Sunday, July 17, 2016

In Pursuit of His Wife - Kristi Gold (HD #2444 - May 2016)

Series: Texas Cattleman's Club: Lies and Lullabies (Book 7)

They married for convenience. Will they stay together for the baby…or for love?

Nasira Edwards has come to Royal, Texas, to escape her past and stop her brother from making a terrible mistake. But her own marital mistake has tracked her down. Her husband, shipping magnate Sebastian Edwards, has followed her across the ocean and he refuses to leave Texas without his wife.

Sebastian knows their convenient marriage isn't about love. That's the way it has to be. But the passion between them is as hot as ever. And he's come west to coax the beauty back into his bed -- while keeping his emotions in check. Then Nasira reveals she's pregnant…

Good book. We first met Nasira in A Surprise for the Sheikh, when she showed up in Royal to set the record straight on the event that had set Rafiq on his quest for revenge. In this book, she has stayed in Royal to take the time to decide what to do about her marriage. She and Sebastian had married for convenience, to save her from an arranged marriage to an old man. They've gone along quite well for ten years, with a passionate marriage, even though love was not involved.

Then Nasira got tired of waiting for Sebastian to agree to have a child and took matters into her own hands. She stopped taking her pills and eventually got pregnant, which did not please Sebastian. Unfortunately she lost the baby, devastating her. Sebastian withdrew completely, spending less time with her and refusing to talk about trying again. She has come to love him, but if she can't get him to talk to her, she doesn't see much hope for the future.

Then Sebastian shows up in Texas, determined to get Nasira back to London and in his bed where she belongs. Getting his emotions involved is out of the question, but if he can show her that the passion is still there, maybe she'll come home and forget what drove them apart.

I had some trouble liking Sebastian at the beginning. He shows up, being well aware of why Nasira left him, but still unwilling to talk about it. Because Nasira is unwilling to just fall in with his wishes, he makes the decision to stay in Royal until he can persuade her. I got really frustrated with his refusal to talk about why he was so against having children. He also seemed to be far more interested in her beauty than in anything else. Even Nasira bugged me a bit at the start. First, she had started all the trouble between Mac and Rafiq by her actions ten years earlier. Then she had deceived Sebastian in order to get her way, never a good thing to do. 

It was interesting to see the rebuilding of their relationship. Nasira started out trying to decide if it was possible to save her marriage, but she could only do it away from him. His extreme control over his emotions, especially after the miscarriage, makes her wonder if there is any chance at all. She was shocked by his arrival, and his attack on Mac, as she had never seen him lose control like that. I liked her stated intention that Sebastian can stay, as long as he doesn't try to seduce her away from getting the answers she wants. Sebastian is equally determined to keep his emotions and the past events that has caused them under wraps. For all her determination to keep him at arm's length, she gave in awfully quickly to allowing him to share her room that first night. And of course, what happened next was no surprise. It disturbed me that Sebastian tried to blame her for it, and that she was no longer on birth control when he didn't exactly stop for a condom. However, her giving in that once gave him hope that he could pull off getting what he wanted without giving her what she wanted.

Though I was irritated at Nasira for having no willpower whenever Sebastian touched her, I was happy to see that she stuck to her guns about getting him to talk to her. I really enjoyed the scene in Dallas as she bargains with him for his cooperation. He also begins to see that there is far more to her than he had realized. The more that she was able to get out of him, the more I began to understand his fears. Nasira also began to understand, but realized that he was basing those fears on misunderstandings because he was a child at the time. Unfortunately, Sebastian refuses to be swayed by her arguments. Then she reveals that she's pregnant from that first night's encounter, and his reaction is everything she feared. I loved seeing her stand up to him. Now Sebastian has to face losing her anyway if he can't come to terms with his fears. I liked his big moment at the end, but did feel that he didn't have to grovel quite as much as I would have liked. However, I have high hopes for their happiness, especially after their conversation at Rafe's wedding.

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