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The Ladies of Missalonghi
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The Ladies of Missalonghi

3.69  ·  Rating details ·  3,227 Ratings  ·  357 Reviews
Sometimes fairy tales can come true-even for plain,shy spinsters like Missy Wright. Neither as pretty as cousin Alicia, nor as domineering as mother Drusilla, she seems doomed to a quiet life of near poverty at Missalonghi, her family's pitifully small homestead in Australia's Blue Mountains. But It's a brand new century-the twentieth-a time for new thoughts and bold, new ...more
Paperback, 192 pages
Published November 26th 1996 by Arrow Books Ltd (first published January 1st 1987)
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Emily This is a long time favorite of mine. The story line is simple and short yet endlessly fascinating.
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Ryl
May 03, 2008 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thissucked, reviewed
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Ghazaleh
Oct 14, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ناتمام
رمانِ زردِ ایرانی طور :|
از صفحه دوم به بعد میدونی داستان چیه و چه اتفاقی قراره بیفته :|
Brenda
4.5s

The Hurlingford family had owned the town of Byron in the Blue Mountains west of Sydney for generations; the Byron Bottle Company was the mainstay of the town, owned and run by the Hurlingford men. But some of the women of the town were destined to be poor and impoverished – treated badly by the men, and without men of their own, they struggled; but with immense strength of character.

Missy Wright lived at Missalonghi with her mother Drusilla and aunt Octavia – thirty three years of age, Mis
...more
☼♄Jülie 
Feb 19, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to ☼♄Jülie  by: Sally906 GR friend.

What a thoroughly enjoyable read this was..
Set in The Blue Mountains, west of Sydney, Australia, in the time just before the outbreak of the Great War, the story revolves around a small town community made up almost entirely of various branches of the same family line...the Hurlingfords.
A bit of scandal, a bit of snobbery, a few old maids and spinsters, and a bit of romance, make this an easy and entertaining read.

4*s
Connie
Thirty-three-year-old Missy lives with her impoverished widowed mother and crippled aunt on the edge of the town of Byron. The town was founded by Missy's great-grandfather Hurlingford, and their system of inheritance favors the males in the family. Missy is considered a plain spinster always dressed in drab brown dresses. Then a new librarian introduces her to romantic novels, and Missy longs for romance and a more exciting life. When handsome John Smith buys property nearby, Missy thinks he ma ...more
Miriam
Oct 02, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: tenebris

This is The Blue Castle transposed to Australia, with less lovable characters and more obvious sex scenes.
Sally906
Mar 02, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Set in The Blue Mountains, west of Sydney, Australia, in the time just before the outbreak of the Great War, the story revolves around a small town community, Missalonghi, made up almost entirely of various branches of the same family line - the Hurlingfords. Missy Wright's mother, Drusilla, has been shunned by her family since she married for love, not money. Now widowed, she lives an impoverished life with her sister and daughter Missy. Plain, thin and doomed to wear brown, it seems Missy's li ...more
Hannah
Sep 29, 2009 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: romances
Sooooo, as a 100% positive "The Blue Castle" rip-off (how could McCullough dare?), I still enjoyed "The Ladies of Missalonghi", but only as I might enjoy the much less attractive and significantly less appealing younger brother of my older, wildly attractive ideal man; the appeal lies in the faint similarities, but the sloppy seconds aren't nearly as satisfying as the real thing!

Really, not a bad short story all in all, but it doens't hold a candle to L.M. Montgomery's The Blue Castle.
Brona's Books
Oct 21, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Regular followers of my blog will already know how much I love The Ladies of Missalonghi. It's not only a deliciously light, confectionery offering of a book, it's also a murky story mired down in a controversy involving plagiarism and L. M. Montgomery's The Blue Castle.

