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The Blue Sapphire

really liked it 4.00  ·  Rating details ·  217 ratings  ·  26 reviews
On a beautiful spring day, Julia Harburn sat on a seat in Kensington Gardens enjoying the sunshine. She was wearing a white frock and a large straw hat with a sapphire-blue ribbon which exactly matched her eyes - a strange coincidence, as it turned out, for the blue sapphire was to have a far-reaching influence upon her life. So far, her life had been somewhat dull and cir ...more
Audio Cassette
Published September 1st 2006 by Soundings (first published January 1st 1963)
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Tweety
Mar 29, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone who needs a sweet, cheary tale
Recommended to Tweety by: Dorcas


4 1/2

Julia has grown up in a house, not a home. Her mother is dead, and now that she thinks about it, she doesn't believe she died happy. Her father is a puzzle, he stays locked up in his study, a brown blanket wrapped around him, nursing some hidden pain that Julia is never allowed to see. When she was born her father was bitterly disappointed, he wanted a son, not a girl. Because of that, for the most part he ignores her. Other than encouraging her marriage to Morland and giving her thirty p
...more
QNPoohBear
Julia Harburn lives with her emotionally distant father and young stepmother in London. She's engaged to the very suitable and proper Morland Beverley and the couple are waiting for him to get a partnership in his father's firm before marrying. When Morland is late meeting Julia in Kensington Gardens one day, she sits down on a bench to wait. A young man by the name of Stephen Brett walks by and into love. He sits down to chat up Julia for the very true reason that he knows no one in London. Rec ...more
Sarah
Mar 24, 2016 rated it really liked it
The emancipation of a girl of the 1960's. I listened to the audiobook and it rocked me gently off to sleep each night, very pleasantly. One could, of course, point out the christian moral values, the symbolic absent father(figure), the contrivances and certain parallel situations (2 very young engaged women who suddenly see the light), but this is never underlined by the author, so one is left to build one's own personal impressions, and read the book as a simple romance... or not.

At any rate,
...more
Hana
Charming, light, a perfectly lovely romance with a delightful heroine. I enjoyed it so much that I was going to re-read it before posting my review but it's on hold for someone else at the library (and I know they will love it as well) so it's going to another lucky reader today.

More later....and in case I don't get a chance, be sure to read these terrific reviews from my friends:

Tweety: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...

Jane: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...

and Bree: https://www.g
...more
Laura
Nov 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
Re-read as audiobook. Hilary Neville has a good voice.
Jane
Apr 17, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Oh, this really should be a play!

Picture, if you will, the opening scene.

On a beautiful spring day, a young woman – Julia – wearing a white dress and a large straw hat with a sapphire-blue ribbon that exactly matches her eyes, is sitting on a bench in Kensington Gardens. She is waiting for her fiancé to arrive. A handsome young man - Stephen - sits down beside her. He is a stranger but he charms her, explaining that he is there to ward off unwanted attention, and that he will absent himself the
...more
Theresa
May 05, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I have been reading World War 2 novels lately, and picked up Stevenson's "The Blue Sapphire" feeling that I needed a break from one of the darkest eras in history, and a gentler, cheerful read! And Stevenson always fits the bill.

Julia Harburn is engaged to Morland Beverley.

"...the engagement was entirely satisfactory. Their families had known each other for years. The Harburns lived in a pleasant old house in Manor Gardens, the Beverleys lived in a palatial modern flat in Springfield Mansions.
...more
Bree (AnotherLookBook)
A novel about a young woman who is all set to marry the man her family wishes her to marry, when a chance encounter helps nudge her toward a more independently-minded lifestyle.

Full review at Another Look Book

Reminded me of:
- Margery Sharp (Cluny Brown)
- Daphne du Maurier (Rebecca), except in a different genre
- Victoria Holt (Mistress of Mellyn), for her female protagonists
- Anne Bronte (Agnes Grey; The Tenant of Wildfell Hall); Charlotte Bronte (the main character in this book is even reading V
...more
Bookworman
Dec 08, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kay Hart
Feb 11, 2013 rated it liked it
I am a long-time fan of this author and have managed to secure a few of her books through second-hand book sources.
I enjoyed this particular book and this may well be my third or fourth reading over the years. I find her writing about the hills country in Scotland refreshing, particularly after extremely busy periods when it is nice to read a book that is relaxing and enjoyable yet not trite.
It is interesting to read them in the current politically correct era and post world wars 1 and II and di
...more
Alisha
Jan 21, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Delicious reading on a snowy day. Finished it in about a day.
One of D.E. Stevenson's best.
Julia is sitting on a park bench waiting for her fiancé (a prim, selfish dictator of a man), when along comes Stephen and sits next to her. Stephen is recently returned from diamond mines in South Africa and knows no one in London, but when he sees the beautiful Julia sitting forlorn and nervously trying to avoid the impertinence of passersby, he seizes the opportunity to make friends. He is one of D.E. Ste
...more
Sarah
Jan 30, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Really enjoyed this one. I just love D. E. Stevenson's writing style. She's witty, she's clever, she's entertaining. Her stories are always unique with a colorful cast and scenery. She includes interesting tid-bits and historical facts that fit well into the story and are interesting and educational, yet entertaining.


