Sep 12 2017 7:00am

Reader Seeks Childfree Historical

Last month we ran an article about being childfree in romance and how society, and the genre, still has children as one of the expectations of a good relationship—despite children not being essential to the happy-ever-after for many women. The comments really lead to a great conversation, and one commenter in particular was left looking for a book that handled this topic particularly well: 

There was one historical that I read years ago - I don't remember title or author, but I would love to find it again—where the couple gets married with the usual expectation that she would provide an heir to his title, but no babies ever happened. The pressure from both families started getting a little out of hand and the hero eventually told everyone else - very publically, “I don't give a damn about an heir, she's my wife and I love her and I'm staying married to her even if we never have children.” (I'm paraphrasing.) And the epilogue showed them, several years later...they never were able to have children, but they were happy and the estate was going to go to some cousin's kid - who was being shown the ropes so he'd know what he was doing when he inherited - and a point was made to show that their life turned out just fine and dandy, sans offspring. More of that, please, authors!!!

Now, however, we're on the hunt for this book as several people are also searching for its identity! Does this sound familiar to any readers? Let us know down in the comments!

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Olive S.
1. Olive S.
Sadly I don't know, but I really want to read that book!

And I agree - more of that, please. ;)
Olive S.
2. Althea Claire Duffy
I don't know this book, but Rose Lerner's True Pretenses has a couple who deliberately plan never to have children.
3. wsl0612
There was a cozy historical mystery series that had this element. I can't remember any more details. I think the MCs names were Charles and Kate. Hope that's helpful :-)
4. wsl0612
I couldn't stand my own ignorance so I did some google sleuthing. The series I reference above is the Kathryn Ardleigh cozy mysteries by Robin Paige (pen name for a really good married writing team). Kate and Sir Charles Sheridan are the MCs.
SPOILER ALERT - they end up married and IIRC Kate can't have children and they adopt? I think. It's really good. Death at Bishop's Keep is the first book.
Adria Reyes
6. adria03
I'd love to see more childfree romances. Not childLESS where the couple CAN'T have kids but they end up happy anyway but childFREE romances where both parties actively state and reinforce that the don't WANT kids. Aside from there being a lack of racial diversity in mainstream romance, there is also a lack of real representation of the different life choices of women and men. I have enjoyed romances that end in marriage and kids for so many years but I'd also like to see a heroine who reflects women like me: I don't want kids and I would love to fall in love with a hero that doesn't want kids.

There's room for every type of woman in romance and we're not in those times where people believed that the key to a happy ending is marriage and kids.
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