Both novels can be seen as fairly classic examples of the romance genre - with a down trodden, plain heroine-to-be, a family that gets in her way/puts her down/hides her away, a mysterious, stranger hero-to-be, a misunderstanding
...more
Megan
Jun 27, 2012 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Absolutely no one, unless starting a fire.
Shelves: horrible
I decided to read this based on reading somewhere that it was similar to 'The Blue Castle'. Apparently, 'similar' means, 'this-author-stole-the-idea-and-made-it-trashy-and-paranormal'. What really galls me is that the horrible plot twists were completely unnecessary. The first 3/4 of the book only had a couple of crude remarks made by side characters, then BAM! Suddenly, the main character decides she should behave like a heroine in the trash novels she's been reading and oh, BTW (now that you h ...more
Ahmad Sharabiani
The Ladies of Missalonghi, Colleen McCullough
عنوان: بانوان عمارت میسالونگی؛ نویسنده: کالین مک کالو؛ مترجم: طاهره صدیقیان؛ مشخصات نشر: تهران، صذوق، 1372، در 223 ص
Lulu Grace
Mar 17, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is NOT AT ALL my type of book. And most of you will know Colleen McCullough for her book, The Thorn Birds. This book, I think is unlike most of her books which are very long and very saga drama like. This is a very simple story. Old fashioned. And lovely. I think the main character actually "swoons" at some point in the book and I just found it to be completely endearing. It deserves all five stars.

The owner of the used bookstore I frequent and have for years actually recommended this book
...more
Libby
I enjoyed this, and didn't know about it's probable plagiarism from Montgomery's The Blue Castle until after reading it and trying to find out more. Now I really need to read The Blue Castle...

Nice little fairy story, where the heroine breaks out of a wretched life and gets the guy, while the "bad guys" get their own back. I enjoyed the setting in the Blue Mountains of Australia.

However, I do feel like the ending was a little rushed--once things started getting interesting, the book was almost o
...more
Parisa Bookworm
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nihaad Gamieldien
Oh, I SO enjoyed this book! After getting used to the writing style and the fact that it was one long read instead of being broken into chapters, I could not put it down. The characters were lively and the plot really picked up as the book progressed. I wasn't sure what to make of the ending but I think that it gives the reader the opportunity to draw their own conclusions.
Laura
It seems this book has a similar plot as The Blue Castle by L.M. Montgomery which was published in 1926.

Another coincidence? To be checked.
Danielle Reily
Jul 14, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
This is a one of those books that just makes me happy. It takes less than an afternoon to read, and I know it almost by heart, but I love it!
Priya
Nov 30, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: drama, old-world, family
Reading this book felt like being wrapped in a comfy old blanket, snuggled in a couch in front of the warm fireplace, sipping hot chocolate while it's gently snowing outside. Yeah.
M.A. McRae
Mar 04, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: women
Colleen McCullough is one of the most original writers that I know. Her first novel (I'm pretty sure) was 'Tim.' I have not seen anything like Tim before or since. I doubt if this novel was plagiarised at all - only that it was very common in the 1920s for widows and spinsters to live together, and in poverty (spinsters were very common Post WW1 due to the shortage of men.) As an Australian writer, she may never have come across the Canadian book that is spoken of.

The plot? Missy finds her exist
...more
Deborah Pickstone
This is one of my favourite novels from CMcC. It was a first time read too! Just a little romance where the good win and the bad lose and our heroine gets her own idea of a perfect life to replace the poverty of yore. Short and delightfully written; a little gem!

I have been reading These Is My Words: The Diary of Sarah Agnes Prine, 1881-1901 and Sarah's Quilt either side of this and imagine my surprise and delight to see the author in an interview at the back refer to this novel as one of the bo
...more
Abeer Hoque
I wanted a romance but one well written, so what better guide than the writer of the Thorn Birds, a book that rends me even in the remembering, twenty years later? The Ladies of Missalonghi, with the occasional illustration (who does this anymore?!) is an afternoon's delight, like the fairy cakes its characters concoct and consume with relish. I admit towards the second half, it felt more low brow than high fiction, but the eponymous protagonist is just dowdy enough to lull, bright enough to cha ...more
Sherry
Nov 10, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Duplicate plot to LM Montgomery's "The Blue Castle," but I still love the book.
Ania
Jan 11, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I picked it up because of its reputation as The Blue Castle plagiarised... The Blue Castle is my favourite book so the curiosity won even though I didn't have too high hopes of loving The Ladies of Missalonghi.

