His Secondhand Wife (Harlequin Historical)

His Secondhand Wife - Cheryl St.John I wavered between a two and a three for this one. At best it's a run-of-the-mill beauty and the beast story that's entertains but brings nothing new to the table. At worst, it's a poorly written story that overuses POV prose, tells instead of shows and rehashes the fairly exasperating "angsty disabled/scarred hero consumed by self-loathing redeemed by endlessly patient and good Mary Sue heroine." The good characters are unconflicted and perfect while the bad characters are pure malice and outrageously cruel. This can work in a melodrama, but the author seemed to want to play them straight, and so they're just soulless and cardboard. I read it in one sitting, but it never swept me away and Noah's self-pity was just wearying.