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Beauty for Ashes

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It was the perfect contract for a marriage of convenience to a woman he didn't know. Didn't want to know. Justin Randolph, a wealthy widower, believes love is a myth. He's only marrying to provide his children with a mother. Mistaken for Justin's intended, Elizabeth Frazier seizes the opportunity to escape a forced marriage. Like Justin, Elizabeth marries, not seeking love, It was the perfect contract for a marriage of convenience to a woman he didn't know. Didn't want to know. Justin Randolph, a wealthy widower, believes love is a myth. He's only marrying to provide his children with a mother. Mistaken for Justin's intended, Elizabeth Frazier seizes the opportunity to escape a forced marriage. Like Justin, Elizabeth marries, not seeking love, but safety. God, however, has a different plan....


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It was the perfect contract for a marriage of convenience to a woman he didn't know. Didn't want to know. Justin Randolph, a wealthy widower, believes love is a myth. He's only marrying to provide his children with a mother. Mistaken for Justin's intended, Elizabeth Frazier seizes the opportunity to escape a forced marriage. Like Justin, Elizabeth marries, not seeking love, It was the perfect contract for a marriage of convenience to a woman he didn't know. Didn't want to know. Justin Randolph, a wealthy widower, believes love is a myth. He's only marrying to provide his children with a mother. Mistaken for Justin's intended, Elizabeth Frazier seizes the opportunity to escape a forced marriage. Like Justin, Elizabeth marries, not seeking love, but safety. God, however, has a different plan....

30 review for Beauty for Ashes

  1. 5 out of 5

    Carol (StarAngel's Reviews) Allen

    4.5 Convienent Stars The story of Elizabeth and Justin had me swooning right along with Elizabeth. This is a wonderful romance that started as a matter convienence that grew into something so beautiful. We read of both of these characters overcoming their fear of love while helping each other get over their horrible pasts. Yes, Elizabeth swoons too much and they are both stubborn to a point where it could get annoying...and yes, there are references to scripture but it's not pushed too heavily f 4.5 Convienent Stars The story of Elizabeth and Justin had me swooning right along with Elizabeth. This is a wonderful romance that started as a matter convienence that grew into something so beautiful. We read of both of these characters overcoming their fear of love while helping each other get over their horrible pasts. Yes, Elizabeth swoons too much and they are both stubborn to a point where it could get annoying...and yes, there are references to scripture but it's not pushed too heavily for a Christian romance. Overall...this was a book I couldn't put down!

