Sunday, July 20, 2014

What I Read in June Part III

What I Read in June Part III . . .

Major Lord David (Regency Trilogy, #2)Major Lord David by Sherry Lynn Ferguson -- Regency Romance

Major Lord David Trent is the younger son of the Duke of Broughton. Newly returned home from the wars, David and his father do not see eye to eye about his future. David wants to relax and settle down into a peaceful, bachelor existence, but the Duke wants to marry David off to the Squire's daughter. David doesn't even remember the Squire HAS a daughter! He is enchanted with a chestnut haired beauty at his family's New Year's masquerade ball. He longs to be alone with her and touch her glossy curls. One moment of slight indiscretion finds David in a bit of a pickle; it seems the chestnut haired beauty is none other than Miss Wilhelmina Caswell, the squire's daughter. David is outraged! How could this enchanting creature be Billie Caswell - one of the neighbor's pack of unruly BOYS?! Billie Caswell has had a crush on David as long as she can remember. She used to run after him with her brothers and she has worshiped him from afar all these years even after several years of finishing school have made her more ladylike. She would jump at the chance to marry him - if only he'd give her his heart. David really doesn't want to marry this hoyden but his grandmere counsels him to wait out Billie's puppy love and so he agrees to go forward with whatever the young lady wants to do. Are they engaged or not? David is confused by Billie's reaction. It's up to her whether he stays or rejoins his Wellington in Vienna. The Season brings unexpected changes and David must return to Brussels and await Napoleon's return while Billie is left in London to worry about her love. In addition, her beloved but wayward brother Kit is giving her Billie when or if he returns to London.

I have mixed feelings about this story. It's sweet but it's complicated. I don't usually like stories about girls who loved their neighbors and suddenly the man wakes up and sees his neighbor as a woman and not a girl. This one is a bit different because David didn't even know Billie WAS a girl. It's also the same because I feel like she never really gets to know him. He knows her but as he continually reminds himself, she's very young. Billie knows who she is and doesn't want to lose herself. David understands this so I think he would be a good husband, but I don't know if he's necessarily her true love. David is a complicated character. He falls in love when he's not even in the story. I'm not really sure why or how. When he's told no, he still persists, at the urging of his friends who can see the true picture. I am conflicted in my feelings about that. I want true love to prevail but I didn't get much of a sense of true love in this story. I'm really curious about the enigmatic Myles. I think he's more shrewd and not as lazy as he appears. I think he's had his heart broken a few times. I want to read his story.

Billie's family are a bunch of stereotypes. I'm not sure what's wrong with her mother or why she indulges Kit, but I think maybe they're the most alike and they both suffer from depression. It's not stated that Billie's mother is melancholy, just ill, but they never say what's wrong with her except the last time she went visiting was 8 years ago. What happened? I need to know these kinds of details. The other big problem with the story is that the Waterloo scenes are too dull. They're not as bad as An Infamous Army but there's a lot of telling going on. I skimmed for David's name to see where he was in the action and that's it. The conclusion comes way too close to the end of the book and I feared it would be rushed, but it wasn't too bad. 

Merely A Mister (Regency Trilogy, #3)Merely A Mister by Sherry Lynn Ferguson -- Regency Romance

Myles Trent, Lord Hayden, eldest son of the Duke of Braughton is traveling in Italy when he feels an old lung malady coming on. Rather than be ill and at the mercy of his friends, Myles feels the overwhelming need to return home, and settle down. He knows he'll probably end up marrying someone his father picks out for him though he'd rather not marry at all. He knows his duty and it's always weighed heavily upon him. Rather than return to Braughton, he takes a detour and heads north to Cumberland where his father wanted him to check on something. What, he can't remember in his fevered state. He's taken to the home of a Mr. E. Whyte whose daughter Anne is an herbalist and healer. Anne's potions do wonders for his health and he begins to fall a bit in love with the beautiful woman, but she believes him to be "merely a mister" and is on the verge of being engaged to his father's problematic tenant. What a coil! Can Myles choose to follow his heart and please his father or will he give up his desires for duty? Anne Whyte is a local heroine: she heals the sick and once rescued a lad from being hit by a carriage. At 24 she is unwed and devoted to keeping house for her father and healing the sick. She has no thoughts of marriage despite what her most persistent suitor Perry Wenfield thinks. If she's honest with herself, she's falling in love with her patient Mr. Myles, but he's a grand London gentleman and she's merely a country girl. She must endeavor to think of Mr. Myles as merely another patient.

At last Myles meets his match! I was intrigued by the enigmatic Myles in Quiet Meg and Major Lord David and wondered about his thoughts and what makes him tick. This story doesn't quite go into a lot of depth but it was enough to get to know Myles. At heart, he's kind and generous but on the surface he appears a rake and a dandy. No one really knows the true Myles, not even his brother. He feels the burden of expectation on him and doesn't like it. He's torn between duty and desire. This endeared me to him very much. I didn't quite fall in love with him but I did like him best of all the three heroes, even better than his brother. I felt for Myles and I wanted him to be happy without compromising the family name. Anne has the potential to be a Mary Sue character but she has a bit more personality than that. She trades witty banter with Myles and even shows fits of pique. She is a strong woman who knows her own mind and doesn't let convention sway her, yet she's also very proper and mindful of convention so she's not too modern for the period. I really liked her.

The plot moves along nicely. It gets a tiny bit bogged down 3/4 of the way through which makes the ending a bit rushed, but not too bad. I wanted a bit more in the end though. It also needed an epilogue or something. Most importantly, I learned a lot from this novel. I loved learning about the herbal remedies and how they were used. I also liked learning about the politics of the period. Most authors don't write about the political issues from the standpoint of the common folk so this was unique. I liked learning how the politics affected the farmers and how people could deal with the situation. It was a nice change to have that directly in the story rather than told in passing. The intrigue also made the story different from the usual Florence Nightingale plot. I stayed up too late reading this book because I really liked it.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Leave comments and or suggestions for QNPoohBear, the modern bluestocking.