Friday, June 4, 2010

'The Viscount Who Loved Me' by Julia Quinn -Review-

   Only JQ can take a plot line like; 'Guy has mortal fear of bee's, or, guy falls in love with girl but can't risk loving her because he thinks he is destined to die young' and make it GOLD! I admit to a subtle sliver of skepticism at first, but as the story unfolds and pieces of the puzzle are revealed, the story turns into one of a deep complexity that is driven by the inner struggles of the characters. Anthony Bridgerton is all set to marry! He's even got a bide in mind. One of the most notorious Rakes (upper-case) in London 1814, Anthony is ready to do his duty by his Viscount title and marry some chit to bare his children (before his early death, which he believes he is irrevocably destined for). A major stipulation in his acceptances of marriage is that he must not choose a wife for whom he could fall in love with. Convinced he will die and leave her soon, his pride won't allow him set that trap. But once said woman and himself are caught in a compromising position, his pans are all throw for a loop.

Read an excerpt: here

   Anthony Bridgerton will never be half the Viscount; no, half the MAN, his father was. Or at least, that's what he believes. Although, if you took him for what he truly was, you would see Anthony  as the most honorable, dedicated and pragmatic of individuals. Some of that logic and practicality will be tested by the reader as they dive into Anthony's reasons for believing he is fated to NOT live pass the age of 38 (maybe younger). His father, Edmund, was killed when Anthony was 18, by a bee. Ever since then, he's always had an eerier sense of his mortality He accepted his thought-fate and didn't fear death so much as he accepted it as the inevitable.
   After deciding to get married and get his duty to his title done with, he asks whose the 'Incomparable of 1814', and when he is informed that it is Edwina Sheffield, he instantly decides to direct his suit in her direction. He meets her, and believes her the perfect candidate for his wife, but her meddlesome sister will prove to be a problem.
   Kate Sheffield was very protective of her sister. The Sheffield's were 'financial stretching' as it were, and it was the consensus that Edwina's incomparable beauty will award her a beneficial match this season. Unfortunately, living besides the glow of her sisters magnificent beauty, Kate was often overlooked or used as a way to get in Edwina's good graces. Edwina boldly states at a ton function, that she would never marry someone without her sister's approval. This fact just exemplifies the bond of the sisters and the absence of jealousy. Kate has an idea of the type of guy who could make her sister happy, and Viscount Bridgerton isn't anywhere close to that ideal.
   As Anthony begins to work on Kate, unbeknownst to him, she's working her way through his every thought. Edwina was the safe choice; he felt no spark with her and knew she would serve his purpose well. Kate on the other hand, was a big red flag, and as he is overwhelmed with desire for her, he tries to tamper down his reactions to her.
   All doesn't go according to plan, when Anthony and Kate are caught in a compromising situation (HUGE and infuriating misunderstanding) and they both must marry. Anohony knows the bullet he was trying to avoid just got bigger, but the passions he evokes in his new wife is too irresistible.
   As Anthony begins to try and distance himself from is new bride, she (at first) believes it is because of his past preference in Edwina. He doesn't want to get oo close and devestate Kate with his inevitable young-death; but when he almost loses her, he realizes how much living for the present, loving for the present, is the most important thing.

Rating: 4 1/2 "Aww's"

My Favorite Part of the Book: Is when the bee stings Kate in front of Anthony and he is besides himself with panic. He pins her to the garden bench and proceeds to suck the 'poison' out of her chest where the bee stung when who should so happen to stumble upon them? His mother, her step-mother and Mrs.Featherington (London's biggest gossip). They now must marry! I just love how this scene ended up! It was sweet, romantic, emotional and dramatic all at the same time; and I feel it is one of the more poignant scenes in the book.

   Overall, this book was fabulous! In the Author's Notes, JQ explains that back when Anthony's father lived, they didn't understand the possibility of being allergic to bee's so his sudden death has an explanation behind it. I felt this book was wonderfully paced and well written. The character plights and the situations you find them in compels you to keep turn the page till there's no more left.

*Next book in this series is 'An Offer From A Gentleman' (Book 3), Benedict's story!/ My Review can be found: here

*Also from JQ, 'The Secret Diaries of Miranda Cheever'!!
-Read an excerpt from 'The Secret Diaries of Miranda Cheever': here

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