4 Jul 2010

Recent reads

I've just discovered a new writer - I mean I was introduced to this historical novel by my daughter, who works in the largest bookstore in Malaysia, Kinokuniya. The writer is Mary Balogh and she writes historical fiction - her style is rather like Georgette Heyer although  Georgette Heyer normally writes about the Regency era. I  was given an uncorrected copy of the novel by Shasha but didn't read it until last week when I found I had finished reading most of my books and there wasn't anything else to read! I immediately scrounched around until I again had at least 3 books on my bed side table - one half way through and two to go! Anyway Mary Balogh was in the pile so I started on that first. And so I read... and read on and found I couldn't put it down. I like her - her heroines are independent, no nonsense types, fun loving and a bit rebellious. This was "Slightly Married" - about a young woman who was about to lose her property, her home and her way of life because of her father's silly will - she could keep the property if she married into the nobility. Otherwise everything she owned would pass on to an obnoxious cousin who was waiting for the moment to take away the house and kick her out. The saviour turns out to be her brother's commanding officer -  Colonel Lord Aidan who had come to the house to fulfil a promise he had made to her dying brother - that he would look after her, no matter what.  So as you all can guess he married her - just to save her house and allow her to live the way she was used to. The fun begins from here. The two agree that the marriage is only one of convenience and that they wouldn't really be husband and wife.   I'm not telling what happens though I'm sure you can guess.
Here is an excerpt:

She dashed across the checkered floor of the hall, flung open the door of the visitors' parlor, and hurried inside.
"You wretch!" she cried, pulling undone the ribbon of her hat. And then she stopped dead in her tracks, feeling intense mortification. He was not Percy. He was a stranger.
He was standing before the empty hearth, his back to it, facing the door. He seemed to half fill the room. He looked seven feet tall, dressed as he was in full regimentals, his scarlet coat and its gold facings immaculate, his white pantaloons spotless, his knee-high black cavalry boots polished to a high gloss, his sheathed sword gleaming at his side. He looked broad and solid and powerful and menacing. He had a harsh, weathered face, its darkness accentuated by black hair and eyebrows. It was a grim face, with hard, nearly black eyes, a great hooked nose, and thin, cruel-looking lips.

I'm a great fan of historical fiction - whether it's a chick lit variety like Julia Quinn, something more in the Regency style like Georgette Heyer  and now Mary Balogh or something with a bit more meat like Phillippa Gregory. I love them all.


naida said...

Thanks for the recommendation. I enjoy good historical fiction. Georgette Heyer and Phillippa Gregory are favorites.


Kat said...

If you like Georgette Heyer, you may like her.