  2. 4 out of 5

    Loverture

    I don't normally write reviews because I either don't care that strongly about a work or I'd love it too much that I'd just gush endlessly which isn't quite helpful, but the hours I spent on this book has made me so angry that I can't help myself. Elizabeth Shannon Frazier fled from a forced betrothal to a horrid man as payment for her cold-hearted father to gain a valuable property. By coincidence, her route led her to be in the right place at the right time to be mistaken for the prospective br I don't normally write reviews because I either don't care that strongly about a work or I'd love it too much that I'd just gush endlessly which isn't quite helpful, but the hours I spent on this book has made me so angry that I can't help myself. Elizabeth Shannon Frazier fled from a forced betrothal to a horrid man as payment for her cold-hearted father to gain a valuable property. By coincidence, her route led her to be in the right place at the right time to be mistaken for the prospective bride of a rich man, Justin Randolph, who meant to buy a bride with a large amount of money because he'd had enough of scheming, lying women who took advantage of him before. Seeing the chance, Elizabeth took it in order to protect herself, and with the secrecy she holds about her circumstances, among other misunderstandings, Justin viewed her in the same negative light as other women he'd known. They went through many obstacles to realize their feelings for each other, and in the end became honest with each other and made it work. After the first 1/3 of the book, I was already fed up with Justin's hot and cold blowing attitude. He was always so angry about everything, and I didn't understand why. He had a nasty view of Elizabeth, and held onto it tooth and nail. Then he'd give her a nice word out of nowhere, then went right back to being aggressive towards her. I empathized with Elizabeth and felt very uncomfortable and scared of him. What kind of hero is this? I couldn't wait for him to be redeemed and I hoped that it would come soon. Several dozen pages later, I realized that half of the book was over and I still felt no more charitable towards Justin and was beginning to berate Elizabeth under my breath, too. He continued to be hardheaded and swung from complimenting his wife out of nowhere to glaring at her in a breath (how dare she be so attractive?). He was beginning to love her but he would NOT let go of the original impression he had of her, despite multiple opportunities to do so. (view spoiler)[He threw the document that would've let him know she didn't take his money into the fire! (hide spoiler)] I wanted to hit him. Their communication was abysmal. And she kept fainting. All the time, with some wild mood swings. She has reassured several times that she isn't prone to sickness or swooning, but there she went. It's more of a pet peeve that the author used "swooning" for this, but that word irritates me to no end. I understand that what Elizabeth went through was traumatic and damaging, but I've read better handling of the issue. She would grow a back bone and stand up to Justin for a sentence or two, then he'd have another misunderstanding and be aggressive towards her, and she'd fall back down again. Were this book not a library copy, I would've hurled it against the wall. I'm not given to rage easily, and it's done it. Their falling in love felt to me based more on appearance than anything else. They certainly didn't trust each other enough during the whole book. Justin constantly doubted Elizabeth's motives and character. She didn't know how to handle him or know anything much about him, such as what made him happy. I felt that she was always uncertain, and it carried over to me as a reader. The truth and the resolution of the multiple, compounding misconceptions didn't come until the end of the book, and I didn't feel at all satisfied or cathartic. I felt it was too little too late, and considering that he was still so ready to discount everything about her just a few pages before even after admitting to loving her made me want to box him about the ears. I also thought that she could've told the truth much sooner and save us all a lot of grief. All in all, I just wanted to be done so I skimmed the epilogue, got on Goodread to mark the book, and ended up with my feelings boiled over here. The only parts that I really enjoyed were Elizabeth's interaction with the children. She did some very good work there, and Sarah's improvement touched me. I really wish there'd been more of that.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Megan

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. For goodness sake. Talk about stringing along a simple, meager plot throughout an entire book. The suspension of belief that Justin & Elizabeth would never talk to each other and figure this out is completely unrealistic, not enough for an entire novel surely. Also, the fact that she faints every time Justin looks at her but the man who abused her in the first place comes back to kidnap her and she walks right off with him, no faint in sight? Seriously?! And Justin never put two & two together t For goodness sake. Talk about stringing along a simple, meager plot throughout an entire book. The suspension of belief that Justin & Elizabeth would never talk to each other and figure this out is completely unrealistic, not enough for an entire novel surely. Also, the fact that she faints every time Justin looks at her but the man who abused her in the first place comes back to kidnap her and she walks right off with him, no faint in sight? Seriously?! And Justin never put two & two together that the reason she may be so skittish could have to do with all the bruises that were all over her body? It's hilarious in the beginning of the story she tells him she is not weak nor sickly & spends the rest of the entire book fainting and crying & laying in bed...hmmm that certainly does not bode well for a robust healthy person. What a shame, the kernel of the story is a great idea but not enough development to carry it along. I'm surprised the woman had any hydration left in her body to cry one more dang time. Darn! I really wanted the story to develop a little more where I could actually enjoy their relationship together and not only the last couple pages.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Barb

