelf: One Perfect Rose, The Rake and the Reformer (original, not the remix), The Best Husband Money Can Buy.

This latest effort though didn't make the cut. I bought into the idea of the couple marrying too young, before they knew one each other well, but the heroine's actions at the end of the novel made me roll my eyes and want to toss it. Maybe it's just me, because other readers liked it.

Jul 22, 2015 rated it liked it
Expectations are heaven or hell in life, that’s something I’ve learned both in my everyday routine and professionally (I used to be an equities analyst!). If they are better than you hoped, wow; if you were right, ok!; if worst what you expected, hell! Mary Jo Putney’s latest book Not Quite a Wife was kind of a ok for me. I didn’t expect much from quickly browsing reviews; could it be a worthless experience? However, it was a Mary Jo Putney, and I missed reading her books to just a few hours ...more
Jacqueline J
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
My copy was provided by the publisher via NetGalley for an honest review.

Author: Mary Jo Putney
First published: 2014
Length: 4040 locations
Setting: Bristol and London, ~1814.
Sex: Infrequent, reasonably explicit.
Hero: Master Spy.
Heroine: Sister to a friend, works as a nurse, runs a refuge for battered women.
Includes: Excerpt from Not Always a Saint.

I've recently read another book where the couple had a long separation before reconciling. Their marriage died a long death but they were adult and mat
Sep 01, 2013 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: historical romance fans
Laurel married James when they were very young and madly in love. He was her brother's best friend from the Westerfield Academy, and they met when he visited her home. After an extended honeymoon of bliss, they returned home to London. Before she could be introduced to the rest of his friends, she witnessed him kill an intruder with his bare hands, and the sudden violence frightened her so badly, she fled to live with her brother, wanting never to see her new husband again.

A decade later, James
May 08, 2014 rated it it was ok
The conversations in this book are incredibly stilted, much of the dialogue just seems somewhat awkward. Especially in the scene where they host dinner and Laurel sits with the wives of her husband's friends.

The rescued mixed race lady's maid was very underdeveloped as a subplot. She seemed like a cardboard cutout and was represented rather simplistically for someone who formed a major plot point. Her secondary romance seemed like squeezing water out of rocks and you just wanted to get back to
Nov 25, 2014 rated it did not like it
What a profound disappointment. This book was both trite and woodenly written. The premise was beyond ludicrous, the "conflict" plot, wholly unnecessary, didn't start until about fifty pages were left, and there were random points of view that added absolutely nothing to the story but pages. The ending was rushed and felt glossed over and unresolved, not to mention being entirely unnecessary.

Really, though, what killed me was the fact that they're back together because Laurel has sex with Kirkla
Sep 06, 2014 rated it did not like it
Shelves: kindle, netgally
Unfortunately I didn't feel it.

Laurel was annoying, I didn't care much for her or her reasoning.

Kirkland surprised me, a spymaster, capable of killing barehanded, yet did not try to keep his wife or fight for her, even ten years later it was circumstances and not their own wishes that brought them together.

And then the whole thing almost happened again.

I was also a bit annoyed at Daniel, Laurel's brother, he was supposed to be Kirkland's best friend, yet when his sister walked away he stopped be
Oh, man. I love Mary Jo Putney. I love the Lost Lords series. And this book... was just not up to the standard set by the previous five. It was really, really not at the same level. This was an ARC, and while the technical (proofreading) editing was fine, the story-line (line and substantive editing) really needed some work. Maybe some of this will be cleaned up before the book is put into print.
A lot of Putney's books start with some action, but this one starts with our hero falling ill, gettin
Mar 17, 2015 rated it it was ok
Shelves: series, romance, sexy
This one---yikes!!

If only she can only get past the fact that her husband is...da da dum...a murderer who did the dastardly deed on their honeymoon. She's advised to become more physically intimate with him to help her get around this "problem" and help her reconcile their marriage. What a gigantic bowl of crazysauce!!

Let's forget about the fact that in reality her husband works for the government as a "spy" of sorts so it wasn't really murder and during the course of the story her husband kill
Jul 15, 2014 rated it liked it
Finally Kirkland's story is told. His wife of one year sees him kill a man and she flees from him. He hides himself in his work and finally 10 years later they meet again. Laurel is this wonderful person who helps others, but can't seem to forgive her husband, or find out the circumstances. Turns out, not a spoiler, someone who doesn't love him/herself can't love another? Oh well. I did love seeing all the previous Lord's show up and see what has happened in their lives! So that was good. I did ...more
Good read. The hero and heroine married young, madly in love, but she really didn't understand what it meant for him to be part of England's intelligence service during the Napoleonic wars. So when she sees him murder someone sneaking through their house, she freaks out, her devout near-Methodist sensibilities upended, and she runs home to Bristol to help her brother--who used to be a good friend of her husband's-- run his mission. This is why, when the hero is beaten up while in Bristol on busi ...more
Kimberly Rocha~ Book Obsessed Chicks
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nov 27, 2014 rated it liked it
I enjoyed it but it's far from Mary Jo Putney's best work. I didn't find Laurel's reasons for leaving compelling enough. Even if Kirkland's violence freaked her out a simple chat revealing that the man had indeed had a knife and been going to kill her husband probably would have sorted it out. Also, she works with battered women so it would be far more realistic if she at least felt the abusive men should experience what they meted out firsthand now and then. I get that Laurel is supposed to be ...more
Amy Alvis
Oct 19, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This is book 6 in the Lost Lords series.