There are multiple plot aspects that are a bit too close for comfort, starting with the set up, a spinster living with her mother and another female family member, her love of books, a mysterious new comer to the town, a beautiful cousin.... Overall however, the writing is nowhere near the
...more
Casey
Feb 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is one of my favorite books. I've read it at least a dozen times. A novelette, it can really be read in one sitting. I'd call it a bonbon book, but one that makes you feel good. Whenever I need a lift, out pops this book.
Catsalive
Feb 21, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: aww-previous, 2015
cover:
Who was John Smith? What was the mystery surrounding his past? Why did he elect to live alone in the bush and listen to the silence? These were the questions the outraged members of the Hurlingford clan asked when John Smith came to town and stole the valley out from under their self-important noses. He would have to go! said the third Sir William. What was all the fuss about? asked Alicia the clan belle, too busy planning her wedding to appreciate the ominous rumblings of change that seem
...more
Knjigomanijak
Apr 07, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Nemam riječi s kojima bih opisala oduševljenje s ovom knjigom. Kratka, ali slatka, zanimljiva i puna humora knjiga govori i tri žene (majka, sestra i kćer) koje životare u jednom malom australijskom mjestu u kojm je sve znaku pjesnika lorda Bayrona. Siromašne( to one misle) i na rubu egzistencije bore se sa nedaćama života, štede svaki novčić i bez obzira na sve to, čuvaju duboko u sebi humor, veselost, upornost i nadu.
Postoji tu još i njihova zla i licemjerna rodbina koja od početka drži konce
...more
Jane Stewart
2 stars. A rush job. Plot and characters not developed enough.

I don’t mind authors telling similar stories if each is entertaining in its own way. But this book troubled me. It had too many parts directly copied from LM Montgomery’s book The Blue Castle (TBC). TBC was published in 1926. This book was published in 1987. I gave TBC 4 stars.

PLOT PROBLEMS:
Missy is 33, wimpy, mousy, downtrodden, a spinster, and lives with her mother. In TBC a doctor sends her a letter by mistake saying she will die
...more
Mary
Nov 14, 2014 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Anyone who likes historical fiction
Recommended to Mary by: My friend Noeleen
Several years into the twentieth century, in the tiny town of Byron nestled somewhere in the Australian Blue Mountains, a shy spinster, her widowed mother and her crippled aunt live in genteel poverty. For thirty-three-year-old Missy Wright, her mother Drusilla and aunt Octavia, life is difficult living as the poor relations of the Hurlingford family - the most prominent family in Byron. Despite the Wrights being allowed to live at Missalonghi - Drusilla's home through marriage - the women are a ...more
Christina
This book was recommended to me by my grandmother who I adore, so of course I had to read it. I will say that I did enjoy the story, but it left me perplexed at some of the author's choices in plot. First of all, I thought the transition in personality the main character, Missy, had was too sudden and radical. I would have liked to read that as more complex. Secondly, the whole paranormal aspect, while intriguing, was poorly incorporated. It was an easy, short read, and not something, unlike oth ...more
Larrirosser
Jul 12, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a sweet little shortcake of a read for the bathtub or the beach chair. So why do I give it a four? Because for me, it's iconic in its niche. When I want a short happy read, this is one of the first books I look for.

Update....when I wrote the review above, I'd never heard of The Blue Castle. Now I have, and it's a great little book. It was written first, and some of the scarily identical small details (like the pic of Queen Alexandra on the wall) convince me that C Mc MUST have read this
...more
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4917067
Colleen Margaretta McCullough was an Australian author known for her novels, her most well-known being The Thorn Birds and Tim.

Raised by her mother in Wellington and then Sydney, McCullough began writing stories at age 5. She flourished at Catholic schools and earned a physiology degree from the University of New South Wales in 1963. Planning become a doctor, she found that she had a violent aller
...more
More about Colleen McCullough...

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“...she looked like the sort of woman most men would want to get to know because they weren't sure what went on inside.” 30 likes
“You just hang onto the thought that every dog has its day, even the bitches” 15 likes
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