December 22, 2009

The Making of a Marchioness - Frances Hodgson Burnett

The Making of a Marchioness was given to me by the very insightful Sarah as part of the Persephone Secret Santa gift swap this year.

Just reading the description of the book on the Persephone site was enough to let me know I would most likely be enjoying this one greatly;

Part I, the original Marchioness, is in the Cinderella (and Miss Pettigrew) tradition, while Part II, called The Methods of Lady Walderhurst, is an absorbing melodrama; most novels end 'and they lived happily ever after' but this one develops into a realistic commentary on late-Victorian marriage. 'Delightful... A sparky sense of humour combined with lively social commentary make this a joy to read' wrote the Bookseller. Kate Saunders told Open Book listeners that she was up until two in the morning finishing this 'wildly romantic tale whose hero and heroine are totally unromantic' (Daily Telegraph); the Guardian referred to 'a touch of Edith Wharton's stern unsentimentality'; the Spectator wrote about the novel's 'singular charm'; and the Daily Mail stressed the 'sharp observations in this charming tale.'

I have not as yet read The Secret Garden (sad I know!) so this was my first experience of Hodgson Burnett's writing - and I loved it. The storyline, the writing style, the detailed descriptions of fashions and scenes and the characters themselves (in particularly Emily) all enchanted me - there is no other way to describe my reaction to this book - I was completely enchanted and charmed by the whole thing!

My only problem now is that I don't know what to read next to follow such an amazing book! Can anyone offer any suggestions? Also, what Persephone do you think I should order next?

Thank you so much Sarah - an excellent choice!


Anonymous said...

I cannot recommend The Shuttle (also by Frances) enough its utterly utterly wonderful. One of my favourite books of the year.

Anonymous said...

Once again, I am SO pleased that you liked the book! Now I just need to get my own grubby paws on it. :)

Anonymous said...

It is a lovely book. But how to pick one Persephone? I can't! But I will say that there are good resons why they have published a number of books by Dorothy Whipple and Marghanita Laski...

Karen said...

Hi Savidgereads - I was hoping someone would suggest The Shuttle - glad to hear it is wonderful!

Hi Sarah - thank you so much again - an absolutely perfect choice!

Hi fleur - I will check out the Whipple and Laski books - I have heard lots of fantastic things about both of those authors.

Paperback Reader said...

Definitely read The Shuttle!

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