Lady Elizabeth Conway is an astronomer and the eldest of 8 daughters. Upon her father's death, it's a distant cousin who inherits the earldom, Tom Con...moreLady Elizabeth Conway is an astronomer and the eldest of 8 daughters. Upon her father's death, it's a distant cousin who inherits the earldom, Tom Conway. But the new earl of Clanross doesn't seem very interested in his estates and takes a whole year to present himself to the family. When he finally arrives to the Abbey, he is not what it was expected…
Elizabeth is a very charming and strong-willed heroine. Her life is her telescope and her stars and, for once, this feels real and not just something to make the heroine look smarter or original. You can actually feel her passion and dedication to astronomy. She even refuses to marry if her profession is not accepted by her future husband. She's also independent and has a dry humor who easily makes you laugh out loud.
Tom Conway, the new earl of Clanross, prizes intelligence and education. He also cares for his family, even when he was never treated like such. A man who is not sure of himself and his appeal and yet, everyone seems under his charm. I'm not normally seduced by beta-heroes but I confess this one is absolutely marvellous.
There is no love at first sight, no initial and overwhelming attraction. When these two met the dislike is mutual. She finds him stiff and grayish. He completely disagrees with her decisions concerning her sisters education. They slowly become friends, respecting and admiring each other. We follow that relationship and it's obvious why they fall in love. We want them to be in love, there's no other way.
Sheila Simonson manages to create a very believable story and even Elizabeth's doubts and fears aren't silly or childish. We can only feel for her and expect for a happy ending. I can say without doubts this was one of my best reads of 2008. The author's intelligent writing and attractive characters makes this book a must read for any Trad Regency fan. If you can get a copy of Lady Elizabeth's Comet, don't let it go! (less)
Hannah Whittier, a young Quaker girl, is traveling to Charleston to be married. To her dismay, her ship is first attacked by the British, whose Captai...moreHannah Whittier, a young Quaker girl, is traveling to Charleston to be married. To her dismay, her ship is first attacked by the British, whose Captain forces a young American boy to join his crew, and later by the French who kill almost all the passengers and destroy the vessel. The young woman manages to escape and is saved by the same British crew lead by Captain Sir Daniel Spark.
What went wrong for me in Miss Whittier Makes a List? The two main characters, Hannah and Daniel. I normally don't mind very young heroines but here it was almost a torture to follow this girl's adventures. She is naive beyond belief and sometimes plain silly. I couldn't relate to her in any possible way and if some of her attitudes were supposed to be funny or refreshing, that didn't work for me at all.
Unfortunately, the hero was not much better. When he first meets the heroine, he appears as a ruthless and quite arrogant man, but right after he seems like a complete different person and shows a huge amount of patience with Hannah who is constantly in everyone's way. Suddenly to make up for all her faux-pas, there she is making extraordinary coffee for the captain, or giving him her support in a difficult moment…
I never believed not for a second that these two had feelings for each other. First him, a man well on his 30's suddenly claiming he is deeply in love with a 17 year old girl who he barely knows. And when he declares his love, it's her who shows some sense, but not for long. I just couldn't picture them together, there was no spark, no attraction whatsoever. I even started to think he was marrying her for her coffee…
After suspending my disbelief for so long I finally gave up, making of Miss Whittier Makes a List my first DNF of the year. (less)
Quite honestly, I don’t think I can do this book justice. Clever humor pours all through the pages of this wonderful story. I spent last Sunday aftern...moreQuite honestly, I don’t think I can do this book justice. Clever humor pours all through the pages of this wonderful story. I spent last Sunday afternoon with a beatific smile plastered on my face laughing uncontrollably. My cat, who was sleeping right next to me, was awaken several times and made me well aware with some glaring looks that I was disturbing his comfortable nap.
The characters are a true delight, attaching and far from perfect, which made them even more attractive to my eyes. But it’s the dialogues that caught me completely unaware with their delicious wittiness. There are so many memorable moments that is hard to pick up a favorite.
Vidal is a true rake, not the kind that makes all the show and, at the end, is another misunderstood man who is in great need of talking about his feelings. But he is always honest with his intentions and clearly shows marriage is not in his immediate plans. The pretty and frivolous Miss Challowner caught his eye and she is convinced he will make her his marchioness.
After another scandal, Vidal needs to leave the country and intends to take his current love interest with him. But this is without counting with the young woman’s elder sister, Mary, who always knew the Marquis true intentions. Determined to ruin his plans, she decides to go in her sister’s place.
I enjoyed Mary immensely! There’s sizzling chemistry between her and Vidal right from the beginning, but they both try to ignore it the best they can without success. The shooting scene is hilarious and one of my many favorites in this book.
The constant interventions of Vidal’s family contributes to many funny moments, especially when his paternal aunt is involved (her complains about Vidal’s behavior and comparisons to her son are highly amusing) or even his mother, Léonie, the heroine of These Old Shades, who has always a peculiar talent to comfort her son.
I cannot recommend this book highly enough! Devil’s Cub is now in my comfort reads shelf forever. (less)