The Marriage Basket

With Family in Mind

My Fair Maggy by Sharon DeVita
(Silh. Romance #1735, $4.25, G) ISBN 0-373-19735-7
The sins of our fathers often leave long lasting scars, followed by the events surrounding our first love affairs. Many a romance has been based on those scars and My Fair Maggy is no different. Yet, it is fun, engaging and full of characters a reader would like to know a little better.

Mary Margaret Gallagher suffers from the scars of her first marriage. Having been raised in a large Irish family, she has always been the one everyone comes to for help. The oldest sister of 6 brothers, Maggy became that family figure when her parents died and her grandparents took them into their home. She realized that at thirteen, she needed to help. She studied hard, went to college and was swept off her feet by an up and coming law student, and she fell hard. But after she helped pay his way through law school, he decided she did not fit into his lifestyle and he dumped her.

Now, Maggy is back trying to finish her own degree and help her grandfather keep the family deli running. She loves her family and is happy to help those in need. But her grandfather, Patrick Gallagher, wants more for her. He schemes with an old friend to match up their grandchildren.

His old friend is none other than Millicent Gibson, known to the world as advice columnist “Aunt Millie”. Millie is trying to retire, but must find a replacement first. She sends her grandson to Maggy, hoping to convince her to meet about the job. Said grandson is Griffin J. Gibson, III. Of course, Maggy immediately decides he is like her ex-husband, more concerned about appearances and money than about people.

Griffin actually is a down to earth man, thanks in large part to his grandparents’ influence. Losing his grandfather several years ago was difficult and he is determined to protect his grandmother from any and all fortune hunters. That is what he thinks Maggy’s grandfather is. He came to see Maggy only to help his grandmother get the idea out of her head. Griffin carries emotional scars from his father, a selfish idiot who left his family to go from bimbo to bimbo seeking something. What Griffin learned is love is stupid and you can’t trust any woman. But what he finds is a lovely woman who affects him more than he wants to admit.

Maggy agrees to act as “Aunt Millie” for a trial period of one month, including all the social functions it entails, and Griffin is to act as her escort. The stage is set and the dance begins.

This is a delightful look at two engaging personalities who try to figure each other out, as they realize neither one fits the mold the other wants them to. Maggy is genuine and lively, caring, concerned and passionate. Griffin shows the world a calm, cool and collected figure, but he enjoys a good beer, hates the socialite parties and helps homeless men get jobs. The glimpses of Maggy’s family are fun and full of traditional Irish sex appeal. The blurb on the back hints that Maggy’s brothers will each get a story and I look forward to reading them.

It’s a charming little romance full of surprises and endearing characters. My Fair Maggy is a good start to what hopefully will turn into a family of tales.

-- Shirley Lyons

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