What a delightful romp!! Kit Fancot comes home unexpectedly from Vienna because he ‘has a feeling’ that his twin in his trouble – and he’s right; Evel...moreWhat a delightful romp!! Kit Fancot comes home unexpectedly from Vienna because he ‘has a feeling’ that his twin in his trouble – and he’s right; Evelyn has not been seen or heard from for almost 2 weeks, and no one knows where he is. To make matters worse, he’s supposed to attend a family dinner the very next night – the family of the woman he recently proposed to! The twins’ Mama decides that Kit should masquerade as his brother ‘just for the night’, and Kit has the devil of a time trying to persuade her that it just won’t do. Of course he’s not successful, so off he goes the following night to be Evelyn, having been assured by his Mama that the only person he really has to fool is his betrothed, who has only briefly met him. Love is not the reason for the marriage-proposal; Evelyn needs to marry to prove to his uncle that he is settled down enough to be put in charge of the inheritance that should have come along with his succession to the title of Earl of Denville. Evelyn is the older, titled twin, but Kit has always been the more reliable one, and all his skills are called upon to pull off this masquerade. He is successful with that on the night of the dinner, but the following day Evelyn still has not shown up, and Kit knows that he’ll never to able to maintain the masquerade in town, so he decides to repair to the estate in Sussex, but – you guessed it – Cressy’s grandmama decides on the perfect idea of having the two of them come for a visit so that Cressy & Evelyn can get better acquainted. Now Kit is really in the soup!
The twins’ Mama is such a lovable widgeon that it is almost too easy to forgive her propensity for getting into serious debt, which is really what’s behind Evelyn’s need to marry. But since her sons have forgiven her, who am I to cavil?!
And then there’s Sir Bonamy Ripple, a “grossly fat and elderly dandy” of sedentary disposition – he does so love his food – but he’s always been there for Lady Denville and honestly cares for her, so this reader cared for him as well, and chuckled about the “wary look in his eye” when she told him he was her “best of friends” and he was very afraid of where that would lead!
Oh! Lest the reader worry – all the romances in the book work out happily! (less)
I fell in love with the Claybournes the first time I read For the Roses. In that book, Douglas was the brother who first discovered the baby who was t...moreI fell in love with the Claybournes the first time I read For the Roses. In that book, Douglas was the brother who first discovered the baby who was thrown in the refuse heap (she became their baby sister Mary Rose), so this role was perfect for him. He travels to a farm to collect the Arabian stallion he had purchased, but instead finds himself delivering the widow's baby during a rainstorm. Then of course he has to stay a while because the doctor says that the premature baby can't be moved from the cabin 'for 8 weeks; 10 would be better' if he's to have a chance at survival. Was the good doctor doing some matchmaking? Douglas & Isabel are stranded alone at the cabin for 2 months, so you can see where this is going. This is vintage Garwood - the dialogue between H/h and among the brothers is great (all the brothers put in an appearance).
Just writing this makes me want to read FTR again!(less)
Many biographers fill their books with lots of dry details that sometimes make the biography a boring read. Not so here - the author converted to Cath...moreMany biographers fill their books with lots of dry details that sometimes make the biography a boring read. Not so here - the author converted to Catholicism as an adult, and fell in love with the ideals and goals of Francis of Assisi. He writes the results of his research/pilgrimage of Francis' life in a series of short vignettes, as if he were having a conversation with the reader. (less)
A marvelous study of how one's actions affect and reflect the person within. In one case - Hester - you have someone who not only accepts but embraces...moreA marvelous study of how one's actions affect and reflect the person within. In one case - Hester - you have someone who not only accepts but embraces the punishment of society, and in another case - Rev. Dimmesdale - how hidden guilt can affect both the mental and physical health of an individual.
This really should be a 5* rating, but it just wasn't quite there for me - a strong 4.5*, tho! I love to sink into Heyer's regency world - to experienc...moreThis really should be a 5* rating, but it just wasn't quite there for me - a strong 4.5*, tho! I love to sink into Heyer's regency world - to experience and perhaps understand a little better the ups and downs of living in 19th century England, this time in Bath. And I especially love the way she uses the vernacular of those times - it's so much more enjoyable to figure out the meaning of the slang & 'cant' through the conversations of the characters rather than reading a glossary, such as in the following soliloquy: Ninian is speaking to Miss Wychwood: "The thing is - well, owing to one cause and another, I'm a trifle behind the wind at the moment! Until quarter-day, in fact! As soon as my allowance is paid I shall be tolerably well up in the stirrups again, but it won't do to be getting under the hatches, so ..." Much better than, 'I'm broke, ma'am.'
Or this: "If ever I heard such a whisker!" Oliver interjected. "You are generally held to be a diamond of the first water, my girl! And don't tell me you don't know it, for I am a hard man to bridge, and I give you fair warning that you'll catch cold if you try to gammon me!" What a lovely way to tell Annis that he thinks she's beautiful!!
Lady of Quality is not a love story - rather, it's about Annis finding love at the advanced age of 'nine-and-twenty' and 1)learning how to recognize that it is love, 2) working through the dilemma of accepting that love or retaining her comfortable, independent life, & 3) discovering that, with the right person, she can indeed have it all. I really liked that Oliver recognized that he, rake that he was, loved Annis and wanted to spend the rest of his life with her, and that he also understood why she was reluctant to accept his love and to acknowledge hers.
This book delved a little more deeply into the serious problems experienced by unmarried women, especially those who were not financially independent. Annis had the money and background to allow her to live independently, although even here she had to employ an older female companion in her household if she wanted to be accepted in society. But poor Miss Farlow, the 'gibble-gabbler' of this story - Maria was a 'poor relation' with no beauty, so she was doomed to do and be whatever her relatives asked of her; no wonder she prosed on and on: how else was she to be noticed?! I have to admit, I got so lost in her perorations that I had to go back and read again what she said to get her meaning; then I often laughed in sheer delight at Heyer's ability to actually bury a meaningful statement in that deluge of words! But no one, not even Annis, seemed to understand that Maria needed more than to just be tolerated; Maria herself accepted her 'place' in society, although you could hear it come out occasionally when she brought up what should be due her as a 'blood relative' (less)