Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Romancing Mr Bridgerton - Julia Quinn

"On the sixth of April, in the year 1812 - precisely two days before her sixteenth birthday - Penelope Featherington fell in love. But Colin Bridgerton certainly didn't fall in love with her in 1812 (and not in 1813, 1814, 1815, or - oh blast, not in all the years 1816-1822, either, and certainly not in 1823, when he was out of the country the whole time, anyway." Penelope Featherington has secretly adored her best friend's brother for...well, it feels like forever. After half a lifetime of watching Colin Bridgerton from afar, she thinks she knows everything about him, until she stumbles across his deepest secret...and fears she doesn't know him at all. Colin Bridgerton is tired of being thought nothing but an emptyheaded charmer, tired of everyone's preoccupation with the notorious gossip columnist Lady Whistledown, who can't seem to publish an edition without mentioning him in the first paragraph. But when Colin returns to London from a trip abroard he discovers nothing in his life is quite the same - especially Penelope Featherington! The girl haunting his dreams. But when he discovers that Penelope has secrets of her own, this elusive bachelor must she his biggest threat - or his promise of a happy ending?

My favourite Quinn book along with The Viscount Who Loved. And it's my favourite because I really enjoy Penelope Featherington. From book one she has always seemed like a nice girl victim of her mother's lack of fashion sense and of not having a conventional beauty. She seemed more a girl next door type. I rather liked her even before getting to know her better like I did in this book.

Here she shows us that she is also an intelligent, warm and witty young lady. She also shows that to Colin Bridgerton who finally realises what he has been missing. This is also the book where the secret behind Lady Whistledown's identity is revealed. Even the odious Cressida Cowper pretends to be the notorious gossip and I was very happy when she was unmasked. I really disliked her since book 2 when Anthony gave her the cut direct.

Penelope and Colin are perfect for one another, have interests in common and we end the story with the certainty that they will have a happy marriage. It's seldom that I read about such a well matched couple.

Grade: B

I couldn't help noticing a small detail. In chapter 1 there's a mention of a novel by S.R. Fielding. S.R. Fielding is the pen name of Sara, the heroine of Lisa Kleypas' Dreaming of You:

Chapter 1
"Is he?" Penelope asked, managing to feign (in her opinion) rather realistic indifference. Of course, she did set A Brief History of Greece down behind Mathilda, the novel by S. R. Fielding that had been all the rage a year earlier. Everyone had a copy of Mathilda on their bed stand. And it was thick enough to hide A Brief History of Greece.

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