http://libraryhospital.blogspot.com/2...
Pam
Jan 13, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Was looking for a book for Charlotte after she commented that all good books have a sad or tragic dilemma. Found this in a book of teen reading lists. Despite being written in 1963, the story of girl power holds true today. Couldn't put it down...
Claude
Oct 28, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: a, cozy, fiction, uk
3 and a half stars really. As usual, quite an enjoyable novel by D.E. Stevenson. But the outline of the novel is sometimes not quite clear. The heroine's relationship with her father, for instance, and I must say that the end of the book was quite rushed and left me wondering.
Carolyn
A lovely romance. I learned about the production of sapphires and meet some lovely people in the reading. The landlady was especially a 'character'.
Claire
Dec 21, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was...interesting. Wavering between 2 or 3 stars. I read several D.E. Stevenson books back in high school (which I enjoyed at the time) but this was a new one to me.

Pro #1: The narration by Hilary Neville for the audiobook version is PERFECT. I could listen to her all day.

Pro #2: As with any D.E. Stevenson book, you're guaranteed a cosy, comforting, completely clean read.

Con #1: This was definitely not a literary masterpiece. The storyline is rambling and random—could have used a good ed
...more
Cricket Muse
Sep 02, 2013 rated it really liked it
One of DES's light and lovely romances where the heroine starts out as a mousey little doormat who is under appreciated in her immediate circle. This is the case for Julia Harmon. Her father ignores her, her step-mother resents her, and her fiancée bullies her about. Being used to this treatment, Julia isn't able to see how she is not appreciated until she temporarily moves into lodgings while their house is redecorated. Then she begins her adventures, which include a sapphire and an impetuous y ...more
Clara Ellen
Jul 29, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book by one of my favorite authors..it's the story of a girl who is finding her way in the world and doing what she believes is right and loving and kind, even if her own father and fiance disagree! Good for her! She's such a wonderful and sweet girl and I love the time she spends working at the hat shop, love the time she spends with her ailing uncle even more, and love the sweet ending of the book even more! D. E. Stevenson writes the kind of stories that are ideal to read before ...more
Deb
Oct 23, 2012 rated it really liked it
Don't remember this, must ILL it. There was only one copy left in our library consortium, and as soon as I saw it I remembered the cover (not the one shown above.) A thoroughly enjoyable story about a family feud and two suitors - one a 'stick in the mud' and another a dashing young man. But more than that, it's about whether wives have a duty to obey their husbands and whether the marriage service should include the word obey - probably a very up to date topic in 1963 but the pill is so delicio ...more
MaryBliss
Jan 22, 2014 rated it really liked it
I enjoy meeting all the characters Stevenson creates and watching them interact. The pleasant ones are nicely pleasant if, occasionally overly exuberant, the unusual ones are quirkily unusual and the bad guys are quirky too. This one was charming.

Polly
Feb 21, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm extremely fond of this book, but apparently I've missed it on my recent bouts of re-reading D.E. Stevenson, because I remembered absolutely nothing about it except the opening scene! Nice to come to it as if it were new!
Wendy
Dec 26, 2011 rated it really liked it
This is one book I re-read whenever I can't think of what to read. Not sure what the magic is for me with this author; possibly just the reminders of when people were less pre-occupied with material things and thought more about leading decent happy lives.
Katie
Oct 31, 2010 rated it it was ok
I thought this book was completely inconclusive on so many points it was pathetic. If you want to read it, I'll be giving it away. I liked the characters but the story definitely lacked substance. It was o.k.
Gail
Apr 22, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: romance
The author my mom came back to for comfort.
Jodi
Feb 05, 2016 rated it really liked it
Delightful book!!! I've decided it is my third favorite Stevenson. I just wish it was twice as long!
Linda Chrisman
rated it it was amazing
Mar 02, 2015
Janga
rated it liked it
Oct 17, 2008
Amicus (David Barnett)
rated it really liked it
Oct 05, 2017
Michelle Alcock
rated it it was amazing
Jan 03, 2014
Virginia
rated it it was amazing
Jul 08, 2017
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Full name: Dorothy Emily Stevenson.
Her father was a Cousin of Robert Louis Stevenson

D.E. Stevenson had an enormously successful writing career: between 1923 and 1970, four million copies of her books were sold in Britain and three million in the States. Like E.F. Benson, Ann Bridge, O. Douglas or Dorothy L. Sayers (to name but a few) her books are funny, intensely readable, engaging and dependable
...more