Anna's Reviews > Miss Marjoribanks

Miss Marjoribanks by Mrs. Oliphant
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's review
Dec 06, 2010

really liked it
Recommended for: people who thought Cranford had too many characters
Read from December 06, 2010 to September 17, 2011

I feel pretty mixed about this book, which is how I feel about Oliphant generally (resourceful lady/a tad reactionary). She's like a Victorian Caitlin Flanagan.

While it seemed to take me forever and a day to finish the book, each section had its own wee narrative motor propelling things along quite nicely. Will Lucilla--the title character--host a successful 'Evening' for Carlingford's fragmented society? Will her father insist on employing a companion for her? Will Mr. Cavendish choose the upstart Barbara Lake over Lucilla? Will she prevail in her selection of Carlingford's M.P.?

The built-in repetition of phrases was well-put to ironic account, but could get tiring. ("I don't even want to think of that; I am just here to be a comfort to my dear papa" gets a lot of play.) All in all, though, this is a funny, incisive, gentle satire with a memorable personage--Lucilla really is one of a kind--at its center.
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