Married when they were quite young, Laurel Herbert and James Kirkland separated and have been living their own lives for the past 10 years. That is until James is brought into Laurel's infirmary one day. Having been beat up and in the midst of a fever, James thinks he is dreaming of being intimate with his wife. That is until a month later Laurel informs James that she is pregnant.

Having lost his wife once, James will do anything in his power to get his wi
Sep 26, 2014 rated it did not like it
Shelves: 2014
I'm sorry, but what the hell.
so we've got our 'heroine' who is estranged from her husband. ok. sounds interesting. until you find out why.
laurel left her husband, Lord Kirkland, 10 years ago in fear of her life. He reappears after he is brutally mugged during a bout of malaria. laurel nurses him back to health only to discover he intends to reconcile.
All sounds good. until the heroine starts talking. she's afraid for her life because she sees Kirkland kill someone in front of her. A rival spy a
Feb 11, 2014 rated it it was ok
This was the least interesting in the series. I thought Laurel was blah and incredibly judgmental, I know Laurel and James married young but this was a time where there was a lot of violence and unrest.
It was a predictable book where you knew Laurel would have her own taste of violence to even the scales so to speak.

At least we get updates on some of the previous couples from the earlier books. Sadly, Lady Agnes doesn't make an appearance nor does Will McKenzie. Is he up next for his own book?

Rashika (is tired)
This doesn't even begin to measure up to the other book I read by the author (The Rake) but it did make for some good brain candy and I did have fun!
Jan 15, 2019 rated it it was ok
Ehhhh. This book was not for me. Maybe it will be for you! However, I don't think the cover really conveys what the book is about, so: this is a second-chance romance between a Regency-era spymaster and his religious and pacifist wife, who left him because she can't cope with the violence inherent in his profession. Which is a very legitimate reason to leave someone! You can love somebody and still not be able to make it work because you have irreconcilable approaches to life! They still love ea ...more
Inconsistent characterization and insufficient motivation combined to make a thoroughly unlikable MC. Moreover, (view spoiler). Perhaps the attitudes portrayed were in line with the time period, but that doesn't mean I want to read about it. If these were not instantly available ebooks at m ...more
Nov 28, 2018 rated it liked it
James and Laurel got married very young, their marriage did not work and they lived apart for ten years. Until they meet again in Bristol: he sick and she is a nurse.
It is very well written, the plot is well built the characters are believable and likeable. I didn't love Laurel, she was annoying and immature, she judged her husband negatively without trying to think that he couldn't act differently. James instead is loyal, kind and sweet, thanks to him, the story was more pleasant
Lark of The Bookwyrm's Hoard
[reviewed paperback edition here] ...more
Lark of The Bookwyrm's Hoard
Review originally published at The Bookwyrm's Hoard.

Not Quite a Wife is book six in the Lost Lords series featuring six (so far) rather unconventional British gentlemen (most of them lords, to justify the title) who attended the Westerfield Academy, a school for boys of "good breeding and bad behavior." Kirkland, the hero of this book, appears in all the first five books to one degree or another, and I've been eagerly waiting for his book. He's a complicated man with a lot of pain in his pas
Bree T
Laurel was barely eighteen when she married the twenty-one year old James, Lord Kirkland. She was young, blinded by the heady rush of first love and it’s very soon into her marriage that she doesn’t know her husband at all. She witnesses him do something horrible, something that she can’t forget and she ends up fleeing. Her parents, disappointed in her with leaving an Earl, disown her.

Almost a decade later and Laurel has set up house with her brother who has studied to become a doctor. She also
Sep 02, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2014
Disclosure: I received this book via Netgalley for the blog tour. Thank you to Mary Jo Putney and Kensington Books for the opportunity. Yes, this is an honest review.

I reflected on two words after I finished reading Not Quite a Wife, the latest instalment in Mary Jo Putney's Lost Lords series: estrangement and separation. The idea of "estrangement" is particularly curious, because of the idea that something familiar and known to someone suddenly becomes treated as a stranger and alien. The secon
Marry in haste, repent at leisure.

Not Quite a Wife by Mary Jo Putney is my first read from the author. Book 6 in The Lost Lords series, Not Quite a Wife’s title reminded me of Not Quite a Husband by Sherry Thomas and I expected something similar to that when I requested for the title on Netgalley. And though the story didn’t deliver the exact sort of tale that I was expecting and I found myself a tad bit disappointed in the story, there were aspects to it that worked for me that kept the pag
Sep 19, 2014 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
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Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 1 Feb 22, 2015 12:56PM  

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She writes young adult fiction as M.J. Putney.

Mary Jo Putney was born on 1946 in Upstate New York with a reading addiction, a condition for which there is no known cure. After earning degrees in English Literature and Industrial Design at Syracuse University, she did various forms of design work in California and England before inertia took over in Baltimore, Maryland, where she has lived very com

Other books in the series

The Lost Lords (7 books)
  • Loving a Lost Lord (Lost Lords, #1)
  • Never Less Than a Lady (Lost Lords, #2)
  • Nowhere Near Respectable (Lost Lords, #3)
  • No Longer a Gentleman (Lost Lords, #4)
  • Sometimes a Rogue (Lost Lords, #5)
  • Not Always a Saint (The Lost Lords, #7)

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“The most we can ever do is our best," she said quietly. "If worry is interest paid on troubles we haven't had yet, guilt is pain wasted on what can't be changed."

"Please remind me of that regularly. I need to hear it.”
“Softly he continued, "You need to ask God for forgiveness. That's His job, isn't it? To forgive imperfect humankind. You are quick to forgive others and offer them kindness. Do the same for yourself.” 3 likes
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