Sunday, March 19, 2006

Review: Pursuing Priscilla

A Signet Regency written by Emily Hendrickson and published in 2003. Featuring Priscilla Herbert and Felix Sutton, Lord Latimer. Priscilla is in London acting as companion to her aunt Mercy. Lord Latimer, conveniently, is a neighbor. He agrees to squire Miss Herbert around the tourist sights in London after meeting her in an obscure museum that features one of his favorite hobbies.

Miss Herbert enjoys his company & begins to fall in love with Lord Latimer- just as his tactless friend Renshaw reveals that Felix is determined to marry 'the first respectable lady he meets' in order to repair his family's tattered reputation. Miss Herbert, therefore, is aware from the beginning that Felix will marry for respectability as opposed to love.

Slowly they fall in love- or at least, Priscilla does. Felix, however, is laughably obtuse to their mutual feelings & is stuck on the idea of respectablity to the point of irritation. Hendrickson uses this to her advantage, however. Felix's preoccupation serves both as plot point as well as reminding the reader just how emotionally illiterate many men are. Hendrickson does an admirable job showing how a stuffy, priggish man gets that way & then evolves into a more mature, understanding, accepting man.

Felix very nearly loses Priscilla over a perceived wrong, which in reality, is based on his feelings of loss and shame in his youth. Priscilla is, how do I put this? Surprisingly meddlesome in Felix's family relationships especially considering the formality of polite behavior in that era. However, she manages to acquire town bronze, keep her aunt company, heal Felix's relationships with his family & fall in love all in one book. Excellent reading!

Romance Novel Review

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