    “Beauty for Ashes” by Dorothy Clark was well worth my time reading the book. We begin in New York in 1820 with Elizabeth Frazier’s father insisting that she wed someone who is not to her liking. Not only is this man not to her liking, he is also abusive. When she tries to reason with her father, he locks her in her room without shoes while he goes to discuss the betrothal that she abhors. Her mother is no help to her as she sees all men as the same kind as her husband and tells Elizabeth that sh “Beauty for Ashes” by Dorothy Clark was well worth my time reading the book. We begin in New York in 1820 with Elizabeth Frazier’s father insisting that she wed someone who is not to her liking. Not only is this man not to her liking, he is also abusive. When she tries to reason with her father, he locks her in her room without shoes while he goes to discuss the betrothal that she abhors. Her mother is no help to her as she sees all men as the same kind as her husband and tells Elizabeth that she just needs to get used to being treated this way. In her desperation, she sneaks from the house and walks as far as she can to an inn where she hopes to summon help. Unknown to her, this inn is the rendezvous point for Justin Randolph and the woman who has agreed to a marriage of convenience with him for a monetary settlement. He has never met her, has no idea what she looks like. So when Elizabeth shows up all concerned think she is the one he is to marry. In her fear she agrees to the arrangement, but declines all monetary reward. Justin and Elizabeth are wed and leave immediately for his estate and his children. Both parties are suspicious of the other. Neither thinks that the other is being truthful and all attempts at civility are non-existent. Even though each thinks their dilemma is solved, there are other forces at work to harm them. This story goes along at a fast clip and is hard to put down. I will definitely be reading more books by Ms. Clark. You can find this review on my blog at http://wp.me/p2pjIt-oF, and other reviews on my blog at http://imhookedonbooks.wordpress.com.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Laura

    Nice read For the most part I really enjoyed this sweet romance. Dorothy Clark is a good writer and it moved along well and had a good plot and I liked most of the characters. The only thing I did not like was that the hero was just such an ass most of the book. I understand that if the hero and heroine immediately like each other, there’s not much left to right about in a romance novel… And there’s always some misunderstandings or there is no plot… But he was really mean to her And jumped to ridi Nice read For the most part I really enjoyed this sweet romance. Dorothy Clark is a good writer and it moved along well and had a good plot and I liked most of the characters. The only thing I did not like was that the hero was just such an ass most of the book. I understand that if the hero and heroine immediately like each other, there’s not much left to right about in a romance novel… And there’s always some misunderstandings or there is no plot… But he was really mean to her And jumped to ridiculous conclusions which made him seem pretty dense and stupid and made it hard to understand what she was falling in love with. There were moments when he was in Sting truly kind and loving to her. I think the story would have been better with more of those moments and if you were moments where he assumed the worst of her and treated her very poorly. Still, it was a really good read in that I never consider putting it down. The dialogue was good and the story was interesting throughout.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Phylisha Stone

    This is my first Dorothy Clark book and now that I have finished it, it won't be my last. Elizabeth Frazier is a young woman in an intolerable situation. She is being"sold" to a man who is abusive to women by her father for a warehouse that will make him even richer. Even her mother basically told her to shut up and take it, because men are that way. Fortunately the book ends way better than it starts. This book has a christian themw. This is my first Dorothy Clark book and now that I have finished it, it won't be my last. Elizabeth Frazier is a young woman in an intolerable situation. She is being"sold" to a man who is abusive to women by her father for a warehouse that will make him even richer. Even her mother basically told her to shut up and take it, because men are that way. Fortunately the book ends way better than it starts. This book has a christian themw.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Cherye Elliott

    Lack of communication First time I have read not only this genre but this author. What a delightful surprise! Well written. Easy, fun read. Did need a bit of editing but not enough to keep this reader from enjoying the book.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Mary

    Can I give a book 1 1/5 stars? Why don't people just talk to each other???? Can I give a book 1 1/5 stars? Why don't people just talk to each other????

  9. 5 out of 5

    Lisa Crookston

    3.5 stars

  10. 5 out of 5

    Amanda

    I have read this book so many times, especially the ending, as it moved me to tears and ached for the moments Justin and Elizabeth would finally have a heart-to-heart. It was a slow-burn type of romance, and one that is built on respect, though something does happen that makes Justin question Elizabeth's honesty, but his love shines through, and it's because of the incident, which I won't go into detail, that the truth comes shining through, and a deeper love blossoms between them. It's a beautif I have read this book so many times, especially the ending, as it moved me to tears and ached for the moments Justin and Elizabeth would finally have a heart-to-heart. It was a slow-burn type of romance, and one that is built on respect, though something does happen that makes Justin question Elizabeth's honesty, but his love shines through, and it's because of the incident, which I won't go into detail, that the truth comes shining through, and a deeper love blossoms between them. It's a beautiful story, one that I would recommend, but it's not for the faint of heart. The other books in this series are good, but, for me, they do not compare with this one. I find myself thinking of Beauty and the Beast when I read this book.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Shelbymarie159

