Sbuchler's Reviews > Mr. Cavendish, I Presume

Mr. Cavendish, I Presume by Julia Quinn
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Nov 11, 08

bookshelves: read-in-2008, romance
Read in November, 2008

Genre: Romance

I enjoyed this book more then the previous in the series (_The Two Dukes of Wyndham_) - it had more humor, and felt a bit more like Quinn’s Bridgerton series. I'm sure it helped that I read this book 6 months after the first in the series, as it covers entirely the same time-frame, and most of the same scenes.

For all that the romance was rather sweet, I think Julia Quinn rather missed the boat on the story - I think the most interesting part was how the original Duke of Wyndham (Thomas, the hero of this book) comes to terms and learns how to function as Mr. Cavendish rather then as THE Duke of Wyndham. That requires some compare-and-contrast with his life as Duke (which was well done in the beginning of this book) but the book ends before he spends much time as Mr. Cavendish.

Secondly, all Thomas' moaning that, ‘if he's not The Duke he has nothing’ is rubbish. I had a huge suspension of disbelief problem with that - his father was the third son of the previous Duke and his mother the daughter of a wealthy manufacturer. Thomas' maternal grandfather would've been an idiot if the mother's dowry wasn't tied up primarily in her children! E.G. Her only son, our hero, Thomas.

For all that much of the book was the same scenes we'd seen previously in _The Two Dukes of Wyndham_ (theoretically told from slightly different perspectives, but not changed materially enough to make me believe that we were actually viewing the scenes from another's eyes) I can't believe that the pivotal scene for the heroine, where she stands up to her father and tells him she won't marry the new Duke of Wyndham, is left entirely out. It's not even mentioned that Amelia found the courage to say "No" despite it being in the climax of _The Two Dukes of Wyndham_!

Many of the scenes from the first book that were included felt to me like they were furthering a different story (the one in the first book) rather then the story of THIS book. I'm sure this is a very hard thing to do, but... I have to compare this duology (unfavorably) to the amazing job that Pamela Aidan did in the _Fitzwilliam Darcy, Gentleman_ books in retelling the same story and same scenes from Austen’s _Pride & Prejudice_ but from an obviously different perspective – some things were left out because Darcy didn't take note of them, others that Elizabeth had passed over in a paragraph got pages and pages of attention. Unfortunately, that kind of perspective changing compare-and-contrast does not happen between _Mr. Cavendish, I Presume_ and _The Two Dukes of Wyndham_.
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