Guilty Pleasures's Reviews > Hidden Paradise

Hidden Paradise by Janet Mullany
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's review
Sep 02, 12

bookshelves: guiltypleasures-kittyangel
Read in September, 2012

Kitty's review posted on Guilty Pleasures

2.5 Stars

This is a story about Lou, an Austen Scholar, getting over the death of her husband; Peter and Chris, her best friends; Mac, a journalist trying to break his 1st big story; and Rob, the Head Footman at Hidden Paradise. What an eclectic group of people they were with different tastes and different wants.

Hidden Paradise is a Georgian house where Jane Austen was supposed to have stayed. It is being renovated by Peter and Chris to be a tourist attraction where people can come and act as if they were in the wonderful days of Lords and Ladies. All clothed to the era with exact replicas of rooms, food, fun and games. Lou and Mac are just a few of the people who were invited to do a run-through of the resort. Sarah, Viv, Di, the “Paint Boys”, Cathy and Alan all lend their own quirky personalities to the story as well with Rob being the catalyst to finally bringing Lou and Mac together.

I was a little put off by the book. At first it sounded like a fun read and then I started having problems with keeping up with the characters. Each chapter is about a different person and is titled as such. So, the book jumps around to the different people and what they are doing and feeling. Yes, other characters are woven into each one, but, it does become a bit tedious jumping from one to another. The book had a wonderful storyline bringing together the past and the present. Janet Mullany had some wonderful ideas and I enjoyed her bickering between Lou and Mac very much.

Unfortunately, I felt like Lou kept giving me whiplash with the way she would change her mind about Mac and Rob. The “cougar” storyline with her and Rob was very well written with her taking Rob’s virginity (finally) but, the menage scene with Lou, Mac and Rob, left a lot to be desired. Then, when Mac and Lou say “I love you”, she takes off back to Montana with Rob. Unfortunately, it just didn’t make sense to me. I personally think that this would have been a wonderful book if it wasn’t broken up the way it was. I think the storyline would have flowed a little better. Also, there were several smaller stories going on throughout the book which I felt were put in to explain things that happened later in the story. At the time, I asked “why here” and “what does this have to do with the story”. Again, I felt a little confused.

But, this is just my opinion of the book, you may enjoy reading this style of writing. Yes, there are three HEA’s: Lou and Mac, Peter and Chris and Rob and Di (which came out of the blue). Oh, and Rob’s parents, who were separated at the beginning of the book, are back together and we have no explanation as to how or why — just that they are.
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