The Chocolatier’s Wife Review
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In the kingdom of Berengeny, a place in the south, William of Almsley is born. Berengeny doesn’t fool with such things as true love—just who makes a good match. But, year after year, the spell bowl refuses to tell where his future wife resides. Then, on William’s seventh birthday, when everyone has given up hope, the bowl reveals that his intended dwells to the north, in Tarnia—a place of cruel and wild magic. No one wants a wife or husband from there, but William sticks with the choice. For many years, he corresponds with Tasmin Bey as he sails the seas, plying his trade and waiting to retire and open a chocolate shop. By then, he’ll be ready to take Tasmin as his wife. But then something unexpected happens.

As the years go by and the letters from William keep coming, Tasmin begins to wonder why he hasn’t sent for her. After all, she’s past the age of consent for marriage. When she learns that William has been accused of poisoning a bishop with a box of chocolates, Tasmin decides to go to her husband-to-be and find out what has happened. Once there, she faces cold shoulders from the townspeople and William’s family because she’s from the north. And a killer is determined to keep her and William from marrying and opening a chocolatier business.

Such delightful reads as The Chocolatier’s Wife are few and far between. It’s the kind of novel that you can’t wait to get back to—and can’t put down when you do. I absolutely loved William and Tasmin. Both of them had such wonderful personalities, not to mention a great sense of humor. I found myself laughing and cheering them on when they’d break a rule regarding men and women from the 1700s—a time when a person could spend a term in jail for committing adultery. Our hero and heroine weren’t quite that naughty, but they would sneak out of the house to see each other or climb onto a catwalk at an event to snuggle under a blanket where no one could see them—innocent stuff that was still a big no-no back then.

Once you start reading this novel, with its romantic mystery and hints of humor thrown in to lighten the mood, you’ll be hard-pressed to put The Chocolatier’s Wife aside. It’s enchanting, witty, and just plain fun to read—and it’s sure to please all audiences. I hope I get the pleasure of reading Ms. Speer again in the future.

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