    This book will always hold a special place in my heart. The title itself speaks for itself and will forever be a reread book for me. The characters are so well developed and you have to love them both for who they are and the struggles they have been through and go through during their journey together. Dorothy Clark will not disappoint you and give you hope for life, relationships, your own journey and even God. I cannot say enough how amazing this book is.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Michelle

    The Randolph Family Book 1 This is book 1 of six. The books in the series are: Beauty for Ashes Joy for Mourning Family of the Heart The Law and Miss Mary Prairie Courtship Frontier Father The first two books are Steeple Hill. The last four books are Love Inspired Historical. I started with the first book and frankly cannot wait to get the second book! This book was a lot better than I expected. After all, I've read lots of Marriage of Convenience stories, but never one quite like this! Both of the main c The Randolph Family Book 1 This is book 1 of six. The books in the series are: Beauty for Ashes Joy for Mourning Family of the Heart The Law and Miss Mary Prairie Courtship Frontier Father The first two books are Steeple Hill. The last four books are Love Inspired Historical. I started with the first book and frankly cannot wait to get the second book! This book was a lot better than I expected. After all, I've read lots of Marriage of Convenience stories, but never one quite like this! Both of the main characters have had their hearts deeply scarred. Justin has been rejected by two women who gave him a bad taste for women. But he knew he needed a wife to run his household and mother the two children. Elizabeth Frazier had horrible parents. She ran away when her father was forcing her into a marriage with a monster who had assaulted her. She was happy to marry a man who never wanted intimacy. She could be the lady of the manor and a mother to his two children. So many assumptions were made by Justin, and so many misunderstandings were made. But as the weeks passed, the two learned so many things about the other. That's all I can say about the plot! It was a wonderful book! I loved the scene of their first night at the Randolph home when he was explaining about why it had to be the way it was going to be. I loved everything about this book. Watching these two come together in the end was magical. This is one of those books you don't want to stop reading once you start! The author uses language that captivates you. She has well-defined her characters and put a multitude of personalities in her story. She has created a world of the rich elite who have maids and nannies for their children.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Raya Whitehouse

    This book is a Christian romance novel with none of the adult type content, which is a great thing. This book is a great read for people who love reading about romance with Christianity thrown in. I loved reading this story and had a hard time putting it down. The story is about Carrie Daly who is living with her brother Henry and he gets married to Mary who has 2 sons Joe and Caleb. At the beginning I really felt sorry Carrie when reading what went on in the house after her brother married and h This book is a Christian romance novel with none of the adult type content, which is a great thing. This book is a great read for people who love reading about romance with Christianity thrown in. I loved reading this story and had a hard time putting it down. The story is about Carrie Daly who is living with her brother Henry and he gets married to Mary who has 2 sons Joe and Caleb. At the beginning I really felt sorry Carrie when reading what went on in the house after her brother married and had Mary and the 2 boys move in. Carrie is sort of seeing Nate Chastain, and the whole town seems to think they are perfect together. Carrie keeps saying she wants to be sure that Nate is the one God wants for her before setting the date. When Griff Rutledge, she starts feeling kind of weird (like she felt when she was with her first husband before he died). She is now more confused than ever. I love the ending (which i won't give away). While being slightly predictable it is still a very heart warming ending to the book.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Marinea

    This is one of my favorites book. My best friend's grandmother is actually the author of this and I got a signed edition on my first trip to New York. Flawless penning! Justin and Elizabeth have a love that people only dream of. It was even more touching because of how I saw her husband as her own Justin in her life. Mrs. Clark did a wonderful job unveiling the secrets, twists, turns, and pacing the novel so it was not only a fast read, but so that you had time to take it all in. She had beautif This is one of my favorites book. My best friend's grandmother is actually the author of this and I got a signed edition on my first trip to New York. Flawless penning! Justin and Elizabeth have a love that people only dream of. It was even more touching because of how I saw her husband as her own Justin in her life. Mrs. Clark did a wonderful job unveiling the secrets, twists, turns, and pacing the novel so it was not only a fast read, but so that you had time to take it all in. She had beautiful imagery in this book and Elizabeth and her thoughts, emotions, feelings, etc. were so perfectly penned that you don't realize that it's not you or not happening before your eyes. It is an inspiring write with a beautiful ending!

