The Night Before the Wedding
Debra Mullins
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Buy *The Night Before the Wedding* by Debra Mullins online

The Night Before the Wedding
Debra Mullins
384 pages
January 2008
rated 2 of 5 possible stars

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Catherine Depford is a wealthy heiress looking to marry but disturbed by some strange events. She's started hearing voices and dreaming of a Scottish man - all rather alarming since her mother went mad and eventually jumped to her death. When Catherine actually meets the man from in her dreams, she discovers that he is courting her because she is apparently the key to mitigating a curse on his lands: the Highland chief must marry a woman from a specific family who bears a particular mark on her body. Catherine is identified as the 'bride' of Gabriel MacBraedon's generation, only she's not instantly willing to leave England and travel to Scotland.

Gabriel tries to persuade Catherine that the curse is real while Catherine's father tries to arrange a marriage for her. As signs of Catherine's possible madness stack up, events become more serious. When Catherine finds herself in Scotland with MacBraedon, she realizes that she might not be his choice if it weren't for the curse, forcing her to decide whether she can give herself to a marriage without love to save people she barely knows.

Very little happens plot-wise right up until the last 20-odd pages, when things move thick and fast. Neither Catherine nor Gabriel are well-drawn characters; the overwhelming impression Catherine leaves is of petulance and selfishness. Gabriel is a cipher of a Scottish warlord and the other characters were equally typical for this sort of book. I didn't find the scenes between Catherine and Gabriel romantic and some of the plot devices, such as her father's behavior, seem both unlikely then magically convenient. This is a fairly mediocre book without anything special to recommend it, the plot device of the curse one I have come across many times before.

Originally published on Curled Up With A Good Book at Helen Hancox, 2008

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