Tuesday, March 26, 2013

A Little Folly-Jude Morgan

A Little Folly

Jude Morgan

St. Martin’s, Mar 12 2013, $25.99

ISBN 9781250022271

Sir Clement Carnell was a bully with a temper and he lived to control others. He married late, but his young bride proved weak and succumbed to death after a decade under his thumb. She left him with two children Valentine and Louisa, who he raised with an iron fist; neither was allowed to leave their Devonshire estate. Both in their twenties, the siblings are freed when in a rage Clement drops dead.

However, adjusting to their liberation from the tyrant proves difficult as they know no other way to live except hiding from the wrath. Still they throw small parties and welcome estranged cousins Tom and Sophie Spedding into their lives. Valentine shows his gumption when he rejects his father’s chosen one. The Spedding couple takes the Carnell duet to London where Valentine and married Lady Harriet Eversholt begin a tryst after meeting at her gambling parlor; while Louisa is attracted to Lieutenant Pearce Lynley. As Valentine runs up a large gambling debt, Harriet’s irate spouse plans to destroy the country bumpkin with the siblings’ childhood friend, James Tresilian intervening.

Readers will feel they are in England just after the Napoleonic wars are over as a euphoric atmosphere of rejoicing has spread throughout London. However the key to this strong enjoyable Regency is Jude Morgan captures the actions and reactions of the naïve brother and sister to their new freedom to do what they want for the first time in their over two decades of life.

Harriet Klausner

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