Danica's Reviews > Nine Coaches Waiting

Nine Coaches Waiting by Mary Stewart
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Aug 01, 2011

bookshelves: sadly-abandoned

Mary Stewart comes highly recommended by Nancy Pearl and Jenny Davidson, which is why I gave this book a chance. Well. That's a misrepresentation. I also wanted to read this "classic of romantic suspense" because I am trying to write romantic boddiceripper longfic and it is going terribly/badly/like a six car collision on an arterial highway in traffic-packed downtown Los Angeles, with, like flames gouting out of gutted semis and scorched rubber tires rolling jauntily past the windows of horrified motorists. However I gave up on Nine Coaches Waiting about forty pages in, not because the prose is clunky and uninspired (which it is), not because the innocent-young-governess in a mysterious-haunted-estate is such an overdone scenario (and it is), but because at that point in the book the reader is introduced to the INCREDIBLY GOOD LOOKING STUD WHOSE FORCE OF PERSONALITY IS A TEMPEST BLOWING THE DOORS OFF THE HINGES OF HER FEMININE RESTRAINT AND PROPRIETY, and who is also, by the way, a cripple confined to a wheelchair.

No. MASSIVE FUCKING LOLS, but also, just no.

Also sadly lacking in the readerly "aha!" department, cf. Alan Bennett:

"The best moments in reading are when you come across something - a thought, a feeling, a way of looking at things - which you had thought special and particular to you. And now, here it is, set down by someone else, a person you have never met, someone even who is long dead. And it is as if a hand has come out, and taken yours."

A good book pings me with moments like these on every page. Stewart's writing style doesn't manage one in the first twenty.
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Comments (showing 1-2 of 2) (2 new)

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message 1: by Supriya (new)

Supriya "Nine Coaches Waiting" sounds like a report on summer at Chelsea FC.

message 2: by Danica (new) - added it

Danica It took me about five minutes to understand this pun, because I had this image of cantering horse carriages fixed in my head. "You mean to tell me that coaches can be used to refer to something else?"

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