Conveniently Married

Romance - Contemporary
186 Pages
Reviewed on 01/09/2024
Buy on Amazon

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    Book Review

Reviewed by Stephanie Chapman for Readers' Favorite

Jo Anne Barnes’ Conveniently Married introduces Caroline Causey and Joe Vandagriff’s unconventional marriage. Caroline’s uncle, Henry, left her a trust that she could only obtain if she married before she turned 26. Her best friend, Janet, introduces Caroline to Joe. Joe dresses in tie-dyed shirts and is an artist. Going against her better judgment, Caroline agrees to marry Joe after they make an agreement. Joe would get ten percent of her inheritance, and then they would go their separate ways. After a quick wedding in the courthouse, Joe moves in that Friday. Caroline is horrified to find his abstract oil paintings on the wall. Slowly, Joe starts to chip away at Caroline’s resolve to dislike him. However, he finds Caroline’s disappearance at night piques his curiosity about what she is hiding. One afternoon, he has a taxi driver follow Caroline and is surprised at his discovery.

Jo Anne Barnes created two characters who are driven to follow their dreams. Caroline’s stringent control of her home reflects how she didn’t like change. She constantly criticized anything Joe did. Joe had the patience of a saint, but the portrayal of his hurt is relatable. His life’s ambition of being an artist didn’t align with what Caroline expected. I found his attempts to compromise and make her smile to be admirable. Caroline is manipulative, and I disliked how she kept criticizing him. The details of how Caroline and Joe view each moment are realistic. Suspense builds with Joe storing items in the garage and the appearance of Gerald Weiss. The tension between Caroline and Joe is easy to envision. Conveniently Married will appeal to readers who enjoy slow-burn romances.