  15. 4 out of 5

    Amy Tyner

    Justin learning to trust and love again both God and a woman is so touching and so true to how God loves us unconditionally. Elizabeth patience and stifle with her difficult journey help us see how when we're severing and submitting to God He can use us to point others to Him. I love going back and reading this book again and again! Justin learning to trust and love again both God and a woman is so touching and so true to how God loves us unconditionally. Elizabeth patience and stifle with her difficult journey help us see how when we're severing and submitting to God He can use us to point others to Him. I love going back and reading this book again and again!

  16. 4 out of 5

    Leslie

    This book was exactly what I was wanting! Clean, fluff romance reading - it hit the spot. Even though it is clean, it is still exciting. It was so satisfying that I'd give it five stars, if not for the main characters constant "swooning," which seemed a little much sometimes. Definitely one I will re-read in the future. This book was exactly what I was wanting! Clean, fluff romance reading - it hit the spot. Even though it is clean, it is still exciting. It was so satisfying that I'd give it five stars, if not for the main characters constant "swooning," which seemed a little much sometimes. Definitely one I will re-read in the future.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Julianna Rowe

    I absolutely LOVED it. I could not put it down, either. Usually, I find myself bored with most books because they are so predictable, but not with this one. It gave me REAL enjoyment, which I don't often get, except when I reread old favorites. It was truly a blessing to me and I would highly recommend it others. I absolutely LOVED it. I could not put it down, either. Usually, I find myself bored with most books because they are so predictable, but not with this one. It gave me REAL enjoyment, which I don't often get, except when I reread old favorites. It was truly a blessing to me and I would highly recommend it others.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Seema

    This was a good story dragged out. A embittered widower decides to have a contract marriage and manages to get married to a beautiful young girl who was running away from her abusive rich parents. The story was about misunderstandings and then redemption. It's a Christian fiction so a lot about the bible. I liked the character of the heroine. The hero was annoying. This was a good story dragged out. A embittered widower decides to have a contract marriage and manages to get married to a beautiful young girl who was running away from her abusive rich parents. The story was about misunderstandings and then redemption. It's a Christian fiction so a lot about the bible. I liked the character of the heroine. The hero was annoying.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Veronica

    This was a good book. It was straight forward, no twists and turns, no surprises. I thought that the plot had a lot of potential but the execution was half-hearted. I'd be okay with reading the rest of the series, but I'm not desperate to continue it. This was a good book. It was straight forward, no twists and turns, no surprises. I thought that the plot had a lot of potential but the execution was half-hearted. I'd be okay with reading the rest of the series, but I'm not desperate to continue it.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Ann

    couldn't put this one down. fast-paced, clean, and fun with a great twist at the end. want to read her other books now. couldn't put this one down. fast-paced, clean, and fun with a great twist at the end. want to read her other books now.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Linette

    This was great fun. I couldn't put it down. Christian Romance at its best. This was great fun. I couldn't put it down. Christian Romance at its best.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Judy

    Justin and Elizabeth have an interesting beginning and a great end. Good Read.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Haley

    I really loved this book. I would give it 4.5 stars. The author did a very good job with revealing the secrets slowly so that you were intrigued the entire time.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Alex

    great book i love romances so i loved this

  25. 5 out of 5

    Rayna

    It was an easy read, sweet but predictable. I liked it but after the reviews expected a twist and didn't feel that there was really anything to set this book apart from other books of this genre. It was an easy read, sweet but predictable. I liked it but after the reviews expected a twist and didn't feel that there was really anything to set this book apart from other books of this genre.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Mikayla

    Absolutely love this book !!!!!

  27. 4 out of 5

    Cassandra Bowers

    I love a good romance, and this book was great! It was clean, it was fun, and it provided me with a great escape.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Brooke

  29. 4 out of 5

    Johnissia

  30. 5 out of 5

    Libraryjoy

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